I must admit to losing interest in this painting midway through, though I do love the cluster of readers under the umbrella. I noticed that there were a lot of these small libraries on beaches in Normandy, France. This was in Fecamp and there was one in Etretat. The hut had the label: Lire a la Plage and people came down and read in the sunshine. It seemed amusing to see people fully clothed clustered in a group reading, ignoring the temptations of the beach.
I may have another go, focussing on the people and cutting out the bulk of beach and cliffs, though the shadow of the cliffs gives a good counterpoint.
We only went for a few days to Dieppe, mainly to pick up some cider and salad dressing and allow for my wife to use a bit of the French she has been working on all year long. This sketch was done by a small village stream whilst we rested during a walk we did, picking up a grande randonee (long distance walking track) out of Dieppe. We didn’t have a map so it we didn’t know where it was going. I had hoped it would take us along the cliff-tops, but it veered off into the country and took us here instead.
As the wife went to the market I took a few minutes on the beach, as the mist started to come in. Just enough time to get the distant cliffs before they disappeared.
I was taken by the image of the three sunlit boats against the shade of the harbour wall, but despite mixing colours on the paper the harbour wall has come out rather dead and there is a lot of it. Well, I thought that it was a good idea at the time.
I was caught by the orange hull against the blue of the water. I thought by bluing out the background it might further highten the effect of the light on the central boat. The painting is actually bluer than this image suggests. I also like the shot of red on the adjacent boat which brings in some dissonance to the basic complementary pairing and as such I haven’t echoed it anywhere else.
Well, I think I have enough local interest paintings for the upcoming exhibitions. I’ve already submitted eight for the first one and don’t have enough frames for the one after that, so I’ll be forced into selecting what I think are the stronger images. Now I can get back to a set of seaside paintings which I started to compile a few months ago. I’m not sure if this will be in the set, but I did like the gesture of the woman and I added a waiter from another image to give it more balance. The only trouble was all those chairs. They can get tedious.
I have quite a number of seaside images from our recent stay in Brittany and was thinking of doing a set of paintings of shoreline scenes. So this is the first one and possibly last – let’s see how the enthusiasm holds up.
This is based around some images in the Gulf of St Malo. I loved the plunging cliffs covered in brush and bracken and broken with deep shadows in the low light and the beaches were pretty good too.
Moving up to the North Brittany coast into the Gulf of St Malo. I did some sketches as we walked along the cliffs. The above is at Val Andre looking south into the afternoon sun.
This again is from the Cliffs at Val Andre. The shoreline is much more rugged here than at Le Cloisic, our last stop. The building is a lookout post for marauding Brits (amongst others) they may be building more as Brexit unfolds.
Another small cove on our walks.
And here, in the low morning light, the cliffs at Pleneuf. In the distance is the start of a sandy beach that went on for a couple of miles, with egrets, terns, cormorants and the odd naturist popping up from behind the rocks.