One of the more abstract works in The Weather series by David Hockney, Small Study Of Lightning shows a fork of lightning travelling through a mass of foreboding clouds in red and black. The fork is white where the ink has been left off the lithographic stone and is accompanied by a smaller bolt which appears like a thread running through the composition. The effect is extremely evocative, conveying Hockney’s curiosity about the different effects of weather on light and mood. The work is one of ten prints that make up The Weather series, each depicting a different atmospheric effect. The portfolio was published in 1973, just two years after Hockney’s trip to Japan where he had become hugely influenced by the work of Ukiyo-e masters such as Hiroshige and Hokusai who are known for their brilliant depictions of water and weather. Just as they did with the woodblock, here hockney pushes lithography to become as close to painting as possible, creating variations of tone and texture in order to produce this elegant study.