Thursday, 18 October 2018

#407 'Emsworth Moorings' 10x12"


I tried painting this boat about 2 years ago when I first started plein air. I drew it out onsite but didn't really know how to tackle it so it was left unfinished. A tricky boat subject!

This time a bigger board and lucky with the refections. Although I had very little time to get them in as the wind picked up as the tide rolled in. So I finished in the studio which is sometimes helpful when a subject is harder there is more time and less panic that the subject is changing!

The side of the boat (hull) in shadow getting the tonal value not too dark and still warm as well, The top of the boat was quite blue - in shadow but also reflecting the sky. I'm pleased with how it turned out. 

#406 'Sunflower & Berries' 8x14"


Oil on muslin covered board which I'd made myself.
Thicker paint and experimenting with medium - GAMBLIN : GALKYD GEL OIL PAINTING MEDIUM. Speeds the drying time and adds a glossy thickness.
Purple to compliment the yellow.
Colours from the painting put into the pattern on the jug!

Sunday, 14 October 2018

#405 'Sunrise, Langstone Harbour' 18x24cm

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The second painting of a morning (see previous post) 

A small sunrise oil sketch, very enjoyable subject, hope to go back before the boats disappear for winter!

Slightly textured linen board gives a different finish.

The tide was coming in so made the most of it with the light reflecting on the water. (previous painting the tide was out)

#404 'Dawn, Langstone Harbour' 10x12"

I arrive early when it is still dark so I can faff with where I'm positioned & composition, board size and format. Mixing some colours and being as ready as I can be before the sun comes up!

Those inky clouds where there when I arrived and dispersed fairly quickly so put them in before the light really came - using my double head lamp:

I don't bother with details of the boats until the end, it's more about the light and colour. I simplified the muddy area and how many boats to put in and choose where to position them too.

I did another small painting straight after see next post....

Thursday, 11 October 2018

#403 'St James's Park' 9x12"

Painted yesterday on a very sunny October day at St James Park with 80 or so other plein air painters! It was fun being part of this gathering and enjoyed chatting with lots of artists, it was hard to focus on the painting! 

This was not any easy subject with so many greens - bit of a shock after Venice colours, I felt rusty with mixing them and 'seeing' them. But I'm pleased with the outcome, the fountain was especially fun to paint. 




#402 'Early Light, Bosham Channel' 8x14"


An oil sketch before the tide swallowed the grasses up. I was pleased the sun direction was directly in front of me so great light on the water. 
Nice to paint something natural after the architecture of Venice.

This area is a haven for Swans there must of been over 30 cleaning and preparing for the day...


Tuesday, 9 October 2018

Venice Summary!

Home from Venice and my studio line up, I can't fit them all in! 
I do feel pleased and proud with what I achieved in a month. 

I felt sad leaving such a wonderful & inspiring place. I am already planning a trip to go back next year! I enjoyed painting with the other artists and having my family to stay. 
What an amazing trip!!

I am planning a solo show in London next year 
with many of these Venice paintings and the title is:
'London, Venice, Coast & Country'
Watch this space!!

'Maria Della Salute'
My favourite subject while in Venice I must have painted it over 15 times! 
Here are 9 of them in chronological order bottom right to top left...

A short video of my studio and Venice paintings!

Monday, 8 October 2018

#401 'My Last Sunrise in Venice!' 10x12"


The morning we left Venice I got up at 5am and did one more paint, and it was this.
A fleeting sunrise where the sun just peeped until it went behind the cloud. I used a slightly bigger board in portrait format to capture the light and movement on the water. 
My next Venice post I will do tomorrow and will show a summary of all my work :-)

#400 'Morning Boat Ride' 10x12"

I experimented with putting the glow around the building next to the sun to give a sense of strong sunlight. There's not much water activity early on but I managed to paint the Vaporetto water bus as it was moving across the Grand Canal! By around 8-9am its teaming with boats, nice early as you still get water reflections and light.

The Maria Della Salute (dome building) is white where the 'window' is but painting it white in this light wouldn't work so I put a warmer colour in than the dome and slightly lighter in tone to differentiated the two.

Saturday, 6 October 2018

#399 '4pm, Maria Della Salute Venice' 8x10"


Braved the afternoon crowds on the Academia Bridge, it can be so hectic on there, I had been put off doing it the whole trip, also the risk of being moved on by the police, they have been known to move artists on from prominent tourists spots.

Anyway I love the afternoon colours on the Grand Canal, so rich and vibrant. The water was tricky with lots of different shades and tones with the strong shadows and the light from the sky.
Decided to keep the buildings loose and not overworked - hard to do this as you want to make them just right and 'perfect!' 
You can see more in your subject when the sun is behind you and lights your subject, instead of contra jour when the sun is in your face and its behind the subject. So knowing how much detail to include is key, being a small panel I didn't put much in, looked wrong when I tried, I put more interest in the foreground left. 
I hope to do a bigger studio painting from the subject.

#398 'Nocturn, Maria Della Salute' 8x10"


An impulse paint! As I hadn't planned to do a nocturne, I usually arrive early get myself set up and draw in and wait until the light hits the sky and water and then scrabble to get it down! This time I really noticed the lights on the water and intense orange strip of sky, I couldn't resist it!
Difficult painting in the dark, luckily a lamp on the Academia Bridge was over my head but it's still a little bit of guess work, I'm pleased with the result though.

