Continuing with my painting of the locality. This one is again of the ‘Village’ with the train station behind the two figures and the level crossing behind the central car. A previous post ‘ Sitting Pretty in Birkdale’ is situated in front of the last house in the main grouping. I did like this mass of buildings with all the internal shapes and the early morning sun shining on one of the faces. I added the two figures and was quite pleased with the outcome.
Continuing my series of paintings of local landmarks. This is one of Duke Street Cemetery. I posted a version in May, but had reservations about it. So I had another go. The buildings are a bit more proportional and believable – the tower is a very peculiar shape and I got some more shots of it to double check the shape. I also got the headstones in better proportion on this one. I still have my reservations about it, but I need to move on. I read an article by an artist who said that when they completed their work they put it away immediately and reviewed it after a couple of weeks. They felt that they got a much more objective view of it after a decent break. So we’ll try that.
Another in my series of local paintings I am doing for a show later in the year. This one is of Birkdale Village, a vibrant cluster of shops and restaurants, some under a Victorian- style veranda. I frequently walk around here in the mornings and, on one occasion, the early summer light shining on the newly unfurled leaves played well against the buildings in shadow. I populated the bench with a figure sitting in the sunshine. There is a beauticians called Sitting Pretty on the corner – you can see the name board in the background – so I thought that might give it a bit of a hook.
Well maybe I’m starting to get somewhere on my project of painting local scenes. At last a picture I am happy with. I was aided by some scratching out on this one and I also must admit to using a bit of gouache – but all in the best possible taste.
I did the original version of this on site in May, sitting in the evening sun. It does contain a wide range of colours, but then that is how it is, though on the final version I did some glazing to try and unify it. Looking back I didnt post the original sketch, so here it is.
Below is a snap of the scene, as I sat on top of the dunes.
I have decided to do a set of paintings of the vicinity of where I live for an exhibition at the end of the year and at present I am struggling. I have done two paintings which I am not pleased with and a third got sold – so very little has progressed.
So after a brief pause I have re started and this is the first one of the Shrimpers on Birkdale Beach – I posted a version of this in May. Recently I went back to the place to get more information and have another attempt and here it is. Apart from it being a bit less overworked , I still have reservations, but I have decided to leave this and get on with the job; another painting is on the way. It will arrive on your screens shortly.
Another medium term project I have set myself is to assemble a set of paintings from around the vicinity where I live to show in my framers shop window around Christmas. The framers is almost opposite the end of this church. This was a first go at St Peter’s Church which I feel is a little stilted.
Another painting which didnt come out as well as I would have liked is a view of Duke Street Cemetery which is an old municipal cemetery started in Victorian times.
I was working from a number of photos, trying to get the best view through the trees along with the turn of the path. What I have done is getting the tombstones on a different scale to the chapel building. I did wonder why I needed to slip in memorial stones to fill the gaps. So here is another one for rework – though I am not sure of the commercial value of a graveyard, I do love the spring sunshine working through the unfolding leaves.
I am getting together for another exhibition of local landscapes which feature the land between the Mersey and Ribble Estuaries. Here is one I’ve just done of the local beach, where to many of the locals’ dismay, the marram grass is taking over. As it grows it traps windblown sand creating little islands amid the residual tidal water. It is rather ironic that where they let the cars on the beach, much to the irritation of others, the plant cant get a foothold and the flat sands stretch out seemingly forever. I must say I like this variation of the beach.