Opposites: Life and Death, Up on the Downs


Love the diagonal composition enhancing the drama here Robert. The indistinct brushstrokes used in the foreground bring out such a lovely array of plants, usually found in such places. The sky is alive with the threat of rain and the overall harmony of colour and light is very appealing.

I love the depth you have created with this painting Robert, it's such a beautiful painting and interesting to look at.

I like the composition, and the sense that bad weather is on the way. Dead trees, often in the midst of lush growth as here, are always intriguing. I like paintings where there's a feeling that something is about to happen, or has happened. Fine work Robert.

I really like this - composition and use of greens is excellent

A real sense of drama here, Robert with the contrasting trees and the dark clouds gathering. Lovely vegetation in the foreground too - beautiful painting!

Lovely compostion and colours

Thanks all. I had my usual fight - to limit the detail; to overcome a habit of using pure tube colour rather than mixing it (I do find Cadmium Yellow a bit overpowering in an English landscape); and I'm not used to this very interesting surface - a birch panel, buttressed at the back, in somewhat off-regular sizes (so would need a customized frame, if one were to frame it). Working on a canvas board now, by way of contrast. I just made this scene up, though from memory of walking on the Downs near Ventnor on the Isle of Wight - nearer to St Catherine's Point, actually. Learned a lot from this one! And that's why I paint these days - not to sell (mind you: make an offer and I'll bite your arm off...) but to experiment and learn. It is HUGELY more enjoyable than trying to catch customers: I enjoy painting far more now than I did when participating in or organizing exhibitions (mind you: I did enjoy the money, when it came....).

Meant to add the palette: Ultramarine; Quinacridone violet; viridian; Cad Yellow; Yellow Ochre; Cremnitz White; Burnt Sienna; Rowney Golden Yellow; touch of Naples Yellow and Titanium White, plus Buff Titanium. On the base of a Mars Orange sketch and wash. Does it help anyone to know that? Well, don't know - but I know that when I was starting out I itched to know the palette employed, so I hope it does. These were all artists' colours, except for the Naples Yellow - used very sparingly because it contains Zinc, a problematic pigment, but used only in the final layers.

Brilliant title! Beautiful rich colours and interesting composition Robert. Yes thanks for naming your colours used, I always find it interesting to know. Also I like your detail in foreground.

Beautiful painting Robert. I like the sky and the detail in the foreground.

Lovely painting - very atmospheric

Like the contrast of the live and dead trees which looks great together and your foliage markings. Lovely painting, Robert

Birch panel I haven’t used, but I’d like to try one sometime! Yes, I do like knowing the palette, but I’m interested in colour and other artists choices. So, let’s move on to the painting itself … it’s a very accomplished work in many ways, and in total contrast with my style of both subject and colours. Detail… yes it’s all there but in relative moderation and not overworked! Interesting threatening sky as your backdrop, to make one small point, and this is always a personal choice of course, I would have broken up a good portion of the horizon line where sky meets land - as we speak I’m itching to smudge my finger to merge the two together a bit, now that would create an even more dramatic mood…

Alan - thanks so much - that's really incredibly useful and I much appreciate it.

Always a pleasure to offer my humble advice Robert, it’s often small details that can make a huge difference!

A piece that has great energy and a sense of movement. That ominous sky is a perfect backdrop for the windswept foreground.

What a super painting Robert. I can breathe the air.

Hang on Studio Wall

Oil on board, ca. 42 by 30cm.

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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