Pastel on Clairefontaine Pastelmat, 13 x 19 inches
I painted this one as a demo for the Horncastle Art Group last Friday, just finishing it off today in the studio.
The place is one of my favourite marine painting venues - Brancaster Staithe in Norfolk - which offers a wealth of subjects for an artist. Being a working harbour, there are lots of fishermen's sheds with all the attendant paraphernalia scattered about.
Painting in soft Pastels, I find the finished painting has a 'softer' quality to it than one done in oil, or at least one done in oil by me! Using a photo I took some years ago for reference, I moved the yellow boat in the foreground to the right a few feet, because the composition didn't seem quite right as it was so far over to the left. Here's how far I got in the allotted two hours of the demo:
I managed to place in the main shapes of the mussel sheds and boats, paying particular attention to the relative tones - always the most important part of any painting. Colour can be out, but the painting still lives, but if the tonal balance is out, the painting just won't stand up and loses impact.
To finish off the painting and to add some life and balance, I put in the figure carrying nets to the left, and one in the big red vessel on the right.