I have been preparing for a September show. I find that if I follow one theme (or assignment) my work has a coherent look and I also really learn. However, sometimes one just has to step back and ask for help. Luckily I live with someone who though he has never painted has looked at enough paintings to recognize what is amiss. I had worked on this scene from a neighbor's place for quite awhile...never posted it as it was always "off." When I asked my husband to tell me what he saw, he said that "it is all the same shade." (Well, he meant "value"...didn't get the art term right, but nailed the problem!
One day of rework and really darkening the foreground and middle distance allowed the painting to focus. It was all about the light cast on the river by the sunset...and now it looks like that.