For those that hadn’t already guessed, the painting I’ve been working on/impaling myself on my palette knife over, is for H.M. The Queen and is due to be presented at the Balmoral Garden Party in a couple of weeks. I will post an image of it after it’s presentation. Not that I think H.M. reads my blog, but if she does, I’d hate to spoil the suprise! I’m really pleased with the final result, even though it took three gos to get there, with complete compositional rethinks each time. It’s just come back from Christina Leder, a fabulous Aladdins cave of gold frames, and is now en route to Scotland.
Works in progress The Highland cattle painting is coming on slowly. It’s had a month on the floor, so was very dry, but a coat of retouch varnish and it’s now back on the easel; here’s an update after this weeks progress. I actually think I’ve lost a bit of the light in it, so that’s todays mission, then I’ll start on the background.
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Lovely big dog, who had a weird habit of ‘grinning’, cute in real life but looks like an alarming snarl in photos – I choose a more traditional pose. Another commission for two more labs has just come in, plus the big painting of a half dozen collies that I have to fit in at some stage this summer.
Jubilee commission IS FINISHED. Thank God. There have been many stops and starts, and a fair amount of sleepless nights, but finally it worked and is on it’s way to the fabulous Christina Leder for framing. She works in an extraordinary studio, a shed on stilts under a railway arch in Parsons Green, but makes exquisiteframes. It’s going to be presented in August, and I’ll update the blog with photos then. I’m afraid it has to be kept under wraps untill then.
I’ve been meaning to do a post on the development of a painting, showing my process of work, as I get asked about it all the time.
So, here is DAY ONE of a new painting.
I start by making the canvas – about 3 foot by 2 and then I do a pale colour wash called a ‘ground’. On top of this I sketch out, in a very thin red oil paint the basic composition of the painting. It is CRUCIAL to get this absolutely right, as it saves heart ache, and much frustration at a later stage.
Next, I start blocking in the main areas of colour.
And then filling in the cows…with some help from my studio assistant!
That is the first days work…a long day, as I’ve been part of the Henley Arts Trail, which has seen a steady stream of visitors to the studio.
Three new paintings on their way to the gallery! These were the result of the ill fated trip to Aberdeenshire; while sketching the cattle I jumped out of the landie and broke my ankle…which made for a quieter summer than planned.
This wonderful brindle highland bull is called Aeonghus. I have been on the hunt for a bull like this for years, travelling all over scotland – then discovered him barely a mile fro my parents house!