I made this up from three photos. I loved the light coming in across the sea, illuminating the cracks in the groyne and making the wet pebbles sparkle. However the picture was a little dull without something else going on. I thought about putting some seagulls in, but decided upon the two guys who were fishing nearby who I had photographed, but with the sun. It meant I had to draw them the other way around and make up some shadow and highlights.
Whilst in Essex during Christmas we went out to the coast and in the cold evening walked along the banks as the sun set and the tide came in and the wading birds made the most of the disappearing sands. Not sure about the sun but I like the birds on the sand.
Christmas day dawned into a bright cloudless day, where we were, begging us out into the London parklands. I was struck by the blue grey of the woodland that played against the acidic yellows. There are flecks of reflected sunlight on the dew-damp branches. I started out by putting masking fluid down on the second and third washes, but when I completed the woodland and rubbed of the masking fluid it looked overly crude and required a lot of fiddling about to get it back into shape. I tried again and when I completed the tree areas I scratched out highlights with a scalpel. The effect was much more delicate and looked better with its hit and miss judderings. I used a lot of masking fluid in other areas of this painting but it does have its limitations.
Other paintings are on my website: grahammcquadefineart.com
Another view of the Brede valley. I’m not sure why I find the subject so captivating – perhaps the tiers of vegetation and woodland as they rise in the distance and the way the light catches glimpses of distant pasture.
From the balcony of my Dad’s flat, in Bexhill on the south coat of England, I took a number of photos the other week and this was a combination of three of them. The view is constantly changing with the weather, the tides and the people all contributing to the variety. I was particularly taken by the light reflected from the draining water on the beach. I have painted this phenomena many times, particularly around the Mersey Estuary and there are examples on my website: grahmmcquadefineart.com
When I got home from doing this piece I realised I had done something similar before with the same model. I entitled this previous work Green Man which I posted on 18th April last year. In that painting greens and blues predominated. In this painting I was dictated by the hue of the paper and based my colours on siennas.
The model, by taking this pose puts many of his back and arm muscles into tension and he does need to rest during the sitting. It is challenging for me to capture this tension.
I am also not sure about the yellow areas in front of the model. I did these at the beginning, along with some of the purples, before I started the basic drawing. These hues also permeate the figure and attempt to unite the subject with the background. However upon reflection they appear a little random and distracting.
Another painting from the Brede Valley. It was a couple of days before the first painting I did on 6th Jan. We were going to dinner with some friends and were a bit early, so we stopped at Brede Church as the sun was about to go down behind the hills. As I got to get a decent view I scared the sheep.
Our hosts told us of a good walk from this point so a few days later, on another sunny day, we set off down waterworks lane from where I did the other painting.