Saturday, 31 August 2019


I've been spotted at Arlington Court

and I wasn't aware that picture was being taken.  Small world here in Devon.  A friend of a friend, had been walking around Arlington and had taken this photo yesterday.  My friend realised it was me and messaged to tell me as it was on Facebook.   I feel very honoured that someone thought a picture of me was worthy of their own facebook post.   (When I found out, I got permission to use this photo - I love it when people are generous like that).

I am still working on that painting, it certainly has been a work in progress.

Blogpost about it coming soon.

Meanwhile, have a great weekend all.

Monday, 26 August 2019

I'm definitely enjoying oil painting these days...

Sometimes the inspiration to do a painting just strikes me.

A walk over at Heddon Valley, you may remember blogposts of this area before.

I would have painted plein air, but didn't fancy standing in the middle of the road

for this scene, probably a wise decision, so a photo reference had to suffice.

Oil painting on art panel • 10"  8" (25 x 20cm)

Titled: "Summer in the Valley"
(painting depicts The Hunters Inn Exmoor)

Tuesday, 20 August 2019

Something of a painting challenge...

A challenge I set myself, what was I thinking!   but firstly, and this is background to why I set myself a challenge in the first place.....

Here's a Watercolour, painted by the late Chrissie Peters who lived at Arlington Court years ago.  As with the owner of the house, Rosalie Chichester, Chrissie Peters was also a very keen artist.  She did this painting of the Boudoir room, with its silk wall hangings....

It occurred to me to do an up to date version of this but in Oils.  I took a photo for reference (no flash) but as you see this room is very dark.  Purposely so, as they need to keep light from damaging the silk wall hangings.....

You'll see this makes it extremely difficult to do a painting -

so I lighted up the photo in an App,

Even lighted, the image still isn't ideal.   The small amount of light in this room anyway, distorts photos.  So in another App I tried to take out the artificial light effect and got this

This is probably a truer image, and does show how the silk wall hangings have faded over the years, somewhere in the region of 200 years!

It would still make for quite a dull painting, and so in the end I have to use artistic license.

I wasn't going to face the intricate design for one thing,
and felt that an Impressionist style would be the way to go.

So here it is 

Oil Painting on canvas
Textured Impressionist style
12" x 12"

my version of the Boudoir room today

Saturday, 17 August 2019

A work-in-progress

I don't always remember to stop and taking photos of the various stages in a least I remembered this time (sort of)! lol

This painting is actually now completed, but here's the Work-in-Progress stages....keep in mind that the PINK is a Background colour only - 

Stage 1

Stage 2
 You’ll notice I changed the seat colour as felt it would be too similar to the blue background -

 Stage 3
Completed painting

Title: Safe Landing
measures 12" x 12"
Oil on Canvas

 ~ My inspiration: Based on a chair at Arlington Court National Trust ~

Sunday, 11 August 2019

When you are faced with a wet and wild Saturday

The weather on Saturday was horrendous.  It had all been predicted by the weather gurus, so we were at least ready.

This meant quick dog walks, when we were nearly blown off our feet, so staying indoors for most of the day was the best option.   That gave me an opportunity to tackle a painting that has been waiting in the wings.  Well, the IDEA of a painting.   Now with the storm, I had no excuse.   Here’s a comment I gave on facebook when I had posted the finished piece...

 “I just wanted to say, and perhaps this will help some, but I went about this painting NOT with the notion it had to be Perfect.  Instead I looked upon it as an experiment, if it didn't work out, then I could learn from it.  That took any pressure off my inner critic as I could just Paint and Enjoy.  Turned out I'm very happy with this painting and also the journey of creating it, and that's a BIG part of the process for me.”

Like any painting there are Stages to the process:

1. The subject / Thumbnail sketches - getting the balance of the subject right

2.  Preparing the canvas / grid the canvas / draw the outlines

3.  Get ready to paint / Premix colours - Tones

4.  Have fun painting

Fortunately I remembered to take a photograph in the early stages of the painting, although I should  have done several step-by-step pics.  Anyway, here's the painting on the easel with the sky painted in.

The "PINK" is an acrylic coloured ground on the canvas.  It allows for little portions of the pink to show through when the palette knife/brush 'Misses' the canvas.  I don't fill ALL those little 'Misses' in to begin with, once they are filled, you can never get them back!  So I wait until the end of the painting and review the 'Misses' and cover some of them, leaving just a few to 'Sparkle'

Here's the completed painting:

(12" x 12" Oil on canvas)
Subject: The TeaRoom, Clovelly, Devon

~ ~ ~

Thursday, 8 August 2019

Oil painting completed....

Cat on the windowsill painting which I've named:


(measures 8" x 8" - will be framed when the paint is dry)

Wednesday, 7 August 2019

Cat on a windowsill....

At the Work in Progress stage

This painting measures 8" x 8"
and I've used mostly palette knife for it.

Tricky and fiddly with a palette knife on a small piece, 
but have been persevering.

Not finished as you see, but almost there....

Monday, 5 August 2019

Oil painting:Heron

Having completed a painting of the lake at Arlington Court, I decided to do a small painting of a heron. The heron is the iconic emblem for the estate, depicted in various places it holds an eel in its beak. The birds themselves can often be seen by the river and perched in the trees.

this is on a wooden block panel measuring 6" x 8"

Now it needs to be touch dry before I add *retouching varnish
(*protects the surface, this allows the painting to breath whilst the rest dries thoroughly)


Monday, 29 July 2019

Plein Air painting at Arlington Court

I never tire of painting over at Arlington Court.  When I think that the various locations have been painted enough, I find another angle and the view dictates the kind of painting, be it Landscape, Portrait or as in this case Square.  Seasonally it changes too, and also the weather makes a difference.

Last week I painted by the Lake, with the Lily's out.  It was slightly overcast, the occasional dark cloud threatened, but luckily it didn't come to anything.  At least it was cool enough to paint, temperatures recently have been high and HOT!

and guess what came along to see my painting

Yes, a Dragonfly.  It rested on the side of my pochade box for probably about 5 minutes. Time enough for a photo, perhaps it knew to wait.

The majority of the painting was done in the time I had, but I did complete finishing touches to it at home in the studio.

Here's the completed painting, and you'll see I added a couple of people
sitting on the bench overlooking the lake.

and a close-up of the piece, which measures 10" x 10".

 ๐ŸŽจ ๐ŸŽจ ๐ŸŽจ 

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