Sunrise Canyon Process

November 11, 2011 § Leave a comment

Sunrise Canyon, Watercolor and Gouache on Paper, 5 x 9”, 2011

Sunrise Canyon is part of a series of eight paintings made for a short silent film, now in production.  The film is a western, so for each work in the series, I used a vivid palette that would be coherent with the theme.

Before I begin an artwork, I make loose gestural drawings and small thumbnail sketches to work out the composition. Often, I will also make small color studies to get a sense of the overall feel of a piece. I like to work out my ideas and imagery using different mediums, as I find that this type of play often leads to a better painting in the end.

Small thumbnail sketch that the final drawing was based on.

Watercolor thumbnail sketches.

For this work, I also used photoshop to make a color study mock up before I began the final painting. Working digitally has become a valuable tool for my process.

Digital mock up of Sunrise Canyon.

Here are two additional images from the morning that I photographed the piece.  The light in the early morning here is pale and soft enough for an accurate color photograph.

The artwork on a small wooden bench outside of our home in Mae Sot, Thailand.

Sunrise Canyon on a small bench.

To see more of my artwork, please visit


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