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Brushes with Farm Life

Scheduling a day for painting on location with others has been the best motivator for me to get out regularly. As it is continuous throughout the months when the weather is favorable, your paints are always at the ready and I find you often get out painting at additional times too.

This painting was completed in 2 sessions. Very few adjustments were made to the composition of the scene from what was there. I chose to leave out an additional portion of the roof to the left of the building as it would be distracting. I also moved the sign on the fence from around the corner to being visible in the painting. Most of the lettering is not legible purposefully so as not to distract from the center of interest, the little building. However, the farm's name can just be made out in the painting if one looks carefully.

I've been painting those mountains, the Skimmerhorns quite regularly for over a year and I try to experiment a little more each time. My next painting (below) is started with a different colour selection. Brown shades on the top portion with shades of green dropped in the wet but drying paint. And an ultramarine blue to the base of the mountains where the many rock slides are.


The horses were out where I could see them this week so they got into the foreground. There were actually five horses and I know in the painting above, there are six horses, however horses move around so much that I couldn't say if I have painted each of the horses at least once or rather painted one horse over and over in different positions!


Where will I go from here? I know for sure I will be simplifying the foreground so the horses don't get overshadowed with surrounding detail.

This week was the first time painting the horses this year. It is so much fun and so challenging. The sun was shining hard on their velvety black coats so the highlights were very evident. Some paints you can lift back a bit and the black I mixed on this one wasn't easily lifted so before next week I will experiment with some mixes of black colour. That will make defining the lights and darks easier. For the darkest of blacks I applied a layer of indigo on top of the already there black. I am pleased with that technique I just happened to try.

Could I possibly just leave the mountains depicted with the dry brush technique? For me it is important to experiment so we will see.

I hope this inspires you to get out painting, sketching or just observing the vistas around you. For instance how many tones of a dark object can you see?


The above was first published on July 31, 2020. Reprinted with permission. https://www.eileengidman.com/

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