As winter draws to its cruel close I came upon this view over the Brede Valley in East Sussex. It was from a dark photo, into the sun, looking over a church cemetery – where some of my maternal family are buried, and on into the valley beyond. I liked the skeletal tree and added another on the right. I lightened the foreground up and created some rough ground instead. Winter coming to an end.
The creation of the branches was a therapeutic exercise, with rain thrashing the window and a spot of Bach on the stereo. It filled a wet morning perfectly.
With a recent spell of bright sunshine we went for a walk along the canal a couple of days ago. It was the fields nearby that caught my attention. This one with the light on the top of the hill and the deep blue of the sky setting off what remains of the autumn leaves captured the day for me. I was thinking of putting some crows in it – but so far have resisted.
I had a bit of time to play around with some forest scenes I had collected from recent visits to our local Ainsdale and Formby woods. On the top painting I did the colour mixing on the paper adding water to push colour away from the top right and then push and reinforce the dark mixtures on to the bottom right to get contrast and mystery.
This, above, was my first try. I like some of it, but feel that I need some colour contrasts to highlight the point of interest and break the monotony.
This got a bit obvious with streams of light, but has the area of interest I needed in the painting above. Again, with a few tweaks it could be worth another try. I think if I push the bottom area up into the `middle it might enliven it a little.
Continuing the series of repeats. I have exhibited the first version of this many times but it never sold . I liked the tight range of hues which I hoped emphasised calm and quiet. This time I have increased the lights in the wooded area and darkened the field shadows. I have also ensured that the yarrow flower heads contrast against the shadow areas in the field. We’ll see how this goes.
Having travelled back from my Life Drawing class and needing to set up an exhibition this week, I have not had time to paint anything new. Then as I was browsing through images on my camera I spotted one I had done a couple of weeks ago and not posted. I recall at the time I wasn’t too taken by it, but after a couple of weeks my antipathy has softened, so here it is.
I also should post it as I have a rule to post everything I do, whether I like it or not, which I pretty much follow, another reason to inflict this on you.
Following my watercolour sketch – Walk in the Woods – I presented a week or so ago, I thought that I would develop it a little. I liked the bands of light and shade created by the beeches in this wood on The Southdowns Way, close to the Cuckmere Valley. I mentioned in the blog that I took some pictures of passing walkers and I put in a couple with their sticks. I also kept the colours muted and resisted my urge to bang in some scarlet amongst the greens. Not sure whether it has the impact of my Dog Walkers where I succumbed to the scarlet urge – but maybe I got some of the calm I experienced on the day. Hope it calms you, also.
A view of one of my apple trees in the autumn. I liked the mellow light coming through. Now it’s up on the screen I think I might need to get a bit more texture in the left hand shadow. Leave it with me .
Merry Easter to everyone. At least we look like we have escaped the threatened snow I hope you all do – well, except for the skiers perhaps.
Another woodland painting and another repeat – I have put versions of this on the blog before. Certainly a little tighter than the previous blog of the woodland scene with no splattering; using brushes only, but I am pleased with the luminosity resulting. This is down to the layering of washes.
If I remember on my previous attempts I tried a loose approach which lost the constant tonal changes throughout the piece and resulted in taking out and scratching back. Slowly building up those changes this time seems to have paid off without it becoming overly fussy.
I must admit that I was inspired by the texture I got on my previous painting that I put out on my last post and so I decided to try and apply the splattering techniques to a scene I had done before in the hope that I would get a less staid outcome.
Well there is a lot of splatter on this but the outcome was less than I had hoped for. Perhaps I could have put the tree trunks and branches in whilst the paper was wet. I also did the splatter in two sections, one for the canopy leaves and one for the undergrowth. I also lost the translucency and the light coming through which I had in the earlier watercolour. So back to the drawing board – sorry about the pun.