Hen Run – Oil Painting

Hen Run

Another small painting. Same as last time, 27.5 x 21.5 cm, and about an hour and a half to paint it. I didn’t have a subject in mind, so I painted the hen run at the end of the garden. We only have 4 hens at the moment. I added a few more for effect. Not that you can see any particular hen, its suggested hens.

I thought this was going to be a quick painting, but I got more involved once I started. The chicken-wire might be a cause of concern. Chicken-wire is a fine mesh which can’t be seen, even relatively close. If you move your head you can see it against the background. Its really too fine to be painted. So do you include it in a painting, as the viewer of the painting is stationary? Well I did include it for a number of reasons. We expect it to be there. When we view the scene in real life, by focusing or moving against the background, we establish its presence. Now we no longer need to see it, because we know its there. The viewer can’t do this when viewing the painting. As I said, the wire is too fine to be painted with a brush, so I scratched a pattern in the background with a knife. This pattern of diagonal scratches is on the background, but as the background image is not altered, the fine lines are detached – ah!, chicken wire.

The colours are: Burnt Sienna (red), Yellow Ochre (yellow) and Cobalt Blue (blue). Also included, Chrome Green Light and Raw Umber and black and white. As the Chrome Green is such a noticeable colour I included it in the sky to harmonize colours.

I’ve included the video of the process of painting. I hope it explains the process better than words.


22 thoughts on “Hen Run – Oil Painting

  1. It is amazing to me that you can complete such an interesting painting in 1 1/2 hours. I do like you portrayed the chicken wire.

  2. Thank you for liking our post on painting with the greats. It was very relaxing to watch your video. We really enjoyed it. We’ll be adding you to our list of blogs to follow in our Reader window. Brent & Lisa

  3. I liked your method of painting. But I have one question – why you do not load the full video (not speeded up)? It would be very useful to look how you take a paint, a brush, how you stroke, but we can not see this in the speeded up video((

    • Alexander, thanks for the comment. The problem is with technology. The original movie, which I have on file, is 30 GB (30,000 megabytes), this is compressed to about 7 GB. It is still one and a half hours long at this point. The max time for YouTube videos is 15 minutes – so I speed up the video to fit about 10 minutes. To upload 10 minutes to YouTube takes about 2 hours, assuming there is no break in communication, which means starting again. This means, without speeding up, each painting would occupy, maybe 6 fifteen minute videos. This could take days to upload alone. I paint the picture in one to two hours, several paintings a week. I actually did this as an experiment, breaking the painting into 4 parts which are on my YouTube channel (LiamRainsfordChannel), Irish Landscape, Impressionist Demo 1, 2, 3 & 4.

  4. Amazing… I can’t wait to be half able to create a work like this!! So far I’ve done a still life (painting class #1), wasn’t horrible, so hopefully, when i master a few techniques and skills, i can rewatch your time lapses and go along with them. Thanks for posting them!!

    • Thank you Helen for the comment. I use a Lumix GH1 and edit in iMovie. I do everything myself. Oil paintings are glossy, so I have to position the camera and myself to avoid glare from the surface. All camera settings are Manual, as this sophisticated camera continually changes everything to adapt to changing conditions and, of course, the camera is static. Its very challenging, multiple “lights, camera, action”, then I have to paint the picture, which has to be 100% right or all is lost.

    • First of all, you deserve the award for your blog, congratulations. I am honoured you should nominate me. But alas, I was nominated previously and at that time I was not able to fulfil the requirements of the nomination due to lack of time. All the bloggers I would have nominated already had received the award and to do justice to the award would require time to research. Thank you again.

  5. You are very talented Liam! I like the way you added Chrome Green in the sky to tie the colours together, it’s a very useful technique.

    Your blog is great. Thanks for checking out mine and liking my posts! I’m glad you enjoy it

    Happy new year by the way!

  6. Saw your “like” on one of my posts (Thank you). Saw the “Hen Run Oil Painting” listed on the suggested views on your blog and chose that one. I love the painting, enjoyed reading how and why you did the chicken wire the way you did. Then, watched the video. Great musical accompaniment. Did you perhaps paint w/that music playing? Yes, I can imagine painting at life-speed with that accompaniment. I like the illusion and reality you have combined in your painting. Very nice interpretation. Watching it materialize was very intriguing-as is the painting. I loved watching the grass grow. Almost couldn’t see the brush. The materialization of the chicken wire was especially meaningful with your description. And, I did tilt my head (vision) looking through the chicken wire, before you mentioned it I think, and especially after seeing it painted. Very well done. Outstanding. Going to share it on Facebook and see it it’ll Pinterest (pin). I’m glad I got to see it, so thanks again for stopping by my blog. Jenn

    • Jenn, thank you for the thoughtful comment and questions. Let me answer by quickly running through the process of producing a post. When I decide to paint a picture, as well as the painting materials, I have to set up the camera to record the painting. Myself and the camera have to be positioned to avoid the gloss from the surface of the painting and casting shadows. This is trickier than you would think. The camera gets the best position and I have to make do. Before I do anything to the painting, I switch the camera on, when I have to do anything unimportant (clean a brush, throw the dog out, etc), I stop the recording. This takes getting used to, and occasionally I’ve forgotten to start the camera. Producing the video takes a lot longer than painting the picture. The clips are loaded onto the computer, usually about 50, each between 1 and 3 minutes. These are edited to cut out any unwanted non-activity (caused by forgetting to turn recording off, etc.). The final movie is uploaded to YouTube. At this point there is no soundtrack. All music is copyright. So I can’t have a music soundtrack. YouTube will allow me to choose a piece of music, from their list, to use as a soundtrack in exchange for advertising on the YouTube video. As you can see, actual painting is a small part of this process. ‘Why do I do it?’, you might ask. Its because I have made it part of my art, like street art, part performance with a permanent end result. Recently a WordPress blog featured a street artist doing finger painting, the art is in doing, more than the finished painting. I believe, nowadays, its not enough just to arrive with an image. I read another WordPress Blog yesterday on how to produce an oil painting from a photo using Photoshop. All images are suspect. Abstract art could be anything. The art world’s solution is to confer the ‘Midas Touch’ to certain painters, even non painters (Bob Dylan, great musician, terrible painter). This work is above criticism, so integrity is never an issue. Thanks again.

  7. Pingback: In the Woods again – Oil Painting « PictureS

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