AN EXHIBITION OF works inspired by the effects of sunlight is set to brighten the walls of The Makers Shed in Glen Innes across winter.
The art of Inverell-based painter Peter Champion, ‘Let the Sun Shine’ features an array of land- and sea-scapes of the New England, Northern Rivers and the eastern seaboard of New South Wales.
“They reflect my constant interest in what we see in sunlight at various times of the day, some being morning, during the day, afternoon and when the moon first appears,” Champion said.
An art teacher trained at the National Art School at East Sydney and the Alexander Mackie College of Advanced Education, Champion is renowned for his Impressionist-inspired works.
“I work in both the studio and ‘plein air’,” he said, describing the French term for capturing a scene in the field.
“Studio work is usually larger though not always, whereas plein air is the immediate results of being in the landscape or seascape.
“I try to paint them in one session to capture a moment, hence the works are usually smaller,” he said.
Hunting the landscape
When painting in the open air, Champion hunts the landscape until he finds a subject he likes, then sets up to work in oils or acrylics.
“Both have advantages. Acrylic dries very quickly, enabling the layering of paint within a few minutes, whereas oils dry very slowly and colour application has to be different,” he said.
“In oils it is a case of laying thin dark areas and building up the lights over the top. Acrylics due to their quick-dry quality means that light over dark is not as crucial.”
More than 150 years since the start of the Impressionism movement in France, the technique developed by artists like Claude Monet remains a popular means of rendering light with paint.
Champion’s latest exhibition includes landscapes of the New England region, with riverside and roadside scenes, and a variety of seascapes.
“I paint both landscape and seascape and in an impressionistic way of quick, short brush marks as this helps me fracture the image on the canvas to get the effects of my title ‘Let the Sun Shine’,” Champion said.