Snow Colors Sample 2014, #1

Here is my first snow colors study for 2014.  It takes me some practice to reprogram my mind to think about the color of snow used for shadows and sun light – it’s all a mind game I suppose, but it does take a bit to switch from landscapes to snow scenes and identifying those elements of values particular to snow.

This oil pastel (4×6) is my first sample of snow for 2014 – a little painting to get me going, This scene was great for it’s a close-up of a snow gully with deep pockets, a bit of water resting in the middle and several small trees for interest, all nice characteristics for a snow scene.

Click onto image for a larger view.

Snow Sample 2014, #1

Snow Sample 2014, #1

A reference image from Tellervo Helminen, photographer of pmp was used.


About Mary

Oil Pastelist
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37 Responses to Snow Colors Sample 2014, #1

  1. dorannrule says:

    What a challenge! But you’ve met it!

  2. Painting for Joy says:

    The study looks like a finished piece Mary! The snow looks so deep and cold. You’ve captured the subtle shades wonderfully. Looks like a blanket of freshly fallen snow with all the sparkles!

    • Mary says:

      Thanks Rhonda for your feedback and comment. Painting snow is a little mind game on colors, but the same formula’s for form and values. Hope you enjoy your weekend.

  3. Looking forward to admiring the series, Mary.

  4. M-R says:

    Love it, Mary ! – it makes me almost feel cold. 😀

  5. That’s what I thought about too when you said you will start winter landscapes “the color white”, it’s not easy but you just made it look so effortless and real! Love how deep you made the snow look, has a perfect “cool” shade and is super fluffy, great study!

    • Mary says:

      Thanks Eva – I have several color combinations that I want to try this year. Painting snow is like painting sea-foam or waves, it’s finding the patterns and using values to create impressions. I’m still new at this subject and hope that this season I can get more confident in snowy scenes. Have a great weekend.1

  6. Impressive subtlety in this, Mary

  7. Gallivanta says:

    Yes, quite a challenge to switch to a snow scene. But you are never afraid of a challenge!

  8. Not an easy task, but you certainly understand the temperature and values. Beautiful!

  9. hey amiga
    with windows 8.1 i am viewing your post… it’s nice to see the cool colors of the snow, and it makes me remember long ago when i enjoyed painting snow as well. great job! friends gave me several new skulls – one a small mammal and the other a pelican’s head, so i am about to gallop down a new stretch of painting ideas, one that should be fun…

    as for windows 8… i agree, the changes challenge the creative mind to master the new hurdles, but there are some things i dislike.. one, on the notebook-sized screen, the wordpress ‘new post’ page is tiny compared to the same screen on windows 7… i can barely see the words, so mistakes are hard to catch. sometimes the mouse freezes (already?) and the touch screen doesn’t work so i am stuck, and where is the ctl/alt/delete, which only gives me a tiny option w/o the restart option…

    anyway, it seems to work slower w/the usb stick than the 7 did….

    like yahoo mimicking gmail, it seems that windows is trying to copy apple? i don’t care if it washes windows, i just want a plain simple platform that doesn’t slow down the already slow internet… but i remember teh tortoise and the hare story and will hobble along!

    • Mary says:

      I have found the windows icon next to ALT button great – the gateway to anything you might need to do. If you hit the windows icon and then type the letter a – now your search engine has come up and you can find any function you want to perform (including deleting excess cookies, temp, etc.). If you play with this area you’ll find most everything contained in any of the three choices on the right said (it is like the old start button, program files, etc.). Don’t hesitate to ask me any questions, I’ll try to answer. (I did stop using internet explorer, firefox is much better with wordpress and most everything else for including speed).

      • as i read your comment, i immediately looked down and asked myself, “windows icon?”

        and yes, it’s there! i’ve been too busy to ‘test’ it – fear i will lose what’s hanging on the screen via slow interent!

        i still think my biggest complaint regarding ‘technical’ issues is not about windows, but about the people who write the troubleshooting prompts for many gadgets – even cameras! — and they say that you must be connected to the internet…

        • Mary says:

          Ah Lisa I had to laugh about your comment on info for technical problems (all online!) – the little reference books for how-to’s and problem solving with technology has not changed since the first day we started using desk-top computers in the early 1980’s. My comment back then is exactly what it is today – they folks writing this stuff has not been done for the average computer user (at that time it was for office work, which was considered average computer user). So in 30 years they still haven’t written it for the average user – nothing has changed and yet everything is different.

          • yes! my new camera didn’t have a manual.. it refers the user to the online site, and at that time i was unable to be online.. so frustrating, but yes, we have to laugh and see the bright side!

            • Mary says:

              Hey Z – I forgot to tell you, if you put your mouse over the windows icon and right click, a menu of all options you used to get with “start” comes up. Check it out – everything we are used too is in this machine, unfortunately you have to hunt and peck for it. Have a great week.

  10. Beautiful! I’ve always loved snow should it be in real, paintings or photography 🙂

  11. poppytump says:

    Tread warily it looks deep 😉 … love the soft light and accents Mary .

  12. Don says:

    Mary, what colour do you use for the shadows? Really looks good.

    • Mary says:

      Hi Don, thanks – several colors went into the shadows depending on the value range. To keep the vividness of OPs in check I have to create a lighter overall appearance by laying down white oil pastels first and spread the whole surface with it – this allows the colors to be blended in with the white and giving a much lighter value mid-tone range. For the darkest blue I used Prussian Blue and sometimes in the foreground mixed with cerulean blue, mid-value blue was sapphire blue mixed with mid-range cerulean blue, and the lighter blues were actually light magenta/purple. I have to blend right on the surface, as noted above, rather if I was painting with oil paints I’d be mixing my colors on a palette (which I would rather do because blending on the surface fills up the tooth quickly).

  13. Though I love you and your work, Mary…I dread what’s coming and can’t dwell upon snow just yet… 🙂

  14. dsaquarelles says:

    a beautiful light with soft shadows! i ❤

  15. Susan Feniak says:

    I would be hard put to think of snow in anyway but as always you have captured your subject very well Mary! 🙂

  16. It looks great. Love all the blue undertones. I am headed to Palm Springs for the weekend to soak up some sun. I would love to see some snow!

    • Mary says:

      Thanks Janell! Snow is still a new subject for me and find the colors fascinating – this year I want to get much more comfortable with the shadow colors.

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