Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Experiments in atmospheric perspective

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Thought I would use an image from a recent bike ride to experiment a little with atmospheric projection. When I was on my ride there was a weather front coming in over the mountains and I was thinking of the Zen conundrum that the mountain and the cloud are one. On a rational basis its true - the cloud is formed because the warmer air cools as it travels up the side of the mountain, and water condenses forming the cloud. But then the cloud releases rain, which erodes and shapes the mountain. The zen question would be are the cloud and the mountain two or one?
Anyway, there's a painting in the Chicago Art Institute that I was thinking of because the Watchung ridges often form the same kind of diminishing cloud formations creating a beautiful rhythmic pattern. I have the name of the artist somewhere in my sketch books. The painting creates a dramatic feeling of distance just through the placement of the horizon line and the diminishing size of the clouds.

Here's the image from my ride that I was using as reference:

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