Profile: Andy Evansen
"I've been very lucky that my art career has allowed me to
The landscape in general excites me, but more specifically when I see an interesting pattern of light and dark with strong shapes, I can't wait to paint it. The subject doesn't matter at that point. Many of my best paintings have a solid abstract quality to them, which isn't possible without that value pattern. I was just painting with a friend last week in a beautiful little town, much to see and paint, and we were both drawn to a group of roofers with their ladders casting shadows on the house. Those types of interesting scenes make a much better painting than a stream running through green trees, at least for me.
The single most important lesson I've learned about painting is that we don't paint things - we paint how light affects things. So many of my students struggle painting cars, or figures, or buildings. I tell them it's just a light side and a shadow side, nothing more. Get those shapes right, and the viewer will see a car, or person, or barn without my stressing with details. The painting itself, on a larger scale, is simply a pattern of light and dark on a 2-D surface that we use to create the illusion of a 3-D world. Value is more important than color in that regard, and I do value studies quite often before the painting just to reinforce the simple composition and get me in the right frame of mind.
Learn more about Andy Evansen in our in-depth interview.
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