I had looked at the 10" x 14" teaching book with absolutely no intentions of trying to paint the ocean or the cliffs I live above and yet
I enjoyed perusing the step by step paintings and the tips and clues to doing the same.
"If you continually think in large masses of light and shadow ..." "Always think and paint the large masses first..." "...pick out the lighting...then you will know exactly where you are going."So if you know from where the light emanates, you will know where you are going.
That makes more than sense to me.
Later in the day, out and about on the land, I found the painting advice impacting how I saw the ocean waves, the light on the rocks, the blue of the sky. Lessons for painters are first and foremost, lessons for the eye.
Writers must see carefully too and one's eye must be attuned to many realms. It's good to be able to see one's own framework of understanding, to filter the light from the dark. Every heart frames reality in its own terms, its own limits. To have an impact it needn't be large, but there must be an intersection with other frames of reality other than one's own.
I look at the sea. Clouds are stretched like peach tinged taffy along the horizon. Light is scattered across the waters so white and shimmering in areas that the eye can barely absorb the beauty without reflexively looking away. I can change my visual perspective and for a moment the waters in front of me appear like a bowl, but I know the horizon is distance beyond my scope.
There's a boat out there carrying its own reality across the waters, but to me it is little more than a dark speck. We are often in each other's view, but seeing eye to eye, well the eyes and the heart can take a lot training.
Such are the topics that have been on my mind lately. You might enjoy the essay I wrote this week and posted on Write Purpose "Why We do the Things We Do "
Now that I have read my old focal guide, I want to see if I can translate it to my digital camera. My notes to my self need to say.."Always be aware of your tendency to just point and shoot on automatic..." and of course that too has metaphorical implications; I'm not just talking about taking pictures.