Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Urban Shadow Highlights V (Bath Marathon Plein air)

This is number 5 in the current  retrospective series of paintings that show the effect of light and shadows in urban space. All these paintings are of streets and places in the City of Bath. It's a wonderful city and the sand stone buildings are always beautiful under the light!

Urban Shadow Highlights V, 6" x 8", Oil on Board


A lot of people ask me what my  main aim is, when I  encounter a scene I like. The main thing that runs through my mind is to simplify! Just say to yourself- How can I simplify what is in front of me- fewer strokes, fewer colours, this is where the ability to sketch comes in handy! I always see myself as a sketcher in colour, when I paint! I try as much as possible to edit everything that isn't necessary and I make up my mind about this as soon as I get there when I am sure I am going to paint a particular scene.

Just managed to get a picture before the large lorry blocked my view!

picture of the scene- you can see from the picture that there's just too much information. I only need what interests me! The light and a few other complimenting components. The rule is simplify, simplify, simplify!

"Attempt anything that catches your eye! It's only then that you'll discover the real thrill of painting outdoor!"-Adebanji Alade

Monday, April 29, 2013

Urban Shadow Highlights III and IV (Bath Marathon Plein Air)

This is a  Retrospective Series  of some selected paintings from my Bath Marathon highlights the effect of shadows and raking light in urban space in a modern city.

This is number 3 of the series!
Paintings bring back strong memories and I can vividly remember hunting for a place to paint in the morning when I discovered this place. I basically went wild with the painting application and painted like a pig eats-just to capture the subtle beautiful light around the buildings. Most of my paint was diluted with liquin for fast drying and rapid stroke effects. A very good and bouncy synthetic long flat brush is also vital! I just love this painting!!! That little lone figure in yellow was the highlight of it all! 

Urban Shadow Highlights III-Raking Light, Old Orchard Street, 6" x 8", Oil on Board


That's the set-up and the painting on my pochade. Sometimes there's no one to take me pictures, so I take them myself and they end up looking a bit awkward.
Picture of the scene- no where near what I saw-this is the fragility of the lens at times!

This is number 4 of the series!
This particular painting reminds me of Chapel Row Gallery- I had just finished a little portrait in pencil during their open day for any one to sketch there, when I got outside and notice this beautiful light hitting the building on the right. I immediately went for it! I must confess, sometimes, I almost forget everything about drawing when trying to capture the light!

Urban Shadow Highlights IV- Up chapel Row towards Queen's Square, 6" x 8", Oil on board


That's my cool spot where I snapped myself after the painting was completed.

Picture of the scene- The camera couldn't pick the dramatic perspective that led the eye up the hilly road.
LIGHT is beautiful! Light changes everything! Lets walk in the light- but not forget the shades!-Adebanji Alade

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Urban Shadow Highlights II ( Bath Marathon Plein Air)

Urban Shadow Highlights II- Raking afternoon light, The Podium, 6" x 8", Oil on Gessoed mountboard SOLD- I was really interested in the light but also the explosion of figures moving back and forth, it added another dimension to this little piece.


This is the second piece in the series of Urban Shadow Highlights from my Bath Marathon of paintings.

I got myself a spot where I had enough shelter from the harsh sunlight.

Picture of the scene-  Once again I like to show the picture because it shows how painting only from pictures can be really deceiving! The ability to interpret the scene when one experiences it right there and then is priceless! I am not saying don't paint from pictures, I do myself, but it's good to combine this with a few outdoor exercises. 

"Imagine, explore, experiment, discover, develop-just make sure you are progressing with your pursuit of painting"-Adebanji Alade

Friday, April 26, 2013

Urban Shadow Highlights I, 6" x 8", Oil on gessoed mountboard (Bath Marathon Plein Air)

Looking back, I have chosen 7 works from my Bath Marathon of paintings which Highlight Shadows and Raking Light.

This is number 1 in the series- it was painted with an evening back-lighting at Widcombe Parade, Bath.

Urban Shadow Highlights I-Backlighting Widcombe Parade, 6" x 8", Oil on Gessoed Mountboard


This particular Series highlight the effect of shadows and raking light in urban space in a Modern City.

The painting in progress- It was one of those afternoon's that a plein air painter longs for. Wonderful warm evening light glowing and casting beautiful long shadows on the pavement!

I love the interaction of light and shadows in urban space and this is what the emphasis of these 7 paintings are. I'll be posting them in the next few days.

Picture of the scene- You'll notice clearly from the picture, that if I was to paint from this picture I would have missed out some wonderful warm colours that can only be experienced while at the scene, the camera can't pick those bits!

There's nothing like experiencing the scene right there and then!-Adebanji Alade

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Afternoon Light, Regents Canal, 6" x 8", Oil on board (Plein Air)

This little painting was done in the afternoon at a lovely place near Kings Cross St Pancras, called, Regents Canal.

Afternoon Light,. Regents Canal, 6" x 8", Oil on Board

I only discovered the place when I was out painting  with my friends and I was thinking of somewhere to paint. I love painting water, so when I got to Kings Cross St Pancras, I saw a sign that showed directions on how to get to a Canal. I simply followed the directions till I got to this lovely spot.

