Monday, October 31, 2011

A work in progress.. Clontarf

These first two images are photos of the sea-front in Clontarf. They are in effect part of my referrences. The first painted image can be seen to follow the first photograph quite closely. (this is because the photo was framed to follow my main plan for the work) The second image is of the Cordyline foliage in beds along the front, and the third image is of other beds with palms, which suffered badly last winter.

The next three images are of the work in progress. I started by blocking in the old power station, and the foliage, along with a lamp-post. The background has been built up with layers of thick oil paint, and the white rings have been painted over the red of the chimneys. I added spirals into the foliage of the tree on the left. After ruminating for a while, mainly when the paint was curing, I decided the foliage needed to be less heavy. I made it much more stylised, allowing the sky to come through. I continued the same effect in the lower foliage, and brought the low sea-front wall into the painting. The third image has more work done both in the foreground, and on the lampost.
I don't think I am nearly finished yet, but the newer layers need to dry. While this happens I will study the work further and re-work it my imagination.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

October light, Clontarf.

'October light, Clontarf.' oil on canvas; 30" by 15"
I have just finished a commissioned painting. Now I can go back to work to finish another for a group exhibition in North Dublin next month. I need to send my list of works in next week, so I'll need to have it finished, or nearly so, before then.
The painting illustrated is an earlier work, which I am sending to the same exhibition. It is a Plein air view of Howth Head from Clontarf, executed in oil paints with a painting knife. I want to combine it with my sea-bass painting (shown earlier) and the view of the pigeon-house that I am currently working on. I will endeavour to post the third work after the weekend, or if all goes well, before it.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Some landscape painting again..

My fish painting has come to a stop for a while. I have completed a couple of small landscape works this week for one of my galleries. They seem to be popular with some buyers at the moment. Possibly because they are small and affordable, they are only small studies so their price-point is lower than more finished and complicated pieces. I enjoy painting them at times, it is nice to be able to just paint what is in front of you, and by the time you start looking for the little details they are finished. Most of them are only 10" by 8", and sometimes I paint them 12" by 10". These sizes leave very little room for detail, so I can work quite loosely and freely. I have mislaid my camera so I have no images of the current work, these are two of an earlier trip... my phone cannot capture such small works, it doesn't have a facility for close-ups. I think I may have to invest in a new camera, unless we left it up in Sligo it seems to have vanished into thin air..???
These are painted with a knife which suits small works of large spaces. I'm off to Sligo this afternoon, for a final look for the aforementioned camera in the cottage and caravan. If I don't have any luck there it will be off to the camera shop I think.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Finn Eces' salmon revisited.

I have used this theme before in my work, relatively recently in both paint (both in 2008) and a lino-cut print
still available. This newest creation is more abstracted. It is a painting following on from my two recent works, with use of thick impasto planes. I have used the prehistoric symbol for water across the top, (as in my award winning "Danube" Ex-Libris, and the most recent trout painting) and the background plane is built up within spirals and chevrons, all decorative elements of prehistoric artifacts. This built up layer is then carved with slashes in the paint naming the piece (for the true scholars out there, I know the ogham should read in the opposite direction.) Bradán Feasa, the Salmon of Knowledge. The Salmon itself originally was blocked in using similar colours to the background, silver/blue/green. I changed my mind however after considering the image for a while. As an angler I know that salmon turn dark red and brown after a period in the river. This salmon had eaten nine hazel-nuts from the tree of knowledge, therefor it would be autumn and the salmon would be dark red. I have left my thumb-print in the paint on the fishes gill-plate in reference to Fionn Mac Cumhaill's burn thumb. The colour of the fish can also be representative of the cooking process so a thumbprint would not be out of place in the narative.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Further work on my two fish paintings

Well, I reworked the water in this one a little. I think I may leave it now.
The second work has been reworked extensively, without the silver foil though. I am quite happy with this one as it is, and I have even signed off on it. Always a sign that I know I have done enough.
I am going off to lough Sheelin tomorrow, hopefully I'll catch another trout to use for further pieces along the lines of this one. That's my excuse anyway. ;)