Tuesday, 19 April 2011

The Spelling Mistake

The Spelling Mistake, Oil on canvas, 22 x 30 inches

MackerelYou can't actually make out the sign on the pole on the left of the painting - it says 'Mackeral Fishing Trips' - hence the title. 

This was a triumph over adversity; there are 2,623,714 pebbles on this bit of Beer beach in Devon.  Did I paint them all you're asking ?  Don't be ridiculous, I only painted the ones on the surface.  How did I do this ?  If I told you that, I'd have to kill all of you..........

The fabulous reflected light was the inspiration for this big painting, for me.  I love a subject looking directly into the light, especially when that light is bouncing off water.  I wanted to capture that blinding light that almost obliterates anything set against it, in this case the flags on the light blue boat and the fisherman in the dark blue boat beneath it, about to launch.  There's also lovely pure sunlight catching the damp boards and metal rails on the two foreground boats.  Pure Titanium White is the hopelessly inadequate brightest colour an artist has in his arsenal, so you have to employ a few tricks to try to create that illusion of blinding reflected light. Again, I can't possibly tell you how it's done, or....................

I never think bigger paintings photograph as well as smaller ones, and I had a lot of trouble trying to get the colours anywhere near the colours in the painting. This is the best effort, although the warm shades are a bit hot.  You'll just all have to come to my show in Devon in July to see it 'as is'.

I've now done a hand-break turn and am painting another 22x30 of my local river, the Welland......will post soon.


  1. I don't like to challenge you but I counted 3 less pebbles! I reckon you've deployed your trusty paintbrush and "stippled" it for the pebble effect! Whatever it really works and I chuckled about the title. Hope you just put your toes in the water here! Be careful at the Welland.......

  2. Love the colour in this one !


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