Thursday, August 29, 2013

Discovering The City of York (Part 2-Plein Air)

 Summerlight Micklegate Bar

This place is the place you can't miss at York! How could I possibly paint York without my own version of the Micklegate Bar! I arrived early on Saturday morning and set up beside one of the pubs which would come in handy in case I needed to use the loo. I hadn't been painting much before this, so I felt a bit timid, trying to impress myself and not just fully concentrating and getting on with the business.

But somehow I managed to survive this one and I was pleased that it looked more like a drawing in the end, than a painting. I painted shape by shape as can be seen in some of the progress shots below.

Painting is a wonderful thing!

Nothing beats singing while painting in the hot August sun and getting people coming round to have a peep or two.

Summerlight Micklegate Bar, 10" x 8", Oil on canvas, 2013

Adebanji painting Micklegate Bar- I love to sit when I paint, I feel more relaxed and it helps me avoid rushing which is so evident when ones legs start to ache.
Progress Shot 1- All set for the first painting, my palette, brushes all in orderly manner, ready for the attack!
Progress Shot 2-Many have asked, how or why I do these lines on the board before I start. Well, this is so I can judge where the painting would fit onto the surface. It's also a way of scaling and making grids. Once I do these lines, I know exactly where I want things to be. It makes me avoid the centre trap and also position things in a careful manner to avoid things being out of place. I don't do this sight-size thing. It works for some people, I just do the diagonals and verticals and horizontals, dividing the surface into 4 equal parts. I now look at the scene through this scale, I see it as an invisible transparent glass, set before me. It's like looking through the lens of a camera and having the grid lines on, on the LCD screen.
Progress Shot 3- I normally start with the sky but for some funny reason , this time I painted it last.
Progress Shot 4- This was towards the end, I was really exhausted after this  piece.
Micklegate Bar-The Scene- The scene from the photographic lens always gives false colour and very little information. Our eyes are far more powerful, innovative and creative than the limited one eye of the camera.

Afternoon Shadows, Micklegate Street

While Ann was taking me around York, this first main street we covered. One thing that caught my attention here was the lovely curve the street had and the white building with black stripes.I just loved the awkwardness of it, it looked as if it was bending or tilting.

I had to stand up to paint this one because there was so many cars parked and it was just impossible to see from a sitting position!

On this day, there were so many hen nights taking place. Lots of groups in different attires booking dinners and lunch in the trendy restaurants and pubs along the street.

Many people kept taking pictures of me. I got one passer by to take a picture of me painting. The commuters always come in handy when it comes to having pictures taken.

I felt a bit more confident while taking on this painting but I took too long to finish it. I think I was trying to convince myself that I could do better than the first one. Maybe just trying a bit too hard.

This piece was more about the drawing of the street, the accuracy of getting all those buildings in without ruining the flow of the piece.

I think I enjoyed the whole progress of the work. Making a very detailed sketch at the beginning saved me from many blushes when things got a bit complicated towards the end.

In all I was very pleased with it in  the end.

Afternoon Shadows, Micklegate Street, 10" x 8", Oil on Canvas, 2013

Adebanji painting Micklegate Street-I had to stand this time, not my best position but there were too many cars parked.
Progress Shot 1- You can see the detailed sketch I did of the scene before bringing on the paint! I used two brown coloured pencils on a brownish orange toned board. One of my painter friends said I should keep some of them at this point, just the drawing, she felt people would love them like that. I think I would, one day, maybe, just maybe.......

Progress Shot 2- You can see clearly here the manner and approach I used in this painting. I used the inside-out technique. It was just a matter of painting one shape being satisfied and then painting another shape.

 Afternoon Shadows,Micklegate Street- The Scene- The picture of the scene.

Evening Reflections, River Ouse

When the sun is going down, this scene explodes!

I painted this one to catch the light while it was moving!

I was happy to get the effect I was out to achieve!

Sometimes a scene is all about the drawing or mood, this was purely about the mood, the light in the scene!

The reflections looked great and I think I got really excitted while painting this piece.

I finished faster than normal, but I had to, because the light was going out and I just wanted to make sure I nailed it before it vanished.

You can see that in the picture I took of the scene, the sun had disappeared.

Evening Light Reflections, River Ouse, 10" x 8", Oil on board, 2013

Adebanji painting Evening Light Rflections, River Ouse

Progress Shot 1- my sketch before the painting here was more organic and easy going. It was a simple scene and didn't need any detailed drawing.
Progress Shot 2- I really like this picture, it tells the story more than I can put in words!

Evening Light Reflections, River Ouse- The Scene
"Art, to me, is seeing. I think you have got to use your eyes as well as your emotion, and one without the other just doesn't work. That's my art"-Andrew Wyeth

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Discovering The City of York (Part 1-Plein air and Urban Sketching)

Relaxing around the River Ouse after a painting session.

This Summer (August 2-9) I had the opportunity of discovering a new urban painting paradise! I got invited to the City of York by Ann Petherick of Kentmere House Gallery. She had silently been admiring my paintings of London and Bath for a while and thought I would love York too! Well, she was right!

The Arsenal, all ready for war!-Paints all lined up for action!

I decided to spend a week in York and I really enjoyed every bit  of the City! I stayed in the one of the lovely rooms in the Kentmere House Gallery and The Petherick's really made me feel welcome at their house. I have never stayed in a house surrounded by so many paintings! It was just inspirational to wake up and see paintings, eat and see paintings, go to the loo/bath and see paintings!

Arriving the City!

The first day I got to York, Ann took me around to see the main features of the City and then she left me to discover the other places I would like to paint! I really love visiting new places but I don't travel much so this was a great opportunity to let get my "plein air antenna" to pick vibes in a new city!

I discovered the ZERO post at the station! Please don't ask me what it's about because it's a bit complicated!

I started with two sketches, once I had completed the first day of work, I knew I was going to enjoy the place!

Jacob's Well-I discovered this weird door along Micklegate-I just had to take a picture!

The first place I discovered was a beautiful hill with a structure on the top of it. It's called Clifford's Tower.

The scene -Clifford's Tower

I decide it's gonna be first in my sketchbook! I get a good place to stay around the Fire Station

Clifford's Tower Sketch, 11" x 8.5", Graphite, 2013- I simply love drawing, I have always said, "if drawings sold as much as paintings did, then I would only draw!"

The next place I discovered was a beautiful building called the Castle Museum.

The Scene-Castle Museum

Adebanji sketching the Castle Museum

Castle Museum Sketch, Graphite, 11" x 8.5", 2013- I thought this building had a slight tilt to it in my sketch, I love it when things like that happen. It's one of the beauties of being there and having to face all the adverse circumstances but still get something done-even with the bendy bits!

and finally my room where I would stay for the next one week!

It was always a delight to come back here for a sweet rest after a hard days work!

"Mine is the horny hand of toil"-John Singer Sargent