When I paint my golf paintings, which almost always have a sky, it seems to be the part I struggle most. I´ve learned through experience that the perfect comparison of how to paint skies above our landscapes is when we think of a lamp. The light bulb will be the sun, the lampshade is the atmosphere and all the decorative patterns or designs suspended, could be the clouds. The density of the light bulb + the lampshades + suspended decorations are the details which interact with and dictate the feeling of the room. The same effect is produced in a painting.
Most of the time, we are used to having a predetermined color for our skies, which could be bluish. However, we forget that it has a variety of colors. Here are some tips that will help you to visualize the color range of your skies.
Instead of looking for an overall color of the sky, just focus on the detail of it. When it comes to creating a sunset you may have darker colors with a range o-f deep reds, pinks, yellows, and purples. However, on a rainy day, you may add gray, green and sometimes yellow tinges to it.
Sometimes when we are painting skies, we feel that something is missing; typically this is the lack of space and depth. Shadows are what will produce this effect in your painting. Even in bright days, when you think that it doesn’t need any type of accentuation, it does! Shadows would enrich your sky with color and reflection.
Clouds sometimes could look really white. And, if you choose painting them white, they would probably have a flat looking with no realism. However, sometimes we forget that clouds reflect light, which means that it could perceive all the colors from the sky. Do not hesitate to experiment with more colors than just white and blue.
Experimenting with different thickness of strokes can give a peculiar atmosphere into the paint. It helps to emphasize the element or situation of the paint. Also, textures are the perfect option to add dimensionality into the painting.
In order to have a convincing landscape painting you may need to keep in mind that the sky tends to lighten toward the horizon. So be mindful of this and start using brighter colors the closer you get to the horizon.