One of the most powerful compositional tools we have as landscape painters is our ability to move the eye of the viewer around the picture plane and even create the illusion of movement into the picture plane by creating the illusion of depth. Movement is a visual pathway through the painting that the artist creates for the viewer.
In this painting by Edward Seago (English, 20th c.) the pattern of the rivulets of water create movement into the picture plane, pulling the viewer in. The masts of the ships direct our eye into the sky, and the counterchange (dark/light pattern) in the sky pulls our eye from left to right creating a sense of movement in the clouds.
Here is a short video showing how both value and color can lead the eye.
P.S. If you would like to learn more about movement and composing strong landscape paintings, join us for Composing the Landscape, our four week online course starting October 28, 2022! Join us!
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