I finally got around to photographing my most-recent paintings, so here’s the first of three updates.

These all come from a farming property, Narpyn, not far from home. It’s a place I’ve driven past for more than ten years but never got around to visiting. Last week I decided it was time I go and knock on the door and see if I could take a look around the place and do some paintings.

The owners were more than happy for me to do just that.

The property offers all sorts of painting opportunities including a winter creek, large trees, wide vistas, old buildings and sheep, lots of sheep. I hope to use it as a chance to develop my style a little further – particularly pushing the boundaries between realism, impressionism and abstraction.

My first painting, however, was pretty safe and I didn’t push too far from my existing style – although it is a square format which is very unusual for me.

I knew the shadows I was seeing wouldn’t stay put for long so I began with a thumbnail…

I started the painting by laying down some basic shadow tones. This stage is quite similar to the thumbnail and provides the foundation for everything that follows…

Stage 2 is mostly about mid-tones and local colour. The under-painting is also strengthened at this stage….

As work progressed, I found myself repeatedly turning to the pencil thumbnail to check where shadows were supposed to be. Here’s the finished piece….

Narpyn pine. 
Plein air painting. 30x30cm oil on board. 
© Andy Dolphin

I did video my progress on this painting so I may put it up on Youtube sometime soon. I just need a few quiet rainy days to get the editing and voice-over work done.