Monday, June 09, 2008


(Bid On This Painting)
This will take you over to eBay

The Grand View Ranch Has A New Web Site!

By popular demand, we have created a new web site which artists can go to and find
information about workshops, events, painting tips and receive a FREE book on “how to” paint on location.
Please check it out and let me know what you think at :

Just south of The Grand View Ranch is an isolated forest that contains an incredible tapestry of canyons and waterfalls. Many of these destinations are unmarked and without visitors. I learned of a place like this, and knew that I had to explore it for myself. Faery Falls is exceptionally beautiful. In the spring, the water in Ney Springs Creek powerfully rushes to form a lovely 60-foot high, fan-shaped waterfall that crashes into a deep, clear blue-green pool of water below, while butterflies dance around the edges of the cascading waters like little fairies. Because of the huge amount of spray and mist at the base of the falls, the one difficulty I had at Faery Falls was finding a dry spot to paint without getting wet.

A secret key that unlocks the mystery of painting waterfalls is to paint them as if they are dry. Start by painting the rocks in cool, dark colors, and sculpt them first. Novice painters usually paint the white of the waterfalls first, leaving the rocks flat without depth. The best water effects are created using shadow and form. Notice also that the highlight on the water is not white but a light, warm color. Try using Cad lemon yellow and Cad orange with white to paint the bright, shimmering sunlight that dances over the falls.
Capturing the feeling of the water free falling to the earth below is what distinguishes the master artist from the Sunday painter. Leonardo da Vinci would call this subtle ability to paint feelings “Sfumato,” referring to a technique which overlays translucent layers of color to create perceptions of depth, volume, and form, requiring a delicate approach as though one was trying to grasp and hold smoke (fume). Painting is personal expression, and most artists learn to paint objects. However, when an artist challenges himself to paint the elusive qualities of his own response to objects in life, he becomes a great artist.
I hope that we can build a community of artists that can share information with each other.

If you know of any artists that might appreciate being included, let them know about this blog.

I hope to offer more painting tips as this conversation continues.If you have questions that you would like me to answer, please don’t hesitate to email me anytime.

I welcome your feedback.


Anonymous ~Kathi said...

"Sfumato"--what a great term! Stefan, I found your blog by going to the Blogger list of Mt. Shasta bloggers. I live here, too, and blog!

I've just retired from almost 30 years working at nearby COS, and I've treated myself to a couple of art classes this past year. This fall, I'm taking painting. I can already appreciate what you've said in this post from my drawing class and some dabbling in watercolors, so I'd love to be in communication. Look foward to reading your blog, and maybe you'd like to peek at mine at

Best wishes, ~Kathi

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