Beside the Lake

Beside the Lake

A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.
(WILLIAM WORDSWORTH)

The yellow blobs of paint in the foreground needed to be recognisable as daffodils. These ‘explain’ the yellow blobs in other areas of the scene – they must also be daffodils.

I truncated the daffodil stems in the foreground to suggest we are looking over them and along the lake shore to the gate and further into the scene.

As usual I’m using various elements of the composition to draw the viewer into the painting. Diagonal lines, repeated shapes and colours. Like the strong yellow of the foreground flowers repeated in the reflections in the water and further to the sunlit trees in the distance, reinforced by the patch of bright sunlight in the top right corner of the painting, or the ‘scratchy’ line of the fence wire leading us to the ‘scratchy’ gate or the ‘zig-zag’ route through the daffodils to entice us in.

There are 3 colours used in this painting, Indian Yellow, Alizarin Crimson & Ultramarine Blue plus black and white. There is no medium used, only White Spirits. The size is 16.5″ x 12″ of primed un-stretched canvas which will be laminated onto a stiff board when the painting is dry.

Here is the video of the painting process. To view in realtime change setting to .25. Quality can also be set up to 1080HD.

Kilkea Castle Grounds

Kilkea Castle Grounds

Built in 1180ad by the invading Normans, this castle was the longest inhabited castle in Ireland until the financial crash nearly a decade ago. In recent decades it was a hotel and plans are afoot to reopen the hotel..

The two towers of the castle, in grey limestone, are intrusive in this idyllic scene. I echoed these two vertical shapes in various parts of the design. Most notably the reflection in the river, the two trees on the right and the two trees on the left of the castle. This places the castle as part of the landscape. I think this is a harmonious arrangement in this instance, rather than placing trees etc. at random. Of course if this is too obvious it will look un-natural.

The use of only three colours will guarantee harmony of colour, provided the colours are well distributed over the entire surface as secondary and tertiary mixes. The three colours used here are Indian Yellow, Alizarin Crimson, Ultramarine Blue plus black and white. There is no medium used, only White Spirits.

The size is 16.5″ x 12″ and was painted in a single ‘wet on wet’ session of about two hours.

Here is a video of the painting process. To view in realtime change setting to .25. Quality can also be set up to 1080HD. See you soon.

Wetlands

Wetlands

Wetlands

The emergence of spring green with the remains of winter browns is always an inspiration.

I’m using my usual composition to draw the viewer into the painting. The diagonal lines from the corners lead the eye into the landscape, around the central group of trees, to the mysterious mountain in the distance.

There is the appearance of perspective because of the regular size reduction, with distance, seen in the trees. I was trying to avoid the cliche of the line of trees running into the distance with the appropriate perspective applied. So the trees are grouped, flat-on to the viewer, and placed at receding distances. The central group have 3 shorter trees on the left to help the illusion. I think it is more interesting like this.

I’m making much use of underpainting and allowing it to be part of the final painting. I’m choosing transparent colours as these work best and glow in the final painting.

The size is 16.5″ x 12″ and was painted in a single ‘wet on wet’ session in about 2 hours.
This painting uses only 3 colours (Indian Yellow, Alizarin Crimson, Ultramarine Blue) plus black and white. There is no medium used, only White Spirits.

Here is the video of the painting process. To view in realtime change speed setting to .25. Quality can also be set up to 1080HD. See you soon.

February Marsh

February Marsh

February Marsh

Highlight colour usually contains white. The more white the lighter the tone, the weaker the colour. I used very little white in these foreground colours in order to get rich colour. The dark colourless shapes of the trees on the right emphasises this colour. Notice the transparent under colour layer of blue also in here using colour contrast to help emphasise the richness of the colour. To see these details click on the picture above to see an enlarged version.

The size is 16.5″ x 12″ and was painted in a single ‘wet on wet’ session in about 2 hours. This painting uses only 3 colours (Cadmium Yellow, Alizarin Crimson, Ultramarine Blue) plus black and white. There is no medium used, only White Spirits.

Here is the video of the painting process. To view in realtime change speed setting to .25. Quality can also be set up to 1080HD. See you soon.

Winter Marsh

Winter Marsh

Winter Marsh

The unusual lighting in the winter skies is creating very colourful landscapes with warm colours on very cold days.

Sometimes even the finest brush can’t get the really thin lines as needed in the distant trees above. Or maybe the wet under colour just won’t allow it. As my method is ‘wet on wet’, scratching the paint with a point is always an option. Depending on the pressure applied, you can reveal the white primer or with a little less pressure the under layer of raw colour. The problem is, as it is so easy to do it can be overdone.

I have a few other interesting variations on this technique of scratching the wet surface. Here is one I use from time to time. A pool of very liquid paint is placed on the surface of the painting. It can be drawn out into very fine lines with a point or as I use, the nib of an old pen. An example could be the trunk or branch of a tree in dark brown, painted in blobs of liquid paint on a wet sky layer. By drawing the point out of the blob of liquid paint you scratch a fine channel in the wet sky paint into which the liquid will flow – producing the finest branches no brush can match.

By clicking on the image above you can get an enlarged view of the painting. See how the under colour is revealed in the scratches.

3 colours used (Indian Yellow, Alizarin Crimson, Ultramarine Blue) plus black and white. There is no medium used, only White Spirits. The size is 16.5″ x 12″. Most of the painting was done with a No. 8, long filbert bristle. A No. 12 was used to blend the sky but not apply paint. A small round bristle and nylon liner were used for details.

The painting process is below. To view in realtime change speed setting to .25. Quality can also be set up to 1080HD. See you soon.

The Hidden Cold

The Hidden Cold

The Hidden Cold

A little bit of Eastern European weather came our direction recently. No rain or snow, just cold air. The landscape is desiccated and even the evergreens have yellow and orange colours. Warm colours, cold walking.

When you view the accompanying video, notice the 2 ‘dippers’ on my palette. The lower one contains solvent – White Spirits, a petroleum derivative, the upper one I rarely use and when I do, contains Liquin and solvent. The proportions are 25% Liquin, 75% solvent. I use this when the weather is warm as it slows down the evaporation of the solvent.

‘Dippers’ clipped onto the palette and brushes ‘dipped’ therein is the traditional method of adding solvent or medium to paint mixes. What a mess this makes. How do you keep the liquids clean? I use very few colours and a bit of cross mixing will not do much to ‘dirty’ my colours, but with a large number of different colours, all adding their bit to the liquids, makes it impossible to keep colours from becoming muddy.

I use a plastic pipette and add the liquids to the paint mix. I can add a specific quantity, a drop at a time, until I reach the consistency required. Check it out in the video below.

This painting uses only 3 colours (Indian Yellow, Permanent Rose, Prussian Blue) plus black and white. There is no medium used, only White Spirits. The size is 15.75″ x 9.75″ and was painted in a single session in under 2 hours.

To view in realtime change setting to .25. Also, quality can be set up to 1080HD.

December Afternoon

December Afternoon

December Afternoon

Fog and mist hang in the air.

The size is 16.5″ x 12″. Painted in a single session.  3 colours used Indian Yellow, Alizarin Crimson, Ultramarine Blue plus black and white. There is no medium used, only White Spirits.

Here’s the video of the painting process.
The photo of the painting can be seen enlarged by clicking on the image above.
The YouTube setting allows the video to be played at a slower / faster speed or the quality to be changed up to 1080HD.

See you soon.