P1020454(1)I parked up in the carpark by the canal ready to go off painting and just took a glimpse along the towpath. Fingers of mist still clung to the reeds, avoiding the sun’s weak rays. Out of the reed beds some moorhens glided across the chill water, probably thinking I might be a source of a free breakfast.

I tried this out in pastel to get the wisps of mist. In hindsight I could have done it in watercolour and used white gouache for the mist.

Other canal side paintings are available on my website grahammcquadefineart.com



P1020449(1)a  Two more from my painting trips of last week. Since then I haven’t been out as we have been getting a lot of much needed rain. Presently I am working this sketch of a tree up into a small painting, so I’ll be putting that on the blog soon.


I might even work this one up as well. There is a great view on the other side of the cottage and the overhanging tree and cable poles give it character. Hopefully the good weather will make a comeback, but at least I don’t have to water the garden.

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



Well, the sun continues to shine, so I’ve been out on my bike again. This is an old track I used to ride down a lot on my way to and from work. I loved the variation of the trees and the line of reeds. After painting this I went back to where I painted Down Holland Farm (earlier post) and found my metal pallet in amongst the stinging nettles.


This one is an old cobbled canal bridge, looking into the sun. I had to stand in the middle of it to paint in order to see the buildings and light on the hedgerow. It is a bridge from an old farm track over the canal to nowhere (I cant understand why it was built) yet as I worked 3 dogwalkers came past, then a pony and trap and finally to people riding horses. Each time I had to move my gear to let them past. It’s tough out on the road, or bridge in this case. Though I might develop this further as I liked the scene and I haven’t done justice to the main tree.


Out in the early morning: this was a bit of a problem, as although the sun was shining, the air temperature was around 2oC. So the washes didn’t try very fast so I did a lot of pacing around whilst the painting sat drying on the grass in the sun. Still it’s great to get out and as I returned home I saw a couple of sites well worth painting on another visit. Always good having somewhere to go rather than wasting time looking around for a subject.

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


P1020430(1)Assembling the paintings for my landscape exhibition, which starts next week, I was including the painting below. It was an old painting I quite liked, but I wondered about the flat area in the middle and whether the images needed linking better. So I painted in a wind sculpted tree which spread across the centre touching the different areas.

Other landscapes are available for sale on my website.




I don’t know what fascinates me about these cottages, just off the road at the foot of Clieve’s Hills as you approach Ormskirk having travelled across the moss, inland  from Southport. I did them  as a watercolour (shown on this blog on September 24th) and have previously painted them plein air by the roadside, although the best view point is in the middle of the road, which isn’t much good.

Perhaps the middle  bale needs a bit of tidying up as I look at is as I write.

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



The old tracks and roads which crisscross the Moss behind Southport where I live start to heave and bend as the land around dries out. The poles which adorn the roadside then tip like dancing men. Here is a typical path which disappears  out of sight done in pastel.

Other paintings of the Halsall Moss are available on my website: grahammcquadefineart.com



In the dash to fill my long/thin frames for an upcoming exhibition I did one of the Leeds- Liverpool canal from the bridge. I did a similar view a few years ago, but this is from a recent photograph. The orientation really suits this format.

It is also three years to the day that I started this blog. I might buy myself a cake.

Other canal scenes are available on my website: grahammcquadefineart.com