Photos from My Art Workshop #2 (Painting Trees)

This workshop day was spent creating a tree painting under my guidance, using techniques I include in my own forest paintings. It’s partly about mastering the techniques involved (torn strips of masking tape being key) and partly about learning to be patient, building numerous layers to create a sense of depth rather than stopping at the first layer (and not to be precious about it). It’s an approach that takes a faith in the process (especially the first time you do it!) so I demonstrated each step on my own 25x25cm canvas before we tackled it.

We started with a coloured ground done in dark turquoise, then all used the same set of acrylic colours on our palettes: Prussian blue, cerulean blue, burnt umber, green gold, Sennelier primary red, cadmium yellow deep, lemon yellow, and titanium white.? The results speak for themselves; one of these four paintings is mine, but which one?

Painting trees in an art workshop on Skye, Scotland
These four paintings were done in my “trees” workshop. One is mine, where I demonstrated the techniques and steps; three are by students.
Painting birch trees on Skye
It’s a magical moment when you peel off the masking tape and see your tree trunks against your background for the first time.
Painting birch trees on Skye using a credit card
The edge of an old credit card is ideal for painting thin lines, for adding a sliver of light or dark to a tree trunk.
Painting birch trees on Skye
Inset photo: The canvas immediately before the masking tape was removed. Main photo: The canvas with the masking tape removed, revealing the trees against the previously created background. When you peel the masking tape off the canvas, stick it onto a sheet of paper to use in a mixed media painting.

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