Tuesday, 7 April 2015
Well, for final piece, for the grand one zero zero, I couldn't do anything else but a painting of the exhibition itself! These two shady characters giving the final judgement are in fact my parents who were in the UK on a brief visit (I'm joking of course - there were no judgements, just lots of hugs!). I had to work from a photograph because of the time restraints and you can see when it was taken by the number of empty frames (exactly five days ago!).
Well I hoped you have enjoyed this project as much as I have. It has been an absolutely wonderful journey and I hope just the start of more adventures! Toodle-oo!
Monday, 6 April 2015
Recently I just haven't been inspired to paint any still lifes but I saw this gorgeous, happy sunflower and I just had to paint it! It's pretty apt too as it was Vincent van Goghs birthday just last week. I feel sorry for the poor little jug though - the sunflower is almost the same size! So now that painting number 99 is finished, there's just one single painting left!
Sunday, 5 April 2015
Ok so I got distracted by some stunning clouds again. I can't believe how many different shapes and colours they form - they are a bottomless barrel of inspiration! Not that I can explore them in this series though as there are only two paintings left after this one! How sad...
Saturday, 4 April 2015
You hear artists dramatically exclaiming that it's all about the light and I have never really understood it until recently. It's scenes like this when it you suddenly go 'aha! So that that what they meant!'. This one is definitely all about the light.
The colour changes are much better in the original painting itself - unfortunately this one hasn't photographed particularly well.
Friday, 3 April 2015
With the end of my project looming I feel the air of finality creeping into my paintings, this one especially so with its warm evening glow. There's that funny phenomenon (which I guess is true of most subjects) when you properly delve into something, you realise that in fact you have uncovered just the tiniest tip of the iceberg and that there's a whole uncharted world for you to discover. Clouds, still lifes or even just the act of painting itself seems to be so much bigger, more complicated and more interesting the more I delve. Well isn't this a light and entertaining blog post for an Easter weekend!
Thursday, 2 April 2015
This sweet, little rivulet runs behind the police station and fire station in Maidenhead. This bit of it is a tangle of saplings, reeds and floating bits of vegetation which turned out to be fascinating to paint. How do you paint some areas to look like reflections while others to look like stuff that is floating on those reflections? To be honest I have no idea! I looked carefully, squinted to simplify the shapes, ummed and aahed and finally painted this piece, I think it sort of works!
Wednesday, 1 April 2015
From painting clouds to painting blossom...I don't think that's a particularly particularly big leap! I absolutely love this time of year - even though the weather is still horrible and wintery all the plants seem to know that the moment has arrived and they all start popping out of the ground and bursting into flower. Tree blossom is one of my favourites, especially when some of the petals have fallen and they create a path of pure white on the muddy ground.
Tuesday, 31 March 2015
For the last couple of paintings I have had a go at late-in-the-day clouds with very warm light. Today I wanted to explore middle-of-the-day bright, white clouds and this time with a horizon to give them a bit of scale. I think in a clouds vs. hills competition the clouds definitely win on size and impressiveness!
Monday, 30 March 2015
I loved yesterdays cloud painting so much that I thought I would give it another go. In fact it's same cloud but a different bit of it! I find it so surprising how dark shadows in clouds can get considering that we think of them as white...
Sunday, 29 March 2015
I've been wanting to do some cloud studies for a long time and as I only have TEN PAINTINGS LEFT (how on earth did that happen?!) I thought it's now or never! I had to work from a photo as all the potential clouds were moving way too fast and were a little blacker and rain-ier than I wanted. I had to study the photo really hard but I'm pretty chuffed at how the painting turned out for a first go.
Saturday, 28 March 2015
After a few days of cloudyness I really needed a bit of sunshine so I went back to the photos I took when the weather was gorgeous. I love that warm, golden grass contrasting with the bright blue reflections. Mmmm...feels like summer...
Friday, 27 March 2015
This is the view across Cookham moor and its little stream (which I think is called the Widbrook...or perhaps it's the Whitebrook). I don't know where but the name changes at some point. Isn't it funny how things are named like that?!
It was a difficult scene to paint because the sun was in and out of the clouds like a yo yo. I think that the painting has ended up looking like it wasn't quite sunny or completely overcast but I can live with that.
The grass was fab to paint because there was such a mixture of shapes and colours - from the dark reed like grasses all they way down to the cute, yellow celandines which were poking out their heads in the foreground.
Thursday, 26 March 2015
This painting is from a photo I took at the river when the weather was still gorgeous and sunshiny. I struggled a bit to get it to look like what it's meant to be and I still can't tell if it's obvious to other people or not! It's a small beach with a bank of tall, dry grass just behind it casting a shadow into the shallow water. It was quite late in the day so the light was almost golden and the cast shadows were wonderfully blue. No wonder Monet was obsessed with painting water!
Wednesday, 25 March 2015
I haven't walked down the Thames towpath (between Maidenhead and Cookham) for ages and as the weather was gorgeous I thought it would be a good excuse to have a little wander and a little paint. I wanted to keep everything as simple as possible so that the focus stays on the reflections. I reduced the treeline to blocky shapes so that the willow tree coming out into leaf (on the right) is now a yellow sort of blob. As I put in the water reflections of the 'blob' it still works as a tree...I think!
Tuesday, 24 March 2015
I wasn't really sure what to paint so I looked all around the studio until I saw something which was bright and cheery and on the feet of my friend Charlotte...her gorgeous red sneakers! I thought they looked much better within a scene than on their own under a spotlight so I painted them with Charlotte attached!
Monday, 23 March 2015
I'm pretty proud of the fact that I don't repeat my paintings very often (if at all!) but in this case, for these scrummy radishes, I just had to make an exception. To be honest it's not actually the same painting at all, it's a different composition of the same subject matter. I just love getting all those hot and cold pinks right next to each other and layering up those floppy, green leaves. Bliss!
Sunday, 22 March 2015
You might take one look at this painting and think that it is a lovely bunch of purple flowers...and you wouldn't be completely wrong but they are in fact purple sprouting broccoli! After my experiment with normal broccoli the other day, I couldn't resist this wonderful purple stuff that I saw at the market.
It was a very complicated mash of leaves, florets and stalks so I simplified as much as I could and tweaked up the colour with the complementary background. Definitely going to have to remember that colour combo for another painting...
Saturday, 21 March 2015
I found these gorgeous radishes at the market...and they still have their hair (also known as leaves)! I tried out a technique which I have known about for a while but hadn't got round to trying. It's used when you want to make objects seem really colourful or saturated and involves placing cool and warm versions of the same colour right next to one another. I think it worked a treat! ;)
Friday, 20 March 2015
This rainy day near Skirmett was in fact painted on the very same day as "A Grey Day Near Skirmett"! It started out just grey and overcast but turned into this really dark, rainy, moody scene. Maybe I should have called them both "A Miserable Day in Skirmett"!
The more I look at this painting, the more I like it. The raincloud is just bursting over the hillside but the lighter clouds are poking through just underneath offer just that little bit of hope.
Thursday, 19 March 2015
This was interesting to paint as I had to keep dulling down all of my colours to catch that overcast damp feeling. I love the tractor tyre marks in the foreground - the mud was so rich and warm compared to everything else.