Friday, April 16, 2010

Distant Mountains

Distant Mountains : Watercolour : 22 X 15 inches

Mountains again, but this time at a distance. The sky ended being the same tone and colour as the mountains. A lighter tone would have given more depth I guess. Nevertheless, I am happy with the result, especially since I have stayed away from foliage rich subjects for a while :)

Your thoughts, critiques, comments and suggestions please. Thanks.

I might be gone for a while since my work is taking me places. I will be on a flight a few hours from now but my sketchbook is going with me too. I hope to be able to make good use of it. Guess I'll know soon:).

Hope to be back soon. So long....

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Mountains all over

Mountains all over : Watercolour : 22 X 15 inches

What happens when you paint mountains after mountains after mountains? You end up creating new :). This one came right out of my imagination. Wasn't too sure if it would work. Gave it a shot nevertheless. After all, it just paper :)

Some not so pleasing shapes in the sky ended up being those peaks in the background.

Your thoughts, comments, critiques and suggestions please. Thanks

Looking at the peak

Looking at the peak : Watercolour : 22 X 15 inches

This time I decided to add some 'atmosphere' to the painting and that's why you see the attempted mist and clouds :). I guess I was in a hurry with the foreground and that resulted in a not so fresh wash in that area. Have left a note for myself to be careful about it the next time.

Your thoughts, critiques, suggestions and comments please. Thanks.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The road uphill

The road uphill : Watercolour : 22 X 15 inches

One more from the mountain series. I added a figure for scale. Did that work? Also tried a different colour scheme this time, just to avoid monotony.

I have to improve upon my figure drawing. The guy in this painting is not as convincing as I wanted him to be. Well, something to focus on.

Your comments, critiques, thoughts and suggestions please. Thanks.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Snow Capped

Snow Capped : Watercolour : 22 X 15 inches

Here's one more all the way from the Himalayas. The sky ended up being completely different from what I had planned for. I did this one a brand of paper that I am not used to. It appeared not so heavy but I risked not stretching it, which turned out to be a blunder. As soon as I wet the paper to lay the sky wash the paper buckled and formed crests and troughs. And when the wash was laid, the pigment settled in unexpected places creating this bizarre sky :)

I seem to like the result. Just that it was not planned this way. Another of those happy accidents, eh? However, I am not completely satisfied with this one. Guess I'll take a while to adjust to this paper.

Your comments, critiques, thoughts and suggestions please. Thanks.

Trivia : Mt. Everest, years after its first ascent, still attracts mountaineers like a magnet. They climb it "because it's there." A Spanish team has ridden motorcycles up it. Japanese mountaineer, Yuichiro Muira skied down it. This feat led to the making of a documentary film titled 'The man who skied down Everest.'

Sunday, April 11, 2010


Annapurna-I : Watercolour : 15 X 11 inches

Here's an attempt at Annapurna-I, the first among the peaks along the Annapurna series of the Himalayas. Painting these mountain peaks have been a satisfying experience. I guess I will continue to work on the Himalayas for a while.

The foreground was done with some wet in wet washes with hardly any detail, so that the peak itself would grab all the attention. Has that worked?

Your thoughts, suggestions, critiques and comments please. Thanks.

Trivia : A French expedition reached the Annapurna-I summit in June, 1950. For the next three years Annapurna-I remained the highest point on earth to be set foot on by man, until Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay climbed all the way up to the top of the world in May, 1953.

Saturday, April 10, 2010


Annapurna-II : Watercolour : 15 X 11 inches
Click on the image for a larger view

Annapurna is a series of peaks in the Himalayas. I've always held a deep fascination for the Himalayan mountain ranges and I never get tired of sketching or painting them. The peak you see in the painting is Annapurna-II, the second among the six peaks along the massif. The Annapurna peaks are among the world's most dangerous to climb, with a fatality rate of more than 40%.

What drew me to this scene was how the peak seemed to emerge out of the clouds and the mist. The shadow washes are a mix of Ultramarine Blue and Light Red with a touch of Cobalt Blue. For some reason the image has supersaturated blues as opposed to a warmer tone in reality.

