I headed to an old favourite plein air painting location- the Isabella Plantation in Richmond Park for a long overdue evening painting session. I was aiming to paint the colours of the sky as the sun set, with the dimly lit park in the foreground. I had to be careful to keep the tones of the foreground path and vegetation dark enough that the sky would read as bright and light emitting. I really enjoyed playing with the hues of the bushes and trees and like the mysterious feel to this painting.
It has been a while since I have had a good opportunity to paint so was looking forward to this session. I find even when I am not painting I am often looking at scenes and imagining how I would go about painting them. In this picture I used the drawing of the scene in front of me but played with the colour and tone to try to create an attractive image. I am interested in the process of finding colours and tones that work as an equivalent to those in the scene. For instance what approximates as the ‘blue’ of the sky is actually a combination of low chroma purple and green with some of the warmer ochre underpainting showing through. It makes me wonder why the eye and brain accepts this as a substitute for blue. I also experimented by not using burnt umber or sienna in order to make my colours feel cleaner. I relented right at the end and added some burnt umber to the trees.
Hadn’t got round to posting my effort from this summer’s Pintar Rapido plein air competition held in Chelsea. The artists had a day to paint any scene in London and all the paintings were exhibited the following day. I knew the forecast was for a sunny morning followed by a rainy afternoon and decided that I didn’t want to start a sunny painting that would have to be abandoned when the rains came. So instead I spent the morning scouting for a good rainy day location. Found a sheltered spot under a tree near the Victoria and Albert museum and anticipated that I could paint reflections in the pavement. The rain started to fall right on cue as I started to paint and the sheltered position worked well. The exhibition was interesting and varied as always and I enjoyed the energetic motivational speech given by fellow painter Adebanji Alade
It was quite a windy day and the clouds were transforming fast as showers blew in from the west. I was at the top of Leith Hill and working fast to portray the scene in front of me. I tend to focus on trying to produce an interesting composition when dealing with rapidly changing clouds. The end result is largely invented using other clouds as reference. Here I was concerned with creating an implied circular composition with the more brightly lit clouds in the centre.