Simple Sunrise Lake

Cori Dyson


Simple Sunrise Lake is an original oil painting by Cori Dyson. The art measures 5" x 7" and the frame size measures 11 1/4" x 13 1/4".


"Sunsets and sunrises are the trickiest but most beautiful scenes to paint. You never really know how beautiful or exciting the sky will be as the sun is at the horizon. So many factors go into how beautiful and vibrant the colors are. If there has been a large fire in nearby areas and the smoke is west of your location, often the particles in the air will reflect the shorter wave length colors more and thus the reds, magentas, pinks and oranges are much more vibrant and colorful.

Clouds also play a big part in the action. There needs to be just the right amount of clouds, not too little and certainly not too many, but just enough, and in the right place, for the colors to bounce off the bottom of the clouds. Clouds can make the sunset or sunrise spectacular or just ho-hum.

These paintings are tricky to capture from life because it is all happening so fast! You may not think the sunset or sunrise is happening fast, but there are generally only a couple of moments in this process (at different times with vastly different lighting conditions) that are really worth painting.

You have to pick one then stick with it! That means remembering all the colors in the right places. In reality, an artist only has a few minutes to capture the sunrise or sunset.

Most artists arrive early, hours before the 'time', set up, and pre-compose/paint the scene. In the early morning hours before dawn is often the hardest. You have some light for a short time before the sun breaks the horizon to put in the composition and structure of the scene before the main event. 

Some artists take a photograph of the moment and paint in the comfort of home away from mosquitoes and glaring early morning sun! I painted this from a photograph generously shared with me by an artist friend. I was able to paint this little gem without fighting mosquitoes as big as birds in other states!"

-Cori Dyson

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