Why This Works: Figures as Supporting Players

“Horizon,” by Paul George, oil, 12 x 16 in.

by Jeanne Mackenzie

In this series, plein air painter and instructor Jeanne Mackenzie takes a look at new paintings by contemporary artists and points out why they succeed as painted images. This week, “Horizon,” by Paul George.

The figures in this painting have successfully become supporting players for the boat subject. It is easy to add figures and spend too much time overworking them. The artist has chosen one (in yellow) to be the dominant figure, but they all tell a story about working on, or interacting with, the boat.

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