Monday, August 07, 2006

First attempt - landscape with acrylics

I made up my mind last night that I would have to paint with those acrylic paints that I bought some time back before they turn into something else. So I packed my painting stuff and went to Upper Peirce Reservoir this morning arriving there at about 8.20am. As there were quite a few people around doing their morning exercises or resting from their morning walk, I decided to do some loosening up of my joints and did some brisk walking along the dam that separates Upper Peirce from Lower Peirce Reservoir. Thereafter I spent considerable time deciding on which part of the park I would like to paint, one of the most important factor being that I had to be out of the sun. I found a stone table and bench that was unoccupied and that was in fairly good shade facing the segment of the park that is in this photo below:

As this was the first time I was using acrylics to do a landscape painting, it took me a while to get use to the characteristics of the paints. I found that I missed the smoothness and versatility of oil. Also, some of the brushes I bought were not of the right type - I think I have bought those meant for water colours. But I told myself not to give up so easily and concentrated on the shades of green and then when I got the hang of seeing colours that only became apparent if you examine the scenery with intensity and concentration, a strong wind blew across the resevoir, dark clouds rolled by, there were rumbles of thunder and I was driven to a nearby shelter for a while. It did not rain as anticipated and I returned to my table but by then the sun had climbed higher in the sky and over the top of the tree behind me. I was getting hungry and bothered by the heat and the ants crawling over my painting. So I packed up and set off for home.

I would most likely go back in a week's time or earlier to finish up this painting. It had been an enjoyable first experimentation with acrylics and I think I will get used to acrylics once I get the correct brushes. Though I can finish up this painting by referring to the photo taken, I find that on-site painting is more absorbing and satisfying especially when the light changes with the passage of the clouds above and everything before your eyes respond accordingly. I see colours that do not appear in a 2-D image but painting in the real environment makes me more aware that the world before me is coloured in a greater range of colours than just shades of green.

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