Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Looking towards Beverley from a pond on the Hurn.

View from the Hurn pond, plein air oil on canvas 20x16"

Tuesday 27th January 2015
I had heard that the weather is to be much colder tomorrow and that the rest of the week is to be bad, with Artic winds on Saturday. The western USA and Canadian coasts are standing by as freezing temperatures and heavy snow are due soon. Therefore I decided to attempt my first oil plein air since before Christmas.
When walking George on the Hurn, the enclosed pasture inside the racecourse, I had seen  an old pond, heavily overgrown with deep squelchy imprints, reflecting use by,
 the previous year’s, cows and sheep. Speaking to elderly Beverley residents I have been told the pond provided a home for newts and frogs in the past. As the pond often disappears, especially in the summer, this is less likely now. I set up the French easel near the pond looking over to St. Mary’s Church with Beverley Minster to the right hand side. The tower of St. Nicholas could also be seen though not so prominently. The sun came out providing some lovely light yet a little problematic when painting as I could not shade the canvas. I found that I was a little rusty and struggled more than usual with the easel. Having sorted everything I sketched the scene onto the canvas. Adding thinned paint first the sky, cerulean blue / titanium white, followed by lemon yellow / cerulean blue / French ultramarine for the grass under painting. I looked over to my left and saw three skylarks flitting around, two in particular seemed to be pairing up? Farther away, rooks and gulls were walking through the grass looking for food. This area is also popular with dog walkers and I was surprised and delighted to see a fawn briard. I trotted over and had a chat with the owner, the briard was huge. George is black and had had his long walk before I started painting. Whilst painting several dogs run over to say hello and have a pat. I am not sure if I will add some minor detail at home as the exposed site with strong winds made detailing difficult.
Happy New Year to everyone.
H A P P Y  P A I N T I N G

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