It is back to the acrylics and going large again. After painting so many small pieces last year I am feeling the need to break free and paint bigger. I love doing these very close-up compositions on large canvases. Victory Gallop is an acrylic and is a 24 x 20 canvas. I used a reference photo of a horse that I used to have named Henry. I lost him to EPM.
The first photo is the initial sketch done with a Sharpie marker. When working in acrylic I have pretty much unlimited freedom to move things around and experiment because I can go over things. If this was a watercolor this would be a pretty detailed pencil sketch. Watercolor is not very forgiving, you pretty much have the one go to get it right. With acrylics I really enjoy "drawing" with the paint.
Next image I have layed down mostly medium values. The main idea being to cover the white of the canvas. There is nothing worse than I white canvas staring you down. *shiver* This is the stage now where I get to make decisions on where I am going with this.
This piece is tightening up pretty quickly. I put a long night into this and needed to wait for the glazes to dry. I defined the musculature and found most of my darks here. I am thinking the markings on the horse's face are competing with some of the elements of the composition. You can see in the next image how I have changed some things around. The joy of acrylics!
The glare is awful here but you can get a good idea. I created a blaze instead of the star and snip that Henry had. I think it works better. I will be mixing my whites to warm up his face as right now the blaze appears to stark to my eye. The rider is pretty much completed. I need to loosen up the color on the lapel. I left things very painterly with energetic brush strokes to convey the motion.
Writing about my art while I am creating it is an odd process for me because I don't really think when I paint. I tend to just throw color here and there and then all of a sudden the painting is just done! I should have this completed this evening and will post the final.
Til next time,
Deborah O'Sullivan Art