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Monday, April 02, 2007

Cow Shed - painting a day

"Cow Shed" oil on canvas panel, 5x7" available at my Etsy store

I drove out to the coast on Sunday, and did some paintings. This little barn is near the town of Bodega Bay. I stopped to paint it because I liked the shadow it cast down the hill, and there was a whole herd of black cows and their calves in the field - at last, my opportunity to paint cows and a barn together. No such luck for this painting. As soon as I got myself parked and set up, the cows moved on to the larger field behind me. I still really like the painting.


At 1:16 AM, Blogger Sheila Vaughan said...

Kris, I love the way you apply the paint. It looks simple but I am sure it is not. How long does it take you to do a small painting like that? This one and the red barn paintings are my favourites. They remind me of Hopper in their sense of calmness and solitude.

At 9:06 AM, Blogger Kris Shanks said...

Thanks Sheila! I'm flattered by the comparison to Hopper. It takes me about two hours to do a small painting. I've found that doing a couple of preliminary sketches is crucial for me. It really helps if I've laid out the composition and thought about the colors a bit before I even touch the paint. The paintings where I rush that step are never as good.

At 12:45 AM, Blogger Sheila Vaughan said...

Yes you are so right. That initial thinking/planning time is very important. I find that if there is uncertainty in my head when I start off a painting it never quite goes away and I am learning now to stop and go back to that first planning stage because it never seems to right itself automatically. There are things that happen in painting by instinct but there is lot that needs conscious planning.


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