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Paintings are like Ogres...

Using transparent layering to create light by allowing the luminosity of the white paper to shine.


The first glaze was a blue copper-based paste called faience used in Mesopotamia, Egypt more than 6000 years ago.  Watercolour glazes are made by painting thin layers of transparent pigmented colours over previous dry transparent layers creating a modified darker richer colour, an "optical effect" created by the looking through layers of colour and creating something new in our mind's eye.  

There is a possibility that the result. like so many things, is entirely dependent on who is looking.

Click the images below to see them larger.

Night Shines

Stary Night

I created this painting to teach at one of my paint nights.  People painted wet on wet and watched how the colours merged and blended as washes of deeper colour were added.  We had a two hour window to complete our painting, so instead of wating for each layer to dry, we added colour while the previous layer is still wet for a dramatic first layer. Then instead of watering down the next layer, we re-wet the paper and add transparent paints that spread as they hit the wet paper and the sky takes on the luminosity of a very stary night.

Watch the creation of the image here


Beyond the Tundra

Tomas Lipke's image of Northern Lights seen across the snowy tundra in Norway showed such a variety of shapes within the Aurora. Layers of brights and darks, shapes inside shapes that sweep across the sky. 

Strangly the challenge for me was not the sky but the reflection, the layers of hills and snow as it faded into the distance and the brave souls out in the cold. 

I hear often from artists, take your time, look at it, decide what needs to be added and what can be omitted, So this has sat... and waited for me to be ready to add my last strokes.

Blue Aurora

Blue Aurora

I watched a recent video where the artist used turquoise and blues to create beautiful washes that resulted in a painting of upwards swooping northern lights. I attempted to do my own demo of this at my art group as a demo, and then we put on music and continued to paint. As the music soared, so did my brush strokes, transforming the soft washes to swoops and lines. Layers of blues over blues, lines of colour deepening and enchasing the bright areas I left untouched of the previous layer to created one of my favourite paintings of an Aurora Borealis to date.

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