Tuesday, November 27, 2007

another Tunisian coast seascape study, step by step

Blocked in

reworking the sea
into the shallow water
and next I work the rocks
some general highlights
more highlights to give the movement in the water and wave lines added

final highlights and details
about 12 inches square, acrylic on canvas. I am building up a collection of these small works, soon I will start on a large scale piece on the subject.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

two small seascapes

Here are two quick studies, acrylic on canvas, about 10 inches square. They are both based on the mediterranean coast again. They are just basic square works, but divided in half, blue and green. This has been varied by splitting the top square again, the lower one in half again above and graduated colour below. In the first painting, the movement in the water and the cloud in the sky have broken up the stripes, thus disguising the geometric form of the painting. In the second, less worked piece the cloud does not break the top strip to a great extent leaving it stronger looking even though it is less pronounced than in the first painting. The gradual and radial colour change of the sea help do the same.


These are two small experimental paintings which will help when I come to do a larger painting based on the same principle.

SOLD Seascape 2,

Sunday, November 18, 2007

North African seascape No.2

I have been working on another North African/mediterranean seascape painting. Here is a step by step work up study;acrylic on canvas, 16 inches square.
Step one:Blocked in colour with a few marks indicating water movement.

step two: further work on the main sea areas. There is added movement in the water and more tonal values in the sea.
Followed by step three: detailing and moving light on the rocks, light movement in the foreground water, created mainly with the use of semi-transparent layers and brush marks.

The criss-crossing curves and arcs create a simplified rippling effect on the seabed while still showing as water surface without needing to delineate the visuals by adding a shoreline

This will be an interesting excercise in a more finished painting.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Second Lino-cut print

These are two prints from my second lino-cut. They are not good quality as I have used plain acrylic paint and sketching paper but they suffice to give an idea of what they will look like when finished. I have created horizontal strips to create an impression of writing in the book. The angled lines on the background are intended to give the idea of a rushing river with the salmon leaping out from it. I moved the 'Ex' over to the right, to help the balance of the image.

Friday, November 9, 2007

My Ex-Libris Lino-cut is coming along

I have been working on my Ex Libris print. Ex Libris from the latin meaning "from the books of",was an old way of claiming ownership of books, much like a library stamp, when books were still very valuable. The idea was to have a personal stamp to put into the frontispiece (1st page) of the book. It will be a lino cut. This is my basic outline. The design is based on Fionn mac Cumhaill, (pronounced Finn MacCool) an early Irish mythical hero, who while cooking the salmon of knowledge for his teacher Finneces, accidentally gained the great knowledge of all things....much like an avid reader does. I will be titling my print "Fionn mac Cumhaill's Salmon" and I think it is an Ideal subject for an 'Ex Libris', as it is sympathetic to the idea of books as tools of learning.

This is my first plate, although it did print well I am not totally happy with the final print. I will cut another block and try it before deciding one way or another.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Autumn rains

I am currently working on the structural element of my studio access, in short building my 'boat-dock' out to the door. The steel structure is in place and I now can fit the timbers to it. Today though we have heavy rain and wind so I don't see me getting much done. I cannot even try to sort out the power outlets in the wet.
It is looking like a day to go wandering around a few galleries and the art supply shop. I may even spend a few hours socialising in the city while I am at it. I haven't done that in quite a while, I have been too busy since getting back from Tunisia, and I didn't have the time before my trip either.

Monday, November 5, 2007

A step by step view of a painting.

Here is todays work, a WIP, work in progress.

This is the first stage with a basic sketch and blocked in dark areas.

My second stage with a base wash of yellows

The next step was to add warm colours into the rocks and a little more substance, still with thin washes

adding some depth and a little more contrast

followed by some further detailing, still in thin washes.

a few washes later, ready for cleaner work with thicker paint. I will start the next steps on Monday.
As you may notice it is a study of the sea and rocks again. I was looking into the water from a stone built 'pier' out into the sea when creating my sketch.

2nd instalment of the WIP, Coastal Groyne

Here is the next stage in the progress of this painting. I have started over painting and adding more detail in the water.
As I continue adding more paint I am both defining the shapes and strenghtening the tones and colours of the painting, I have also started to define the wave at the foot of the painting.
Here you will notice I have started to create a swirling motion to the water, this has been done by adding many more curves with the marks from the paintbrush.

Finally I have added final touches to the broken wave and the stream of water over the rock in the foreground. I have also warmed the colours as the depth of water shallows while still keeping the overall blue/green effect in the sea.
Here is a detail of the streaming water over the rock ...
and a detail of the breaking wavelet in the foreground.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

The first work out of my new studio..

Is an acrylic on canvas, 24 by 18 inches. It is based on my Tunisian coast studies. I photographed it when I had the base work painted in. These base colours look a little stark, but you will notice how much they soften with the extra layers of paint in the final picture. I intend to do a few of these seascapes, and then I hope to paint a couple of larger paintings in oils when I have explored the ideas a bit further. The acrylic paint is a bit flatter than the oils would be, but because they dry so much quicker I can develope my ideas more rapidly.

For my next painting I will try to get more vibration within the sea itself. I like the movement within this one but I feel I can get a deeper look to the movement if I use less brushwork, but more careful blending of colour tones. The similar tones of two colours react when laid down beside each other, giving the effect of a vibration within the painting. This will aid the movement of the water in the seascape.

PS. in the actual painting the rocks sit below the surface of the water, but not quite as well in the photograph. I must look at the painting again to make sure.