THE BEACH AT COODEN – WATERCOLOUR SKETCH

With family issues dominating of late I have had little time to paint. The day before yesterday we sat on Cooden Beach in Sussex and I sketched this scene with part of Beachy Head in the background – rather a sparse scene, I’m afraid, but time constraints pressed.

I also manage a couple of abstract pastel landscapes. I was just playing around with a loose idea, but when I reflected on the outcome, I was disappointed to see a woodland scene had evolved. Hopefully I can build on this – it certainly wasnt the vision I had in mind when I started. It never fails to amaze me how the mechanics of the process can take over and lead you away from where you wanted to be.

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

TOP OF THE HILL TO COODEN – WATERCOLOUR SKETCH

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Another plein air painting I was forced to complete at home. It was nearly done when my stool started making strange noises underneath me so I stood up and it fell apart at my feet. As the place was covered in sheep droppings I decided to pack up and continue our walk up the hill and on to Cooden.

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The day before I had gone to Hastings and walked to Fairlight where this row of coastguard cottages stand on top of the cliff at the highest point. I left out the radio and communications mast and hid the large radar behind the bushes on the right. I certainly wouldnt like to live there with the houses being continually bombarded by large doses of radio waves even though they are relatively low frequency.

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Here are a couple of sketches I am less happy with. The one above  is of Ecclesbourne Glen a deep ravine on the sandstone cliffs east of Hastings. The hillside is covered in a mass of amorphous vegetation which  I knew was a bad thing to try to paint but I have a long affinity with the topography, having run it many times in my youth before heading off on the run along the cliff-top path to the next ravine and another lung-bursting descent and climb.

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This last one is of a newly mown  field in a valley on the edge of Friston Forest. I was taken by the illumination on the row of trees at the foot of the slope. Behind is the deep valley in shade beneath the forest. I didnt do the contrast justice, but sitting in the afternoon sunshine in isolation amid the birdsong was a pleasant way of passing the afternoon.

Other landscapes are available for sale on my website: grahammcquadefineart.com or grahammcquadefineart.co.uk