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Creating a Gallon



STEP 1

Once a subject has been selected to paint, Dale & his historians begin their painstakingly thorough research of each individual element.  From belt buckles and buttons to time of day and weather, Dale and the historians leave nothing to chance.

As the research is done, Dale adjusts his sketches until all agree that the image is not only visually pleasing, but historically accurate as well.

Preliminary Sketch for “Reynolds” painting

STEP 2

Dale transfers his sketch into a composition using live models and props.  Dale values his relationship built over years of working with special reenactor units.  Often the unit would spend the day with Dale while he photographed them for future reference in the painting.

Once Dale is satisfied with the composition, he will transfer the image to a carefully prepared canvas. The size of Dale’s oils vary but are often 24″ x 36″ or 24″ x 48″. He is now ready to paint.  As information is brought in, Dale & the historians discuss how to properly present it within the image.

Composition for “Fire at The Angle” painting

STEP 3

The first step in the painting process involves an entire wash of transparent color to the canvas.  This sets a warm or cold feeling throughout the painting.  Then Dale begins to paint the sky and work his way from the background to the foreground layering color along the way.  The fine details of the foreground are painted in last.  This includes much of the equipment, weapons, and detailing on the uniforms. It takes Dale 3 – 6 months from start to completion of an oil painting.

Dale with completed original oil of “Gould’s Breakthrough at Petersburg”
Painted 2019