Mount Everest (Oil on Canvas)
This 30" x 40" oil on canvas painting is being inspired by my daughter and sister in law's trek up to Mount Everest Base Camp in May of 2018. The photograph used was taken by my sister in law from Kala Patthar while watching the sun rise over Mount Everest on the left and Nupste on the right. Kala Patthar is 18514 ft (5643 meters) above sea level and while their journey was a success, it was one of the most challenging life experiences that they would ever endure.
Step One (Day 1): Wet on Wet Technique
Due to the size of the canvas, it was decided to start the process using the Wet on Wet technique as showcased by the famous "Joy of Painting" Instructor, Bob Ross. To make the "liquid white", equal parts of titanium white with linseed oil along with turpenoid where applied to the canvas after achieving a consistency of cream. This process allowed a quick application to form the sun, clouds, sky and outlines of the mountains using a 2 inch painter's brush along with a #106 RGM palette knife.
While the wet on wet technique was beneficial to create the effects of the clouds, sky and forming of the mountains, drying in between layers of palette knife painting will complete this project with plenty of dry time in between. It is noted from here in as steps 1 to 4 and days/nights 1 to 5, but the final project from start to finish took over two months to complete.
Step Two (Day 2): Blocking
Blending Burnt Umber, Chromatic Black and Titanium White created a grey tone to the snow along the lower rock while using this mix to block in lighter gravel affects on the bottom shoreline. Both processes completed using the #106 RGM Palette knife. After this process was completed, a mix of a little more titanium white along with a glazing medium was used to soften the clouds/fog along the bottoms of Mount Everest and Nuptse.
Day/Night 3: Scraping and Fan brushing
Night three fell into two stages. A quick base glaze was applied to the canvas for some more shoreline rocks then sat for a few days to dry. After that, more Burnt Umber, Chromatic Black and Titanium White was used over the base for scraping along the canvas with a palette knife. This was followed with lightly fanning the colours with a fan brush. Now it will sit for a few more days to let dry a bit.
Night 4 & 5: Textures and glazing
The two separate nights below consisted of adding more textures to the lower base of the rocks along with glazing in the sky. At first, a blend of Titanium white with dabs of Prussian blue and Van Dyke Brown were applied using a gentle touch with the #106 palette knife. After the application, a gentle feather of the fan brush running over the textures created a soft blend into the rocky shore.
Secondly, a touch of Prussian blue was added into the clouds followed with strokes of alizarin crimson a stern push of Zinc White blended with a smidgen of linseed oil. Now here it will sit, for a few days.
The last evening detailed a little more transparent detailing with a small amount of Zinc White mixed with 1/3 Damar Varnish, 1/3 Turpenoid and 1/3 Linseed Oil. After applying the final mist in the foreground of the mountains, there comes a time when you have to step back, take a look and "tap out!" This will cure for a few days on the easel before being mounted to a wall to further cure for about a year and a bit.
Thanks for following along on this journey and for viewing.