Saltmarsh, mixed media painting - maybe finished?

Saltmarsh - maybe finished? 20x16 ins, mixed media and collage on canvas, Vivien Blackburn

The blue-mauve background that was surrounding the painting wasn't playing up the colours in the painting - instead it was fighting for attention with them. So I decided to change it to a deep bitter chocolate colour - burnt umber and cerulean blue, cooling and greying the brown. It's a colour that flickers throught the painting. It now highlights the colours and their subtle changes from warm to cool (that sadly don't pick up well in the photos) and emphasises the drawing.

There is a very little black from the charcoal but all other darks are deep shades of brown and blue.

I added flicks of copper in the leaves of the tree, in the tree on the left and in the reflections. I like the warmth against the other colours. That is also quite difficult to photograph being metallic. It's a bit more subtle in real life, the camera make it gleam too brightly - the second to last photograph catches it as it looks best.


The pale blue is a bit more lavender than it appears here - it's so difficult to get the colour balance for it right without changing the turquoisey blue too much. This last image has a bit too much of a pink cast in the lights - they should have a very very slight warm golden tinge, too slight to pick up well.

The canvas is a deep sided box canvas, painted in that bitter chocolate, and won't be framed - though this is one that would work well in the very dark wood frames popular in the US.

What do you think?


Robyn said…
What do I think? I think it's unfair you can make such beautiful paintings, Vivien!

When you mentioned copper colour before I didn't realise you meant a metallic pigment. Beautiful. I have a dear artist friend who keeps wanting me to use metallic leaf or pigment, to the extent she has provided me with the medium to attach it. I had better get cracking.
vivien said…
oh that will be fun - you could use it as chine colle in your printmaking too?

(and thanks for the vote of confidence!)
Beautiful work, the copper and blues just sing! This could have so easily become jumbled and fussy, but you've pulled it all off, well done.
Stunning, Vivien! I'm with Robyn :)
Jeanette said…
I think its beautiful. It says cold but that touch of copper is a perfect hit of colour that breathes life.

I love it. Please make prints.
vivien said…
thank you all :>)

now on to do some more in the series :>)

prints? mmmm maybe I should think about going that route too
Dave Linder said…
Great textures in you painting - I really like this one.
vivien said…
Thanks Dave - I too get hung up on subjects (like your current oil refinery tanks :>) ) - this is from an old sketchbook and part of a long series on this part of the North Norfolk coast :>)
Lindsay said…
I have throughly enjoyed seeing this piece develop. Thanks for all the in process photos and close ups! I too love to work with metalic pigmens and just bought a Golden Acrylic called stainless steel.

I'm excited to see how your next piece grows!
vivien said…
that sounds an interesting colour - subtley metallic

the next piece is undergoing major changes and being recalcitrant :>(

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