Some paintings just appear
My favourite thing is when I'm having a productive day of painting and a FLASH of an idea slams into me. This happened the other day.
I had made great progress on a commission project and glanced over and saw a new 12" x 36" canvas over in the corner of my temporary and very cluttered studio. I knew my intention was to do some kind of nature inspired piece on it when this clear image of a mountain range popped up.
We live on what is ostensibly prairie, but the mountains are not far away. On clear days, they offer incredible inspiration and a reminder of the majesty of these rocky peaks. As we've traveled back and forth between High River and Okotoks - dozens of times over the past few months - we've been treated to some heart stopping mountain views.
This painting poured out of me in four simple steps.
First, I sketched out a mountain range in black. As soon as it dried, I sprayed the canvas with water and applied a series of bright colours. I wiped those off with a paper towel. I think of this step as "staining" the canvas.
The magic step involves using an edging tool and a series of colours that call to me. This technique happens fast but requires a finesse that I have acquired over dozens and dozens of paintings. The trick is to know when to stop.
Once all the ribbons of colour are dry, I go over the mountain range with black and then start adding all the colour highlights.