Thursday, 7 June 2012

View From The Dell


The Dell is a road in the village I live in. It turns into a track as it goes up the hill and out of the village; it's the start of most of my walks. At one point on the track, there is a field gate with a stunning view over the downs. Until very recently, there was a ramshackle metal shack to one side of the gateway, inside the field. I doubt very much that the farmer has had any use for this construction in years, and I can imagine that some people thought it an eyesore. But I rather liked it. It was distinctive, and its rusty corrugated iron complemented the colours of the landscape. Its semicircular profile echoed the curves of the distant downs. Its scruffiness lent interest to the scene.

But it's gone now. We saw the farmer pulling it down when we were returning from a family walk a few weeks back.

So I had no choice. I had to paint it from a photograph. (I was going to anyhow; the view point is barely off a busy footpath. So I had a collection of photographs from different days in different seasons to choose from, which was fortunate.)

And now I have done.

The photograph of the painting is not, I know, very good. I've been working in the evenings and the light runs out. Luckily, it ran out just as I finished today... which meant that the photograph is taken in artificial light. No flash, though. Because... oh look, I'll show you:

Oil paint is quite shiny, particularly when new and wet. So you get problems with reflections. Now, I'm sure that there are ways round this if you have a fancy camera* with a separate flash and all, but my digital is a fairly simple little thing. It works quite well if I shoot the paintings in daylight.

Maybe I'll do that tomorrow. And I'll post the in-progress shots then, too.
(Done. Click here.)

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*I have an SLR. But it's not digital. And I don't have a flash for it. I like using available light.

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