Painting process: small landscape, 8 x 8 inches

Step one is a very loose sketch, setting up the composition and using marks to indicate direction and texture.
Step two is blocking in colour with a saturated wash. making the colour a shade darker than what I see.
Step three is adding the thick paint with a small palette knife, starting in the background and getting warmer and more vibrant as I work my way towards the foreground.
Close up of the top of the painting.
Close up of the trees and fields towards the bottom of the painting.
Here is the finished product. You can see that in the distance the colours are cooler and become warmer and more vibrant towards the middle and slightly cooler again as it moves into the foreground.

Just finished: Ranunculus and plums

I have been working really hard this past week.  This is my latest painting which I finished in the wee hours of this morning.  Here is the sketch that I started with.
I have been working really hard this past week. This is my latest painting which I finished in the wee hours of this morning. Here is the sketch that I started with.
The underpainting looks pretty close to what the finished painting will look like.  I really enjoyed painting all the different blues.
The underpainting looks pretty close to what the finished painting will look like. I really enjoyed painting all the different blues.
A close up of the progress on the pitcher and the finished stems.
A close up of the progress on the pitcher and the finished stems.
I finished this in two days.  Without all the details of other vases and plates, I was able to focus on fewer elements.  I enjoyed the simplicity.  I will take a break this weekend and find more inspiration.
‘Blue April, a pitcher of Spring’ 30 x 30 inches, oil on board- I finished this in two days. Without all the details of other vases and plates, I was able to focus on fewer elements. I enjoyed the simplicity. I will take a break this weekend and find more inspiration.

A whole lotta pomegranates…again

I will be working on a series of spilled fruit paintings for the Morningside Gallery in Edinburgh. This is the first of four that will be available in March. I am working on a 30 x 30 inch cradled panel. Here is the underpainting.
I will be working on a series of spilled fruit paintings for the Morningside Gallery in Edinburgh. This is the first of four that will be available in March. I am working on a 30 x 30 inch cradled panel. Here is the underpainting.
A close-up of the underpainting
A close-up of the underpainting
The whole pomegranates have been finished. I decided to leave it here until tomorrow.
The whole pomegranates have been finished. I decided to leave it here until tomorrow.
close-up of a whole pomegranate
close-up of a whole pomegranate

Painting process: Pink house, yellow field, 30 x 30 cm

I have been working on a series of Suffolk landscapes.  Above is the sketch.  This painting is 30 x 30cm and will be available framed when dry.
I have been working on a series of Suffolk landscapes.  Above is the sketch of the third in the series. 
The underpainting.
The underpainting.
The trees and house in the distance have been painted in with a small palette knife.  I dug and dragged through the paint to create tree trunks and branches.  The house is created with  a few quick marks.
The trees and house in the distance have been painted in with a small palette knife. I dug and dragged through the paint to create tree trunks and branches. The house is created with a few quick marks.
I am working on the yellow field now. I am keeping my marks loose and gestural.
I am working on the yellow field now. I am keeping my marks loose and gestural.
Here is the finished painting.  it took about an 1.5 hours to complete.  I think the small abstracts I recently did helped me to loosen up.  I've been wanting to include a "Suffolk pink" house in one of my landscapes.
Here is the finished painting. it took about an 1.5 hours to complete. I think the small abstracts I recently did helped me to loosen up. I’ve been wanting to include a “Suffolk pink” house in one of my landscapes.  This painting will be available framed.

 

 

