Christmas Morning – Time lapse painting

Christmas Morning

Placing figures in a landscape, for me at least, is always problematic. I’m fascinated by artists who paint figures first, then fit the landscape around them. This seems to be the logical way to do it.

In this painting, although the story is of the Christmas Morning church goers, the figures are incidental to the scene, so their placing is better in an already finished landscape. As you can imagine, painting wet on wet, adds a few more problems. I would plan the figure as a separate sketch, experimenting with different figures and their sizes before attempting to paint them in. As in the previous painting, by lightly ‘scratching’ the figure on the wet paint the correct size and shape of the figure can be worked out. When the correct ‘drawing’ is made any unwanted marks can be repaired by lightly reworking the wet paint. Also, if there is a heavy layer of paint its advisable to scrape this off before adding the paint of the figure. Wet on wet does not allow for errors, so be careful. It sounds like a pain in the neck, but as you can see in the video its not that daunting.

I will be printing the Christmas cards (this painting and previous one) next week. I will include observations and a few photos of the finished product in future posts.

UPDATE: Christmas Cards available at ONLINE SHOP.

Here’s the video of the painting of above picture.


55 thoughts on “Christmas Morning – Time lapse painting

    • Thank you. Your paintings are fantastic as they are. Colourful, interesting, full of personality, especially the portraits. I love them. As you saw, I’m one of those dull, old landscape guys. Your paintings are a ‘sight for sore eyes’.

  1. Hi Liam,

    I sent you a comment but mistakedly put it under Sept. 22 painting. Oops! Could you please go there to read it as I asked a few questions?

    Thank You,


  2. Great painting Liam. I love the colors, and the composition is fantastic. You really know how to pull the viewer in and direct them where to go. Really nice job.

  3. Pingback: Christmas Morning – Oil Painting « PictureS

  4. Thanks for visiting my site, Liam. There’s something special about a snow scene and uours are beautiful. I have only ever painted two – one for a wedding present l long time ago and the one on my website. It was painted earlier this year was from the scene on a battered old Christmas card that I’d carried around for twenty years, vowing to paint it one day – I don’t even know where in the world the setting was!

    I’m certain your lovely cards will end up being treasured as inspiration too! 🙂


  5. Oh my Goodness!!!You are a gift to ALL artists. What I have learned in nine minutes and fourty seconds boggles my mind!!! I could go on and on about how talented and amazing you are, I could tell you all day, but being a busy Mom, I will just say Thank You from the bottom of my heart, and certainly from the tip of my brush.

  6. Thanks for visiting my blog and clicking Like. I am no artists but am fascinated and envious of those who are. I shall take time over the coming holiday period (we are in the summer here) to look over the pages of your blog. 🙂

  7. That was so lovely! Time lapse painting – what a great idea for blogging! Really enjoyed watching how you gave dimension to the snow. I always get lazy about halfway through a painting and decide I like a more abstracted, two-dimensional look, but you made it look so easy – maybe I’ll try harder next time.

  8. I am going to enjoy learning some good technical stuff from you, I can tell. What a delight! And beautiful photography. A marvelous combination right there. Thank you for introducing yourself over at my blog! I’ll look forward to seeing more of your work.

  9. Thank you for liking my first post on my blog. Wow! I love the time lapse video’s seeing a painting develope in front of you almost like a photograph. Very lovely and inspiring!
    The background music is wonderful as well!
    A delight!

  10. Hi Liam – glad you enjoyed my post. I really liked watching your video. Thanks for letting us watch your process!

  11. OMG this is awesome! I am starting a painting class today actually… I would die to be able to create something like this 😀 Great job, very well done!

  12. Hi Liam, I really enjoyed your video, and love watching artists at work. Look forward to browsing through your site to see your other paintings.


  13. Thanks for stopping by my blog. Watched your video of this painting, and liked your approach. I too agree that adding in figures can be a challenge in wet paint, but imho the only way to gauge the placement and proportions correctly. I always paint from far to near…it just makes sense to me. Keep showing us your approach. Such a great learning tool! Thanks.

  14. I find wet on wet very forgiving, but there is that line where you have to avoid mud mixing. I do a lot of landscape with a wet on wet technique but I’ve taken to doing layers so now I do a sort of wet on wet then dry and repeat process ass the light can really be captured between layers for stunning effects.
    I discovered in playing with this process that you can create markers for where you want your figures. Most folks using wet on wet begin with a dark and build the color up but I tend to always work backwards thusly I will sometimes start from white and work the dark in. If you reverse that way and just lay in a || it gives you size markers that you can build upon and it is much much easier to blend the edges into the background.

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