outstanding in their field

I am pretty sure I have used this as a blog title already, but it totally applies to this post, so I'm using it again. Because I can.

I was asked by someone recently how to get better at drawing. 'Draw more.' I responded. Like anything, the more you do something, the better and more comfortable you get at, well, whatever it is: knitting, running, cooking, getting up early, writing letters, applying liquid eyeliner, whatever. So this is my plan of attack for sketching in oils. I'm going to sketch with oils more. And what better time of year? Autumn! My favorite! Where you get out of the shower and don't immediately start sweating. Where you can turn on the oven at any time of day and not regret it when you go to bed at night because it has made the house too hot to sleep in. When the bugs are gone and the sun is low enough to bathe everything in this awesome golden glow, and creates lovely long shadows where colors deepen or hide altogether.

Yesterday I had to go pick up the dogs at my friend Colleen's in Onoway, and I brought my kit along. I found 4 places I took mental note of along highway 779 that had little pullouts where I could safely paint and not be a deterrent to the local traffic. I spotted some cows out enjoying the evening on a hilly field. Perfect!

There were cows, I swear. I did not make them up! I snapped this at the end of my sketching session, before we left and after Coltrane barked her fool head off at the cows and scared them all away. Finding good painting assistants is hard. Luke was quiet and slept in the back seat. Hmmph. Puppies.

I put some finishing touches on the sketch in the studio this afternoon.

Goodness GRACIOUS, I freakin' LOVE the texture of this paint!!!

My plan of attack to get better at oil sketching on location is just to focus on tonal value and shapes. This sketch is finished, though, now that I am writing this my brain is coming up with all these cool things I could add to it, which I am not going to do. Instead, I am going start a new sketch before we meet friends for dinner later. Our back alley is looking pretty interesting in the afternoon light. I'll give that a go.

If anyone is interested in purchasing this sketch, it's $150 + tax, and shipping is again included. Email me if you want it, and thanks for helping me get better and more comfortable with this medium. This sketch is called 'outstanding in their field'. It's 9x12, oil on masonite and is not framed.