Cow Parsley and Oilseed

The trees have felt a bit too dark and heavy on the horizon since I glazed them with Olive Green, so I decided to put a coat of white over them to drop them back in a misty veil. In the first photo the white (which I mixed with a touch of burnt umber to make it a little bit grey, so that I can add pure white later to pop the highlights.) is beginning to cover the tree on the left of the canvas, then in the next picture I’ve wiped away most of the paint so that there’s a slightly swirly mist feel to the haze. I brought the haziness down into the furthest part of the landscape, where the land meets the sky, and allowed it to meet with some of the patchy areas of distant grass.

I’ve painted the grass seed-heads in light grey so that I can put greens, yellows and browns over the top, bending the stems and seed-heads to the left so that there’s a sensation of a breeze blowing the field – with the bending trees and the swept back hair we should feel some sense of motion in the painting. In the background some cow parsley and oil seed has sprung up, reminding me of the English countryside. I should probably look at some Constable paintings to see how he treated his landscapes – get some good advice from the master.

I’m still working out if I can bring those lovely mountains into this painting. It’s tempting.

About pearce

Michael Pearce is an artist, writer, and professor of art. He is the author of "Art in the Age of Emergence."
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