Adding the finishing touches with a smile (photo by Olha Pryymak)

The day was brilliant and the reflections and trees in background just highlighted the beauty of the place.

A picture of the scene!

I long for places like this!

"Sometimes it's the the love we have for the scenes we paint that shines through in the finished product! Look for a place you love, a place you have feelings for and put some of those feelings into the painting!"-Adebanji Alade

Friday, April 19, 2013

Morning Light Albert Bridge, From Battersea Bridge, Oil on Board, 6" x 8" ( The Plein Air Process)

This is a plein air piece I embarked on on a breezy Saturday morning last week.

Morning Light Albert Bridge, From Battersea Bridge, Oil on Canvas, 6" x 8" SOLD

I tried my best to take some stage shots to explain the "Outside -in" technique (where I cover the whole surface fairly quickly and work into it). I mostly use the "Inside-Out" Technique (where I start from the inside of the surface and work my way out)

Adebanji painting the scene- I sometimes sing while I paint!

This was quite tricky because the scene started with lots of water around the boats then all of a sudden, most of the water disappeared and I was left struggling to adjust the scene and painting the mud. But the light shone through and its effect on the mud made the piece interesting.

Stage 1- All the colours lined up, fresh and nice. Order is vital, it helps to know exactly where each colour is.  Sometimes I increase the speed at which I work and it's always nice to know I'm dipping into the right colour. I have a some drops of Liquin to help in fast drying. It's a grey day and I'm not really bothered about this, I'll try to work in some colours into the piece.
Stage 2- With very diluted Liquin I quickly start the sketching of the basic structures -the bridge, the boats and the background foliage and foreground trees. This is just about putting things in the right places.
Stage 3- Here I begin to cover the surface with the larger elements, which are sea and sky, all the surface is covered at this point.
Stage 4- At this stage I start making each component more definite. The little details that matter .

Stage 5- The water started vanishing away from around the area where the boats were positioned and kept drying up as the sun came out! I had to quickly adjust my painting to suit the change. This is not something I do very often but because this surface is so small, I could take the risk.

Final Stage 6- with the Full Set-up-This is when I had to stop, you can see that the river  has completely gone far back and the boats are almost on dry land. It's always good to be flexible in handling these tricky changing events while painting outdoors
Just get out there and paint, forget about the wind, the rain, the snow or the biting cold! They all seem to vanish when we start painting!"-Adebanji Alade

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Sketches on the train, tube and bus in April I

These are some backlogs of sketches I haven't published here! Enjoy the moments! Enjoy the people from different places. London is a melting pot-a sketchers' dream!!!

Remember to sign up to my Blog where I share my sketching tips. Click HERE for the Sketching tips site

"Nothing gives me such delight while I journey from place to place within the city of London, than when I am busy sketching every face that catches my attention on the train, tube or bus. It's a really high feeling!!-Adebanji Alade

Friday, April 12, 2013

Seasons Change, 2 x 8" x 10", Oil on board

This piece just reminds me that seasons change.

This was painted at Westfield park, Upcerne  Road, Chelsea.
Seasons Change, 16" x 10", Oil on board (2 Separate pieces)

I really enjoyed the feeling of painting this at different seasons. I hope to continue this with another scene.

That's me during the winter season- the best time to paint!!! No light changes.

"Whatever season you are in now, just remember that it is not permanent"- Adebanji Alade

Monday, April 08, 2013

The African Headgear III, 8.5" x 11", Mixed Media on Card.

This is the third piece in my series of paintings and drawings to celebrate the beauty of the African Headgear.

This particular piece all started off without any preliminary drawing, I just decided to go into into it with the pastels used with the broad side.

THE AFRICAN HEADGEAR III, 8.5" x 11", Pastel, Crayons, Coloured pencil and Oil Pastel on Canson Card, 2013  

Because I started this way, I was left starting off without any accuracy at all and a long process of corrective drawing. But it was quite fun as I enjoyed watching the repair process materialize into a finished product I was satisfied with.

Below are some of the Stage Shot photos I took while working though it.

STAGE 1- That bold start that got me frightened, I thought, what am I doing here? No preliminary drawing, just broad strokes of pastel on the card.

STAGE 2- I blend the broad strokes together, just for some clarity.
STAGE 3- Introduce the darks, this changes everything, but I'm still timid, not sure how this will work out.

STAGE 4- I slow down and keep my focus on correcting the faulty areas, adding more rich smaller strokes of the pastel.
STAGE 5- Here I am a more confident, the corrective drawing helps and slowing down is a reward, as it is often said, "Haste is the Artists' Worst Enemy"

“A portrait can get awfully hot when the artist thinks in terms of flesh and blood, rosy cheeks, lips and ears. This is particularly so if there are cools surrounding the subject such as a blue curtain or blue shirt... don't forget that some of that cool might very well be bouncing into the face and figure”- Harley Brown