Saturday, 19 May 2012

start of a new painting

One of my favourite animals is the red fox,a much maligned animal in my view that like its cousin the wolf faces a great deal of hostility in certain circles.i am not a great one for lengthy debates on the rights and wrongs of fox 'control' or the ridiculous excuses some folk hide behind to cover up there simple blood lust or field 'sport' as they would have it known.personally i think the 'sport' is rather one sided.The fox is a magnificent animal with ,granted, guile and cunning aplenty and certainly not adverse to misdmeanors but its a wild animal that despite the persecution piled upon it by us humans continues to thrive by being so very versatile.in this painting,which is quite large for me at 20" x 19" i wanted to show all the fur details and the glint in the eye of an alert fox.ive had the drawing roughed out on a gessoed mdf board for some time and struggled with several attempts at a simple greenish background that would complement the reds in the foxes coat.green really is my nemesis with colour work and invariably my frst attempts end up way too garish and vivid or too muddy from prolonged attempts at colour mixing.eventually,usually more by luck than judgement,i settle upon a colour that works for me and this is where i'm at with the background colour of this painting.having finally sorted out the background ive now blocked in the main shapes and colours of the animal with thinly applied paint.this i'll set aside now to dry for a few days and then i'll start to build the oil layers and details on the fur.

5 comments:

Peter Brown said...

Looking good Clive.

With the "fat over lean" principle in mind, I'm never quite sure when to introduce more oil into my paint, especially when I'm applying many separate thin glazes as I build up colour and texture. Should I be adding more oil with every layer, or is that overdoing it? How do you approach it?

I'm afraid I have a less charitable view of the fox than you! Australia's early settlers thought it would be a good idea to introduce rabbits and foxes and their effect on the environment and our native wildlife has been devastating.

Clive Meredith said...

hi peter,i have to confess to not using the glazing technique very often.if i do i tend to use the medium liquin rather than adding oil.ocasionally i thin out my oils with white spirit for the very first colour blocking in but generally i dont thin the oils often i just use the colour sparingly and spread it around quite vicously with the brush.i normally only have a couple of layers of paint,the second layer i apply straight from the tube and add detail into it 'wet in wet' usng a little liquin now and again to prohibit details blending in and sit on top of the wet paint nicely.i'm told my oil paintings are very smooth by other painters as the oil is generally thinly applied and only a couple of layers used.i dont think its necessary to have the paint 'fatter' with every layer as long as its following the 'fat over lean' princple it will be fine.i decided on my rather simplified technique very early on in my experiments with oils buti'm sure in the future i may well need to utilise some of the more traditional techniques to accomplish some of the paintings ive shyed away from thus far.
as for the fox i can certainly understand the need for control in the particular circumstances found in australia although once more this is not the fox's fault but another example of mankinds stupidity at work.in the uk it seems to me there is a good deal less valid reason for hunting the animal other than to satisfy the blood lust of a bunch of muppets in fancy dress!

Peter Brown said...

Thanks for explaining your technique Clive. It could be that I'm worrying too much about the oil content of my paints, although I'm very much aware that my very first oil painting effort - admittedly from 30 years ago - has cracked badly over the years. Interestingly, I have read that the same principles should be observed when using Liquin as an oil substitute.

I'm with you on man's stupidity - Australia now has the Cane Toad to worry about on top of the usual suspects!

Marc Calvo said...

I just himagine, that the fox are your favorite animal, wen i look the portrait of the last one.Because your express much energy when you paint this animal, more than your last hare i think.

Clive Meredith said...

thankyou marc,ive always had a soft spot for foxes and over the years have drawn and painted them countless times