Back to the task of getting some paintings for the exhibition at Little Crosby. The Alt is a small tributary to the Mersey, opening out into its estuary, not far from Little Crosby. A number of boats moor up there. This one was done at sunset and is a subject I have painted before. I love the trail of buoys and markers down the watercourse and the reflections and patterns in the vast expanse of wet sand out to the Mersey and Irish sea. At present you can hear the sounds of migrating Canada geese as they feed way out in the distance on the sands. Looking the other way in the morning you get the view below.
The block of flats on the right is an eyesore and I blended it out in the morning sunlight. The houses dont do much either, so I kept them as simple as possible. Hopefully they will appeal to someone, as this is a well visited spot of wildness in a built up area at the north end of Liverpool.
I warned you – another view of Little Crosby in readiness for my exhibition in the old manor hall there next month. This view is further back than the painting in the previous blog and is, as you can see, in a long format. At first I was going to leave out the modern house on the right, but the sun playing on the windows and the shadow cast on the wall was a delight. What I did leave out was the never ending line of traffic, although I toyed with putting a car in the distance, but finally decided against it.
As I said in my last blog I completed one project – now on to the next … . This is a painting for a group show in November. I need eight paintings for it and I already have a couple. The event takes place in the old Manor Hall of Little Crosby. This is a small village set at the northern end of Liverpool. So last Monday morning being bright and sunny I got up early and headed down to the area near the exhibition. I had to take photos of Little Crosby as this small lane gets choked with traffic on the school run – not a place to be painting plein air – I could barely cross the road. This will be one of two paintings of the village. I have painted the scene before and the morning light warming the faces of the stone built cottages – some as old as the 17th century – gives great passages of light and shade. More will follow.
The final painting of my local series on Birkdale is of the main golf course ( one of many around here). It had to be included in a series on Birkdale. I had painted it before, but from the outside and the 1920’s modernist style with its angular shapes is really set off in the morning light. This time I did it from the ‘playing’ side – so it had to be from photos – they dont allow riff-raff like me to trample over their lush greens. I wanted a long format to complement the previous painting I did of New Cut Lane, I posted last week and thought that the long clubhouse would fit the bill, but as you can see below, halfway through I didnt feel it was working and turned to a landscape format. Not too sure about this even, but that completes the series. I now have 14 paintings – so that should be enough. The exhibition isnt until December, so I have time to reconsider and change. Now on to the next project…
I am just completing my local series. I wanted some long format paintings and selected this view which I have painted before. It is the road out of Birkdale, across the low lying moss away from the sandduned coast. In the early morning the light is low and casts long shadows and concocts mysterious shapes in the distance.
Returning home from the French Riviera, I was trying to find some source material to continue my series of local paintings but they seemed to be hiding from me. Instead of turning the place upside down I found an image I liked from my trip and proceeded to paint to calm my nerves. Menton, and many of the towns on the riviera, have shady passageways which suddenly spill out onto sunny courtyards and squares and you get this great interplay of light and shade. This was one such scene as I descended into the old town on Saturday.
Yesterday a walk around Castellar a 15th century village perched up in the mountains above the coast. We couldnt get to the Italian border ( which is very close) as there are now armed troops preventing migrants moving into France from Italy and they dont take too kindly to tourists with cameras – so much for Schengen.
The previous day we had a holiday from the holiday. So we had a wander around town and visited the museums. This view is from the cemetery looking east from Menton over to Italy – painted whilst we waited for the museums to open.
The day before the holiday from the holiday we visited another hill-top town called Eze. Here is the view as I waited outside the church for the others to arrive. It was unfortunate that wave after wave of tourists arrived from a cruise ship at the same time. Tourism on an industrial scale.