How Backlit Landscapes Create a Sense of Wonder and Beauty

It’s been a harsh winter here in the Midwest. My view has been limited to the ground covered in white snow, to an ashen gray of the sky, with teasing glimpses of brilliant sunrises and sunsets here and there throughout the weeks. I try to focus on the whimsical way the untouched snow sparkles with light reflected off of the individual flakes, but am easily distracted by the freezing wind–and the solid ice that grows over my car nightly.

And so I hope you feel as refreshed as I do after viewing the life-filled watercolor paintings of Karlyn Holman. We can be reminded that other seasons await, and that a life filled with color is not far off. In her landscapes that I’ve featured here, for example, we can see the sun peeking from behind the trees, its rays of warmth reaching out reassuringly. “Don’t worry,” this says to me, “everything is temporary.”

“Whether I’m painting an abstract or realistic landscape, my goal is to convey the same sense of wonder and beauty that I experienced while on location,” says Holman (tweet this!) in Watercolor Artist (February). “Generally, my realistic paintings are based on subjects from my native area around Lake Superior or from my travels around the world. I’m always looking for ways to create a fresh, loose look for my landscapes. I usually have a plan, but I love when accidents happen, offering a dash of spontaneity in an otherwise controlled effort.”

Focus of Light on Fall Trees (watercolor on paper, 15x11) by Karlyn Holman

Focus of Light on Fall Trees (watercolor on paper, 15×11) by Karlyn Holman, author of Watercolor–Making Your Mark. View a step-by-step demonstration of this backlit landscape painting here.

“One of my favorite scenes to paint is a backlit woodland landscape,” she continues. “The light filtering through the trees is an experience not soon to be forgotten–and one that painters love to re-create.”

What a beautiful image. In addition to Holman’s step-by-step demonstration of a backlit landscape painting, click here to learn more about a special offer that includes her book and its companion DVD, as well as a signature watercolor brush set, and a download of Watercolor Artist that features another 10-step lesson.

Warm regards,

Cherie Haas, online editor**Free download! Easy Acrylic Painting Techniques To Try Today!
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