It's all too easy to be trapped into feeling that you shouldn't change your subject at all. It's nature! Who are YOU to mess with it? Frankly, nature doesn't care if you shift her around on the canvas to show her best side, and neither does anyone else. Go nuts!
My one caveat is that the more you change, the easier it is to get something wrong that breaks the illusion of the reality of the scene.
For instance, in this painting it was difficult reconciling the size of the trees in the mid ground with the size of the mountains in the background. That's because I squeezed the vertical height of the mid ground river plane, which made the trees there look too large.
So if I painted it again I'd probably want to either give the canvas some more depth so I could make the mid ground deeper, or shrink the size of the trees there. Live and learn.
Which illustrates my point that it's very easy to get critical stuff wrong when you fiddle with nature.
That's why it's best to learn all her rules before you try breaking too many of them.I hope you enjoyed the short video. If you did, please do me a big favour and share it on Facebook or wherever you like.