Atmospheric Landscapes By Thomas Hill

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Thomas Hill (September 11, 1829 – June 30, 1908) was a brilliant American artist known for his atmospheric landscape paintings. Most of his landscape paintings feature the Yosemite Valley and the White Mountains of New Hampshire.

Hill was associated with the Hudson River School, which refers to a group of painters who painted large scale romantic landscapes. Albert Bierstadt and Frederic Church were part of the Hudson River School. You can see the similarities in their artworks.

His paintings have a magnificent sense of scale, which is created by the illusion of atmospheric perspective and the clever positioning of small animals or people in many of the paintings. 

I really enjoy Hill’s stunning use of color in his paintings, particularly the balance between light and dark, and warm and cool elements. It can be difficult when painting these paintings of such a grand scale to retain balance and harmony. The more elements involved, the more difficult it is to balance everything. 

My favorite painting is not actually any of the grand scale landscapes, but rather this painting below which features a man tending his cattle next to a tree. The colors in this painting appear so full and rich and there is a beautiful contrast between warm and cool colors. 

Thomas Hill, Chinese Man Tending Cattle
Thomas Hill, Chinese Man Tending Cattle

Here are some of the other beautiful landscape paintings by Hill: 

Thomas Hill, Yosemite Valley, 1884
Thomas Hill, Yosemite Valley, 1884
Thomas Hill, View Of Cascade Lake, Near Tahoe, 1874
Thomas Hill, The Davidson Glacier, 1888
Thomas Hill, The Davidson Glacier, 1888
Thomas Hill, Stream In Forest Winter
Thomas Hill, Stream In Forest Winter
Thomas Hill, Sir Donald Peak And Selkirk Glacier, Canada, 1890
Thomas Hill, Sir Donald Peak And Selkirk Glacier, Canada, 1890
Thomas Hill, Sentinel Rock, Yosemite, 1880
Thomas Hill, Sentinel Rock, Yosemite, 1880
Thomas Hill, Piute Indian Encampment, Yosemite
Thomas Hill, Piute Indian Encampment, Yosemite
Thomas Hill, Mountain Of The Holy Cross
Thomas Hill, Mountain Of The Holy Cross
Thomas Hill, Mount St. Helena, Napa Valley
Thomas Hill, Mount St. Helena, Napa Valley
Thomas Hill, After The Storm, Yosemite Valley, 1888
Thomas Hill, After The Storm, Yosemite Valley, 1888

I hope you enjoyed these paintings by Thomas Hill. It is interesting how similar they are to the paintings by other artists of the Hudson River School. It demonstrates how powerful the influence of those surrounding you is. So surround yourself with great artists and grow as an artist yourself. 

Thanks For Reading!

If you enjoyed this post, please join in by adding a comment below and share on Facebook, Pinterest or your preferred socials.

Happy painting!

Dan Scott

Draw Paint Academy

PS. You can also find more advanced tips in my ebook, 21 Easy Ways To Improve Your Paintings and reference photos in my Reference Photo Library

16 comments on “Atmospheric Landscapes By Thomas Hill”

  1. WOW – I was not familiar with Thomas Hill. Thanks for sharing. Of the ones you posted, Chinese Man Tending Cattle is my favorite.

    Reply
  2. Thank you so much for sharing. I’ve been trying to pluck up the courage to paint a scene using a photo I took at the Golden Gate National Park in South Africa. It is reminiscent of his paintings from Yosemite Valley.

    Reply
    • No problem Anne. You should give it a shot! Worst that can happen is it doesn’t work out. Let me know if you need any pointers.

      Dan

      Reply
  3. Beautiful work, what really impresses me is the richness of colors, I am sure artist’s of that time did not go to the local art store and buy paint but had to create color from a very limited palette. Again beautiful work!

    Reply
    • Yes the richness of color is stunning. It just goes to show that we don’t need all the rare pigments. A limited palette is more than enough.

      Dan

      Reply
  4. Dan, I just found you:) so glad I did, your tips have helped me a great deal so far…..I started drawing first and now trying my hand at some oil painting. Just love your post on
    atmospheric landscapes….I just purchased an oil painting by Alexander Dzigurski who I have falling in love with…that is a seascape, but have seen some beautiful landscapes he has done. Are you familiar with him? Thanks, Sandi

    Reply
    • Hi Sandi 🙂

      Good to have you on board. I trust you will enjoy oil painting. But I warn you, it will be a struggle when you start.

      I was not familiar with Dzigurski’s work, but I just Googled him and I am glad I did. Beautiful paintings! Thanks for bringing him to my attention.

      Dan

      Reply
  5. Tanksss Dan ‘ for your sharing of inspirational art thoughts. I love those pointers of yours “ surrounds yourself with great artist and explore to be one “ . Gave me courage to continue my journey to Art . ??

    Reply

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