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May 2014


Landscape Watercolour of Chipping Sodbury, 15" x 11".

The Saturday Farmer's Market in Chipping Sodbury on a sunny winter's day.  I liked the scene with the light coming in between the two buildings and catching the tops of the stalls and the bonnets of cars.  Had a bit of fun with the sky - the whole area was wetted evenly, then left to dry a bit.  When damp, I dropped in the dark clouds in a random fashion with a small mop brush, then quickly dropped in some cobalt blue up to, but not quite touching the clouds.


Tavira Algarve 5


Landscape Watercolour of Tavira, Algarve, 15" x 11".

A busy backstreet in the Portuguese town of Tavira on the Algarve.  I think I've put everything into this one - houses, people, cars, birds!  I think the shadows left turned out okay and the way they merge with the darker walls of the background houses across the middle of the composition.  Also a bit of merging in of the figures limbs into the shadows worked out alright.


Bayards Cove Dartmouth


Landscape Watercolour of Dartmouth, 15" x 11".

Bayards Cove in Dartmouth, an historic bit of waterfront where the pilgrims set sail in the Mayflower.  A bit of a challenge this one with the light behind.  It was a winter's day but the sky was quite bright and with the buildings being a soft yellow it could have made for a flat painting.  So I added a darker sky and foreground.


Brook Street Chipping Sodbury 6


Landscape Watercolour of Chipping Sodbury, 22" x 15".

A Winter scene of the path leading to Brook Street in Chipping Sodbury, with the town Church tower in the background (the tower was moved to a more central position than it really is, to help the composition).  There's a row of cottages here who have a nice view over the park to the right.  On the path I introduced some lighter areas depicting puddles and an easy way of getting some reflections in.  Trees top left were done in a 'random' fashion with a mop brush and fairly thick paint.


Sitges Church and Old Town


Landscape Watercolour of Sitges, 15" x 11".

A view of the back of the old church in Sitges, Spain.  Just in front of the high wall here is a small park and prominent statue which I've tried to make a bit of a focal point.  Also, there was strong light bouncing of the houses right, and producing a nice glow to the walls on the opposite side.


Clock Tower, Chipping Sodbury 2


Landscape Watercolour of Chipping Sodbury, 15" x 11".

An iconic building in the High Street Chipping Sodbury which has gone through a few additions over the years.  First it was just a tower with some clocks at the top, then a building was built around it and a public lavatory was added, and finally a tourist office at one side.  As regards the painting, special things I did here was adding a lot of dark pigment in the left hand shadow while the base wash was still damp, and lifting out colour with a paper towel in certain areas like the cars.


Dartmouth Inner Harbour, Devon, 5


Landscape Watercolour of Dartmouth, 15" x 11".

Another sketch of the 'Inner Harbour' in Dartmouth Devon, looking towards St Saviours Church tower and the row of Georgian houses at the back of this small square harbour.  As regards composition, we have a couple of foreground figures walking their dog into the centre (rather than away from the centre), behind that a group of small boats.  Getting a dark shadow across the top of the boats is probably an easy way of defining the tops of all those vessels quickly, rather than spending ages on little details.  The shadow towards the right was painted into a wet wash to give a softer look.


Embankment, Dartmouth, Devon


Landscape Watercolour of Dartmouth, 15" x 11".

The Embankment Dartmouth, running along the side of the estuary.  Out to the left is a little marina and yachts moored up.  Steps for this painting were 1) Sky wash and down to the foreground road, going warner as I came down.  2) Background hills in mainly ultra and burnt sienna.  3) Town buildings and central building (actually called the Railway Station Cafe), painting around figures and car on the right.  4) Roof tops and windows.  5) Railings, figures and car, with their shadows.  6) Central lamppost with sign and last some highlights with white gouache.


Don't drink and paint?

One night recently I had a few beers and for some unknown reason, decided to do a sketch late that evening.  Subject was the 'inner harbour' down in Dartmouth Devon, at high tide.


Landscape Watercolour of Dartmouth, 15" x 11".

So, against the light, the far buildings silhouetted, and left background is the other side of the estuary.

The following morning, as an experiment, I attempted the same scene (this time without beer)


Landscape Watercolour of Dartmouth, 15" x 11".

I'm not sure which turned out 'better'.  Probably the brush work on the second and the figures were an improvement.  Water reflections I think on the first were better.


War Memorial Chipping Sodbury


Landscape Watercolour of Chipping Sodbury, 15" x 11".

The War Memorial standing at the bottom of Broad Street, silhouetted against the background buildings.  The shadow in the foreground was stretched by me to cover the whole area, much longer than in reality and then drop a couple figures walking in.  It's tricky with the window details and frames to decide what to leave out.