Back in october last year i held an 'oils for beginners' workshop at which i demonstrated the basics of oil painting including how to underpaint in preparation for a more detailed top coat of oils.At that demo i produced an underpainting of a Hare and my students then attempted to do the same.That little underpainting had been languising in the studio since then and the other day whilst pondering what to tackle next whilst my snipe painting was drying i remembered this little picture.i set myself the task of completing the top detailed coat of oils all in one session,no great feat for speedier painters i'm sure but for me definitely out of my comfort zone.Anyway i decided a different approach was needed including attempting to not get too hung up on detail and so for this piece i abandoned my tiny brushes and riggers(except for the whiskers) and used a small flat for the majority of the painting.i absolutely loved the sensation of working more loosely and mixing colours quickly on both palette and painting surface,moving paint about with bolder strokes is very therapeutic and akin to the fun i have when underpainting freely with bigger brushes.its only a small painting by most oil painting standards but i feel more comfortable working small,i think its because of my background in tight detail with graphite,and perhaps this technique wouldnt work for me everytime but this time i think it did and was thoroughly enjoyable.My snipe painting is still on-going and nearly complete as i slowly overlay vegetation in the foreground,although its slow-going as i have to let each batch of vegetation dry before overlaying more.next on the agenda its back to graphite and a commissioned equine portrait of a much loved animal for a special birthday.
South coast based Clive Meredith is an entirely self-taught artist and has been working professionally since 1993 specialising in detailed portrayals of wildlife from both Britain and abroad. Clive's initial interest in wildlife and the countryside was fostered in his early years, brought up the son of a dairy farmer, and spending hours outside in the Shropshire countryside birdwatching and larking about on the river Severn and its streams in his hometown of Shrewsbury. Working in both graphite pencil and oils,observation is vital to Clive's working practice.Each drawing or painting reveals meticulous attention to detail,achievable only by hours spent in the field observing and photographing subjects in their natural habitat.As a result Clive has become renowned for the stunning realism of his images and an incredibly assured ability to inject real life and character into his works. His art has been extensively published with over 50 limited edition releases to date and can be found in galleries throughout the uk and beyond. In 2010 Clive was named Wildlife Artist of the Year by Wildscape magazine after winning the prestigious annual competition with his image 'The Egret pool' and appeared as a finalist in the DSWF Wildlife Artist of the Year 2010,2012 and 2013 with works exhibited at The Mall Galleries in London. Clive is a member of the Pencil Art Society and the RSPB.