Sunday, 26 July 2009
For the last two days there have been wonderful clouds in the sky heralding a change in weather and some much needed rain. I started the clouds for this piece from life, but the sun was blinding even on dark paper and of course the clouds moved constantly across the sky. This is common of course in plein air work and I usually get the outlines and values in place then work on it on site or back at the studio.
I took a few shots of the clouds for reference and started playing with them in the studio using pastels on a lovely half sheet of Canal paper by St-Armand in Blue Denin. As I manipulated the clouds, the sea and distant headland just arrived unbidden. What started out as reality morphed into a mix of reality, memory and wishful thinking.
I don't use pastels often, but enjoy the freedom they give when done loose and large. There seem to be as many techniques of laying down colour with pastel as there are people who use them. I feel still very much a learner when using them, as they aren't as familiar to me through use as some other mediums.
The heavy clouds seemed to fit the scene of last light before night, covering the land and ocean and waiting for the rainstorm to arrive.