I had a bit of time to get out and do some sketches in the last few days. This one is a view from Bexhill to Hastings, in the distance, on a bright summer’s evening after the dark clouds had passed.
This is one from Hastings of an old lighthouse ( built around 1850 to replace an earlier one) which stands on the West Hill over the beach where they pull the fishing boats up on. There is also another light below it on the beach. The idea is returning boats line the upper and lower lights up as they approach the beach which means they have a safe passage past the submerged rocks. Now they beach on a different location and this lighthouse is redundant.
Here is one of the fishing boats on the beach waiting for the tide or fish quotas to reset before setting off again.
I have missed some sunny mornings of late due to other commitments or sheer laziness, so guilt nudged me from my bed the other morning when the sun was shining bright and early.
I had decided to go to a specific spot as there was a scene that had caught my eye on a previous outing. The trouble was when I got there the effect was different. I suspect the trees had filled out and the light effect had vanished.
Anyway, after searching about I found another couple of spots to sit and paint and I enjoyed a tranquil morning in the summer warmth, serenaded by birdsong and fortified by a flask of tea.
It’s a dirty business, but someone’s got to do it.
Painting opportunities were sparse this week despite the scenery. We walked around Slad, where Laurie Lee (Cider with Rosie) lived but had to dive into the Woolpack – his local – for a cider, naturally, because of the rain. The next day, the sun only started to come out as we left Wells – a fabulous town I’ve never been to before, but it lead to a sunny evening in Bath where we stopped for a meal by the river.
So yesterday morning I took ther opportunity to snatch a couple more sketches of Leighterton before we left.
With having our own visitors and visiting others, things have been busy of late. We are with friends in the Cotswolds and this morning I got up early and ventured into the fields to do some painting.
It was a dullish morning and generally I would turn over and go back to sleep, but I needed some paintings and it was a new place to explore – so I gave it a try.
Without sun, objects were a bit flat and washes took ages to dry. But despite the problems I wasnt too displeased with the results and came home with wet feet to a well earned breakfast. I can relax for the rest of the day.
On Monday morning the forecast was for a clear start so I got up early hoping to take advantage of the light as we have had some mixed weather of late and are about to get some more rain this week.
I’d decided to cycle to the moss, a low lying, drained area, now mainly now used for agriculture, which is behind the sandy coastal strip where I live. Arriving soon after 5am, to my surprise, the whole place was shrouded in mist.
I decided to make a start near the higher coastal belt, and set up alongside one of the many drainage ditches.
As I worked the mist slowly dispersed and the trees in the background appeared – I thought that they were clouds at the start- and then houses also came into view – though it was too late to include them. The picture directly above was the result. In the damp, cool conditions drying the washes was difficult and parts were still glossy wet when I packed up to leave. I carried the painting open on my bike, hoping to dry it as I wobbled along, searching for another subject. By now the sun was out and I eventually found a path across the fields as a subject shown at the top.
The week before last I was visiting my ailing mother on the southcoast and did some paintings as I sat around beside the sea in between preparing lunch and tea.
The last one is my stepbrother’s cafe in St Leonards, Sussex which I might work up into something more finsihed later.
Another from my early morning outdoor starts. I had spotted this the day before and there was much more tonal contrast when I first saw it. I still like it and there might be scope to work this up into a more finished piece.
Some old cottages spotted across the fields. The power cables in the hedge were a good lead in and I was able to sit painting undisturbed whilst taking in the early morning birdsong and sipping my tea.