I had a bit of trouble with this painting – well I have trouble with most of my paintings – but this time it forced me to start again.At the outset I was caught by the light through the trees illuminating the flowers and reflecting off the petals and leaves. I think I caught that with this version – though it was quite tedious painting the bluebells -because I needed to reserve a lot of the white of the paper for these reflections.

The first one below lost the effect of the illuminated flowers and became disunited – though it has some qualities which eluded me in the second version.

The venue is an old, disused, railway line coming from Maghull, in the north of Liverpool, to Southport, where I live, called the Cheshire Lines. I think around this wood was a branch line linking to the main line.

I stumbled on this during a cycle ride a couple of weeks back. The bluebells are now fading away fast around here.

Other woodland scenes are available for sale on my website:


  1. Both watercolors are so beautiful! They make me feel like I’m in the middle of these forests. The play of light and shadow is wonderfully captured in the first watercolor. The second exudes something playful and magical.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Beate. The second one does have qualities, such as the shift into a bluer green which gives it variation and a lift. I might glaze some blue onto the first one around the left hand side. Just thinking about it for now,

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks. This isnt the first time someone has preferred the painting I discarded. I suppose it is all about preference and, for me in this instance, meeting aims. The one I like gets closer to what I wanted.
      I dont believe in best or better in art – just different, and your personal response to something – which can itself change.
      I see you live in Michigan. I worked in Muskegon for a year back in 82/3.


  2. It’s interesting how (and why) two versions can be so similar and yet evoke such a differing sense of time or feeling – both are quite beautiful though. And I think you’re totally right, the bottom image has qualities eluding the top, maybe for exactly the reasons of capturing the tighter representation of the physical scene, but I’m just thinking out loud, I’ve never completely understood all this even in my own work, lol!

    The top painting feels like 1st light to me, the slant of light catching and detailing each beautiful bit of life become visible, my heart waking with the world.

    And the bottom work to me seeps with the sense of a risen sun fully engaged with the morning air, expanding and diffusing light into it, evoking a wonderful warm sense of just being.

    But like I said, just me thinking, trying to feel, lol! 😊

    Beautiful work, Graham!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for your kind comments Felipe. As I was explaining to another correspondent I think the first painting didnt meet the aims I had in mind when I started the painting although there are aspects I like. In the end it comes down to personal preference. There certainly isnt any science to it despite that many say there is.
      I have long stopped trying to please others and just paint for myself and hope a few others like what I do,

      Liked by 1 person

      • It really is the best, and ultimately, to be able to continue, the only way – paint for yourself, and those who like ‘em will, etc 😊 I definitely like both, and it’s good doing variations of a similar piece, most the time anyway, lol! It’s really something to see works so similar yet so different in important aspects! Stay well, keep painting, Graham! Love seeing your work 😊

        Liked by 1 person

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