Saturday, 21 April 2012

Dorset trip - Part 2

Here is the second post about my recent painting trip in Dorset with a further 4 paintings (click here to see the first 4 paintings):

DAY 3 - Sunday

Lulworth Cove: We just didn't get enough of it the day before, so the four of us returned for more painting thrills. The "boys" decided to head rather early to avoid the mass of tourists. I played it cool as if I was used to waking up early but I ended up sleeping the whole journey at the back of the car like a baby. It became a bit of a habit actually; I can hardly remember any car journey as I fell asleep every time! We arrived before the hoards of tourists and enjoyed a quiet painting session looking down on Swyre Head:

Swyre Head and Bats Head in the morning, 
Lulworth Cove, Dorset 
7"x10"   oil on board

Tim, David P. and I "living life on the edge" (literally):

Enjoying the peace and quiet before the coaches of tourists invade the place:

I thought it would be a wise choice to go for a small panel to start with and save my bigger formats for when I'm properly woken up:


After this nice little warm up we decided to have a try at the Durdle Door which was just 45 degrees to our left so no need to move, just turn around a little and start painting again. The water had beautiful reflections and the sun was slowly coming out behind the rocks...

Durdle Door, Lulworth Cove, Dorset   12"x10"   oil on board

At this stage we were surrounded by tourists talking with excitement and taking photographs. I thought our moment of fame had come but I soon realised they were trying to get a good snap at the views we were somehow obstructing... It was fun listening to some of the comments. I remember hearing a group of young schoolboys rating our paintings and saying out lout which one is good and which one is not! I'm glad I couldn't see them pointing at the paintings...

The painting after 20 minutes

Detail of the finished painting

After finishing this second painting, we gave ourselves the luxury of a 5 minutes break to swallow our sandwich and then we were off looking for the next spot! The sun was properly out by then and we all found inspiration on the other side of the Cove, looking towards the beach.

Lulworth Cove

I decided to go for a long format to fit most of the coast:

Lulworth Cove from Durdle Door in the afternoon, Dorset
16"x9"   oil on board


Painting experiences in plein air don't get much better than this!

I reached this perfect view after climbing up on the hills. That's me below, enjoying nature and getting a break from the crowd:

David and Tim kindly took these pictures of me from the opposite hill where they set up to paint:

Tim (left, in green) and David P.

It does look like we got into an argument and went separate ways but I promised it wasn't the case :-) We just found inspiration at different spots... Meanwhile the other David (below) was getting some attention from the tourists as he stayed on the main passage:

After this third painting, I thought we would finally get a break, but before I could say the word "break", the guys were already starting their fourth painting back at the top. I surely didn't want to look like the "poor weak lady" of the group so I gathered the energy I had left and produced the quick study below. I started last, somehow finished first, and ended up being quite happy with it:

Lulworth Cove, evening, Dorset   10"x8"   oil on board

You might notice the fact I painted the same view the day before. Click here to have a look at my previous post.

The painting towards the end

David P. and Tim - unstoppable painting machines!


Check this blog in the next few days for the story about my last 4 paintings of the trip....


To be continued...


  1. Valerie...sounds like a grueling but enjoyable trip. You've taken on some really challenging subject matter and handled it very well. In particular I like the Lulworth Cove from Durdle Door picture. Good composition and fab colour handling... as always.

    1. Thanks Ian for the comment! Much appreciated.

  2. Your paintings and blog are like a brief visit to the British Isles that I totally enjoy and look forward to. I especially enjoy reading about your group trips. I have a large group of very talented artists that I have the great pleasure of painting with but we don't have the great scenery that you have. I don't know if you ever read the Plein Air magazine but there is a very nice article in the newest issue about my friend Tina Bohlman. She paints in both oil and watercolor but the article is about her watercolors.

    1. Thanks Doug! Glad you enjoy my posts. I'm sure you have some outstanding sceneries in US too, just different I suppose. Yes I do read the Plein Air magazine so I will have a look for your friend's article. All the best.

  3. were on fire at Durdle door :) 10 hours in total if I remember rightly! Great paintings and you managed to work up an excellent composition with the last one when you were perched up on the cliff. I chickened out and avoided those rocks in the water but you've managed to incorporate them really well. The foreground rocks in the bottom right help to balance things up perfectly. Love ly stuff...keep em coming!

  4. Thanks David! You were on fire too and there were simply no way of stopping you! Even those exhausting hills you walked them as if it was a little stroll! Glad you like my "rocks". Your supposedly "chickened out" version ended up very well so you must be glad anyway. Have fun in Sennen. I'm not jealous at all. Nope.

  5. Loved your painting of the model and the entire class!! I paint a lot from a model and had thought of trying to get the entire scene, but had never tried. You did a really great job.