BEHIND THE SCENE
A little boy rows a boat for the first time, and he takes it very seriously
This is a picturesque scene, but it was also a meaningful photograph to paint because everything in it says something about its young subject: his passion for rowing, his excitement about exploring the mysterious river, and his sense that he was the captain of the ship. As you can see from his focused expression and flushed face, he took his responsibility very seriously!
I like all the compositional angles in this painting. The boat, oar, and bush all slant upward to the right; meanwhile the figure leans forward and looks toward the left, providing a tension of opposites. To release this tension, in the upper left the glimpse of sky casts a reflection in the water, making a strong vertical column that almost becomes a second character in the painting, its lightness matched only by the figure's pale face and hair.
At 30 x 40 inches this is one of my larger paintings, and I found it to be a good size. It is big enough to "hold a wall," but in a house with high ceilings it doesn't overwhelm the room. For clients looking for a painting large enough to make a statement, but not go overboard, I would recommend it.