Tonal Study – River

Today’s watercolor experiment:

My experiment for today is a rendition of The Tiber from Monte Mario c.1640, a tonal watercolor sketch by Claude Lorrain.  I used the techniques from today’s warmup exercise to give the impression of faint, distant mountains, middle-toned trees and their reflections lining the riverbank and darker trees in the foreground.

According to art historian, E.H. Gombrich in The Story of Art, Lorrain’s sketches showed that “he was a perfect master of the realistic representation of nature, and his studies of trees are a joy to look at. … It was Claude who first opened people’s eyes to the sublime beauty of nature and, for nearly a century after his death travelers used to judge a piece of real scenery according to his standards .” (pg. 302-303) Gombrich makes a distinction between his life-like sketches and the dreamlike vision of his finished works.

Here is my tonal study of a river:

Watercolor: Tone Study in Sepia

Tone Study – River
9″x12″ 140# Cold Pressed Watercolor Block

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