– Jeanne Mackenzie reporting –

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, Alex Schaefer’s “MacArthur Park.”

Lead Image: “MacArthur Park,” by Alex Schaefer, 2016, oil, 30 x 28 in.

There is a lot of action going on in this painting — landscape, cityscape, figurative. What gives your eye rest and entry into this lively painting is the solid tree in the foreground. By keeping the distant colors close in value, the park and cityscape stay as one shape. Having the trees on different diagonal lines would help to add a variety of angles. This painting has so many fun activities to explore —the marquee sign, the ball game, the people strolling. Did you notice the person relaxing under the tree?


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