One of the most interesting painting commissions I’ve worked on in 2016 has been for the Lakes Distillery. The Lakes Distillery opened in 2104 and is already winning awards for its Whiskey, Gin and Vodka. It is housed in a Victorian Cattle Farm with hand made copper stills, set in the stunning scenery of the Lake District.
When I was given a tour around the distillery to get painting ideas, the first thing that really struck me was just how beautifully thought out everything is about the Lakes Distillery, from the branding through to the actual buildings themselves. It really is a credit to everyone who has been involved with this project.
The first subject which demanded to be painted was the warehouse containing dozens of barrels of maturing whiskey. The distillery manager John Drake took me around and we decided that a painting with him testing the progress of one of the whiskeys would make an interesting painting.
My initial study was an A5 watercolour painted in my home made leather bound sketchbook. When painting on location, I tend to draw with the brush, rarely using a pencil. Working in this manner produces brush marks which are very direct and expressive. Photography is also an aid to make sure everything is drawn out accurately when it comes to the finished studio painting.
I always aim to retain the fluency and freedom of the sketchbook studies when it comes to working in the Studio otherwise the painting can loose its freshness and spontaneity.
Two paintings were commissioned. The second one of the copper stills was again inspired by a sketchbook watercolour. I’ll be writing about this one in another blog post.
Paul Currie, the Lakes Distillery founder and his team were delighted with their two painting commissions which have been reproduced as limited edition prints to present to their Founder Club Members.
I really recommend a visit to the Lakes Distillery if you are in the area. The setting is stunning and their restaurant is first class.