The Spalding Inn, Whitefield, NH

Small Changes – Big Differences

My White Mountains painting is still in progress.  Every time I work on it, it energizes me.

However, I’m not sure if yesterday’s changes will be evident in these photos.

The differences are subtle.  However, those small changes are making a big difference in the emotional content of the painting.

At left is how the painting looked earlier this week. (I wrote about that in When You’ve Got the Blues…)

The biggest difference was the space for the hotel.  That rectangle was white, to be filled in, later.

Mostly, my work at that point was to establish the tones, and convey the eerie beauty of the landscape during a full moon.  (My last visit to Whitefield, NH, had been in mid-December, at night.  Driving to the hotel, the light on the mountains and the snow… well, it was breathtakingly beautiful, and an inspiration.)

Yesterday, with extra paint on my palette, I decided to fine-tune some of the details.  The larger photo, above, shows how it looks right now.

Specifically, the building – the rectangle –  is closer to what the finished tone will be.  I want it to stand out as a focal point in the finished painting, but I don’t want it to look stark.  So the contrast should be slight, and building illuminated slightly.

(I will probably show some lights on.)

The real-life hotel I’m basing this on is blue, and – looking at the position of the moon – the front of the hotel should be slightly in shadow.

I’m also suggesting an additional shadow cast by the moonlight, across the land in front of the hotel.

See… I want the hotel to look eerie in the moonlight, but not creepy. There’s a fine line between those two impressions, visually.

So, I added some pinkish color to the lower sky.  I tweaked the moon and the sky, in general, to bring attention up to it.

Then, I refined some of the broader color areas in the landscape.

The painting is nearing completion, but I think the hotel rectangle needs to fully dry before I work on it more.  That means a week or two, since there’s a lot of white in the light blue; white paint tends to dry the slowest.

So, it’s still a work in progress.

I think it’ll be finished in two or three more painting sessions, probably around late March.

This painting is hanging in my living room, where I can admire it regularly.  I really like this painting.  The energy in it makes all the difference.