A Berneray Croft (3)

Croft 3

The third picture in my Croft triptych features the second calf!

This lovely subject  will be the basis of a number of pieces of work  , as I found it a fascinating one!
I had been challenged to find suitable subjects for making triptych paintings in a square format , thus providing material for creating sets of lettercards. As a result the chosen subject matter needed to lend  itself to not only creating a wide panorama , but be capable of splitting into three quite separate parts.

I had been invited to paint outside this wonderfully- situated croft just at the time that this elderly vulnerable cow  and her twin calves had been brought down from the hillside for a sojourn on less risky terrain .  I leapt at the chance, and spent several most  enjoyable sessions sitting with the sunshine, the sea breeze  in my hair, painting sparkling seas , racing clouds and amazing animals.  Sheer heaven!

The process was somewhat interrupted by a couple of weeks of arctic weather , when even the normally adequate bus  shelter didn’t prevent the hapless occupants from getting both soaked and frozen, so as soon as there was a flicker of a suggestion of an improvement in the weather I was super organised and ready for action first thing in the morning!

I had already done several sketches and studies , but still had some final crucial decisions to make on composition   – not something I was ready to do away from the scene, as although I don’t usually like to take too much ‘artistic licence’ , with a relatively complex triptych  to plan, then I needed to make a final careful selection of elements to include. Arriving at my working base I took the precaution of dividing a landscape format double- spread in my moleskine sketchbook  into three square sections, to replicate the format of the proposed canvases .  Then it was on the next available bus  to the other side of the bay after collecting my kit  from the makeshift studio   I was using, and keep my head well down ‘on site’ for a solid four hours before catching the latest bus possible to The Lobster Pot cafe for a welcome bowl of their wonderful homemade soup  .  Then it was back to my ‘studio’ base again for several hours’ hard painting before walking back to the hostel in the warm sunshine for supper.  Phew, quite a day, but very satisfying!

The result is pleasing but somewhat surprising. I had decided in advance that the most important elements of the triptych were to be the sense of space , the beautiful shapes , and the sea/sky ‘feel’,So I concentrated on painting  these first.  Having got to this stage, it was the end of a working day, so I left the canvases propped up as usual, in such a way that they would be the first thing I looked at on arrival the next morning.

So the next day the question was what to work on next?…………  and I decided I didn’t want to add any more  to these particular pictures, but would look forward to doing more work on this subject in the future.
A final decision of this sort is entirely up to the artist, of course, and it’s really a matter of professional approach, as an artist  – in other words whether I want to work to please myself, or pander to the populist taste

I’m firmly on the side of the former, so we’ll see……………..!

TITLE “A Berneray Croft”. Triptych painted in Acrylic on Canvas. c. Jo Morton 2014


ORIGINAL FOR SALE. Passing Place Gallery, Berneray, North Uist. Mounted and framed. Overall Size: approx size: 98cms x 35cms. (Each individual canvas approx 12” square) Price:£90

PRINTS This image can be supplied as Limited Edition Prints (20 x), numbered and signed by the artist. Your print can be enlarged to any size you require, but remember to allow for mount and frame margins . Prints can be supplied unmounted, mounted or framed. Various papers are available , or images can even be printed on canvas if preferred. Price from £20. (For Custom sizes p.o.a. ). Please contact the artist for more information.

CUSTOM PRINTED GREETINGS CARDS This image can be specially printed for YOU as a short run of cards , featuring YOUR OWN TEXT. No order too small. p.o.a. Please contact the artist for further information.


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