The Arches, Cheltenham Road, Bristol

Arches cheltenham road

Bristol, UK, 15" x 11"

An iconic railway viaduct in Bristol and the painting is based on a Dashcam image of mine (while waiting in some traffic).  Dashcams are good source material for paintings - have them record your journey (hopefully on a sunny day) and then fast forward the reply to a suitable subject.  Then delete when done.  They're also good becuase they can be set to a low resolution.  Painting in a loose style, you don't want to be distracted with lots of detail, so the smaller the better.  I sometimes like looking at thumbnails of pictures, so really small in size.

Painted on Saunders Waterford, Cold Press, 300 gms.


Dusty road to Faro Railway Station


Faro, Portugal, 15" x 11"

A dusty 'back road' to Faro Railway Station.  Initial wash started with the sky, and all over the bottom two thirds of the paper with weak yellow ochre, burnt sienna and cobalt blue.  A medium size mop brush was used for the darker shadows on the left and some darker dry brush strokes for the left hand fence.  The railway station is actually the middle building with the red roof.  I think the way the shadows across the middle connect many objects works quite well.


Approach to Faro Railway Station


Faro, Portugal, 22" x 15".

The approach to Faro Railway Station.  I've painted this area a few times now, last time was 3 years ago, and this one is twice the size of the others.  Before starting, I made the decision on what would be the darkest area, lightest area and any other area where I would have maximum contrast.  So darkest was the central area and background building.  Overall I was happy with the result, except the composition perhaps could have been moved more to the right, and that parking sign would then not be too central.


Gare Saint-Charles, Marseilles


Watercolour of Marseilles, 15" x 11" on Saunders Waterford Rough 300gms.

I've been experimenting recently painting on the 'wire mesh' side of Saunders Waterford paper rather than the normal (I think most people would paint on this side) 'Felt' side.  I'm going to try a few paintings with this approach and see how I get on.  I suppose it's more noticeable in the sky area - you can see the more regular pattern where the wire mesh has moulded itself into the surface.  Apart from that, the absorbency seems the same as the other side as well as the 'roughness'.   My scene is right outside the main railway station in Marseilles, and cars dropping off or collecting travellers.