Thursday, 4 October 2018

#397 'Gondola Ride, The Grand Canal' 8x14"


We went back to this spot to do it again! With a wider format board and looked at the aerial perspective, there is a lot of sky colour put in the distant buildings.  The colours of the sparkle are tricky to see, but they start warmer yellow/warm colour and go to a lighter whiter colour in the middle.
Perched on the end of a jetty, Sally my painting buddy had a one paint brush casualty over the edge!

#396 'Ospedale, Venice' 9x12"


It's hard to believe this lovely old white building was used as a hospital, such grandeur in Venice! 
I focused on getting the colours vibrant as they were sunlit and the strong shadows on the building and the water. 

Tuesday, 2 October 2018

#395 'Evening Sparkle, The Grand Canal' 8x10"

A great spot at the end of a jetty close to the Maria Della Salute for a wonderful sky line and also near the gondola action! The sparkle was a so bright on the eyes!

#394 'Campo Ognissanti, Venice' 9x12"



I've not painted this before, canals are always a challenge this one was in contra jour which helped to simplify the tonal shapes. With morning light so the sky is a warm yellow, the sparkle moved across the canal and was gone within the hour. The boat in the foreground helps with composition a larger shape against the smaller houses. The skyline is the fun bit to paint the lovely dome and chimneys!

Painting with artist Sally Balick on a quiet locals area in Dosoduro.

Friday, 28 September 2018

#393 Monet's Spot no.2 8x10"


9am softer more diffused light than the 8am painting with rapidly moving water sparkle. Not putting in too much detail like windows, just suggesting them.

#392 'Morning Sun, Monet's Spot no.1' 10x12"


8am - Strong tonal contrast with the sun peeping over the building. Warm sky and cool water colours.
Blocking in and simplifying the tonal shapes with a yellow glowing sky.
beginning stages with water sparkle

See next post for 9am....

Thursday, 27 September 2018

#391 'Afternoon Reflections, Venice' 10x12"


I see this view every day I leave the house and always stop to have a look! I have 4 paintings on the go of this subject and just this one finished! I'm planning a series on it.

I studied the shadow colours and I wanted to make the light colours pop.
I painted the windows in first and the colour in around them.

Tuesday, 25 September 2018

#390 'Early Sun, The Grand Canal' 10x12"


My favourite spot from the Academia Bridge! I don't get tired of this view. The sun coming up and just peeping over the buildings creating a lovely warm glow, contrasted with the cooler water.

#389 'Early Morning, San Marco Square' 11x14"


I convinced my family to come with to San Marco at 6am sunrise no people just pigeons. It has a magical quality at this time, they really enjoyed it. I wanted to paint a bigger more of a statement piece of this square. Not easy to get the drawing and perspective right. I was lucky to put the Giorgio Maggiore in from the start as within half an it had disappeared just white mist! Its a very tonal painting with a hint of warm colour.

Saturday, 22 September 2018

#388 'Sunrise 3, San Giorgio Maggiore' 8x10"


The final sunrise painting in a series of 3. I was pleased the sun was near enough to paint a portrait format with the San Giorgio next to it. I am happy with the glow I managed to get from the light of the sun, not easy!

This week I have had my family staying with me in Venice. It's been a treat to show them the sites and also to accompany me on my painting outings.
Here is my Mum who experienced the sunrise with me :-)

#387 'Sunrise 1 & 2, San Giorgio Maggiore' 6x12" & 20x50cm


The first in a series of 3 paintings I did of sunrise one after the other.
This stage is when the light is low and the colours rich. A small quick sketch to capture the moment. Then I changed to a bigger board:


The sun just peeping over the horizon, with very light water and darker sky.
See next post for the final painting...

Wednesday, 19 September 2018

#386 'Sunset, Campo Barnaba' 9x12"

I stood on a small bridge thinking I'll do it in the evening when its not so busy. But I didn't know it was the first night of the glass week, with much street celebrating and fizz popping! Quite a bustle and lots of people were stopping to chat and look at my painting. A tricky subject easier at dusk when the shapes are more merged together. Looking at big tonal areas instead of al the details!

#385 'Dawn, Maria Della Salute' 8x14"

I tired a portrait format, which I was surprised at how well it works. With a limited palette and harmonious colours.

Saturday, 15 September 2018

#384 'Venice, Early Evening' x2 paintings


I wanted to get some movement in the water and variation in the sky.

I did a very quick one while the sun was going down.

#383 'Early Mist St Marks Basilica' 9x12"


Very misty at some points the Basilica almost disappeared! The tonal values were so close together, I had to make sure the darkest darks were quite light. Also not putting into much definition or hard lines - a suggestion of shapes.
I couldn't resist putting the white Nun in scurrying across the square!

Friday, 14 September 2018

#382 'Mist St Marks Square' 20x50cm


An atmospheric morning, I wanted to capture a bigger area of it so tried this shape board.
Very quiet but a lot of brides having their photo taken this morning!!

#381 '10am Maria Della Salute' 8x10"

Painted without drawing out first as I know the shape now.
Risked painting in the day hoping I wouldn't be moved on by the police!
Not too many colours to keep it harmonious. Painted the sparkle first before it moved out of my painting view.

Thursday, 13 September 2018

#380 'Late Afternoon, The Grand Canal' x2


I painted the one below first as it was above the San Giorgio Maggiore and a huge sparkle 
on the water. 

and then as the sun went around it was above Maria Della Salute which is the main picture.
I had started this one the other way up see pic. But thought the composition would be stronger if I turned the board to portrait!

#379 'Sunrise, San Giorgio Maggiore' 20x50cm


I did this one straight after the previous painting. The sun just popping up over the horizon.
A longer format to get the sun and building in.
Soft misty light not so much colour as pre dawn.