Farndon cottages

For the past two weeks, I have been working on this scene in my weekly class to demonstrate one way of painting buildings.  In the first demonstration, I washed in glazes, letting down the oil paints with copious amounts of “Zest-it”, as an underpainting for the buildings.  You can see this thin paint on the left had side of the picture below.  I have treated the sky and the distant church tower more immediately with thicker paint which should not need much modification later.

The passage on the right hand side shows the beginning of the overpainting. Not a lot of the underpainting is left, but just enough shows to give depth to the painted surface.  The main value to me is that the thinned paint uses the white canvas to create lighter tones, just as one does in watercolour.  This in turn means that the true colour remains, not deadened by white paint, so I am encouraged to use true colour for the second pass – more vibrant and alive.  I used yellow to lighten my greens, reserving a blued white for the cottages themselves.  I am a bit cross that  I didn’t make my underpainting of the cottages darker, for then I would not have needed to repaint the wooden beams.  Next week I shall work on the white cottages on the left.

Lakeland Waterfall

This is one I did earlier – about ten years ago!  I was decidedly chuffed with it at the time and the years have not diminished my chuffedness.

There is absolutely no back or middle ground here; all is foreground.  It was a rather small waterfall, which you can judge by looking at the leaves of the sapling on the left of the picture.  There are so many differing textures , mosses, shrubs, rocks, grasses and water, both still and moving.  I had a field day didn’t I?  The red-browns and oranges are working their spells on the greens and blues, but are totally outclassed by the moving water.

My eye goes to the flat rock bearing the brunt of the fall, then follows the crack in the rock to the bushes above.  These curve over the fall where the topmost leaves of the sapling help the journey down to the stream.  Sometimes the trip is in the reverse order – and I just love the way the waterfall curves to the right in a series of miniature falls.