Thursday, 23 December 2010

Seeking Solace

Painting and Sailing have something in common you (well I do) become completely absorbed in both practices. In sailing (particularly in the Bristol Channel) there is nearly always too much to think about to let your thoughts wander. In painting within seconds of starting to think about the painting I am fairly oblivious to other thoughts or outside influences. We no longer sail having had to sell our yacht for family reasons.
I do however still have a great respect and attachment to the sea. The painting above is sold but shows a Brixham Trawler entering St Annes Head and is based on a painting that has been in the family for several generations.
So despite the chaos that is Christmas I have for the most part been in a state of inner peace and concentration with a brush and paint. Today I decided to start on a second Still Life. The first hour was spent considering the props and the composition. Three days or so painting is a big commitment so it is essential to get it right from the begining. After working out the composition I then consider the order of painting. Do I do the background first? Do I put an overall ground over the surface ? Do I start at the top and work down?
Am I going to use glazes? There can be good reasons for choosing anyone of the above.
Then I get ready to work. I am by nature a tidy person not obsessed by it but I like a clean organised work space. There is less chance of accidentally spilling paint or damaging your work and it is easier to know where everything is.
So today went well, I think. I have got the main elements down. Being Christmas Eve tomorrow, even I may not be able to seek solace in my small studio. But you never know!

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