Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Painting No 21 - Bridgewater Monument across Aldbury Common

Oil on board - 10" x 8"

Yet another picture taken while on a run.  The trees and monument looked great against the dark sky.  I tried to focus on the tonal values in this one.  Whilst it has largely worked I did find the sky a bit tricky (to keep the values light enough) although I'm pleased with the final result.  I ended up by rubbing the sky over with a kitchen towel to get the edges to blend. I also rubbed backed to the underlying gesso to get the highlights in the clouds.

I stayed very loose with the plantlife in the foreground.  I think any more detail there would have detracted from the overall composition.

Compositionwise, I used a very useful iPad app called  Value Viewer from Plein Air to find the golden mean (although I could have easily measured it at 0.618 x length (or width)), and placed the monument on the vertical GM and the bottom of the right hand trees on the horizontal GM.  It does seem to work.

My numbering system for my paintings has collapsed as I now have two other paintings on the go plus a finished value study for one of those paintings.

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Painting No 20 (take 2) - Aldbury in the Spotlight

The original version of this (see previous post) was nagging me.  The sunlit area just wasn't strong enough to overcome the massive cloud formation.  So I expanded it (and also added some colour to the clouds and added a few sheep while I was at it).  I'm much more pleased with this.  It is much more balanced.

Sunday, 3 June 2012

Painting No 20 - Aldbury in the Spotlight

Oil on Canvas Board  18" x 24"

This is based on a photograph (yes, I'm still working from photos, sorry) that I took while out running. I couldn't resist this cloud formation and trying out the hotspot technique by placing Aldbury in the sun. I took a risk with demoting the land in favour of the sky but I think I just about got away with it.

It is amazing how effective the sunlit area is.  I had the painting on the easel for a couple of weeks with just a dull green and blue middle ground and the whole picture looked flat and uninteresting. I particularly the like the natural greens and browns in the sunlit patch.  There is something soothing about them.