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The way through the woods is in colour

I love painting sunlight through trees and am always on the look out for source photos to base my paintings on. This painting is of one of my favourite woodlands in Kent and I really wanted to bring in strong colours within the slightly impressionistic style.

That meant starting the painting with lots of bright colours for the underpainting on the 31 x 24 inch block canvas, knowing that the subsequent layers wouldn’t fully cover them, leaving lovely hints of contrasting vibrant colours showing through.

The way through the woodsI wanted the focal point to be the bright area where the sun bleached out the distant trees, leading the eye over towards that area, with a hint of deep yellow as the start of the pathway leading in that direction. Pinks and oranges, purples and reds adding interest to the woodland ground, and flecks of pinks and oranges and rich blues in the trees to add more pops of colour as extra vibrancy and life.

Its only a simple picture in a way, but there’s a lot of work in this painting, to celebrate the colours of the woods and the overhead canopy of leaves and light.

I adore the colours and the textures in the acrylic paint, and won’t tire of looking at this painting because of them. I used a palette knife for virtually all of it, giving me freedom to add the textures and smear on the paint. It was a perfect way of painting this particular subject!

The title came to me quite easily and is “The way through the woods”, as it can be viewed as a simple landscape or as a spiritual painting depicting the light at the end of struggle and challenges….

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