I am spending a week with my elderly Mum. I find where she lives very claustrophobic, a small dark cottage in a maze of small houses that look exactly like hers. I really look forward to the afternoons when I bring her dog for a walk.
I usually drive to Donaghadee further down the coast from Bangor, it’s a nice small village with a lovely harbour complete with lighthouse, I sketched the latter many times. The open horizon outside of the harbour relaxes me and I have an enjoyable walk with Misty, the dog.
Afterwards I sit in the passenger seat and paint a watercolour sketch of something that catches my eye. Today it was the old Life Boat that was up on land and needing some love. I hope she gets it, I thought it was a beautiful boat. She was on the hard as they say, in fact she was in the car-park which made it very easy for me to sketch from my car.
Click the thumbnail below for the full-sized image.
I was struggling with this one until I painted the dramatic red background. Now I think it’s pretty cool.
I am having fun with the images I caught just before it got too cold here in Sweden. Having a big zoom is certainly an advantage when photographing people in the street.
Title: Walk on the wild side 36 x 26 cm Click the thumbnail below for the full-sized image.
I have been trying really hard not to paint sail boats for a while now, it’s hard – I just love to paint them. The reason I am avoiding them is so that I can develop as a watercolour artist by painting other things that I am not used to and find difficult. Portraits are difficult, the one that’s featured here doesn’t resemble the original model very well. I wasn’t trying too get a perfect likeness, my goal is to master painting skin and building the facial form, I think creating a likeness will improve as I practice.
The model reference by the way was downloaded from the iPhone only Sktchy app. Why it’s only iPhone users who can use this service I do not know. Click the thumbnail below to see the full-sized image
One should avoid sunsets, most artists and photographers will tell you that.
So it was a challenge to find a theme that made a sunset acceptable in the eyes of critics. The subject I have chosen has divided Europe since 2015. I do not know how people will react to my watercolour, it speaks to me clearly enough but I also know that my neighbour might see something totally different.
It seemed to be a name that suited. Both my wife and I are in agreement, Aquarelle is the name of our boat that we bought last summer. It was launched into the cold Baltic yesterday but the day was so sunny and perfect. A good sign for great sailing in 2018!
Info: The boat is a Sveakryssare 36 from 1975. 11.04 x 2.44m. Link to Swedish site, http://www.sveakryssare.se
I love the design of these scandinavian pearls called Nordic Folkboats.
A friend of mine owned one and I sailed it a number of times, it is a beautiful boat to sail, the only negative was that it felt cramped when camping out in the archipelago. I painted these two sketches in my Moleskin journal (29 x 21 cm). Special thanks to Erik Lähteenmäki for the inspiring reference photos of a Folkboat regatta in Finland.
I plan to paint a few large format watercolours featuring these classic boats in the coming weeks.
Urban Sketching is just so much fun. This month we visited Lilla Wien which I have walked past everyday going to work and never once thought, “Oh, I must visit that pub!”. Every Sunday it seems, elderly jazz fans gather to listen to live music and to dance. They really looked like they were enjoying themselves.
I sat down at the long table that was reserved for us sketchers, I wasn’t facing the band but instead I had a good view of the bar. I am reasonably happy with the watercolour sketch, it would have been nicer if I had fewer hard edges. The bottles behind the bartender should have been out of focus, also the light on his shoulders should have been soft too.