Oil on Canvas 18x26 inches
A very warm, glowy painting, this. I've painted sunsets many times and said before that you have to be careful not to make them too 'twee' and chocolate-boxy. It's difficult not to actually, when you have such a painterly subject like this1
The fun bit with this, of course, is painting the sun itself and trying to portray the intense brightness shining just through the edge of the tree. Everything around the sun takes on a glow and the challenge is to get those colours and tones right. I particularly like the big shadow cast by the lone tree to the immediate left of the setting sun. This negative shape was described by painting in the golden tips of the grasses to the left and right of it. The Hogweed in the foreground wasn't there, but I felt it needed something.
With the heavy focal point of the sun, it would be easy to make the painting rather lop-sided, but the dabbling activity in the water and the two Swans on the bank also added balance to the piece.