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Richard Larkin demonstration
Seascape in acrylics, 14 June 2013

Visit him at www.richardlarkin.co.uk or email ricart52@hotmail.co.uk

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Richard was obviously very keen on Chroma Atelier Interactive Acrylics: he even had the T-shirt.

Invented in Australia to cope with high outback temperatures (faster drying) the paint can be revived from a tacky state by spraying with plain water.

Apparently-dried brushes can also been revied with warm water. Beyond that, you can use Atelier's "Unlocking Formula" which makes even dried paint workable again.
Richard is an extremely-limited-palette painter. This evening, apart from titanium white, he used only three colours: light red ochre, yellow ochre and cobalt blue hue.

He said these were all transparent so that he could glaze with them.
To make the surface more interesting he likes to mix the paint on the canvas - tonight a pre-stretched one, about 16" x 32".

Starting with yellow ochre and white on a large flat (No 20?) synthetic brush he swept paint back and forth across the canvas. He continued immediately with the cobalt and the same unwashed brush. These colours combine to be more grey than green - fine for sky.
Then he put a few touches of red into the sky and a strip of it on what I imagined would be the horizon. But as he kept sweeping across and adding more white and the other colours the horizon disappeared again.

A stronger blue went into the sea. Yellow started the sand. Touches of red warmed it up and all the time the brush was moving across the scene, smoothing out any glaring patches of colour and removing any tackiness by spreading a little water .
Then the first rock was started with thick blue and red, and higlight touches of white/yellow. I say "started" deliberately, because for the rest of the evening Richard kept coming back, adding touches of colour, smoothing edges, dragging down for reflections, drawing off-white lines where rock met sand (and then spreading them out again).

With a smaller flat brush, he added horizontal strips of off-white for waves but immediately almost removed them by smoothing back and fore.
White and yellow clouds appeared but these, again, were smoothed almost to invisibility.

The horizon was not straight enough for him so he over-painted the distant water with more blue and added white into the sky above the horizon. This meant that the wavelets needed re-doing.

Lines of rock were added, more blue and white brought water in over the sand and strips of off-white made highlights and splashes.
The foreground was first darkened and later lightened. Yellow was over-painted with red and blue. Clouds were re-introduced. Reflections came and went.

In fact, all the latter half of the demo was one of repeated adjustment. In a way I found it encouraging because it left me feeling that it doesn't matter if you get it wrong - you can always blend it in or even overpaint it! Thanks!.
A few asides:

He always mixes his own greens, recommending black and yellow.

Try strengthening the canvas by painting the back of it.

Keep the water mister well back from the canvas.

Finish with a waterproof glaze.
It will be interesting to see what happens if Richard does more work on this canvas at home.
He said he would try to remember to send us a photo of the finished work.

Thank you, Richard , for an interesting evening.

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