Clippesby drainage mill – 5th and final version

Clippesby drainage mill. Watercolour and body colour. 12"x18"

Clippesby drainage mill. Watercolour and body colour. 12"x18"

The sticking point all along really has been the sky. In this version I think I have captured the quiet evening sky, although there is enough breeze on the river to take the last two sailing boats home before dusk. A low, slightly obscured, sun off to the right is modelling the tower and cap. There were a couple of swifts catching flies and I may put one of them in the picture too.


Having got the main things to my satisfaction I was ready to commit to lots of small detail that I know is required in this commission. It’s not what I usually do, but it has it’s own interest, and a good quality reference photograph, taken on site, was essential here.  Sometimes I work off a computer display for this sort of thing but in this case I printed off a full A4 print to work from.





These close-ups show a mixture of wet-into-wet background painting, some “dragging” with an almost dry brush (the tops of the trees), and opaque body colour produced by adding permanent white to watercolour. The narrow white line was produced by running a No 2 sable brush along the edge of a slightly raised ruler.


~ by noelgarner on August 8, 2009.

One Response to “Clippesby drainage mill – 5th and final version”

  1. Hi Noel. What a lovely painting. Thank you for all the close-ups, I find them most instructive. I love the sky – Somehow you have created a foreground with a lot of detail that is not frantically busy. Stephen

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