Painting Demo: Step by Step: Alan Flattmann's "The Abita River"

11 Sep 2008

Alan Flattmann presents a quick a step by step demonstration of his painting The Abita River.


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Step 1
Flattmann toned the canvas with a thin wash of burnt-umber acrylic paint. The artist drew the landscape with vine charcoal, sprayed the drawing with Krylon Crystal Clear acrylic fixative, and let it dry.
Step 2
Next, he blocked in the major values and shapes of the landscape in oil, starting with the lights and working toward the middle tones and darks. He applied the paint thinly and then gently blended it with soft paper towels.
Step 3
He then added details and refined shapes with dark lines and values painted with small brushes.

 

The Completed Demonstration:

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Step 4
To finish the piece, Flatmann developed the forms with thicker paint and bold brushstrokes.

The Abita River
2007, oil, 20 x 16. Private collection.

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Comments

J Beerbaum wrote
on 31 Dec 2007 11:05 AM
I love the finished product,but also am intrigued with the underpainting which seems to get totally lost in the final creation. The underpainting seems to be the start of an autumn scene then turns into a summer scene totally missing all the warmth underneath.
joan wrote
on 31 Dec 2007 11:47 AM
I agree with the above comment. Step 2 & Step 3 in the demo look just beautiful and to me could have been finished paintings. I wish 3 had been shown from the front. The finished painting is "ordinary". The under paintings are something special.
Lili Archak wrote
on 3 Jan 2008 5:30 AM
Renaissance painters would underlay gilded portions of their paintings with red paint. Is Flattmann possibly using this technique to enrich his spring greens?
Shirley Russell wrote
on 18 Feb 2008 11:24 PM
Great comment, Lilli! In that case would an even lighter underpainting color have created a springier green?