Wednesday 31 October 2018

#411 'Autumn Light, Albert Bridge' 24x30cm

Arriving in London I had a plan to paint the same scene as I did this time last year:

Including a bit more of the river bank and boats on a bigger board.

The tide was very low, which helped the composition anchoring it on the side. Also the space between the pink part of the bridge and water was huge which allowed there to be more room for boats and water.

The light was beautiful and it got better and better! (as we were leaving!) I goal I was aiming for painterly but well observed...

I was in London collecting work from the Chelsea Art Society Open exhibition I was really pleased to have a painting hung and it sold :-)

Tuesday 30 October 2018

#410 'Rain Cloud, The South Downs' 9x12"

This is about a 25 minute drive form me and during the whole car journey is rained hard! I thought I'll have to sit int he car when I get there and wait.

But upon arrival this is what I saw! A huge beautiful cloud covering a lot of the view I wanted to paint. The cloud shape was quite stable and it didn't move off for at least 30 minutes so was able to study and paint it plus the rain falling in the distance.

The light on the water on the horizon line I emphasised with thicker paint and strong marks. I made sure the tonal values got stronger coming into the foreground.

#409 'First Light, Langstone' 12x12"

I used a textured linen coloured board by Loxley. Not tried this type before, its quite rough and I think the subject work well with this style. 
Thinned the paint with Distilled Turps  - experimenting to see if it's any better than Winsor & Newton Sansodour which I usually use. Strong smell but I think I prefer the consistency. I added thick paint especially around the skyline of the trees - the important bit! Paying close attention tot he silhouetted shape of the boats not needing much details just get the shapes of them right.
3/4 of the way through, tide coming in, sun just up!

Saturday 27 October 2018

#408 'Sunflowers series of 3'

 33x35cm oil on linen

16x18" oil on linen

40x40cm oil on cotton canvas
All from the same bunch of flowers. Experimenting on linen canvas - with clear gesso, so its still buff canvas coloured.
Composition - just the heads and a hint of the vase no.1
Old style 'masters' colours with a goldie background no.2 
Provence French blues and yellows, square more contemporary feel no.3 

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

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.