Margaret Shaw - Artwork - Wip Higland Lights 1

I took some stunning photos in the Highlands - including this one of Burghead Beach
which got me thinking about an Highland Lights Series. 
As I had a canvas prepared with a dark blue ground it seemed like a good opportunity to make a start.

Under painting just to get the composition in place.
Lighter colours required in the sky - can see me using lots of white mixing paint.

Worked on the sky with ultramarine, mixing white, burnt umber and paynes grey.  Mixing and blending the paint all over with a large round brush.  Have put a moon in as I'm working on a previously used canvas and couldn't get rid of the previous moon marks.  This means that the light source needs moving from the right to the left of the painting which I've marked out in the land.  Quite liking where this is going.

Darkened the right side of the sky in congruence with the change of light source.

Couple more painting sessions and a few changes. More uniformity in the sky.  New cloud added and highlights in existing clouds.  Moon has a halo.  As the right side of the picture was empty, brough the sea in and have started to add the harbour.  Final look to be decided as this is now one from memory / imagination.

Drawing on the painting with watercolour pencils ( because they will wipe off ), I've decided on a double harbour as I'd seen in some fishing villages on the Moray Firth.  I will be raising the sea level to account for this.  The moon is going to be reduced and who knows if a boat will appear on the horizon?????

Moon size has been reduced and the halo is more distinct.  Sea level raised.  Harbour painted in.  May put land mass in the distance as I know its there.  Now need to look at some light designs for the lighthouses.

Had a play on the PC as I didn't like how this was going.  Raised the horizon line and wondered about a boat.

Once I'd changed the horizon and added the land across the firth, the fluffy clouds didn't look right- so here's where I am now.  Seas been painted with a pallett knife which has also been used to get lines in the water on the beach.  Have decided that I'm not at my best making images up.

Did some more work and having completely lost the plot, I made the decision to start again on a small canvas.  Here's where I am after the first session with an underpainting in place.  It should just be a matter of refinement and blending with the next paint layer.................................................

Refined the sky adding more shape the the clouds and getting brightness in the middle, tapering towards darker areas at the ends.  Painted in the sea, as with the sky going darker towards the edges of the picture.  Used a paynes grey and ultramarine mix to paint in the land areas.  Limited pallett of ultramarine blue, paynes grey, mixing white, titanium white with some burnt umber on the side in case I decide I need another grey.

Final stage was to complete the land - working from darker areas at the edges to lights in the middle.
Signature added and varnihed.

White floating frame compliments the piece nicely.