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Sketching in the early morning sun

I had time to spend in Wootton today having dropped the car off for a service at 8am. I had a couple of hours to spare so decided a walk and sketch were in order. It was cold but sunny, so sunny the sun was like a torch beam with untouched pockets full of damp cold air and mist. I started with a pleasant stroll through agricultural land, marshes and forrest to come out at Wootton creek. After walking backwards and forwards for a while looking suspicious I found the perfect spot to sketch and here is the result, I thoroughly enjoyed the wobbly boat reflections. The row of posts looks like little sea creatures, each slightly different.

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A rising tide at Steephill Cove

There is going to be an illustration exhibition next weekend at Northwood House Hall

I will be displaying my new work of Steephill Cove there and here is the work in progress.

I started by sketching on location (mainly in pencil) so the people in it are real and were there. When we arrived there was a nice bit of beach but by the time we left I was perched on a rock being splatted by the waves. So I had to make a decision about where the tide was and I settled in the middle.
Firstly I used my dip pen to outline and sketch in the scene then I painted in the shadows to give it depth and some yellow edges to give it a warm end of day feel and drama. From that point on I have painted it in more or less the actual colours, I was pleased with the wet in wet mix of colours in the middle of the sand – I need to do more of this. Also the frothy wave in the foreground which I splatted first with midnight blue then white gouache to give the effect of the splash. I’m really pleased with how it has come out and really enjoyed the new larger size paper

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Sun at Sandown

I had to deliver some new stock to Keats in Sandown and took the opportunity to go sketching. I had planned the view back in the summer and taken lots of reference photos on a busy summers day but when I got down to the beach the sun was facing the wrong way. To do the planned section would have meant squinting into a bright low sun with everything silhouetted the cliffs in the other direction were gleaming white and with the sparkling turquoise water I had to do a U turn. I met a couple of lovely people, a man who was very into painting atmospheric works with scant detail and a lady collecting flotsam and jetsam who took these photos for me.

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Sketching at Steephill Cove

Last day of the school holidays and I thought it would be perfect to spend an afternoon at Steephill Cove and have a much needed ice cream.

I took my massive watercolour pad with me so this is one which will take a while to complete but here are the preliminary sketches in the meantime. I have done a couple of crops so you can see the detail too, bit by bit I will draw in pen over the pencil taking care to retain the character and rub the pencil out (and remove any mistakes).

As usual I took a lot of reference photographs to work from which turned out to be a good thing as the tide was moving really quickly. I ended up with all my possessions balanced on surrounding rocks and waves splashing my paper – the sky wash will be fairly interesting!