Elephant Hole Cave, Niton Undercliff

Elephant Hole Cave, Niton Undercliff

There's an extraneous "what" in the comment to the right - while I didn't injure myself when visiting the cave, I did, just today, manage to trip over a cable and fell right on the wrist I broke a couple of years ago: I blame this for the typo - keyboard work is a bit painful at the moment...

What's in a what? Well I can say that there's a lot in this one Robert and not an extraneous brush mark in sight - I am quite in awe of it. This, for me at least, is one of those paintings which leap out of the gallery. Simplicity and originality in design, detailed in brushwork and limited in palette with the effect of demanding attention and holding interest. One of your very best and - yes - as you may guess - I do like it. Nurse that wrist.

Sorry about your 'trip ' Robert, so incapacitating for you. I like this verdant painting, all that detail in growth must have taken ages.

Super painting Robert, the detail is very impressive.

All those greens very confidently handled Robert!

A difficult one to tackle with all that vegetation, such patience.

Superb manipulation of detail, giving the painting life and movement. Excellent piece, Robert!

Robert, I do not like painting grass and vegetation. It drives me mad. I pull my hat to you for this intricate detailed work. I also admire the many tones of green that make this painting so special and uplifting!

Thanks to everyone for their comments - and yes, my wrist is fine now! We've had so much rain lately that I wouldn't even attempt to get back to the cave at the moment - it would be incredibly slippery, and lethal. If it helps anyone, the way to pick out green vegetation is to lay down a dark undertone in thin paint - here, it would have been a mix of pthalo green and a red or burnt sienna - and then to add the greens on top, ensuring you have plenty of variety in them, and by adding highlight areas: I've done a few more to this one, but haven't changed it at all radically; just rationalized it a bit. It doesn't really take much time if you do it like that. It was always a problem for me, working out what went underneath: thinking about it, you realize that the earth is fundamentally darker than the vegetation on top, and if you paint it like that, darks first, lights second, glazing or scumbling here and there to adjust matters, this 'what's underneath it all?' problem goes away.

Great picture Robert , those greens and blues work together beautifully Im glad i have seen it...your tip is very instructive and i will do your method of a dark base to the grass etc. when I next do a painting from my imagination.

Hang on Studio Wall

This is a natural cave in the cliff face, connected what by what must be a man-made tunnel to another entrance. The area is extremely dark thanks to overhanging vegetation, especially at this time of year, and the carpet of ferns and thick ivy conceals very hazardous cracks and holes. Nonetheless, I actually managed to get through to the cave a couple of weeks ago without breaking a leg ... didn't find any of the bats that are said to inhabit it, but they probably saw me. Oil on board, 12" by 16".

About the Artist
Robert Jones, NAPA

Born November 18th 1950. Former party political agent, former chairman of housing association. Has worked as a volunteer with the NHS since 2000, painting seriously for the last ten years, sporadically for the last 50. Member, National Association of Painters in Acrylic from October 2015

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