Well I’ve seen spiderwebs before but not on this scale and beauty before. I was camping at Wuruma Dam which seems to be my home away from home in the past few months as you can camp up to 3 weeks for free.
I awoke to morning dew on my tent and as I stepped outside under foot and between my toes I could feel the wetness. Mist was floating past my face and being caught in spiderwebs, backlit by golden light of the rising sun. This was the most incredible sight and I literally half skipped and ran back to get my camera.
I must have been taking video of the spiderwebs blowing in the slight breeze for about half an hour, luckily I also took some photos. Another hour later and the sun and wind evaporated all the dew and the spiderwebs just about became invisible again as most of the other campers were getting out of their caravans after having eaten breakfast.
I love witnessing something truly amazing right under other peoples noses without their knowledge. Sometimes it’s all about timing and been in the right place at the right time.
I have always wanted to paint a spiderweb and now I’ve found a good one to start with.
Here you can see a close up of the white water droplets I’m painting. Apparently that one strand of web had 173 dots from the other edge to the centre.
So you can imagine how long this is going to take and the concentration to get the dots closes together was a little strain on my eyes. Fortunately “Pineapple” the pet bird I was also looking after was happy when I had a break to give it a head scratch every 15mins.
Now this is where I made a mistake as I think a may have been better starting from the centre and painting in an ever growing spiral. Or maybe not have painted the centre of the web first.
As they say you learn from your mistakes, hopefully I’ll remember next time.
The spiderweb coming along nicely but I was having a little trouble painting they curves evenly.
After finishing the web I started work on the strands of dead grass but I didn’t want these to have too much focus.
Now I had to make the decision do I add a juicy big spider in the centre or paint something a little less scary. In the end I settled for a snail I photographed while walking the Camino in Spain a few years earlier.
Finished artwork with a computer mock up mount board added.
Very easy subject to paint, it’s just time consuming and a little hard on the eyes.
I must admit the snail was a little harder to paint and I really do like it as I think this could be an artwork in itself.
I love painting this subject but was annoyed that I could get the spider webs parallel to each other.
After posting this image on my social media accounts, my friends loved the finished artwork and told me not to be too hard on myself. Sometimes you can have beauty without having a perfect painting.
If I paint a commissioned artwork for some one then I usually hide their initials somewhere in the painting.
Here you can see J H on the dead grass, some are harder to find than others. These initials were added after the photo above so are not visible, or the framed detail photo, as the reflection was too great so I superimposed the photo above onto the frame.
Other hidden initials are on the Snake, Chicken and a future Red-Dog.
For my Black Label collection I use Winsor & Newton Gouache on Black Mi-Teintes Touch Pastel Card.
My painting come from my own experiences that I have lived and photographed while traveling. By reading this blog, you as a viewer can now hear The Story Behind the Painting. Where, when, what was happening while I was photographing the wildlife.
If you want more details about my adventures checkout my travel blog website www.ChrisOsborneAdventures.wordpress.com
Enjoy, Chris Osborne
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