I’ve started on a new painting after fiddling about with another photograph from the archives, again taken during my eight day trek along the South Downs Way back in 2009, and which straddles its way across three counties in the south of England. It’s an image of St. Andrew’s Church in the ancient East Sussex town of Alfriston. The church itself dates back to the 1300s and is a lovely sight when you’re out and about exploring. I’ve always had a fascination with old churches and had a hankering to do paintings of them.
I played around with my original print in one of my painting simulation apps and decided that I would try to reproduce it on canvas. In analogue. With actual paint. I’ve talked about doing exactly that quite a lot – master of procrastination, me. Actually doing these things is a whole different adventure, however.
I think I’m off to a good start. The blocking in is done and a start made on the sky and the trees behind the church itself. I’m still trying to work out the best approach to achieving the painterly effect that the app created in the above version. I think it’ll have to be created by a succession of thin glazes. It looks very primary and somewhat ugly at the moment, but I have a good base of colours to work with now. If you remember, my last landscape looked this bad at the blocking-in stage. It shall be remedied.
I love the colours of the overall piece, but I wanted to put more emphasis and detail on the grasses and meadow flowers in front of the building than the digital version allowed. The building and the background I like in their loose impressionistic style. If I manage to achieve my desired outcome with this one and I’m feeling plucky enough, I might try and tackle the previous painting of the lighthouse.
In fact, I have a whole list of paintings I’d like to do. Woke up with another idea this morning and dutifully recorded it in my sketch pad that lives next to my bed. Luckily these paintings that come to me from the ethers also come with exact dimensions and full instructions as to technique and exact paint colours to use, which is handy as execution of these ideas then requires very little thought on my part – which I prefer. Thinking makes my brain ache. Some ideas come and go never to return, but I don’t sweat it. I learned long ago that there is plenty more where they came from, it just requires a little trust that such is so.
Hopefully my first layer of tree detail is at least dry to the touch, and I can continue with adding highlights and therefore definition later today – stop the trees looking too flat.