Strolling through Wisley Gardens– the finished painting

A stroll round Wisley Gardens

Somewhere we could go during lockdown. Wisley is the main national garden centre and headquarters of the Royal Horticultural Society. We can go there as we live within five miles radius and if we make a booking. Over many years and as members we were used to going on the spur of the moment, so Covid conditions, which we fully applaud, do take some getting used to

I did this picture fairly fast, rather like a sketch. The sky was put in fast and furious, to get some feeling of movement. Usually I just go straight across with a large wide brush, and maybe use two colours. The detail on the building I have left hazy and slightly out of focus because of the distance. The photography hasn’t helped on this occasion, and has left me feeling that the foreground figures need more depth, which wasn’t apparent from the original. Still, that I can attend to

Last time, when I painted Windsor Castle, I used sepia ink for the shadows on the building. I rather wish I had done that this time. Watercolour does disappear into the paper, and often needs reinforcing, whereas the ink is instant, but i don’t think I will go back over it now, so have published with its faults.

I shall leave it there. The machine is giving me trouble today. I altered the font size so that I can read it, and the machine keeps taking me back to default, so I am getting a rather jerky post, for which I apologise. Too much incarceration perhaps is bad for the brain

Wisley Gardens–latest painting

The last painting from Wisley Gardens

This was the last painting of Wisley, which I did about two years or more ago. I was pleased with this one, especially the long shadows. It sold at a local exhibition fairly soon after I painted it.

Wisley is the main national garden of the Royal Horticultural Society. I forget the acreage but is big. This particular shot is of the canal and the laboratory, a fine modern but Tudor styled building, which works well with the plants.

Unlike previous lockdowns, gardens including Wisley are open, but with strict control of numbers. We went in December, one of those fine winter days that makes walking around pleasant. I thought I would try another painting, something like this one but with changes

This is the main composition. I am further away from the main building with some figures in the foreground. I am being more selective in the way I paint this one, just for a change. Usually I wash straight across and wait for that to dry, and then paint onto a coloured background. Just for the moment I have put the shadows in before painting, although they may need reinforcing later

the drawing

It will be interesting working out the sequence. Sky first or bushes first?

I’ll come back to it later

Windsor Castle – the finished painting

Windsor castle on the Thames

The finished item. Quite a lot of trees, relieved by the building to a certain extent, but nevertheless the greens took some sorting out. Mostly they are a mix of sap green with something else. Quite a lot with raw sienna, which is the one I use mostly for vegetation, and works I think for the lighter trees.

The boats have been useful, bringing in some red to relieve all that green, and also stop the eye going off the page. As I said in the last post, I have used sepia ink for the shadows on the castle. I was a little hesitant about that, but seems to have worked out ok.

I seem to be working my way through the list of paintings that I always wanted to do and couldn’t find the time. Lockdown plus very wet weather does keep us indoors a lot. Looking back at these favourite places does make us wonder if we’ll see them again. Vaccination programme seemed to be going well, but now they have found two tested positive for the South African variant, in our village, without them going to South Africa

Oh well. More incarceration