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, Sharron Boxenbaum’s “Island in the Snow.” 

Even though this landscape is of an overcast scene, there are strong contrasts of shapes and value giving it life. The play of complementary colors — violet/blue and yellow/orange — gives a vibrant feel to a simple subject. Although there are many horizontal banded shapes in the scene, the artist has added enough angles in the foreground and sky to counter the repetitions. The playful palette knife strokes add energy to the painting. 



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