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Charles Evans chose to paint Pin Mill near Ipswich, with the old Thames barges moored up on the resting mud when the tide is out
Pin Mill has a fabulous pub, The Butt and Oyster, which is the building featured here. I approached this painting by cutting down on some of the detail surrounding the boats; I made the image suit me and what I think would make a good painting. Don’t forget: artists are not photographers; we can change details to benefit the end result.
Using my 1½” brush, I pre-wet the entire sky area. I then used well-watered Yellow Ochre in the bottom areas of the sky and Cobalt Blue from the top coming all the way down. I sucked out some paint to create the clouds. I then mixed a touch of Light Red into the Cobalt Blue to give a grey for the base of the clouds.
For the lighter side, I pre-wet that side of the building and, using my Round brush, simply dropped on a few spots of Yellow Ochre and Light Red and let these merge and soften. For the darker left-hand side, using the same brush, I painted on Cobalt Blue with a tiny touch of Burnt Sienna mixed in, weaker on the sides facing the light. I then did the same for the chimneys.
To finish the building, I filled in the windows with a stronger mix of Cobalt Blue and Burnt Sienna, using a stroke of the paint and leaving the white paper showing through between each stroke. For the base of the building, I made a black from Ultramarine Blue and Burnt Sienna. With a touch more water added, I painted the tops of the bay windows. Using my Rigger brush, I painted some broken squiggly lines in the roof using Burnt Sienna. Once all this was dry, it was time for the shadow using a mix of Cobalt Blue, Alizarin Crimson and Burnt Sienna. With my Round brush, I painted along the top line and down the right hand side of each window, underneath the overhangs of the roof and the shadows cast by the chimneys.
Next, the trees. I used my ¾” brush, but I firstly split the brush, and stippled Yellow Ochre in the top of the trees, followed by a mixture of Hookers Green and Burnt Sienna and a little Cobalt Blue to add depth.
For the rest of the wall at the base of the building, I used strong Raw Umber to the left hand side and added more water to it for the right hand side, using my Round brush. The people are just a few blobs. Then I painted the track and grasses to the right. All this with my ¾” brush using a mixture of Raw Umber and Yellow Ochre for the muddy bits. For the grasses underneath the trees on the right, I used a mixture of Yellow Ochre and Hookers Green.
For the distant boats to the left hand side, using my Round brush, I painted a stroke of Cobalt Blue along the top and Light Red along the bottom. For the cabin, I added a touch of Cobalt Blue to the left hand side. For the wheelhouses, I used touches of Raw Umber and Cobalt Blue mixed with Light Red here and there. I added some shadow to the first boat using a weak mix of Cobalt Blue and Light Red. Then with my ¾” brush, I painted in the muddy bits behind the big boat and foreground jetty. I then removed the masking tape from the masts.
A mix of Hookers Green and Light Red made a simple strip along the top of the big boat. I made a black using Ultramarine Blue and Burnt Sienna for the middle section and a strip of Light Red along the bottom. For the cabin, I used Burnt Sienna mixed with Raw Umber, stronger to one side than the other, then Cobalt Blue mixed with Burnt Sienna for shadowed areas.
The figure and masts were painted with the Rigger brush and a dark mix of Cobalt Blue and Burnt Sienna. A couple of strokes of Burnt Sienna indicated the anchor at the front. Finally, a strong mixture of Cobalt Blue and Burnt Sienna added some shadow and grottiness to the hull.
I used some very watered Cobalt Blue to stroke across into the puddle and, finally, added shadow with a mix of Cobalt Blue, Alizarin Crimson and Burnt Sienna, taking care to edge this puddle with the same mix.