Paintings are intended to portray a specific scene or idea. However, Woodland Winter by Paula Oakley offers us more than just a scene. The vivid detail in which this painting is managed makes it possible to even hear the sounds of the surrounding area. Although the painting appears as a photograph, rest assured it is a completely original painting given to us by a remarkably gifted artist. 

Paula Oakley uses a unique method of painting that allows for more vivid colour than is provided by nature alone. This element makes her paintings such as Woodland Winter shine with delight. Each stunning detail is managed by her expert hand. Her use of light and impressive shadows within Woodland Winter astounds us as we look deeper into the piece. 

It is clear from the artist’s expert use of the brush and addition of every tiny element Paula Oakley has an invested interest in nature. Famous realism artists such as Winslow Homer and Gustave Courbet would be very pleased with how Paula Oakley has given true life to this snapshot of a remarkable scene. 

The details noted in Woodland Winter are not merely about Oakley’s expert understanding of light and how each element plays upon one another, but the overall feeling of the piece. From the snow on the ground, we can clearly see winter is the season of choice, but the overall feeling of the painting remains still and even cold. However, the warmth of the sun works to warm the viewer’s inner being. What does Paula Oakley have to say about this truly stunning painting?


How do you bring out such impressive colours in Woodland Winter?

I don’t think I can really take credit for the colours. The Autumn leaves were late to fall and a rare December snowfall just highlighted them. The leaves almost glowed in the early morning sun.


Do you have an artist you look to for inspiration of your own art?

No, not really , I like to experiment, I like the challenge of attempting something new. Maybe a view, a texture or capturing an atmosphere of a place. With each painting I endeavour to learn something new


Woodland Winter is a very complex piece. How did you know it was complete? What was the last element you added?

Oooh….that’s a hard question. You sort of just know. You reach a point where you think if you paint any more then it wouldn’t really be adding anything to the painting


Do you work from a photograph or is the scene painted from memory?

I work from my own photos that I take on my many walks around the countryside. I often take about 200 photographs ! If I find a spot I fall in love with then I take loads of pictures from various angles . By actually being in the places that I paint allows me to not only soak up the atmosphere but to also see other things that I may wish to incorporate into the composition . Such wildlife, flowers etc.


Where does your love for nature come from?

I am and always have been a country girl . Nature just makes me smile. The colours, the textures, the amazing sights you see, the peace and tranquility of it all


How long did Woodland Winter take to paint?

It took about 45 hours to paint . I paint for about 4 hours a day , any more would be rather tiring on my eyes these days . It also allows the paint to thoroughly dry overnight ready for the next session.


What is your favourite scene to paint and do you find yourself revisiting scenes you have painted previously?

If I had to pick a favourite place it would be the South Downs. Hot Summer days high up on the hills, the warm breeze full of butterflies flitting about from one flower to the next with stunning views that go on forever …….perfect!


View more artworks by Paula Oakley

Please follow and like us:
Pin Share