Whether it’s a busy citycape or a sunlit meadow, John DuVal’s gorgeous watercolor landscapes all seem to have a little extra shimmer and shine to them.
Perhaps that’s because he wasn’t always a painter—this Jersey City artist originally trained in figure drawing at Rutgers University, and in fact, his painting career only began after a trip to Florence, Italy, where he studied with a local artist for several months.
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Today, he’s devoted his focus entirely to watercolors, and with Sargent, Wyeth, and Turner as inspirations, John’s paintings certainly don’t disappoint! Check out these landscapes from his collection below, then make sure to visit his website for more.
First up, Sunny Liberty State Park is a classic example of John’s highly illustrative, light-filled paintings. Note the figures, loosely sketched in strong colors, their shadows a rich purple hue cast by the bright morning sun—you’ll see a similar effect in many of his pieces, keeping our eyes focused on the landscape as the people “blur” by.
John’s focus is really on the feeling of a place—the way it breathes and changes throughout the day. In his cityscapes, like this one, people are often simply one more element of that great living organism.
A NYC Morning, below offers a different vantagepoint with a similar message.
The colors are warmer than the previous painting, but the air still feels damp (another quality often found in John’s work). Steam rises from the glistening sidewalks, heated by the early sun, a stark contrast to the line of cold cars parked against the curb.
And let’s finish with another painting from Liberty State Park. The city, again, rises in the distance (a returning actor in today’s trilogy) but it’s much softer, more removed, and the landscape appears to breathe a little easier because of it.
Wind whips sparse leaves into fluttering ribbons, while a speckled yellow ground waits patiently for the coming rain. It’s not a wilderness any longer, but the soul of the wilderness remains—and with imagination, you can envision what this place once might have been.
Please take a few minutes and visit John’s website at duvalfineart.com to explore the rest of his paintings. . . you’ll be glad you did!
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