A more traditional rendering of the local landscape than my previous blog, but both show the topography of the flat moss. Here the road – Segars Lane, a single track road – hovers above the drained marshland which is now fertile arable land. It gradually splays and slides into the fields below, causing it to undulate in the process. Then the road is reinforced and the process starts again. Roads, crows and powerlines cross the land. Here the powerlines take a shortcut into the sun on a bright summer`s morning.
Another calming painting – well that’s the intention. I did this quickly just to see how it would work out. It comes from a couple of photos taken on an earlier outing when I did some watercolour paintings on a quiet summer’s morning. Hopefully there will be a few more to come, but not this week if the forecast is to be believed.
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.
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.
Last week as I was cycling up and down Segars Lane taking some photos of the moss for the painting I put on my blog the last time, my eyes caught a flash of light as I went past a drab collection of farm buildings at White Otter Farm. The buildings close to the road were in shadow, but the farm yard bisected the cluster of buildings and the low light, from the far side, illuminated the yard, bouncing off the puddles and sending open doorways into deep shadow. I had to stop down the lane, wait for a tractor to come by and return to check it out. The tangle of shapes and tones were fascinating and I took a load of shots.
I thought that it would be a complex painting to do, but it almost painted itself. I did most of it in a morning and finished it off the next day. I suppose it is the interplay of the complementary colours in the foreground with the dash of another set of complementaries at the far end as well as the interlocking shapes.
I didn’t realise a muddy farmyard could be this beautiful.
In November I posted a couple of paintings of New Cut Lane. This lane, in the painting above, runs parallel with it across the moss, inland, to higher ground. The land is fertile and has shrunk below the road leaving a big drop for those who miss their way. Segars lane is narrower than New Cut Lane and there are passing places along it. One is visible in the mid ground in the painting.
The pictures of New Cut Lane were contre jour which bestowed mystery and dynamism. Here the day is a little older and the light is coming from the right, burning off the morning mists and bestowing a calmness.
Other landscape paintings and those of the Southport moss can be found on my website: