Artistic question

Discussion in 'CycleChat Cafe' started by Andy in Germany, 14 Sep 2018.

  1. So I need to make a second painting for the dining room to be a partner to this one I painted a few years ago.

    The new painting has been giving me some trouble though.

    I wanted a small ferry with a post bus approaching it, if possible in (semi) darkness giving the feel of the ferry being a safe haven. I made a few thumbnails:


    Then came up with a design I liked:


    The problem with this is
    1: possibly too much foreground
    2: Bus on wrong side of road with no barrier. If I add a barrier the bus will be hidden.
    3: Bus has come over all Postman Pat but that's no big issue.

    So, I made another sketch and mucked about a bit on Gimp to make it more what I wanted Atmosphere like this:


    As for perspective, I don't know; but the middle one seems best:
    The bus looks a lot better, but they all have a flat quayside which logically would be flooded if the ferry is that high. So I tried to combine the good bits in the first attempt at painting:


    Hmm... still crummy perspective. There the matter has reated for some time with the picture bugging me constantly.

    I wondered if making a more obvious quayside ramp would help:


    Still not sure though.

    I really want to get this moving next week so if anyone has any ideas I'm open to hear them...
    Dayvo, AndyRM, Katherine and 3 others like this.
  2. Salar

    Salar Über Member

    Hi @Andy in Germany

    As you say the perspective is out, although you could say the ferry is pitching and rolling.

    I think you have two problems which need addressing.

    1.There are two objects in the picture fighting for your eyes attention which makes you look from left to right to left etc. One needs to dominate.

    The horizon is in the middle, if possible it's much better to have the horizon set at a third or two thirds of the depth of the paper.

    Good luck.
  3. midlife

    midlife Guru

    Quite like the perspective of the rear end of the bus, it reminds me of the tail end of the plane in the pop art picture that has gone completely out of my head lol
  4. Salar

    Salar Über Member


    I do a bit of drawing and painting of boats. They can be difficult!! So keep at it.

    I tend to not worry so much about perspective when I do impressionist type of stuff, more formal stuff maybe.

    See the following two pictures of mine regarding regarding the horizon position p101.jpg Swansea Lightship.jpg .
    postman, lane, Hill Wimp and 9 others like this.
  5. meta lon

    meta lon Guru

    I like the 2nd pic, atmospheric, I like the proportions ,nice, simple and sort of relaxing
  6. meta lon

    meta lon Guru

    Superb ,the red ship one is stunning
    Mrs M and Salar like this.
  7. Lovely pictures. I'm trying to break away from only doing realistic pictures but I think my technical drawing training works against me a bit there...

    Thepicture of the lightship is more the idea I'm aiming for, but I really wanted to tell a story in the picture. Is there any way I can use the bus or the landing as a way to draw the eye toward the ship, instead of away, do you think?
    Salar likes this.
  8. Katherine

    Katherine Guru Moderator

    What about composing the picture so that the view is from the ferry welcoming the approaching postvan.
    Mrs M and Andy in Germany like this.
  9. Salar

    Salar Über Member

    Thanks Andy,

    I also started off on the drawing board as a young draughtsman and technical drawing training can hamper you a bit.

    The lightship is about as formal as I go in watercolours, I prefer drawing with dip pens, bits of rag, cocktail sticks, that type of thing.

    Enough of my stuff.

    As the ferry is more interesting than a post van, why not reverse the picture.

    Draw it as if you are standing on the ferry deck about a third of the way down with the post van coming towards you in dusk if you want atmosphere.
    You can then add boat fittings, the deck construction, lights etc, the ferry will be dominant and take up most of the picture , but you should still be able to tell a story.
    Last edited: 14 Sep 2018
    Andy in Germany and Katherine like this.
  10. Salar

    Salar Über Member

    You just said what I was typing.!!! :smile:
    Katherine likes this.
  11. Katherine

    Katherine Guru Moderator

    But you explained what I was thinking!
    Andy in Germany and Salar like this.
  12. Salar

    Salar Über Member

    But you beat me to it.
    Andy in Germany and Katherine like this.
  13. Reynard

    Reynard Veteran

    Cambridgeshire, UK
    Yeah, what @Salar says makes sense.

    Use the ferry to frame the image, and then you can almost reduce the van to a smear of colour and a pair of headlights. Even better, if you make out that it's raining, then you can play with interesting reflections of a wet quayside.
  14. Now you've got me thinking. I like the idea but I'm not entirely sure:

    1: If I've got the skill to achieve that or
    2: what the inside of the ferry should look like...
    Last edited: 14 Sep 2018
  15. Reynard

    Reynard Veteran

    Cambridgeshire, UK
    There should be plenty of boat-y pictures lurking online that you can use as a template. Google is your friend here. :smile:
    Andy in Germany likes this.
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