Painting process: Autumn still life, 24 x 24 inches

Autumn has always been  my favourite season.  To express my love I paint a few Autumnal still lifes as soon as I can find heirloom variety gourds, squash and pumpkins.  Above is my sketch and you can see my set-up as well.
Autumn has always been my favourite season. To express my love I paint a few Autumnal still lifes as soon as I can find heirloom variety gourds, squash and pumpkins. Above is my sketch and you can see my set-up as well.
I have blocked in the colour.  I am already getting excited about how this will turn out.
I have blocked in the colour. I am already getting excited about how this will turn out.
The lily and eucalyptus bouquet is finished.  I love the movement in the leaves.
The lily and eucalyptus bouquet is finished. I love the movement in the leaves.
Bouquet close-up.  i have also painted in the vase as if it were just a plain white vase.  I will do the pattern next.
Bouquet close-up. I have also painted in the vase as if it were just a plain white vase. I will do the pattern next.
After scratching in the pattern with a small palette knife, I paint in the pattern with a brush and smooth it over in places with a palette knife.  The cloth has also been painted in with a palette knife.
After scratching in the pattern with a small palette knife, I paint in the pattern with a brush and smooth it over in places with a palette knife. The cloth has also been painted in with a palette knife.
With a thin brush I start applying the pattern one colour at a time.
With a thin brush I start applying the pattern one colour at a time.
The cloth is finished.  I am very pleased with it.
The cloth is finished. I am very pleased with it.
Cloth pattern close-up.
Cloth pattern close-up.
Here is the finished painting.  I love it!  A 24 x 24 inch painting usually take only a day to complete but, this one took a day and a half to complete.  I am glad I took my time on the details.  What a result!  I am off now to set-up the next still life.
Here is the finished painting. I love it! A 24 x 24 inch painting usually takes a day to complete but, this one took a day and a half. I am glad I took my time on the details. What a result! I am off now to set-up the next still life.

Painting process: Spilled figs on gold

I happen to really love painting figs.  I decided to test how much by  doing this painting.  Just like my 'Spilled Pomegranates' painting I used four figs to help cover this 30 x 30 inch board.  Above you can see I have sketched in all the figs and painted the background and shadows with a thin wash of paint.
I happen to really love painting figs. I decided to test how much by doing this painting. I used only four figs as a reference to help cover this 30 x 30 inch board. Above: I have sketched in all the figs and painted the background and shadows with a thin wash of paint.
With a brush I gave the figs a thin wash of colour.
Underpainting of the figs.
Before I start applying thicker paint, I mix all the colours I may need for the figs.  This way I won't break my flow as I begin painting all these figs!
Before I start applying thicker paint, I mix all the colours I may need for the figs. This way I won’t break my flow as I begin painting all these figs!
Figs detail.
Figs detail.
I pain tinted as many figs I could before getting tired or lazy and sloppy.  This part took three days.  I made sure to vary my mixes and colours of the figs to keep things from getting monotonous.
I painted as many figs as I could before getting tired, lazy and sloppy. This part took three days. I made sure to vary my mixes and colours of the figs.  Some are darker, some more cool in colour, others are more red, etc.
Finished figs detail.  The gold background has been added as well.
Finished figs detail. The gold background has been added as well.
Here is the finished painting.  It took six days in total to finish.  Well worth all the work I think and I am surprisingly not tired of painting figs!  My next panting will be a few figs on a decorative plate.  I think I will give figs a rest after that...maybe.
Here is the finished painting. It took six days in total to finish. Well worth all the work and I am surprisingly not tired of painting figs! My next panting will be a few figs on a decorative plate. I think I will give figs a rest after that…maybe.

Small painting: A romantic bouquet, 12 x 12 inches

This is the last of four small paintings headed to the VK Gallery in November.  I will be using a softer palette with deep reds and sage greens.  Above is my sketch and you can see that I have started to block in the background.
This is the last in a series of four small paintings headed to the VK Gallery in November. I will be using a softer palette with pale pinks and sage greens. Above is my sketch.
Here is the underpainting.  Things are looking good!
Here is the underpainting. Things are looking good!
The background and bouquet have been completed.  The soft pinks and deep reds are lovely.
The background and bouquet have been completed. The soft pinks and deep reds are lovely.
bouquet detail.
bouquet detail.
fig detail
fig detail
Here is the finished painting.  A different colour palette for me, but I love the feeling of this one.  Figs really are fun to paint and I have been using them a lot lately.  I plan to do a large spilled figs painting this weekend so watch this space!
Here is the finished painting. A different colour palette for me, but I love the feeling of this one. Figs really are fun to paint and I have been using them a lot lately. I plan to do a large ‘spilled figs’ painting soon, so watch this space!