Lavender and Hay Bales, Sault, Provence – oil on panel, 7 x 5 inches Click here to bid. This was one of my last paintings from Julian’s workshop in Provence last month. As usual, despite spending ages deciding which view to paint, I made a few mistakes during set up. The main mistake I made
I thought I’d picked a good spot.
There was slight shade on me, keeping the full Provence sun from baking my head, and I had good light on my panel.
The other workshop attendees were mostly in front of me, in my field of view and obscuring some of the scene. But I thought I’d be able to edit them out as I painted and make up the bits I couldn’t see.
So here is my first ever plein air painting!
Well, I suppose that’s a bit of an exaggeration.
When I was on my foundation year at art college (post-school, pre-university) I spent quite a bit of time wandering around the North Yorkshire Moors, where I lived, doing little studies that then became very large paintings of rocks.
So it’s not quite the first. But it’s the first time I tried to to make a finished piece completely en plein air, and the first time I’ve painted outside for, erm, 30 years. I think.
The pain seemed to come from nowhere. I suddenly noticed that my ankles and feet felt like they were on fire. I was so absorbed in what I was doing that I hadn’t noticed the shade I was standing in recede as the hot Provence sun moved across the sky in a direction I hadn’t
Painting experiments are kind of like scouting missions. You blunder off into the unknown, thrashing around and hoping to find something useful you can bring back. Occasionally, you do. I’ve been searching for a different way to paint flowers lately, especially roses. If you paint them too precisely, they look like they’re made of porcelain.
These roses are from the same bush as yesterday’s painting – a different colour harmony this time. In fact, this painting is really about the colour harmony more than anything else. I think the is the closest I’ve got so far to my idea of how the flake white can be made to represent rose
Oil on panel, 5 x 7 inches. Click here to bid This painting is my first time painting with Natural Pigments Flake White #2. I don’t often get worked up about a specific paint, but this flake white is truly wonderful. The consistency is perfect for sculpting flower petals – and I find that lately
“Pinks from Paddy’s Garden” – oil on panel, 12 by 9 inches. This painting is up for auction, Click here to bid. In the nine months since we sold our house near London and moved out to the countryside we’ve seen the seasons change from late autumn, through winter, spring and now high summer. Each
Seeing is complicated.
I’ve spent more hours than I can count judging colours, trying to match them as closely as I can, learning how to shift them slightly this way or that.
Now, I’m practising combining them in different ways, and my thought process is changing.
Who knows what really goes into our paintings? I’m not sure we do ourselves, completely. I’ve been struggling to work through some ideas for a little while and have produced quite a few paintings recently that moved me closer towards what I was looking for but didn’t come off. All the ideas seemed to coalesce