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October 2015

Terrace Walk, Bath, 2


Bath, England, 15" x 11".

Terrace Walk in Bath, a central part of the city and a popular dropping off point for tour buses.  Here's a view towards a couple of pubs and the tip of the abbey tower in the background.  A summer's scene like this needs plenty of people in the picture.  In fact I think I should have put a few more in with all their shadows connecting to some other element in the picture.  The buildings needed a couple of washes with mostly a yellow ochre/burnt sienna element.  The line of bollards was the last part of the painting, done with some quick strokes of neutral tint - almost pure pigment out of the tube.


Place du 11 Novembre, Duras, France


Duras, France, 15" x 11".

Place du 11 Novembre - a square in the town of Duras in South West France.  The sky was done with a preliminary wash of a dirty colour (whatever was left in my palette from the previous painting) in a random fashion with the side of a mop brush.  Then quickly afterwards I dragged in some cerulean blue again with the side of the same brush, meeting the clouds and allowing them to blend with each other.  The whole painting was done with two brushes - a medium mop and a smaller mop (size 8).


Rivermead Farm near Saltford, Bath


Saltford, Bath, 22" x 15".

A plein air painting of 'Rivermead Farm' near the banks of the River Avon near Bath.  A nice peaceful place to paint outdoors with no distractions (It's on a short road that ends at the river and a small boatyard).  Apart from that, what attracted me to this scene is the light and the diagonal shadows.  Maybe I could have put in some chickens to make it more farm-like.  The trees were painted in quite loosely with the right hand one being allowed to bleed and drip.


A view up 'Hounds Road' from Chipping Sodbury High Street


Chipping Sodbury, England, 15" x 11".

A view up 'Hounds Road' a side street leading off the main High Street in my local town of Chipping Sodbury.  Effects I have used here - allowed the roof tops to blend in with the sky (so the sky wash goes on first down to the edge of the roof top, not too precise, then when this is still damp, I go in with a thicker mix of the roof top paint and continue down the picture), the cars have a bit of 'wet in wet' where the light bits meet the dark shadows and I used a bit of weak white gouache for some of the window frames (again, not too precise).


South Stoke, Bath, plein air demo painting


South Stoke, Bath, 22" x 15".

Another plein air demonstration painting with the South Stoke Art Group.  This is the centre of their village.  A rather overcast day when I was there, so I had to introduce some shadows or would have been slightly less interesting.  Painted on T H Saunders paper with a NOT surface (that's medium rough and just enough to get a good effect for trees using the side of a mop brush).


Praça Ferreira de Almeida,Faro


Faro, Portugal, 15" x 11".

The "Praça Ferreira de Almeida" and a view towards the waterfront in Faro.  Another Faro sketch and one more on the ancient T H Saunders watercolour paper which has the creamy tone which shows up quite well in the foreground.  There's a small square to the left.  My reference photo was taken in the early morning, nobody was about, so I had to invent some figures here for scale, and introduce a vehicle.  The scene would have been to stark without.


Gendarmerie office in St Tropez with many window shutters!


St Tropez, France, 22" x 15"

The local Gendarmerie building in central St Tropez with all its complicated window shutters!  I am still in the process of getting used to this old 'T H Saunders' watercolour paper, the forerunner to the Saunders Waterford brand.  It has quite a creamy colour - ideal if you're doing some Mediterranean scene because you have that yellow ochre undertone already.  This picture is dominated by some dark shadows.  It was fun playing around with the many colours you see in shade.


Bristol Waterfront - Hotwells and views to the suspension bridge


Hotwells, Bristol, 15" x 11".

A Plein Air sketch done on a warm summer's day (paint drying so fast making it a challenge to get a smooth wash) of the Hotwells end of the Bristol Harbourside area.  The boat looked as if it was in for repair - there's a busy boatyard just to the right.  Managed to sneak in the left hand pier (tower) of the Clifton Suspension Bridge.


Cala Cava Baja, Madrid, Spain


Madrid, Spain, 15" x 11".

Cala Cava Baja in Madrid.  Not sure why the word 'Cava' is in the name, but there are a lot of drinking establishments up and down this street.  I was undecided whether to have the bright side of the street or the shady part of the street with the more detail.  Most of the time, if something is in deep shade I will leave it very under stated.  Here I went 50/50 I guess.  A convenient white van allows me to connect the two halves. 


High Street, Totnes, Devon


Totnes, Devon, 22" x 15"

A view up the High Street of this Devon town.  There's two distinct areas here - the middle ground with the blue building coming across and its shadow joining with the far side of the street, then second the foreground.  Deep shade here with merging figures and a car connected there also to the middle ground.  I must have used a heck of a lot of Ultramarine Blue on this one!