When my Hyenna painting found a new home (as described in an earlier blog), I had a look for other interesting animals, I had seen whilst in Namibia, as potential subjects. Here, above, is one of a pair of warthogs I sketched by the waterhole at our lodge. They were a young pair and this one was probably a female. I was struck by their incongruous appearance with a big head and body on thin legs. Not only that, but she appeared to me, to be tottering on stilettos as she made her way around the edge of the water.
So I had to have a go – a bit of fun to paint – here for your amusement.
I painted this at the back end of 2017 and posted it shortly afterwards. I did it along with other animals I had seen in Namibia at that time. None of them sold and I never even exhibited this one, though I did like it and I put it on my website where it has resided for around five years. Then, last week a buyer popped out of the ether and purchased it.
It just goes to show that many paintings have only to find an admirer – the problem is finding this elusive creature. This is the second time within a few months that a buyer has suddenly popped up to claim an old, floundering painting of mine. The previous time the actual painting wasnt even on my website. I think the purchaser googled it from this blog. In fact the painting she saw was in a larger format – in an effort to try give it more legs for a sale, I cut it down to focus on the subject matter. Anyway, despite its new size, the lady still wanted it and away it went.
I suppose it’s like angling – you cast them out there and hope for a bite.
Sometimes a painting eludes your initial vision and this one certainly has, so Finishing Line may be inappropriate as a title – there could be future versions. I wanted a triptych but thought that I could intertwine the images more, instead of just three rectilinear boxes that the subject finally dictated. I also found the greens started to dominate as the piece progressed.
Like all projects that cause consternation, this has taken longer, as the enthusiasm dwindles.
So I am pausing and taking stock.
So why show this? Well, my blog is a diary, and this is what has occupied me over the last few days, brought to some sort of conclusion. And there are a few bits I do like.
In my previous post I described sitting in the morning sun painting the trees last Tuesday. Well, as I worked, I noticed movement in the field and a large hare came towards me. Unfortunately as I fumbled for my camera it seemed to get wind of me and moved away across the fields. In the end I managed to get a few shots which I turned into a pastel painting.
I thought I’d have a bit of fun painting a gaggle of geese I saw the other week. They all appeared to be heading in different directions – though if trouble did get too close there was no argument and they were off back into the water – together.
A quick birthday card for a relative who owns these male cats. We were up visiting her last week and I did a few sketches thinking it might make a birthday card she’d appreciate. The black one is 19 years old.
I saw this dog by the roadside whilst walking in the Yorkshire Dales this summer. Normally I would tackle such a subject in pastel but what made me paint it was the notion of exploring what kind of textures I could get with watercolour. So it was more of an exercise in techniques than anything else.
I’m not sure why I did this one. I came across the image from my trip to Thailand. And then I’m also not sure why I chose watercolour when pastel might have been better. I then sketched them out and I had them arranged like opposing apostrophes on a line. That left a lot of space at the top.
By arranging them on the diagonal I could make the dogs bigger and fill the space – more dog less mud. I also put some grass in at the top for visual relief.
Another challenge was the dappled shade on which I may have failed. Something to ponder during the long nights of winter.
When out walking the other week I saw this sheep with her lambs waiting for us to pass before they made a bolt for the field in front of them . I arranged them into an overlapping group to accentuate the anticipation and tried to keep the colour range tight. I painted it in a single sitting as it seemed to come together fairly easily and am pretty pleased with the outcome.
With not having much time to paint of late and my studio reverting to its original use as a bedroom I don’t have much on offer, but here is a second one from my giraffe period that I managed to complete whilst the house was a slumber.