This painting is “Argenteuil”; painted by impressionist artist, Monet. The impressionists painted light and the color of light. Therefore, the impressionists liked to paint with the light behind them; form and cast shadows were not important. Colors were under mixed and warm and cool color temperatures were used to model forms. The impressionists also used a similar thickness of paint throughout their paintings. Shadows were not transparent but colors were added to any shadows. Brushstrokes were used to describe the form and the brushstrokes varied. For example, horizontal brushstrokes would likely follow the direction of a building. Large brushstrokes were used in the foreground and smaller strokes were used in the distance. Reflected colors were important. At this time, more colors were available and the impressionists were able to use pure colors, tints (hues with whites) and whites. Darks and earth colors were limited in the impressionist palette. Middle and dark values were tints with pure colors; muted colors were avoided. Unity was achieved by using tints of pure colors. Warm and cool temperatures instead of light and dark values were used. Complements or near complements in close values enhanced colors and vibrancy. Warm tints enhanced cool colors. Simultaneous contrast of temperature was more important than contrast of values.
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