Still Life, the means to the end.

So far, so good…

I’m working on a difficult still life at the moment. Difficult in that it requires several sessions before completion. Under painting is generally painted with very little medium and much thinners, such as white spirits. These layers dry quickly allowing the painter to continue painting without the usual long wait of the final layers. I have also decided to include a lot of detail in the subject items. At the same time I’m making a video of the process for a future post on the subject.

The most disconcerting part of this type of painting method (paint, allow dry, paint again) is that some of the colours dry to a very matt finish. When you return to the painting the deep rich shadows are much lighter in colour and not at all like the painting you left after the previous session. If this happens you can apply a thin layer of ‘Liquin’ to the dull patches before you apply fresh paint. Be careful if the under layer is not completely dry as the ‘Liquin’ can soften or even mix with the under layer. Don’t use a thinner, such as white spirits, or this will worsen this effect.

Hopefully I will have this painting finished in a few days and I’ll post the movie.



Do you remember the experiment, about 40 years ago, in cinematic projection which was called Cinerama. The recent efforts to introduce 3D in cinemas reminded me of this. Cinerama involved projecting the movie on a wide curved screen. 3 projectors were used, side by side, to produce the effect. Depending on where you were sitting in the cinema your entire vision was filled with the screen image. This, of course, was the problem – where you were sitting. Very few of those in the cinema got the full effect. If you were to the side of centre the screen was distorted. Why somebody didn’t think of this before the millions were spent converting cinemas and producing films for same, is a mystery. Of course the whole project was abandoned after a few years. I wonder will the same happen with 3D.

We were in Glenbeigh, a few years ago, looking north across the bay towards the Dingle Peninsula. The vastness of the scene reminded me of a Cinerama scene. Of course I took loads of photos but none captured the scene the way I would have liked. It needed a Cinerama treatment. The above photo was the result of my ‘experiment’ (Click on the photo to enlarge it).

The original photo

This was the original photo with a Photoshop ‘Watercolour’ filter applied. By sampling the image I painted in the extra width rather than stretching the scene. When printed at about 4 feet wide it looks good as the ‘curved’ effect gives the feeling of been in the scene.

(Printed on an Epson Stylus Pro 9600 on matt paper)