Durham Skyline Commission

It’s been a few weeks since I last posted any work, so here’s an update…

I’m currently working on a commission for two of my friends who are moving in together in July. The brief was wide open, however since they met during their time at Durham uni, it seemed fitting for them to take a reminder of Durham away with them. I think the Durham skyline is quite recognisable with the cathedral and castle both very prominent. This is of course a very common subject matter, and has been painted numerous times by many excellent artists. I wanted bring some life to the painting, so decided to try a very free form of painting using colour shapers rather than brushes. These hold up better to moving large amounts of paint around than small brushes, and give a vibrant textured finish.

Here is the initial ‘prompt’ image; a photoshop composition of a sunrise and a Durham skyline. I wanted to use false colour, so the prompt image is converted to greyscale allowing clearer identification of tone. I really just use prompt images to get the general shape of the important features, the details are done through intuition rather then following an image exactly.

This is a tester piece, just a small section of the full image painted at full scale (the final painting will be 100 x 50 cm). I’m really looking forward to painting this one, hopefully I’ll keep up with the posts as it progresses so you can see how it develops. In addition to this I’ve got a few other paintings on the cards, so stay tuned!


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