I have a couple of watercolour demos to do at the end of the month. In fact they are on consecutive days which is a bit awkward – I need to get that secretary replaced. The first one wanted a canal scene so I have been looking through my images to find something suitable to do. I did this yesterday morning, so with a bit of preparation, like getting my paints ready and having everything to hand, I should be able to do in the allotted hour and a half.
This is a scene I have posted before, both as an on-site sketch and as a more finished painting. The painting never sold and I have made a few small changes in this version. I am thinking of getting down to the canal and starting to build up a series of canal paintings as they were popular and its always a nice place to sit and paint.
In the dash to fill my long/thin frames for an upcoming exhibition I did one of the Leeds- Liverpool canal from the bridge. I did a similar view a few years ago, but this is from a recent photograph. The orientation really suits this format.
It is also three years to the day that I started this blog. I might buy myself a cake.
Another canal scene and in a place I’ve painted before on the Leeds to Liverpool Canal. The light coming in from over the fields and catching surfaces on the boats and vegetation caught my eye. To evoke the morning stillness I tried to reduce the range of colours, so that there was a calmness of hue.
This started out as a bigger painting. Initially I liked the array of trees in the background and the way they dwarfed the narrowboat and man, but when I completed it, the mass of foliage was boring and overpowering. I decided to cut it down from half imperial to quarter imperial. This is the quarter imperial (36x26cm) painting. I do like the warm colours of the man and lifefloat on the narrowboat, singing out in the sea of greens and the smaller size has put more focus on the boat. I still have some misgivings about the painting and will put it aside to consider it later.
I have liked this scene on the Leeds Liverpool Canal when I’ve been looking for somewhere to paint. There isn’t much, but the light reflecting off the rooftops and coming through the trees and the areas in shade make it appealing to me.
I mentioned it to someone who lives in the area and does a lot of painting and they told me that they had been cycling on the path here and had not been paying too much attention to what they were doing (looking at the scenery) and the cycle wheel got caught in a rut and they finished up in the canal. From what she told me the bike is still in the canal .
A couple of watercolours I did recently which I had high hopes for, but they fell a bit flat by the time I had finished. Both were contra-jour. The horses in the evening sun seemed to come out rather flat. The actual horses in the photo were in coats so I took some images of horses from other photos and arranged them in the field but perhaps I had the tones a bit wrong – being wary of overdarkening the horses. I felt the finished painting lacked a bit of punch.
The view from the canal seemed to finish up with a mass of reedbeds and rather little else going on.
As promised, or threatened, in my last post I said I would present another scene of the Leeds Liverpool Canal from where I was painting the other weekend. After the boats on the left and right had departed another boat came in under the bridge and I reached for my camera. It seemed like everyone was making the best of the good weather to get their narrowboat moored up for winter. I particularly liked the smoke coming from his exhaust or chimney – not sure which – which partially obscured the bridge.