Yesterday afternoon, I packed the car and headed north.

The plan, as I told my wife, was “to drive half-way to Kojonup”. Koji, as it’s often called, is about 100km north from home and I ended up travelling about 55km to somewhere between Cranbrook and Tambellup. This is wheat, sheep and cattle country, and not much else.

Unlike the situation at home, the sky was blue out here – not a cloud to be seen from horizon to horizon.

I found a multi-trunk white gum just off the road, with a safe place to park and paint. I had set out with a “plan” to paint a white gum so, despite the flies and the occasional whiff of rancid cow dung, my subject was settled.

Here’s the result of a little over two hours painting.

Wheatbelt White Gum
25x30cm oil on board.

© Andy Dolphin

And here’s the “proof I was there” shot.

I used a limited palette on this one – cerulean, French ultramarine, permanent crimson, yellow ochre and burnt sienna, plus titanium white. I wanted to keep it “earthy” and play the warm tones of the dry grasses and tree trunks against the clear blue sky.

The leaf canopy on this tree was very open (you can see it in the background above) and presented quite a challenge but I was happy with the end result.

I did video the process so may upload that to Youtube when I get it edited and narrated.