A train to go with my boats and planes

OK, OK, OK, I know. Another painting pictures post, rather than about wargaming! Don’t worry, I am working on getting a separate site up for my paintings, I promise! But until then I need to share this blog across my two hobbies.

Anyways …

Up till now, I have painted mainly boats and planes. But with Burt Bacharach’s song ‘Trains and Boats and Planes’ ringing in my head, I just had to broaden my scope from aviation and marine painting to include railways!

I wanted to start local, so decided to paint one of the resplendent old locomotives that have been restored by Steam Inc in Paekākāriki (the next town to where I live).

A wee bit of internet searching resulted in this great photo from New Zealand transport publisher, TranspressNZ. Steam Inc’s Class Ka locomotive is pictured climbing the grade from Paekākāriki to Pukerua Bay, hauling an excursion train of restored carriages in their former New Zealand Railways brick-red livery.

As with all my paintings, I started with a computer mock-up to work out the composition of my painting. I wanted it to be closer-in than the photo. I also shifted the iconic Kāpiti Island to ensure it fitted in frame (amazing what you can do with artistic licence, moving a whole island several kilometers!).

Although not done in my mock-up, I realised that during the painting process I would need to move that obtrusive catenary post that was cutting the tender in half.

The actual painting process went quite well. You can follow my progress through the above slideshow.

I was surprised at how effective the light on the locomotive came out. It seemed counter-intuitive to start painting a black engine white. Likewise, the white sunlight on the sea came out better than I expected.

I did have a little trouble with the perspective of the line of carriages as they rounded the curve. But I am happy with how they have turned out.

This is the first time I have painted a train. Railway buffs will no doubt to be able to pick up many errors, as I know nothing about how a steam engine works, and so have no real idea where all the pipes, valves and pistons should go! But hopefully the overall impression is OK.

Based on a photo from Transpress New Zealand. Acrylic on canvas, 25×50 cms.

4 thoughts on “A train to go with my boats and planes

  1. This is great my wife would like to go on one of the South island steam train routes [if the Greenies still allow this to happen -the Spoil -sports…!!! ] we both love Steam trains . We went on a Diesel excursion up the Tongariro spiral a few years back -but diesel is not as good as steam …Nicholas John Papadopoulos ,Auckland ,New Zealand.

    1. You put a lot of thought and planning in to your paintings. Your draught Manship is very thorough …great work … Nicholas John Papadopoulos , Auckland , New Zealand.

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