My internet connection has been down these last few days, so I have been delayed posting, though I have been painting, At least with painting there is very little that stops you operating. I remember when I broke my right arm, I started to doodle with my left hand – perhaps it’s something I should have persisted with…
Anyway back to the present; in April I posted a watercolour sketch called All Sides Now. Above is a variant of this idea worked up into a more finished piece. I am quite pleased with the result here and it has moved the idea on a bit. I will have a go at reworking All Sides Now and also see where this could lead.
Not being of hardy stock I only venture outside to paint when the sun starts to shine and the temperature rises. I have spent too long in the past waiting for washes to dry in cold bleakness or battled to warm up frozen mixes on my palette. Not any more.
So with some sunshine forecast we went over to Yorkshire and into Wharfedale to do some walking and along the way I was able to sit in the spring sunshine and do a bit of painting.
Starting out from Burnsall we climbed above the River Wharfe and amongst the hill farms I saw this scene, above, of broken down walls, isolated buildings and patchwork fields populated by grazing sheep.
Later, after lunch at a pub, we walked along the river and this was one of the derelict farmhouses alongside of the Wharfe in the shadow of the hill, crisscrossed with the drystone walls and peppered with a helping of the ubiquitous sheep.
A great day in the early spring sunshine which sparkled off the rippling river waters.
I was doing another painting of our local beach but things got out of control and I washed off what I had done with the intention of starting again, but when I got the paper dry again my heart had gone out of the project and as it was a piece of reclaimed paper I thought that I would try out an idea I had been carrying around in my head.
I am quite happy with the result and though a few of the panels could be improved I think that there is scope for further development and I might even be able to create a small series on the idea. Anyway, I’ll post any further work here.
This is a modified painting which I posted some time ago. When I first posted it I had some reservations about certain aspects. Then, the other day as I was searching through some old paintings, I came across it again and took a moment to reconsidered it and realised that my issues could be addressed. One problem was the central tree which I modified and then I enhanced the main field and strengthened the top field. It may have moved away from the original scene, but it was a bit of a combination of views in the first place, broadly based on the Wear Valley in Durham City.
This was done in my favourite three colours a warm red, yellow and blue and allowed wet colour mixing on the paper to get a myriad of subtle shades before picking out some recognisable shapes and forms.
Originally I had an image of a mountain river I took in New Hampshire one fall, but I felt the background was too dark. Recently I saw a woodland scene on the TV and it gave me an idea for a more interesting background. Both were contra jour so fitted well together and seemed to add up to more than the sum of the parts.
I liked the dark background behind the sunlit fields and path and the way the light was reflecting off the tops of the trees. I tried a block approach, using square brushes, but in hindsight should have primed the paper with a strong undertone. I might then have got a bit of vivacity with the primer showing through, complementing the rough approach.
I was thinking of getting my oils out for this one but decided that first I might just sketch it out in pastels, and here is the result. I certainly like the lost and found edges lending an air of mystery to the piece and the way the land dissolves into the atmosphere.
I took it from a couple of photos combing the best bits although I am a little unsure of the darkness that pervades the bulk of the image even though, as I keep telling myself, this is necessary to state the highlights.