Sunday, 26 February 2012

Widcombe before the rain, January

Here is a small one I painted in January. In fact it was actually my first painting of the year. I was a bit worried I forgot how to paint as I hadn't done any painting during the Xmas break (eating chocolate and watching TV somehow got in the way) so I decided to take it easy and cowardly went for the smallest canvas size I could find - 5"x7" (any smaller and I would qualify for a postage stamp design competition). Here is the result:

Widcombe before the rain, January    5'x7"   oil on board 

It was a grey cold and wet day in January and I went painting with fellow painter Bo Hilton but naturally I arrived late - he was already at an advanced stage in his painting so I made my mission to get up to speed and finish mine before him :-)

Bo painting dangerously close to the water...

Here is the painting half way though. The board was actually too small to stand on the hook so I had to put some brushes at the back to make it more stable:

My painting towards the end:

You're probably thinking you've seen this painting before. Well, I have done the exact same view in similar weather a few months ago. Click here to see my previous post.

Sunday, 19 February 2012

On the way up to the Cliff Top, Cheddar

As I'm wrapped up in blankets with the heating on maximum, here is a reminder of the hot and sunny summer days that seem so far away. This is a painting of a path to the cliff top in Cheddar. I went painting there last summer with the Plein Air Society (click here to view my previous post) and took a few photographs of the views I didn't have the time to paint on the day - I just finished this one in the studio. 

On the way up to the Cliff Top, Cheddar    oil on board   10"x8"

This is slightly different to my usual style, probably because this sunny day view offered very strong contrasts which I don't always I have the chance to experiment with on the usual misty - grey english weather...


Here is below the reference photograph. I love compositions that invite to viewer to wander in the painting so I hope I managed to achieve this. I love the variety of greens in here and I remember the heat and the scorching sunshine just by looking at this.

Monday, 13 February 2012

Landscape in Herefordshire, October morning

Here is a studio piece I just finished based on some pictures during my trip with my mother in Herefordshire last autumn. I managed to do a quick study not far from there during my stay (see previous post here) but also took a lot of pictures to work with in the studio.

Landscape in Herefordshire, October morning   12"x10"   oil on board

When people are asked what is their mental "happy place", some might answer an amazing sunset on the beach, the snow on the mountains, or a luxury spa retreat. Well mine just involves some trees, a view and peaceful sheep wondering around. I'm pretty low maintenance I think :-)


Here is one of the reference photograph:

There are a few other paintings I'd like to work on from my Herefordshire photographs so watch this space...

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

The Avon on a January afternoon

Here is a small study I did a couple of weeks ago alongside the canal in Bath, just 5 minutes walk from my flat. I was looking for inspiration when I saw a scene with an interesting composition - I like the way you can see patches of colours and light showing inbetween the trees and branches, almost like a mosaic.

The Avon on a January afternoon   10"x8"   oil on board

Just like for any painting I do, there is always a moment when I struggle and wonder if it's any good. Well this time, just when I was feeling like giving up, a girl doing some exercice ran pass me and shouted "Looks great!!". That certainly gave me a second wind and thanks to that I managed to get some kind of result. 

Here is my set-up on the day:

On an other note, I'd like to share what I think it's the best Art book of the year which I just got my hands on today. It's Peter Brown's latest painting catalogue which you can get here:

Looking at those amazingly beautiful paintings, I can't decide whether I'm terribly inspired by it, or if I just want to give up painting altogether as I can't imagine ever being as good as that. Only time will tell!

Wednesday, 1 February 2012


Here is an other peacock painting following my first attempt a few months ago (click here to see the post). I really love painting them. It is officially the most beautiful creature on earth! (well, maybe just after James Dean). I already feel like doing more of those... watch this space!

Peacock2   10"x8"  oil on board