The Life of London Churches
This was the first painting of this size I painted using my masking technique. It was quite a traditional subject matter and I was going to use my usual approach with blown ink across the entire painting.
Two things stopped me.
The first was the Occupy London protest where people were camping outside St Paul's to protest at social injustice. St Paul's locked their doors to stop people going inside which goes against everything the Christian Church is supposed to stand for. As a Christian, I was not impressed. I've always been uncomfortable with decadent church buildings. Either the building is a church, in which case it should open its doors to all or it is a national monument. The conflict of interest trying to be both does not serve either well.
The second point was the recollection that to the right is the headquarters of the Salvation Army known for their active outreach programmes.
I've always maintained that the blown ink technique I use reflects the life force emitting from buildings. In this instance I felt it was lacking. So I painted the white of St Paul's ostentatious and devoid of life. Whilst the almost invisible Salvation Army building is where vitality and love reaches out for all to see.
The Life of London Churches is sold unframed, please contact me if you would like me to arrange framing for you.
The Life of London Churches is part of the 30 day Painting tour of London.
The picture is painted on watercolour paper. I start off with a detailed pencil drawing. I then draw over the lines with masking fluid before painting it with a watercolour wash which gets covered with clingfilm. Once this is removed the picture is further developed using acrylic inks which are left to dry before the masking is removed to reveal the final picture.