As we can no longer meet to discuss our paintings we are having an online critique session. Catherine Inglis, a local well know artist has agreed to critique our paintings and her wise words are included here for all members to read and learn from to benefit their own work. The members names are not displayed a these paintings are not yet complete

Eller Ghyll

Please can you give me your opinion on this painting of Ellar Ghyll in Menston.
It is from my own photograph and is painted with hard and soft pastel on Canson Mitente Touch paper.
I like the wall and the foreground but I’m not at all happy with the foliage. I have been fiddling around and feel it may now be overworked.
I like the lovely airy feel you have achieved in this pastel and I think the foliage is fine.
You have emphasised the detail in the middle ground by keeping the foreground quite loose, so the viewer’s eye is directed immediately through the arch. The bank behind is very nicely worked and gives a very good recession to the composition.
If you look closely at your photo there are some wonderful reflections in the stream. By contrasting the darker tones with the lighter, green reflections in the water (using your foliage colours) your green reflections will sing. There are some spectacular reflections from the bank behind the arch too don’t miss these. Do remember dark subjects reflect slightly lighter and light subjects slightly darker- give it a try. Love the stonework on the arch and the rocks in the stream.
You could just soften the topmost branches of the trees behind the arch, just a light finger touch is enough. The arch could have been a little more off centre than you have it regarding composition but certainly does not detract from a lovely pastel work – please do keep it up.