Gold Hill, Shaftesbury, Dorset

I worked this painting from a photograph of a very iconic advert photograph.

I used the boy, his bike and basket of bread as my measure for all the other elements of this composition. Therefore I drew the baker boy first, then the bike, then the basket and last but definitely not least the wheels. I used a ruler for parts of the drawing, to ensure that I had the figure leaning forward aplenty so he really looked like he was pushing his load up a steep incline. From that composition within the whole composition, I could scale the heights of the buildings and the size of the windows, doors, pub sign, barrels, roofs and cobble shapes. The drawing took around one hour to complete, before I was sure that I had all the proportions to scale.

I painted the baker boy first with a chromatic black I had mixed that had a purple bias. I then painted the wicker basket using light red and then a light red mixed with a perylene violet to make a darker brown than the light red. I used small semicircular brushstrokes for the wicker, leaving small gaps on the paper also. I painted the loaves of bread using a mix of the dark brown mix and a burnt umber. I was very aware to keep the light source evident on the leg, shoe, the handlebars and parts of the wheels.

I then painted in the houses and roofs. I used a wide variety of washes, some overlaid on others, keeping the washes very transparent. I also used watercolour pencils in conjunction with sandpaper to make the marks on the wall at the front of the painting to represent sandstone.

For the cobbles I made a yellow ochre wash and a purple/blue wash. I put the yellow wash on first, and then impressed the marks of the cobbles with the edge of a tube of paint, I really impressed those marks into the paper to facilitate my purple mix really seeping into those marks to give a good impression of cobblestones. I laid four purple washes, increasing the paint content in each subsequent wash. Finally, I painted in the shadow cast by the baker boy, and his bike.

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