The Fountain of Love Commission continued

original photograph of fountain at Cliveden House

I am starting with a photograph which has been published before, as events forced me to abandon the blog on this particular commission, other paintings being needed more urgently. I thought therefore that repetition of the original reference made sense, to remind us all where this story starts.

This is the very ornate fountain in the grounds of Cliveden House in Buckinghamshire. The style is Baroque so the statues are extremely Mannered in their style. As an architect once said to me, “If statues on a building wave to you, then it’s Baroque”. Very detailed therefore and consequently tricky to paint

The drawing is done, and I have started to paint, just to get some form of definition into my head. I see that I haven’t filed my photograph of Work in Progress  yet, so I will do that and then come back later

Well, this where I have got to, and it is a bit of a mess at the moment. The drawing was done a few weeks back, and as I said earlier, I have started to paint. I have masked out three trees in the background so that the trunks could be white as silver birch or pale green, whichever I think works best

I have also masked out the edges of some statues so that I get a really crisp edge and don’t lose any detail, having fought to keep it so far. No doubt this painting will be difficult. May even be my nemesis! Again I ask myself why I accept some of these commissions, except perhaps for the sheer challenge. Also the client is a regular who keeps coming back, so one wants to help

Since taking this photograph, I have sprayed masking fluid in certain areas to serve as spray from the fountain’s various jets. I kicked myself for not remembering right at the beginning, before I put colour into background foliage. Well, too late for that now. I will have to fall back on white gouache instead.

For now, that is all I can say. I shall remove the masking on the tree trunks and on the statues, so that I can define those edges. We will see how we get on

8 thoughts on “The Fountain of Love Commission continued

    • Thanks Emma. Glad it helps. To reproduce water spray in a painting I usually spray with masking fluid on to the white paper and then remove after painting with the dark colours. It doesn’t help though if you forget to do it until too late and put the dark colours on first. Bad planning

      Liked by 1 person

      • I just use my thumb and some friction Emma ( not the nail obviously). The painting must be rock hard so I would let the painting dry over 24 hours at least. We are told not to leave the mask on for too long, so a few days and I try and remove it so that it doesn’t get trapped in the tooth of the paper. Also I only do small areas like edges normally. I have on occasions torn the paper by doing too large an area, which is when you see a grown man cry.
        I have to say I find it messy and hard to control, but find it best in certain circumstances. Other times white gouache is better
        If I didn’t say, I prefer the blue mask by Frisk. You can see where it is
        All part of the fun of watercolour. I hasten to add that I am not an authority but this has worked for me in the past

        Liked by 1 person

      • All went well. I removed the mask from the trees and the statues without mishap. That still leaves the spray to come off at the end, but these are tiny marks which should come off cleanly. I shall write about this later
        Sometimes we worry too much about watercolour being sensitive. I remember watching in horror as a tutor held a painting under the tap once, to remove a colour that had gone too dark. I’m still not brave enough to do that.
        Having said that, I am still very conscious of all the things that could go wrong
        Thanks for your interest, Emma

        Liked by 1 person

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