This is the third painting in a series commissioned by my friend Suzi Lantz for her 100x Leadership Summit here in Canton.
This time, I wanted to explore a more concentrated look at the hikers themselves. The distant hills were painted in much the same way as they were in the first two paintings. The composition changed dramatically in the foreground. Here I painted two high hills between which the hikers are walking. I like the way this lends itself to the story of the painting, as though the hikers are coming at us from the distant hills, but zooming in on the hikers comes at the cost of an impression of grandeur that was present in the first two drafts because of their openness.
Because the hikers are closer, I had to put a lot more detail into them, though looking back at this I wish I had silhouetted them more and made them almost completely black.
The shadows cast by the hikers might be my favorite part of the painting. I want to explore more with intentional use of shadows in my compositions in general, and this reinforces my desire to do that.
The foreground grass I would prefer as a smoother field of color. The detail in the foreground makes sense if thinking only of perspective because it is closer, but as far as composition goes, that detail draws the eye and competes with the hikers for focus.
I like the story being told by this composition, but I prefer the open landscape in the others.