Wednesday 31 May 2017

#182 'Table Mountain, Cape Town' 24x30cm

I made this painting from the drawings I did in Cape Town on our recent visit (see below). I didn't have my paints with me so it was great to actually paint it! 

Sunrise, with beautiful soft light on the mountain and deep turquoise blues and apricots of the sea and beach, a wonderful combo :-)

It did the painting in two stages firstly blocked in an approximate colour and tone of each area. When dry did a second layer of thicker paint and more closely observed. 
I drew the mountain in pen and ink 4 or 5 times, so when I came to paint this the mountain shape came easily. It was one of those paintings I didn't have to wipe off or redo anything, this doesn't happen often! I'm pleased with the final image.

Tuesday 30 May 2017

#181 'Spring, Devils Punch Bowl' 24x30cm

I started this one a few days ago....

But decided I wanted to get more information to finish it so I went back the next morning to do a drawing and really look at the shapes and tones.

It was early morning light between 5-6am it had a warm glow and strong contrasts. An hour or so later there was no lovely shadow shapes from the gate as the sun had moved around, so getting up early was worth it!

The gate was tricky as I didn't want it too defined or with hard edegs. I made the tone lighter and cooler than the trees. I didn't try and straighten the slatted edges or fill it all in. Leaving it allows the brain to fill in the missing information and makes the gate look back lit.
I'm pleased with the outcome and will do more there :-)

Thursday 25 May 2017

#180 'Spring, Bramshott Common' 18x24cm

I started this one outside 30 mins in I looked behind me and saw and big bank of dark cloud coming. It didn't take long before the light I was painting was obscured! So I painted what I could remember and then finished in my studio. 

To show you how different it was without the strong sunlight, see pic below. The scene looks so ordinary without the light!

It is a medley of greens! Light to dark in tone and yellow green to blue green fun to paint and a good exercise in learning to paint light.

Wednesday 24 May 2017

#179 'Frensham Little Pond' 8x8"

I zoomed in to be close to the subject as I wanted to study the colours, reflections and light. Subtle variations in tone, with just a few really light, bright greens. It isn't a classic view of this pond but still hopefully has a feel of the reeds and water!

Sunday 21 May 2017

#178 'Emsworth Habour Jetty' 5x10"

This is the second one I did a couple of days ago in Emsworth Harbour. I was running out of steam by then and the light wasn't as beautiful as the early morning so I packed up. Back in the studio I ended up wiping most of it off see below as I wasn't happy with how the paint was applied. 

So there was a ghost of a painting left and having been closely looking at the subject the day before I could remember it quite well, so it came together quickly.  I also looked at the drawing again because what had attracted me was looking through the uprights of the jetty to the boats behind. 
A mistake possibly was using too small a board so the scale of the boats were mini! 

Saturday 20 May 2017

#177 'Morning Reflections, Emsworth Harbour' 18x2cm

I got up at 4.30am for this painting! Rather early but needed to get down to the coast and paint and get back again before my husband went to work at 8.30am - we have our shared dog staying, he's blind and can't be left alone.

It was beautiful at this time so still and quiet. Although rain wasn't forcasted it rained enough to make the mixing and applying paint difficult, it goes sticky with the moist air and the board resists the brush. 

Choosing a subject I ended up trying 3 separate paintings. The first I wiped off. The second is this one I'm posting now. The third I finished yesterday and will post tomorrow.
The tide was going out so it was hard to find something that wasn't going to change radically. Choosing a subject that was further out fromt he shoreline allowed for this. But the two boats in the foreground were moving with the movement of tide, everytime I looked up they were in a different position!
The reflections were so perfect and fun to paint. I really studied the tone of the boat and how the reflection compared to it - lighter or darker...

Tuesday 16 May 2017

#176 'Low Tide Emsworth Harbour' 18x24cm

Back home I wanted to explore what I had learnt with Richard Pikelsey as soon as possible. 
So I set off early to paint in Emsworth harbour. With a very low tide I was able to stand out on the mud flats and use a little boat as my table :-) see below

I liked the bright green with the blue boat combo. The green was being lit by the sun and it was difficult to mix. Because if you just mix pure say Lemon Yellow and Cerulean Blue it's an intense colour but too dark in tone, add white and it lighter but the colour is then chalky and not so intense! I think you get a feel in my painting with what was there?
I have attached the beginnings below as I thought you may want to see the different way I started this one in practising what I learnt with Richard. Not drawing first and blocking in colours & tones and covering the board quickly....

The man walked across once I tried to paint him while he was walking. Mixing a colour then looking up and he's gone! So difficult but it has the essence of him! And I think helps the composition.

Monday 15 May 2017

#175 'View Towards Abbotsbury' 18x24cm

This is the second painting I did with artist Richard Pikesley.

We struggled to find something decent in the murk of drizzle and low cloud. The view we eventually settled on you could easily have driven past as it wasn't spectacular but it had some great light in the skyline and the atmospheric perspective was strong. 

I was stuck behind a bush of yellow flowers (not sure of the name) the board shape seamed to fit having the flowers in the foreground of the painting. I didn't want to descibe them with too much detail but I emphasised the flowers with strong colour and shapes which also added to the ariel perspective.

No drawing out before hand straight in with paint! Feeling your away around the composition this method allows for more flexibility as the painting develops. It also encourages to paint in slabs of colour and not 'filling in' to linear lines. I didn't find it easy though and half way through I was really doubting it all! Richard encouraged me to go on and I'm pleased with the result, it's not how I'd usually paint a landscape but it's fresh and painterly and feels like I'm on the right track :-)

An amazing day with Richard and I'm sure its going to have a great impact on my paintings to come......

Sunday 14 May 2017

#174 'West Bay Harbour' 18x24cm

I feel very privileged to have had a painting day with an English artist Richard Pikesley he is a wonderful painter and the president of the New English Art Club.

I felt like I needed some input and direction on how to progress my paintings to another level. I took a selection of paintings to show Richard and he gave me some great advice and guidance. We then painted in two locations morning and afternoon. The first I will post now the second tomorrow.....

West Bay Harbour 
What Richard told me to work on was less linear and more blocks of colour. To help me do this I didn't draw the subject first I went straight into looking and comparing two colours next to each other - I started on the reflection on the front of the boat. Trying to match the colour and tone. Also aiming to get the board covered quickly so you can relate the colours in the subject and not be distracted by the colour/tone of the board.

It definitely felt out of my comfort! Although I am pleased with the result and Richard liked it too! (The little boat was called 'Henry' and I love the character it has!)

The conditions weren't easy, it was chucking with rain when we started so sheltered under his Land Rover boot and at times the subject disappeared in the haze of rain! Thankfully it did stop but you can see it's a quiet tonal painting - not big contrasts like when the sun is out, which still has a beauty to it.

'Painting is about looking' a quote from Richard and something I am really working on :-)

Wednesday 3 May 2017

#173 'Morning Light, Southsea Promenade' 9x12"

I went back the next day to paint looking west into the morning sun. I featured the sky and old fashioned lamp post. The sun on the sea was bleached white just some warmth from the yellow.
The string of fairy lights were fun to paint, I used 4 brushes one for each colour and alternated, making sure the perspective of getting smaller and closer together worked. The people in the yellow shelter gives a focal point. 

This painting didn't come as easily as the one before. I drew it out in situ but was battling with gale force winds. I tied my easel to a lamp post but my arm was being buffeted so much and it was hard to do any line work. Then it clouded over and I lost my subject - the light! So I completed back in the studio today.

I like this area and I may go back and making some drawings to do a bigger works from this subject.