Your thoughts, comments, suggestions and critiques please. Thanks.

Trivia : Annapurna literally translates to 'Full of Food" but the meaning of the word is "The Goddess of Harvest/Food."

Friday, April 9, 2010

As high as it gets

As high as it gets : Watercolour : 15 X 11 inches
Click on the image for a larger view

I decided to have a go at Mt. Everest and here's the result. I guess I've been strongly influenced by paintings of mountains and peaks that I keep looking at all the time. I enjoy painting them as much as mountaineers enjoy scaling them!

Isn't painting is a little like climbing a mountain. There are those flat surfaces in which you feel at ease. And there are ascents that you have to work really hard to scale. When you think all's fine, down comes an avalanche sweeping you off your feet and throwing you downhill. And all you can do then is gather your gear and set out again. This cycle goes on and on till someday you find yourself at the pinnacle. That's about it :)

Your thoughts, comments, critiques and suggestions please. Thanks.

Trivia : Mt. Everest used to be called Deodungha (Holy Mountain) in parts of northern India before it was (re)christened after Colonel Sir George Everest who was the Surveyor General of India from 1830 to 1843. Sir Everest was against the idea of naming the peak after him since he thought that the natives wouldn't be able to pronounce the name and that it was difficult to write 'Everest' in Hindi.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

From Behind

From Behind : Pencil : 12 X 10 inches
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What do you do when you are going through a bad patch with your brushes? Turn to women; I mean to your pencils :). I did this one to ease me out of the spree of failures that I had with watercolours yesterday. I am happy with the result. It does bring back my confidence.

Your thoughts, comments, critiques and suggestions please. Thanks.

Three Failures

Roses : Watercolour : 15 X 11 inches
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Its been a bad day. I attempted three watercolours today and all of them ended up as disasters. Have you ever gone through such phases? Phew! Three in a row. I feel high and dry :(

I guess I was not concentrating enough or had something else at the back of my mind. Well, tomorrow is another day and I shall try again.

For now, take a look at a painting of mine from about three years ago.

Your thoughts, suggestions, comments and critiques. Thanks.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Morning Light

Morning Light : Watercolour : 15 X 11 inches
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I tend to use pigments straight out of the tube very often which results in my palette being kind of imposing. When I started to paint this morning I set myself the goal of achieving a cool-ish palette which would be soothing to the eye ( well, at least mine). I also wanted to create some soft and loose effects that's only possible in watercolour. I guess, I have achieved what I aimed for to a large extent.

The composition is not original. Its based on a painting that I came across on the internet ( can't remember whose). I wouldn't call it a copy because I did not copy. I made a sketch based on that painting and painted this one my way.

Your thoughts, comments, suggestions and critiques please. Thank you.

The Mighty Himalayas - Sketch

The Mighty Himalayas : Pencil : 12 X 10 inches
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All I have to show you today is this sketch. I am just back from a very bad infection of the throat and am in not mood to paint yet. However, didn't want to be out of touch and decided to sketch something this morning.

Here's the result.

Your thoughts, comments, critiques and suggestions please. Thanks.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Portrait - Hurray

Eeyore : Watercolour : 15 X 11 inches
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I have never painted portraits. I've always thought that I have not been wired for it. Fellow bloggers Crystal and Vinayak have always amazed me with their portrait painting skills. Crystal seems to be able to churn out one stunning portrait after the other and Vinayak does those dramatically lit portraits in oil. Well, I guess I had no choice but to derive inspiration from them.

But then, the only time I attempted a portrait was a pencil sketch of a person, several years ago and it turned out to be a cross between a chimp and an alligator. Learning from that experience I decided to choose a model who wouldn't complain and that's when Eeyore came by. He usually spends time in the neighbourhood of the living room sofa, doing nothing and was more than happy to pose.

I must admit that he's an artist's delight and has the uncanny ability to stay absolutely still through long painting sessions. I suggest you guys hire him too.

Tell you what? I have decided to be proud of the fact that my first ever portrait painting was done from life. LoL.

Your thoughts, comments, critiques and suggestions please. Thank you.

If you are a sketch freak, here's what led to this painting.