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There's nothing so fascinating to paint as a cloud. Nothing so elusive, so definite, so shapely and so shapeless, so colorful and so without color, so bright and so dark, so with form and so without. A cloud can look so simple and pure after a painting, and not give a clue to the viewer about the great difficulty involved in its creation. Just as a cloud will not sit still for long in the sky to be painted, it will change and transform itself for the artist until he makes it stop.It's good to have as close a color set in mind for the clouds as possible before starting, otherwise the painter may become transfixed and hypnotized by the magical spell the clouds cast upon his eyes. He should know the complex combination of layers and form and color set he wants in the end before starting. That way when he gets the cloud structure, lighting, shadow, etc., painted in its basic form satisfactorily, he can then clean up the form, add details when necessary and finish the sky.