To OutFox a painting!

A painting can be completed in one sitting - wet into wet (alla prima), or can take many adjustments over many sessions.

The 'tail' of the fox had a happy ending, as I had to be very cunning to outwit it! Probably five separate sessions were needed, to radically repaint areas until I was happy with the composition and shapes/tone.

Materials used: Cobra Oils (Burnt Umber/Yellow Ochre/Cadmium Yellow/Titanium White/French Ultramarine/Kings Blue/Cadmium Red Light/Cadmium Orange).

Wooden support with hand painted gesso and Yellow Ochre ground.

The initial hand drawn layout in Burnt Umber maps out the proportions and shapes. At this stage there are no commitments and adjustments are easy to do.

Colours are placed in blocks, mapping out the warm and cold areas. Again no detail as it allows me to adjust tones/shapes/line.

Adding further placement of brush marks starts to create the form and character:-

Working on a large palette, with a warm coloured surface, allows you to adjust your tones/temperature more accurately, as your initial support colour is a wonderful warm yellow ochre.

Further work was needed, as the background tone had to be darker so that the contrast between the fox and the surrounding area was less. I decided to go for a warm yellow, so that the fox blended with the background and did not distract from the face.

After about five further reworks and adjustments, the fox painting was completed. What was I after? Well, movement of the fox and the off weight of the head balanced to the angle of the legs, creating a diagonal composition.

I'm happy with the fox as it wanders off to explore!