After laying in the darkest and lightest values, the next darkest values go in the shadows of the buildings and trees. I often like to form a painting this way as the old masters often did; starting with thinly painted shadows and culminating with piled on light areas. Its like using light to pull the forms out from the shadows. In the next image, you can see large areas of middle and light values have been applied like the sky, street and building facades. I like to rough in the whole painting, then go back with details. That way I'm more likely to ensure the different elements all relate to the whole in term of color, value, proportions, etc. If you focus on finishing one area at a time, you can risk having a bunch of little paintings on the canvas that don't relate to each other. This can especially be a problem on a large surface like this one (34 x 40 in.). Another observation about using photos: the sky looks very lifeless and bland in the photos. So I consciously put rich color in it, going from blue to a warm peach which echos the warm facades of the brick buildings. We don't have to paint things as they are, but as we wish them to be and whatever works in the painting. You'll notice in the second image that it doesn't take much to make a painting appear finished. Patches of roughed in color can appear as buildings, cars, flags, signs etc. In fact I like to work in a loose painterly style, suggesting detail instead defining it. Though I admire it, I'm not a super realist/precisionist painter. The painting will be nearing completion in the next installment.