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The demise of an en plein air painting


Yesterday evening, I was at the Solway coast in Cumbria, a beautiful location that borders Dumfries and Galloway in Scotland. The lighting was really interesting, prompting me to begin an oil painting using a mix like Naples yellow against a raw umber primed background, which worked well off each other. I initially outlined the main features, adjusting the horizon's height. Subsequently, I filled in the sky and beach with a heavy, moody grey-blue shade, darker than the actual sky but complementing the Naples yellow. I also introduced a band of orange to the lower right corner. However, my decision to incorporate green into the painting to enhance its representational quality ended up being a misstep, leading to what felt like the deterioration of the painting. Below, you can view a video capturing the gradual demise of the painting (sped up slightly to spare you the potential discomfort of a real-time viewing). I wanted to illustrate the occasional challenges I encounter while painting outdoors.




I was relieved that I didn't end up kicking over the tripod and exclaiming "it's all black" like the BBC's Fast Show character Johnny Nice Painter.

After some consideration, I decided to give another try to the same board, as shown in the video below.




I usually try to work with mistakes but for once I didn't. I hope this gives you a bit more insight into how I work.

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