Thursday, 26 February 2015


I entered the Oil Painters of America Exhibition this year for the first time.  I only joined last January and missed the deadline for 2014 but I made sure to enter this year.  And I'm really pleased to learn that I had a painting accepted.  They allow two submissions from each painter but only one will be accepted.  This is the one they chose.  This painting also was awarded FIRST PLACEin the OPA Spring Showcase.  It is available at the West End Gallery in Victoria

Twelve Small Boats, oil, 26x36

I often think I will take photos of a painting at various stages along the way but get so involved in what I'm doing that I forget to take more than one or two.  With this painting, I did take one shot right after the layout stage when I had just started to block in the darks and shadows.  Later on I made a few compositional changes so you can play 'spot the difference'.  And you can decide if I might have been well advised to leave the composition as I had it in the initial block in.

Initial Block In

I also took a close up of some of the small boats showing the sort of brushwork I used:

Detail  showing some of the boats


  1. I love the composition of this painting - really original. I often struggle to find really interesting compositions and find myself falling back into the habit of dividing the canvas up into thirds - the tried and trusted layout. Seeing this makes you realise that a view painted from an unusual angle can reveal itself to be far more engaging.

    1. Thank you David, your comments are much appreciated. As for composition, I believe that one can break the 'rules' but it is a good idea to know what they are and why you are breaking them. All the best!