I did this painting for the SCVWS upcoming "Red, White, Or Blue" exhibit in July. I had fun designing this painting.
The photo I started with was of both my kids and one of their friends getting ready for the annual Menlo Park 4th of July parade. As you can see, my daughter had elaborately decorated her scooter. In order to make this work, I kept zooming and playing with different crops until I got the bow in the lower left corner. I also loved the interesting light shape created by the arm and the light concrete. However, I had to adjust the lighting on the bow so that I could have lights move over to my center of interest. I also had to work hard to make the white in shadow darker than than the red and blue in direct sunlight. (I probably could have darkened even more) I also was pleased with the slanted E composition that the darks created. I actually did about 12 different thumbnails before I got the value composition the way I wanted.
It was very tricky figuring out how to handle all those crazy stars, but I liked playing with their shapes. Also, I wasn't sure how to make sparkly silver stars, so I just did wet in wet and dropped in some bright thalo blue. It seemed to work. Anyway, I'm pretty pleased with how this came out. Let's just hope it gets accepted into the show.