Thursday, February 13, 2014

Snow Reference!

by Donato

Although the snow storm that is slamming the whole Eastern Coast for a knock out.  This is one of the greatest opportunities as a visual artist to acquire amazing reference images for future projects.  I was luckily enough to have my assistant Kelley at the studio during a snow storm a couple of weeks ago.  We got dressed up as the Nights Watch for my Game of Thrones Calendar work, as well as sliding in a series of pictures for my Fellowship of the Ring - Descent from Caradhras.  I've also thrown in a few images while in Vermont walking with my daughter Cecilia and my brothers dog in the early morning light.

Something great will come of all of these.

I just so happened to assign a project based upon Jack London's wonderful short story To Build A Fire to my students a few weeks ago.   No excuses for those in the NorthEast for not landing the right references!

Make sure your costumes, camera and props are always ready to go, and amazing art will follow! Have fun!

Frodo catching a chill

Look at those shadows, and edge light on the dog!!!!

Snow can be blinding white, and all the way to near black in the shadows near the feet!


  1. Love these! Even though I hate the cold, I love the way unspoiled snow looks. The other day when I was taking my kids to school the rising sun cast a golden yellow glow over the snow, creating gorgeous deep blue/purple shadows. I really need to start taking my regular camera everywhere because my cell phone just doesn't do the colors justice! Very cool! :-D

  2. Great timing! I dressed up and took the plunge. No excuses now. I think I got some good reference and had some fun at the same time.

  3. Boy, I know what you mean, anytime conditions are unique I find myself running around taking reference photos, even if I don't have a specific project in mind. It snowed last week and I couldn't help but trudge around the hills gathering reference. Then the next day, I was driving to my sister's to make her pose in the snow wearing a medieval dress.
    I'm glad you have another good one to add to the artist selfies, it will be exciting to see the paintings you produce with this reference.
    James Gardner

  4. Wow looking forward to the paintings these lead to!

  5. I shot some nice ref in -18 C, at sunrise, a month ago. (Granted, sunrise at that time of year in Finland is about 10 AM, so it's not that extreme...)
    I also like collecting reference of different amounts and different kinds of snow on trees, just in case I ever need that one photo of a small pine 60% covered in 2 days old, melting snow. And a snow filled background is a great excuse to paint your figure all in midtones.