READY FOR THE OFF – WATERCOLOUR PAINTING

Whilst on holiday in Portugal I saw this boat moored by a pontoon. There was a feeling of calm about the scene with the gentle lapping waves lazily distorting the reflections. I took some photos to record the moment, as I didnt have time to do any painting.

The other day I thought it might be a good subject to paint whilst sat minding the shop in the pop up gallery. I was there two days consecutively last week. The first day I took everything – except my glasses. So, I could only do some of the washes as I couldnt see much detail.

The second day I made sure I took everything and was able to complete the task. I few of the visitors watched me paint. One lady was commenting on it and during the conversation asked where my paintings were on the wall. I pointed to my group, and she went over to look at them. Then she came back and asked to buy one of them.

Whilst painting the scene, I felt that it looked a little too empty, so I decided to add two figures and change the narrative a little. Now that it is complete, I wonder whether I have lost the calmness that first attracted me to the scene, by adding the activity of the figures.

It’s time to put this painting away now and consider it again later. However, if nothing else, it helped secure me a sale.

Other marine and seaside paintings are available for sale on my website: https://grahammcquadefineart.com

THE BOATYARD AT BANKS – WATERCOLOUR PAINTING

Earlier this month I posted a painting from a recent walk. Here is another scene from that walk: the ramshackled boatyard on the banks of the River Douglas. This river flows into the River Ribble at its estuary, near Preston. Many of the boats in the yard are deposited alongside a footpath which runs at the side of the river. On the other side of the river are tall embankments and green fields. The site is rather incongruous in this rural setting and I have noticed that a growing number of people are living in boats or newly erected static caravans. No doubt there`ll be a shop and a village pub opening soon.

In the painting I wanted to show the cluttered boatyard against the open country, so the main boat occupies a space close to the centre of the painting. This design may upset some of the purists, but I wanted to present the two aspects of the site in a sort of split screen production, segregated by the tree. I placed a lead in of an upturned dinghy and cart, but hopefully I captured the flavour of the yard amid its surroundings.

Other nautical and canal paintings are available on my website: grahammcquadefineart.com

HOI AN, VIETNAM – WATERCOLOUR SKETCHES

Moving further south in Vietnam we arrived at Hoi An. There was quite a lot of charm about the place, but you still dont escape the crowds and hard sell. The town is situated on Bon river 4 Km from the coast. It is an old trading post with many influences and a number of old houses.

We walked through the very busy market, where fish and squid were being landed off boats and chickens were being taken away for the pot and walked along to the old French Quarter by the waterside. Here pleasure boats and fishing boats were moored and for once there were very few people. A great place to paint.

In the afternoon, after sitting in a cafe and watching a monk come in and scrounge some cornettos for him and his mates we crossed the river and I sat on a shaded bench and painted the waterfront. Mid way through an old woman came by. It was obvious I had taken her favourite siesta spot, but I wasnt moving, so she made do with an adjacent bench.

Other paintings are available on my website: grahammcquadefineart.com

MORE PICTURES OF KRABI, THAILAND – WATERCOLOUR SKETCHES

One of the limestone stacks just off the beach at Krabi, Thailand. This was painted from a beach in a national park where some of the rules on the sign as you entered were: no food and dont feed the monkeys. How could you feed the monkeys if you weren’t allowed food?

When we got to the beach there were some exclusive hotels – but you couldnt get anything to eat as they firmly said Guests Only. So I just sat on the beach and contemplated the view. It was pretty good and there there was even a long tailed boat in view.

On another day we went on an island hopping boat trip to some exclusive beaches – though they weren’t that exclusive as everyone else was doing the same. So we had small pockets of sand overrun with tourists like us, wondering why they had come. Outside our hotel there was a vast sandy beach with hardly anyone on at all – oh well… .

The second sketch was done whilst we jostled for space on Paradise island, named possibly as it was one of the few islands with a toilet.

Other landscapes and seascapes are available on my website: grahammcquadefineart.com

VENICE – ACRYLIC PAINTING

P1020565(1)aEvery time I look at this I end up adding a bit more, so it may move on a little before I exhibit it – but that’s enough for now. I wanted to get the feel of the wear  and decay that I experienced when exploring the city. It uses images I have painted and posted before, as well as new ones.

Other paintings of Venice and other towns and cities are available on my website: grahammcquadefineart.com

BOAT PEOPLE – ACRYLIC PAINTING

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I was thinking about entering the marine artists exhibition in London. I had a couple of suitable paintings but wanted something a little different so that I could judge what it is that they are looking for a bit better and worked up this idea. Now that it’s complete I’m a little underwhelmed by it. I have got tighter than I would have liked. I’ll prop it against the wall and have a look at it over the next week or so  and make my mind up. I have used motifs that I have used as subjects before, in case you are wondering whether you’ve already seen it.

Other marine paintings are available for sale on my website: grahammcquadefineart.com

THE HARBOUR AT LE CROISIC – WATERCOLOUR PAINTING

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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.

Other marine paintings are available on my website: grahammcquadefineart.com

HARBOUR BOATS BOBBING IN THE FLOW – WATERCOLOUR PAINTING

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I had a number of photos of boats in the small harbour at La Val Andre in Brittany and wondered how they would look in an elongated format. I was taken by the two red boats (off different photos) against the grey green of the water.

Other nautical and beach paintings are available for sale on my website: grahammcquadefineart.com

BOATS AT BANKS, SOUTHPORT – WATERCOLOUR PAINTING

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The area here, to the north of Southport,  is very flat and subjects can be hard to come by. Even so  I went out on my bike one morning and did some on site painting and took a number of photos. This painting  was from one of the photos. I need to get a collection of local paintings together for a couple of up-coming exhibitions, so all other projects have been put on hold.

Other local paintings are available on my website grahammcquadefineart.com

SUNSET ON THE ALT ESTUARY – WATERCOLOUR PAINTING

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Last September I went out painting on one of the few bright evenings we had in late summer/autumn. I sat myself down near some old farm buildings surrounded by trees and started to draw and then paint. I hadn’t counted on the sun disappearing behind the trees so quickly ( very different to when I was out in June). The interesting assortment of buildings in light and shade quickly merged into a dark mass in deep shadow. So I packed up and,  as the sun was still hovering over the horizon, decided to call in to the Mersey estuary where the local river, the Alt, merges into it. There are a many boats moored right  along the estuary, all  the way out to the Mersey. When I got there the tide was out and  the sun cast everything in an orange glow. The river carves its way through the mudflats to the Mersey and the sun created intriguing patterns on the mud, reflecting off the wet mud and being absorbed by the drier areas. The scene was changing too fast to paint so I took a load of photos and painted it later on a half imperial sheet. I wasn’t happy with the result and had another go on a  smaller quarter imperial sheet. I am happier with this. There isn’t much to the scene and probably too many darks, but I think I’ve got the feeling of the place as the sun disappears over the Atlantic.

Other marine paintings are available  for sale on my website: grahammcquadefineart.com