I wonder if anyone spends as long on a background as me? Its taken me a week and many layers of glazing to create the effect I wanted. Its been fun though.
To me, a background helps to set the scene and develop the mood or atmosphere of the painting. I wanted a soft almost dreamy feel to this.
I expect many of you have traveled by air and have looked down at the clouds below. It has an almost unreal feel to it. We are so used to looking up at the clouds but now they are below us like snowy mountain ranges peaking through a layer of mist.
This was what I was imagining as I began creating the background.
Ok, time for a quick science lesson now :)
Each winter, when a high pressure weather system moves over the snow-covered mountain valleys , something takes place called a temperature inversion. When this happens the warmer air above traps a layer of cold air in the valley and the clouds settle almost on top of us weighing us down with misery as we long for the sunshine once more. Yet only a couple thousand feet above us, sometimes not even that much, the sky is deep blue in every direction and the sun sparkles.
Isn't this a little like our lives? We so easily allow the problems and stresses of life to cloud around us, blocking our vision and dulling our spirits. We need to remember though that hope and sunshine are just above the haze. Once we realize this, we can leave the clouds of despair below us and move into the sunlight of hope. I guess this is partly what this painting is about and its an important thing to remember at this time of year as we lead up to Christmas.
I'm not sure how quickly I'm going to get the actual portrait section completed in the coming weeks but I'm going to remember to keep my head firmly above the clouds as I do so :)