Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Skellig Glow

I've been working on this studio painting for a couple of weeks. It is based on some photos I took of the Skellig Islands while on vacation in Valentia (South West Ireland) in September. I was really taken by the rugged beauty and almost mystical quality of the place and had this idea of using the cloud formations and wake of the boat to "frame" the smaller of the two islands. Part of my thinking was that it must have been a view the monks had as they made their way past the Small Skellig on their way to Skellig Michael, and it must have inspired them to live in such a remote and treacherous place (Skellig Michael was a monastic settlement between approx 600 and 1300 AD).

Skellig Glow
(24" x 24" Oil on Canvas)

Since this a large painting, I've posted a few close-up images below to give some idea of texture and brushwork:-

I also took a lot of progress shots while painting this one. Here are some of them:-

Finally, here is one of my reference photos:-


Mick Carney said...

This demonstrates many of the facets to your technical control. It is a control that imparts a wonderful realism to your work without moving towards the type of photo-realism that doesn't leave any space for the viewer to participate in the process of realising the image for themselves. As always your helpful extras aid the understanding of your process. A masterly piece and as you know it is a part of the world that I love so I have many layers of pleasure in viewing this.

Michael McGuire said...

Thanks Mick. I'm planning a series of Skellig paintings, perhaps pushing towards a "fantasy" reality a little further each time, so keep looking in and enjoy.