Sunday, 6 March 2011

Current Projects

I have two big original paintings on the go at the moment, both VERY different even if they are of the same horse/s! I am not especially confident that either are going to turn out as I would like but I am enjoying them nonetheless!

Both canvases are the same size- 100cm x 70cm, linen deep edge. You might remember I blogged about the above background at the start of the year- the result of lots of experimentation dripping paint on various surfaces. I have waited several months to let it dry before beginning to paint the horse on it. Now, normally, I tend to draw my horses onto the canvas very carefully in pencil before any paint goes on but for this one I was a bit stuck... pencil wasn't going to show up on the brightly coloured background! I had no choice but to cross my fingers and go straight in with a paintbrush freehand.. no room for error with the background as if I made a mistake in paint it would make a mess and spoil the effect, eek! I just blocked in the main shapes and areas of light and I think I am not too far off *phew*! Almost dry enough to start working on again now. I plan to try and incorporate some of those bright colours into the horses coat, as though they are reflected but I have no idea whether it will 'work' or not! VERY experimental for me! Good fun though :-)

On the other end of the spectrum is the painting below. I'm really challenging myself to make it as 'real' as possible. The canvas was sanded and gesso'd to silky smoothness and the detailed drawing carefully drawn in pencil. I am doing a grisaille underpainting first (basically a black and white version of the finished painting) which I'll then glaze transparent colours over to build the final look. This is the first layer of paint, several more to go before the grisaille is ready for colour. One of my favourite paintings of mine ('Arabian Filly') was produced in this way but I have been disappointed with my subsequent attempts at this technique so I am a bit nervous of how it will turn out. Plan to do lots of practice glazes on spare boards before I tackle the actual painting!

My 365-2011 daily painting project seems to have gone out the window leading up to and following my recent surgery but I'm determined to get back to it! I'm really excited to have secured a place on the SEA's new Hampshire workshop later in the year, I want to do as much painting from life as I can before then in order to get the most out of it!