Saturday, 30 January 2010

Lady Arabella Moger and Rupert

I'm so very very close to finishing but having spent the day working on very small details, I canna take no more cap'n! My poor back is aching from leaning in so close to the canvas and never mind my poor eyes. I'm such an old woman, ha ha! I'm pretty pleased with the progress so far on this painting and only have a few small bits of tack to finish up which I should manage on Monday. By the way, do I sound odd if I comment on how darn gorgeous this horse is??!! I think he's absolutely stunning!

Thursday, 28 January 2010

Lady Arabella Moger and Rupert

Rupert's coat is proving to be a surprisingly tricky colour to work out, there are so many colours in there, including grey tones and because of how quickly acrylics dry, I have to work on very small areas at a time so that I can blend these colours together to make them look like his natural coat. I'm pretty pleased with the result so far but because I have to work in small sections, it means that each time I mix up more paint to use, I have to get it to match finished areas so when I come to work on the painting next, I might well start tweaking areas I've already covered!

Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Lady Arabella Moger and Rupert

Believe it or not, I've been working on this painting all day! All I've managed to finish today was Lady Arabella but it took me all morning just to paint her face as it's quite a precise thing to paint and just a single brushstroke out of place can make it look all wrong. I also just wanted to point out that because of it being dark outside, I tend to take work in progress photos with lighting from the daylight bulb which is overhead and this can show the painting as much lighter than the original. I try to take the finished painting photo in daylight but photos never show the paint to it's true colour and strength.

Tuesday, 26 January 2010

Lady Arabella Moger and Rupert

Here is todays update. I must admit that I thought, being a smaller painting, that it wouldn't take as long as usual to paint but there are so many little details to include so it's taking the same amount of time as a much larger painting. Having said that, I bizarrely adore painting tiny details so I'm loving this one and if it wasn't for my eyes getting tired, I'd happily keep going into the evening and maybe night!!

Monday, 25 January 2010

Lady Arabella Moger and Rupert

Time for my next commission and this time it is of Lady Arabella Moger and her favourite horse, Rupert. This is quite a small painting for me, 10x12" but a really interesting one as I don't get to do many horse and rider paintings. Below are the first couple of stages. I start with the drawing having been put onto canvas. I then mask the edge of this drawing with masking fluid so I can paint on the background without worrying about going over the lines of the drawing. The photo below shows once this background paint has dried and I have removed the masking fluid and gone around the edge of the drawing to define it and touching up any bits of paint necessary.
Then I start to add the first layer of paint, purely just to cover up the canvas so it doesn't show through on any later layers. Some areas, like the saddle, I will leave until I come to paint it as it's quite a mixture of saddle, reins, whip etc so I don't want to paint over it now and forget what's going on under there when I come to paint it.

Shamrock - finished

Here is the finished painting of Shamrock, awaiting approval.

Thursday, 21 January 2010


I thought I'd post a couple of stages of todays work so you can see how I paint. The top photo shows the dark underlayer that I start putting down. I always work with dark on the bottom and lighten up on top.
This photo shows how I have started to put lighter layers on top, creating the different shades and tones in the coat. I will go over it at the end and put in any tones that are missing or have been covered in the process. I also painted in Shamrock's eye before starting the rest of the face as this helps me to feel the character as I'm painting.

Wednesday, 20 January 2010


Here's todays update. I've been working on the neck area today and have managed to get most of it done with just a bit of tidying up tomorrow.

Tuesday, 19 January 2010


My next commission is of Shamrock. I have been looking forward to this painting as the colouring is so unusual and I love it! Below are a couple of the first stages. The top one is just after I had painted on the background and tidied up the edges around the head area.
And this stage is when I have covered up the canvas with the first, very attractive, layer of paint, covering up the white canvas so colours that I paint on top come out correctly.

Wednesday, 13 January 2010

Lillie - Finished

Here is the finished version of Lillie, awaiting approval. Again, there's a bit of light reflection on the background because some acrylic paints can have a slightly 'plasticy' shiny appearance but I always varnish with a matt varnish so this never shows on the final piece.

Tuesday, 12 January 2010


I decided to make the background a bit more interesting than just grass so have been working on this today. Unfortunately there is quite a lot of light reflection on the righthand side but this will be sorted once I've varnished the painting at the end. I've made a start on the grass around Lillie but there's a lot more work to be done here. And then I can get on with finishing Lillie and making the edges blend better.

Friday, 8 January 2010


It's taken me a while to get around to posting an update on Lillie's progress but that's mainly because I've been waiting to hear about the background as the first background idea was going to hide Lillie and I normally paint backgrounds in first so it's looking a bit of a mess to me at the moment. Now that I can move forward on the background, I will get that done next and then finally finish the details of Lillie as I will then be able to paint her fur edges over the background and make her appear to be sitting in the grass. Hopefully!