Saturday, 23 May 2020

Harlyn Surf

Oil on board, 12 x 17 inches. 
Painting waves can be very twee if you're not careful, but they're just such gorgeous subjects, especially with sunlight straight ahead, piercing through the wave tops - couldn't resist! Lots of expressive brushmarks and observing the shadowed colours of the breakers is the key, then carefully placed highlights will then 'pop'.
#waves #breakers #harlynbay #surf #spume

Friday, 22 May 2020

Foreshore Activity, Burnham Overy Staithe

 Oil on board, 12.25 x 33.5 inches
Another painting for the RSMA exhibition, and this time I opted for the long, panoramic shape, to concentrate the eye on all the goings-on on the foreshore of this lovely place in Norfolk, full of painting subjects. Looking into the light, this provided dramatic light effects, with lots of little cameos all over the picture - just wanted to capture the busyness of a Summer's day out. #burnhamoverystaithe #northnorfolk #norfolkcoast #oilpainting #marine #seascape

Saturday, 16 May 2020

Harbour Lights, Mousehole

Oil 10 x 14 inches. 

Quite enjoyed trying to get that half-light as the sun has dipped below the horizon, and the shop, car and street lights glow, with of course those gorgeous reflections in the water - great fun to paint.

The Harbour Gap, Mousehole

Oil 10 x 14 inches. 

Another marine subject for the RSMA show. There was a lovely light in the harbour when I took a photo for this painting. Mousehole just abounds with subject matter - at almost every turn is a potential painting.

Portree Harbour

Oil, 6 x 8 inches

I'm painting a few marine subjects for the Royal Society of Marine Artists exhibition later in the year, and this tiddler is the first. The lifeboat in Portree Harbour, painted from a photo I took a couple of years ago on Skye.

Deer at Wakerley Wood

Oil on canvas, 18 x 26 inches. 

Started this one a year ago and put it in the back of the studio, so dug it out and finished it. Woods are always great subjects to paint, and none more so than at the end of Winter, with a touch of frost on the fallen leaves, and arays of sunlight catching the tussocks and old stumps. I added the Deer for a bit of life and focal point, with the logs, sunlit leaves and branches pointing to that point. Almost every time I've been in the wood, I have seen the Deer, usually just their back ends as they scuttle off to safety.
Lots of texture in this painting - had fun painting the leaf carpet with a heavily-laden palette knife.

Hummikngbird Hawk Moth

Just been to the gallery to pick up a painting, and as I walked past the little garden in full bloom, I spotted this little guy - a Hummingbird Hawk Moth, a frequent day-flying Summer visitor to Britain, and a suspected resident now. I didn't have my camera with me, but luckily had my phone in my pocket, so managed to nget these three pics of him, hovering over W
allflowers, and sipping the nectar, never settling on a flower, just using his long proboscis, just like a Hummingbird does, hence the name. Keep your eye out for this beautiful little insect in your garden!

Wednesday, 22 April 2020

Self Portrait

Oil, 12 x 9 inches

Work in progress. Whenever I've done a self portrait, the result is always a miserable-looking convict! Painting yourself from a mirror is so tricky to pose anything else other than a really concentrating face; you're looking so hard at your visage, observing the shapes, the colours, the tones, the cools, the warms, it's just impossible (for me) to hold a happy-looking face. Strange light I painted in - there were what seemed almost like...grey hairs on my head.

Will have another look at it tomorrow morning in a different light to see if it needs tweaking...

Saturday, 18 April 2020

The Windrush at Widford

Oil on Board, 10 x 14 inches. 

This is a commissioned painting for one of my lovely customers, completed in the studio. Spring, about now, when the leaves are shooting out with fresh growth everywhere, which I shall largely miss this year with the wretched virus that has disrupted all our lives.

Herb Robert by the Teign

Oil on Board, 7.5 x 14 inches. 

Still experimenting with methods and brushes in an effort to paint more loosely and painterly. Work in progress...

Near Sundown, by the Pillbox

Oil on Board, 6 x 8 inches
A fast oil sketch done in the studio today, using a photo I took a few weeks ago as I was driving home from the gallery - I spotted this glorious light effect at Morcott and thought it might make a painting, so here it is.

Thursday, 26 March 2020

Oaks by the Brathay

Oil on Board, 10 x 17 inches

I painted this over the last couple of days, from my trip to the Lakes in November. I had just painted a small oil on site, facing in the other direction, then turned around and here was this most glorious view which just had to be painted. I didn't have the time there and then, so took a couple of photos and made this painting from them, and filmed the painting of the water. Many people who come into the gallery say they admire the way I paint water, because it's so difficult, and I always reply that painting water is the easy bit, it's trees that are difficult! So, I've posted a video of painting water in oils, and if you fancy sitting through 55 minutes of real-time painting, click on this link:

Saturday, 29 February 2020


Oil on Board, 6 x 8 inches. 

I'm doing a lot of experimenting with my efforts to become more painterly, ie., getting the final result looking more obviously a painting. This seemed a good subject to try this out some more. I'm quite pleased with the result, especially the cluster of trees on the right, painted with a soft, flat brush, rather than the more spiky household brush I've used since Noah was a boy.

Silver Dawn, Duddington

Oil on board, 12 x 17 inches.

This painting started life as a demo a couple of weeks ago, finished off in the studio today. I love painting frost, and with a low sun again, this was a challenge to portray the brightness of the sun at the top left of the picture. I used a pallette knife to give just that bit more intensity to the pure light.

Snow Sunset

Oil on board, 9 x 12 inches. 

We're waiting for snow here, but when we did get snow in 2018, I took a few photos and this painting is a result of them. Just down the road from my studio, I was driving home when I saw the glorious sun behind some low clouds, creating this fabulous view. When the sun is low and casting strong shadows, snow can appear very blue, and the highlights pink - a tone down from the brightness of the sun itself. The key to a successful painting is noticing the subtle differences in tone. Had I painted the highlights on the snow pure white, the sun's intensity would have been lost. It's raining the eye to paint what you see and not what you know, or think you see.