October – Oil Painting


Winter’s coming. An icy dew at the start of the day and a mellow mist in the evenings. I was trying to convey this transition, from light to dark and Autumn to Winter. Its about the feeling of year’s end and all that it entails.

This is similar in technique and subject matter to recent paintings. Here the sky has more prominence, not a backdrop to the foliage as in the others. I was thinking of painting the sky in a similar ‘dotty’ way to the rest of the painting, but decided against it as it would destroy the sense of reality which is most important in this painting. I want the viewer to enter into this world and feel its real. So in a small way the sky is a backdrop, detached from the landscape.

The other difference from recent paintings is the extremely limited palette. Just three colours, Burnt Sienna, Cadmium Yellow and Prussian Blue. There was no medium used at all, just White Spirits. As in the last painting I recorded the action on the palette as I believe this was helpful to other painters. The process of achieving the large array of colour from such a limited palette is a useful exercise and seeing how its done is the only way to convey this. Three colours is the minimum number of colours to achieve a natural landscape. The red, yellow and blue when combined will produce all colours of the rainbow. Its the individual pigments which skew the colours in different directions. In this painting, the intense colour and tinting power of Cadmium Yellow gave the overall warm colour cast. Prussian Blue is also as powerful, and this counteracted the yellow. Burnt Sienna is not as strong a colour as the other two but appeared in every part of the painting, from the grey of the clouds to the fallen leaves in the foreground, moderating the harsh yellow and blue.

I will post the video later in the week. See you then.


21 thoughts on “October – Oil Painting

  1. One of my favorites of yours. There are so many points of interest here. The light in the distance on the trail, the gate and the sky all things that really grab my eye.

  2. Almost thought I was looking at a late19th century painting when I saw this. It certainly looks realistically classical! Extremely effective use of light vs dark My mentor used to have his students paint with only red blue yellow as an exercise every now and then. Makes you shake your head at painters who have 30 colors squeezed out in tiny dots all over their palettes!

  3. This is my favorite…the most beautiful painting I have seen yet. Wonderful work & such great use of light & dark transitions. I felt as if I was a part of the painting & could feel the crisp air. Nice work!

  4. Pingback: Woodland Stream, Late Autumn – Oil Painting « PictureS

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