Union Pacific #844 in progress
It’s hard to concentrate on school work daily when I have this image burned into my retina from last Friday and Saturday of the Union Pacific #844 that visited Fort Worth. I had a full slate of high school classes today, and a college class tonight, but managed to steal about 90 minutes at my drafting table this evening and resume work on this composition. All I’ve managed to do this evening is work on the wheels, track and cowcatcher. At least it’s starting to look more like a steam locomotive now. I think it will really begin to “pop” once I add the numbers and lettering to the signboards on front. The bell could use a little more burnishing as well.
My major challenge with this watercolor is rendering the “blackness” of the locomotive. I threw away my black pigments in June of last year, and have really enjoyed the challenges of mixing my own cool and warm blacks. Of course with this image, it’s been a challenge, because I have to keep finding ways to separate the cool and warm dynamics of the overall black color of this locomotive.
This is turning out to be great fun, and I’m delighted that I have two of these in progress (the first one I haven’t touched since Friday night, but I will). I plan to do a third, because I was smitten when the morning sun came out strong, and lit up the front of this train with bright gold colors. I had already committed to the muted, overcast lighting, and had the basic washes already laid in. Fortunately, my camera was with me, and I captured some nice photographs of the sunlit locomotive, before the sun hid itself for good. So, I plan to do a sun-washed gold-highlighted rendering of this loco as well.
I’m just sorry that I have to put in the lion’s share of my daily hours tending to school details. Tomorrow I’ll face three different preps with three different classes. And, of course, I have a 3-day art festival coming up this weekend. There is still plenty of matting, shrinkwrapping, labeling, and inventory checking to do before the big weekend arrives. And . . . I’m hoping to finish this along with the other two freight train paintings posted previously (a UP and a GATX freight). So little time . . .
The woods are lovely, dark and deep
But I have promises to keep
And miles to go before I sleep . . .
Thanks for reading.