With Quiet Paintings, You Have Nothing to Hide Behind!

Here’s a painting fresh off the easel: Kingfisher Bay, Morning Light.

Dan Scott, Fraser Island, Morning Light, 2023
Dan Scott, Fraser Island, Morning Light, 2023

I painted this from a photo I took on our last trip to Kingfisher Bay on Fraser Island, Australia. It was 6:24 am on the jetty, with the sun low on the horizon line, and when all the wonderful pastel colors had come out to play. Several boats were anchored along the shoreline and swayed on the glassy water. It would have been a perfect moment to pull out a small canvas and brush and start painting. But a photo had to do.

Quiet subjects like this aren’t the most technically demanding to paint. But they are challenging in the sense there’s nothing to hide behind. You cannot rely on any inherent complexity of the subject or striking value contrast or bursts of vivid color. Everything is quiet and you must approach the subject with a subtle touch. As soon as you overstep and try to do too much, the painting won’t work.

I drew inspiration from Fred Cuming for this painting. He was a master of capturing the soft colors and relationships of early morning and late afternoon.

Anyway, thanks for reading. Don’t forget to check out my Landscape Painting Masterclass. This is the final cohort we take through before we open the course to the public at full price. Join now to lock in the reduced price and bonuses.

Happy painting!

Dan Scott



Dan Scott is the founder of Draw Paint Academy. He's a self-taught artist from Australia with a particular interest in landscape painting. Draw Paint Academy is run by Dan and his wife, Chontele, with the aim of helping you get the most out of the art life. You can read more on the About page.