Like many artists I love depicting light in my paintings. This work was started by flooding cool yellow on the paper from the top right then cyan, ultramarine and a little Maimeri permanent red light (not light red which is more opaque) in varying amounts from the left and base, weighting the base with darker hues. The yellow was to give a sense of light, although at this stage I did not know the resulting scene was to be a forest. My concern was purely to paint atmosphere… the sense of light. The depiction of a setting would come later. I was working with cling film technique with students, so while the work was still damp I covered it with cling film, pulling and manipulating it to create interesting shapes, bigger in some spots and smaller in others. At this stage I was thinking “underwater scene” with the patterning being refracted light within the water. On removing the cling wrap I saw a tree suggestion on the LHS and I started to ‘pull” that out from the background. A lighter patch suggested a waterfall so I lifted colour to re-inforce that…. made easier because of the extra soft Fabriano torchon paper. Gradually the forest evolved with some traditional brushwork, a little use of palette knife, scraping and calligraphic marks using sumi ink, watercolour and a little white gouache. The centre back was left to suggest the indistinct, hazy mystery of distant, vegetation.
Last night I came across this photo of a watercolour of a pelican which I did a year or so ago using the same process mentioned in the previous post. This one sold rather quickly but I had intended to do a seies of birds in this manner. As often happens other things took over. Maybe this time if I find a good, appropriate place to have an exhibition I will be inspired to produce a collection of these. I do so enjoy the process and the bit of mystery and movement of the end result. Satisfies both my love of careful rendition and drawing…. my Science/Biology background…. and my love of playing with paint effects in a fluid and creative manner…. my “wild”, emotional art side.