Tuesday, 16 February 2016


This is a commission to change an unwanted large oil painting with a nice frame, to an ocean painting with lots of waves that would be more to the patron's taste. First I showed her some of my previous works. This is where a smart phone or tablet comes in handy.

Next I painted a preliminary 8" x 10" panel. The client wanted to hang the painting in her bedroom as soon as it was complete so I wanted to test some quick dry I was unfamiliar with. I was also new to the brand of paint available in the vicinity and wanted to see how it worked when mixed with the Japan Dryer.

I liked the impasto effect in this sample painting but I prefer more color peeking through from under-painting. As the painting I was over-painting was mainly orange, I thought I would try and retain some of it. The quick dry product worked well, but was quite smelly. So back to the store I went and found some Daler Rowney Alkalyd Gel which had great texture, was less smelly and dried the thick impasto very quickly.

Image I - The original painting, a drip painting with a black hump and too much orange for the client's taste.

Image 2 - Shows my start. A friend gave me the tip to put some gel on top of the old painting to help the new oil paint adhere and this seemed to work really well. Here I was erasing the distracting hump. I also added a few wispy clouds to see the effect.

Image 3 - To hide the drips, I painted Titanium White over them and softened the edges so I didn't have a problem with ridges later. White is a good opaque choice for coverage when you don't have access to under-painting white or gesso. I also added a few more clouds.

Image 4 - I've added foreground waves leaving some glints of orange. I told the client I could paint over these later if she didn't like them. (She was sitting on the sofa watching the process).

Image 5 - Most of the black has been painted over and some cool blue added  to suggest distant breakers or ocean current. I have also softened the horizon with some paler blue.

Image 6 - The client said she liked the orange glints so I added some in my own brushstrokes. I have also added in some brushy sky to blend the style across the painting. I've blended edges, added some impasto and softened the orange sandy bits.

More detail and the finished painting tomorrow.