I tried something a little bit different with this one. It seemed to have an awful lot of stuff going on on the ground. In the foreground, this was kind of okay; the leaf litter included large sweet chestnut leaves that made it all quite interesting, but keeping that level of detail would be too much for the amount of forest floor in the picture. My usual solution is a sort of leafy scribble – but in most cases, that is for smaller areas, often at the edges. Taking my cue from the way that the three main trees echoed each other’s shapes, I decided to try turning the leaves and winter undergrowth into an informal pattern.

I really like the way that some of the pattern has worked, but I’m not entirely sure that the picture itself works as a whole. I suspect that it’s got something to do with my change of tack part way through and also a lack of significant variance between the lines used to describe trees and ground. It is an interesting problem and I intend to return to it.

Recurve, ink on kaolin-coated board, 12 x 16 inches panel/ 34x44x3cm framed