Monday, July 22, 2013

More Handley, etc.

Here is another painting from the Handley area of Fort Worth (see the others in my last post).
Methodist Church, Handley
Oil on panel, 11 x 14 inches
Click Here to Purchase
We had a few rain storms last week and I wanted to include some of the rolling clouds and clear skies. There is a certain clarity to the sunlight after a rain storm that just makes everything a pleasure to look at. And old churches like this seem to have a lot of interesting compositional opportunities.

Since it has been so hot here, I've been thinking about ways to keep myself from having a heat stroke while having the benefits of painting outside. In that spirit, this work was carried out in a few phases. I started with thumbnail sketches to decide on a composition. Next, I went out early one morning and nailed down an underpainting in a mixture of burnt sienna + ultramarine blue, to try and get the drawing as accurate as I could. Then, I worked for another quick session in front of the scene to capture the colors and values. Last, I brought the painting home and tweaked it in the studio to finish it off.

Breaking the painting up over a few sessions is an interesting way to work -- not only for the lack of sunburn, dehydration, and so on. I think it helped me to see errors I might not have noticed if I'd painted it au premier coup. Granted, you have to work to retain a look of freshness. To keep fresh paint on reworked areas, I scraped a lot with my palette knife and repainted directly on the panel ground. It's always good to rattle your own cage.