Betws-y-Coed the River Llugwy in spate

Mar 12, 2020Paintings0 comments

For my first blog post for what seems like ages I’ve chosen this painting which is hot off the easel. Horrendous as the flooding has been recently, the rare event of two storms following in quick succession produced some fantastic scenes if, like me, painting water is your passion. In Betws-y-Coed a couple of weeks ago the River Llugwy was in full spate and the water was pounding over the rocks and under the Pont-y-Pair Bridge. This is my attempt to capture the sheer power of the scene, started on site and completed in the studio. Obviously the biggest challenge here was to get a sense of movement into the water. Apart from the tree on the right of the canvas, the entire work is knife painted which allowed me to build up a thick, textured surface in the first painting session, which established the main areas of the painting without going into too much detail. Once this first stage was dry, I was able to knife-in some glazes to give a greater sense of depth in the trees and to give more definition to the water where it races over the rocks, before working more texture with thickly applied white to represent the foaming torrents and swirling pools. To complete the scene I used a rigger to develop the tree in the foreground, as I find painting winter trees with the knife really difficult. Oil on canvas 16″x12″


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