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Thursday, 31 August 2017

Eclipse Watchers and Sun Seekers

Eclipse watchers - two dogs in sunglasses hanging out of a window in bright sunlight. An oil painting by Karen Robinson

Well, this one was a challenge after a difficult week during which nothing went right. 3 wipers in one week is going it some and I thought this one might go the same way once or twice.

It is painted on board, prepped with a coat of cadmium red acrylic - a very difficult colour to work on, but it lends the sensation of warmth. I painted the background first - around the dogs - although it did need some re-touching after the dogs had been put in. This was to differentiate it better from the dogs' faces. It was necessary to mix a slightly darker primrose shade for the boards and grey it a bit more (with red) so the brightness of the dogs jumped forward better.

I used three colours for most of this painting: Cobalt Blue, Cadmium Red Medium and Lemon Yellow + white. I found it difficult to get the darks dark enough with this combo for the dogs so had to use a touch of black for them. I also used a touch (literally) of Cadmium Green Pale and Orange for the reflections in their sun glasses.

The most important thing to me for getting this piece right was to keep the brushes scrupulously clean. It could so easily have disappeared into mush and mud. I used a different brush for each colour and wiped the brush in-between every single brush stroke (I was working wet-into-wet as usual. A layering process would have been simpler if more long-winded).

Just love that one of them is wearing his sunglasses upside down.


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