These sketches of the Leeds Liverpool Canal were done a few days ago as the weather has now taken a turn for the worse, or returned to the norm, depending on your level of pessimism.
The sketches are of each side of the bridge, by the Ship Inn at Haskayne, although on the first one the bridge is just out of view on the left. It was when I was well into this second sketch that I realised something was missing. Here is a painting of the same site which I sold a few years ago.
Admittedly the second one was painted in the evening light whilst my top sketch is done in the morning, but I must say that the willow and the ivy on the bridge do add some character and interest to the image, not quite balanced by the reeds now growing on the canal bank.
One morning, a couple of weeks ago, I was sitting on the canal edge painting when this entourage drifted by. They came up from behind me and I had to drop the painting, brushes and palette and scramble around in my bag for the camera, all without upsetting the group. I crept along the bank taking a number of shots from which
I compiled this painting.
I felt I needed some more flower paintings and in came spring and the apple blossom burst out on my trees. Now with the warm weather there looks like there’s going to be a lot of fruit.
Last year I planted a few allium bulbs in the garden. I was hoping for some cerulean blue flowers but got a purpler version. I need to go and search for some of the bluer kind, but even so, the evening light on the flowers made them look like they were exploding.
I tried an acrylic painting of this lady at another venue a couple of days earlier and gave up and walked out as there was not enough time to make radical corrections as things went a bit awry. This version in pastels, of another pose, seemed to fall into place easier.
I liked the angle on this pose, in acrylics, as everyone else worked from the front.
The model asked for a glass of water during this session. I thought that it made a nice accompaniment.
This guy looked a bit wary, like we were about to whip away his manhood.
I dont normally like long poses and once again struggled to get all the figure in, but I took a low angle which gave the pose a bit more interest.
The good weather continues so I have been getting up early and heading for the canal. This one is at Burscough that has a few pleasant buildings along the canal which I have painted in the past.
This one is near the first painting. Whilst I sat in the warm morning sunshine painting away a fledgling magpie hopped over to me and sat on my knee. It then wandered off, probably looking for its nest. Then later it came back and tried to get into my bag – probably the next best thing to the nest.
This morning started off sunny and enticed me from my bed but by the time I sat down to paint the mist was rolling in. I persisted with this one painting, below, but I do find that when the watercolour doesn’t dry, or dries slowly it gives you problems and I finish up waving the paper around in the air to get it dry. Wears me out!
I reported some issues with paintings on my last two posts, so to take a break from the projects I was struggling with, I decided to splash some colour around and paint a few flowers, especially now that the garden is in full flood with the good weather we are having.
This is one of the rhododendron bushes that grow in my garden that I spotted in full flower and illuminated by the afternoon sun.
The project of doing some local scenes has once again taken another backward step, in a similar way as with the last two paintings I posted.
I went down to the beach to observe the local shrimpers coming back from the sea with their harvest and decided on a scene to paint, but I was disappointed with the result and abandoned it at the sketching stage.
I then cobbled together the scene which I painted above, but I made so many changes and additions as I progressed, that I would need to do it again if I were to contemplate trying to sell it. At least the exercise crystallised my thoughts as I dragged parts from six photos but even then I had to make up bits.
In the end I got something which might work and I can now go back and get some more reference material, aware of what it is I’m looking for.