Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Odds and Sods

Just a quick post really, very busy at the moment! Here's an update showing the re-worked snow scene from the top of Calton Hill looking down to the centre of Edinburgh. I must say after years of not really getting on with Acrylics, these Atelier Interactives seem to be the best of all worlds - I love them for their flexibility. An airtight container makes a good mixing palette which can be lightly sprayed at the end of each session to keep paint wet for the next day. The palette proved useable for a week, which was handy as I could only spend short stints on this before the the start of each working day. Chroma's claims of unlocking paint already on the canvas also hold true, so I can choose whether to let areas dry immediately, or whether to keep it workable. Marvellous mechanical mouse machines!

I did this painting some time back. Remember when we had some half decent picnic weather? Well we did you know, though it was a long time ago now! This image is an oil pastel sketch of a place we ate al fresco. Unremarkable as far as landscape subjects go, but I really love the way branches intermingle to create abstract webbed patterns. If I ever get away from my computer long enough there will be more of these!

This was a quick iPad 2 Study looking up at the sheer cliff to a portion of Edinburgh castle (I have started idly writing a story which will require such a scene.) The sketch was done during beta testing for ArtRage iPad's latest great thing - script recording, bringing it in line with the full desktop version of ArtRage. It is wonderful to bring a recorded script back to the mother mac and marvel as it re-creates paintings at print resolutions. This also marks the first time I've tried AR's watercolour brush along with pencil, crayon and palette knife for blends. Happy.
Click on images to enlarge.

Sunday, 7 August 2011

White Noise

A few days ago I did a quick acrylic sketch based on a picture I took stood on Calton Hill in a snowstorm. It was not very good, but I liked the idea enough to explore it in more detail. As a consequence I spent a few hours over the weekend painting this, a view down my street in a snowstorm (oil on canvas.) It is quite unnerving to work something up only to cover it in 'white noise,' but I love the way the falling snow breaks edges so that your brain needs to work that little bit more to resolve the verticle and horizontal lines. I also like that you need to look a little harder to find the solitary figure. The canvas was prepared with a Raw Sienna wash and the whole image is based around a neutral mix of French Ultramarine and Burnt Sienna. I have already started on the next in the series. Click on image to enlarge.

Monday, 1 August 2011

Bah! I Hate Summer

I think it is safe to say I'm in the minority here, but I never did understand our obsession with Summer. It makes me instantly lethargic often to a debilitating degree. It makes me instantly sweaty and if you can believe it, even a little grumpy! :D Lying for hours on a beach with a thousand other over-baked sardines is particularly mystifying. Weird.Winter on the other hand gives me energy. It is a time when our dull grey cities are transformed into magical half worlds bathed in half light. A time to wrap up warm and wear silly hats. Standing on Calton hill in a snowstorm looking down on Edinburgh is an immensely gratifying experience. I used this image to fulfill three goals. 1) To get away from the computer for a few hours! I currently have a large in-tray spanning months, so sitting at the screen 24/7 occasionally becomes too much. 2) I got some freebie
A Time for Silly Hats!
Atelier Interactive acrylics with a mag subscription and had been meaning to try them out. They're great! 3) I also saw this as an opportunity to try a painting with an extremely limited palette - just three colours; French Ultramarine, Burnt Sienna and Titanium White. Summer is nearly dead. Long live Winter!
Click on images to enlarge.