A bad day – trees and skies

Well of course it was too good to last – this was the fruit of my labours.  Not a good day at all.

Things started well with some warmup thumbnail sketches :

and the preliminary sketch looked fine :

but oh dear the final result was disappointing :

Everything went wrong.  The sky was overworked and lumpy,  the trees were awkward and the foreground scrappy and muddy.   Most unpleasant to do – if a painting is going well then it is a pleasure.   The colors mix perfectly,  the brush goes where you want, everything hangs together and becomes more than the sum of its parts.
This,  however, not so much.
Ok so what to do – let’s start with a few skies as that’s where the rot set in.
Sky 1 :

Hmm well no improvement there – blotchy and awful.    From here on I changed tack a little – I’d started with the previous sky with a 1″ flat brush which felt too awkward and big.   For this one I’d traded down to a 10″ round – too small.   Let’s try a 12″ round and see if we can get a Goldilocks moment.
Sky 2 :

Ahh – well here’s an improvement I think (we’re starting with a low bar here of course).  The bigger brush helps in the lower half although blotchiness abounds in the top half.    The colours look a little better too.  Did this in 3 parts – sunlit cloud (the light yellow),  dark cloud (purpley bits) and blue sky (the blue bits).    Let’s see if we can continue onward and upward.
Sky 3 :

Sadly no.  Back to blotchyness – trying to make the sky too complicated and not enough water around to blend the colors.  Better luck next time.