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Digital Subscriptions > The Artist > Summer 19 > Rapeseed fields in sunlight

Rapeseed fields in sunlight

Paul Talbot-Greaves demonstrates how to paint a field of rapeseed in full flower in five simple stages

Although I drew the shapes out in pencil it isn’t imperative to use graphite for acrylic painting. Sometimes if the shapes are easy, I simply start blocking in freehand with colour. Sometimes I might draw a few lines with paint using a small flat brush, especially if I want to be able to see the structure throughout the painting process. However, whichever method I use, I always endeavour to create a guideline, not an outline. The purpose of the drawing is to set the proportions and scale of the individual shapes that make up the overall design. When the drawing was complete for this painting, I loosely blocked in the shapes and values of the picture using a number of brushes to avoid constantly washing and rinsing one single brush. I used thick mixes of neat paint for the heavy values and thinner colour mixed up with flow improver for the lighter values. This is quite a quick and rough process. You can even see where the paint has run. Next, I used slightly thicker paint of a semi-transparent quality, which I achieved by mixing colour with matt medium and a couple of drops of water.

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About The Artist

Welcome to the summer issue of The Artist packed with articles by top professional artists and tutors to inspire, inform and help develop your technical and creative skills in all media. This month James Bartholomew discusses how he seeks to create more dynamic paintings using mixed-media techniques. Watercolourists will enjoy Aine Divine's demonstration showing how to paint a side profile portrait and Trevor Waugh's focus on how to capture flowers quickly using lost-and-found edge techniques. John Threlfall explains why pastels are ideal for capturing wildlife subjects and working in the field. There are also demonstrations and practical articles on how to add interest to your landscape foregrounds, capture a seasonal field of rapeseed, paint realistic-looking strawberries in acrylics and how to select the right colours and paint big summer skies. Plus we include articles on painting self-portraits, keeping a sketchbook , working on handmade linen boards, how to protect your work online, what you can and can't do about copyright issues, and more.