Simon Bland

A Blog About Oil Painting

Hillside Sketch

by Simon Bland / Jul 21, 2015 / Landscape Plein air Sketch Study

Plein air painting of the hillside at Blooming Hill Farm

Hillside Sketch (plein air). 5x7, oil on linen panel. 2015

This plein air sketch was done at a property where the Loudoun Sketch Club had a paint-out. Technically speaking, it was next door to the host's property and I felt a little guilty about leaning over their fence to paint the neighbor's field.

What I was going after here was the look of the trees against the light. I didn't worry about too much about anything else and I tried not to fuss over any details.

Because this was done on a very small panel, the paint was applied directly with a small palette knife and then a large flat brush was used to work the edges. That helps me to paint very quickly so I'm able to capture my first impressions. I went back and forth a few times between the knife and the brush until the finished painting emerged. The color mixtures were tried and trusted combinations of chromatic black, cad yellow light and burnt sienna.

Once everything looked about right I stopped. There are a couple of areas that might have benefited from more attention, but I think it was a good idea to leave the painting a little unfinished rather than risk overworking it.