Corn birdsPosted: November 15, 2015
I am a firm believer in planning a painting. For me, if a painting doesn’t work out it’s more than likely the result of one of two things: I didn’t spend enough time planning or I didn’t spend enough time drawing. When I went out to Macdonald Farm this morning I spent a few minutes driving around, trying to decide what to paint. I love the view across the corn to John Abbott College, and I’ve sketched it before in winter, but they don’t always plant corn in this field so I was happy to see the remnants of it today. The first thing I did before I put pencil to paper (watercolour paper, that is) was to draw my thumbnail sketch. That helped me make one important decision. What is the division of space on the page? One third sky and two thirds foreground, or the opposite? You can see below what I chose. The thumbnail is a scribble, really, but it gives me a direction and allows me a few minutes to think about what I’m going to paint. And if I decide that the thumbnail isn’t really interesting, then I’ve only lost a few minutes and a tidbit of paper, and I can move on and try something else.