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How to paint elephants.


When I came up with this idea about 3 years ago it sounded like a good plan. Like painting the white stallion (that took 30 hours to paint) or the long wolf (that took 25 hours to complete)

Many times, we have great ideas that look good on paper, reality however is much, much different.  The sheer size of this painting was a challenge, getting all the perspective sizes and shapes correct. This proved to be a slight issue.

Thankfully, once the base image is laid in a painting, the rest is so much easier. Painting the sky with giant strokes and blends of yellows and reds creating the deepest colours possible, the silhouettes of the tress, making sure that their shape is designed to lead the viewers eye into the centre of the canvas. None of what you see happens by accident, it is all carefully planned.

The trees in the distance, the mist covering the trunk, it is all designed to put the focus on the elephants.

The elephants originally, were just silhouettes, but as time went on I felt that it would be best to put life into them. I wanted to use an olden native American style technique to paint the elephants. The one thing I didn’t want, was for them to look the same as so many paintings that are around today.

The Native Americans had a wonderful way of creating art that was simple and yet still packed with detail. Being in touch so much with creation meant that they could not only see but feel their way into the art they painted. Something that we share.

In this video I would like to teach you how the final stages were added into this painting to bring it to life.

Until next time thanks for watching and reading, have a wonderful weekend


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