Black bog, blue hills

I’ve been working on some small paintings this week ( 5″ x 7″ ) – I really enjoy painting on this scale as I can get results quickly. It’s not just the speed factor though ( impatient as I am ) it’s the ability to make a better response to the landscape. At the moment I find this more difficult with larger work – covering the canvas takes longer so the response is less immediate. I believe that smaller works and drawings often have an energy about them that is lost in larger work. I would love to scale up in the future and get better at making bigger paintings – a bigger space, bigger brushes, more paint – it’s good to think about the possibilities. For now small is good for me.

The composition here is based on a favourite spot of mine near Oughterard. When I drive past, I want to stop the car and get out and just take it all in. Sometimes I do but it’s not always possible and it is a very fast stretch of road.

This is how this piece started out below. I’ve used large brushes and lots of colour, a little charcoal too.

 

First stage of painting

 

 

 

 

Here’s the next stage. I’ve played with different consistencies of paint – thick and thin layers over each other. I’ve used a sepia ink to describe the bog which is almost black at the moment. I allowed the paint to dry before continuing.

 

Second stage of painting

 

 

 

 

Once this first layer was dry, I used smaller brushes to add spots of colour – some green in the foreground and more red and blue on the hills behind – a little more definition overall.

 

Oughterard Bog

 

 

 

Happy with this one now and eager to do some more..

by Deborah Watkins