January 2021 – In the Bleak Midwinter

Several members painted last weekend, when our first Saturday session should have been held. All agreed that it felt good to paint again and we all enjoyed ourselves. Making time for a hobby is important for our wellbeing and we felt the day was good art therapy.

‘In the Bleak Midwinter’ was the suggested subject and all members painted to that theme. Some used their own photos, some their imagination and others were inspired by images in books and on Instagram.

Susan used watercolours to paint her two pictures. The first is Nurstead Church Lane, with the skeletal trees suggesting winter.

Susan’s second painting is of a snowy path through the woods towards Northfleet Green.

Susan also took a photo of the above painting in black and white. It is shown below and it’s interesting that it gives the same image a different perspective. The painting in colour feels like the yellowish tree to the left and browny green tree to the right are the main focus, as your eye moves around the painting. In the black and white image that centre of focus changes to the centre of the painting with the gap through the trees. What do you think?

Christine painted her picture of a snowy scene in watercolours. Lovely to see the children have built a snowman and now they look ready for a snowball fight.

Peter’s winter scene is painted in acrylics and he has got great detail into his picture. You can see the main characters are skating across the picture by lamplight.

Dot’s painting started out as an ink drawing but she decided to add colour, which is enhanced against the black ink. By including mountains, cabins and trees it feels like you’re in a European ski resort, ready to go back into the warm after a day’s skiing.

Juliet painted her two pictures using watercolours and coloured pencils. By making a tree the main focus you know it’s a cold scene by the total lack of foliage against the snow. The skies in both paintings are sublime, showing how the sky in a wintry scene doesn’t have to be pale or grey, they can be the main focus of colour.

Steve painted in watercolour using a photo he took last week from the football field in Cobham of the church. What a contrast to snow paintings, showing just how contrary January weather can be, with some cold days having bright skies and saturated colours.

Angela D saved a reference photo of a snowy tree years ago and was pleased to be able to use it for this subject. It’s only her second painting of snow and has mastered it well, as the complicated branches of the tree look 3D. It’s in acrylics and took her 3 hours.

Tracy was inspired by a photo she saw on Instagram of snowy fields in Yorkshire. A simple sky was painted in watercolours then field lines in grey in the distance get darker as they get closer to the viewer, until the shapes of the trees in the foreground are in black pen.

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