Thursday, 30 December 2010

more oak trees

Well for the time being Im still going to continue this blog.I know I change my mind like the wind but there you go. Managed to get out to paint last. But still freezing fog. Continued with my series on the Oak trees . I wasnt going to do them today but was persuaded by a friend. Anyway below is the result. Didnt come without pain today..I forgot my hat and gloves and boy was it cold!
Oaks in the fog  12 x 16

Monday, 27 December 2010

xmas paintings.

Well as expected Ive not managed to get out alot over xmas. I also got frustrated so much that I didnt get much chance to paint in the snow. Maybe Im one of the few people that wishes it would come back! Im not back at work now until the 4th of January so hopefully I will have some opportunities to paint.Ive posted the last two of my efforts . Ive been doing this blog for almost a year now and am seriously considering not doing it anymore. I only started it to record my painting a day project which I failed and cant see much point in continuing with it. Happy New Year to all

Snowy track by Wittersham Road Station 12 x 16

Field gate, winter 16 x 12

Saturday, 18 December 2010

from life or photo?

This week Ive done very little painting but thought Id post this blog whilst waiting for my van to defrost before venturing out in snow..yippee I love the snow :-) !!

The reason for the title of this post is probably quite obvious. I dont think there are rights or wrongs or goods or bads about how and where people choose to paint. Many of us love painting outside whilst others hate it and cant see the point of standing out in the cold. For my part its just my preference to be outside and to respond as quick as possible to what I see. Yesterday was a prime example. I have a great little 6 x 8 pochade box which was a gift from my friend Mr Rafferty and I carry it everywhere in my truck hoping I might snatch abit of time here and there to paint. Yesterday was so frustrating as the snow started and I was surrounded by so many potential paintings, but too busy to stop.. At the very end of the day nearing home the view of the Rother stopped me in my tracks and I thought even though there was only 15 to 20 minutes light left I would try and get something down. 6x8s are so small so keeping it simple you can do a quick sketch in not much time. Worst of all as quick as I tried to paint I was losing the light and by the last few minutes I really couldnt see what colours I was mixing. I really enjoy the excitement off it , but you never know what youve got until you get back. Ive posted my effort below which took no more than 20 minutes. The colours are perhaps a bit lairy and it is only a sketch, but my question is...would I ever paint anything like it in a studio ? .. I think not. Ive also posted a photograph of the general scene before I started. Im sure if Id only used the photo of the scene for reference |I would have ended up with a laboured copy..who knows..maybe I should give it a go and find out. Anyway thats enough waffling Im going painting.
Photo of The Rother at sun set before I started
My quick oil sketch 6 x 8

Thursday, 9 December 2010


Today was the first time Ive managed to get out painting since I returned from Venice on Saturday. I worked until lunch time and then took the afternoon off to paint at my present favourite spot in Peasmarsh. Ive painted the same scene once before this Autumn and now have decided to try and paint here once a month for a year as an experiment to see how the scene changes. Whilst painting I thought my god this looks just like the last one I did, but having got it home and compared the two it looks completely different. There is definately a cooler more wintery feel to this one and no where near as much colour as the Autumn one. Ill post both to show the comparison . Think the autumninal one was much better, but interested to see what the scene looks like through the seasons. I was also lucky today to be joined by Rowan Crew. I wish Id taken a picture of his painting. Quite different with a much higher horizon, but very nice:-) excursion Sunday :-)

Winter Oaks Peasmarsh  12 x 16 ( Todays effort)

Autumn Oaks Peasmarsh 12 x 16 ( My first effort and favourite of the two)

Saturday, 4 December 2010


Just got back from 5 days in Venice. It was a last minute trip and I joined my friends David Bachmann, Roy Connelly and Paul Rafferty. Ive never been to Venice before but loved it..what a city! It deserves its reputation and has to be one of the most beautiful citys in the world, no wonder its been painted so much! On the downside the weather wasnt great and we had the Aqua Alta to contend with on 3 morning..apparently the highest in 4 years at 1.3m. So there was alot of wading to do. That wasnt to bad and it was really dramatic to see the city flooded. However the stench was disgusting and i literally threw up twice. One other highlight of the trip was satying in Ken Howards studio for a couple of days, which was surreal. I painted a couple of interiors but didnt do it justice. We literally worked from dawn to dark ( not dusk) and doing nocturnes was great fun and something I want to explore further. I ended up doing 23 paintings in 5 days as well as scraping of 3 others..not snapping any more :-) Paul did 28! ....
I also had the flight cancelled which caused alot of grief yesterday but enjoyed flying home club class. Below Ive posted a few from the trip
Salute nocturne 1  8 x 6
San Georgio nocturne 6 x 8
Salute nocturne 2 8 x 6

Fish Market 10pm

The interrupted proposal 8 x 10
Misty Afternoon on the Grand Canal 8 x 10
Winter Afternoon Sun St Marks Square 12 x 16

Sculptural colomn study fishmarket 10 x 8

Venetian horse study 12 x 12
Grand Canal from same spot as Monet and Ken Howard  8 x 10
Gondola Study 10 x 8
Salute door 16 x 12
The Grand Canal from Acadamia Bridge 12 x 16
Ken Howards studio 10pm  12 x 16
Salute 10,30pm   16 x 12
Under the arches St Marks Square 10 x 8

Sunday, 21 November 2010

studio paintings

Well Ive just had two whole days manning the old gaol. Its a lovely spave but after spending two boring days there last weekend , I decided to go prepared to paint between talking to visitors. I didnt get that much done, but did a couple of landscapes and a still life of Irises and eucalyptus. Hopefully Ill get out sometime this week. Next week Im off to Venice :-) Hard life...
Purple Irises, Eucalyptus and Chamberlain W/C 20 x 16
Kingston Barges 16 x 20 studio painting

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

Old Gaol

Well finally my Old Gaol studio is open. I had the preview on Friday night and we had a great turn out..over 200 people. I didnt really know what to expect but it went well and 9 pictures were sold. Saturday was busy too but sunday was deadly! I sat there from 10 am until 4pm and only had 4 visitors.It was disgusting weather though. Its on for another week and then it will be used mainly as a studio not a gallery. It will be open by appointment if anybody is passing and wants a look. I have posted a couple of pictures of the gaol and of the small 6 x 8 still lifes I did on sunday to eleviate the boredom :-) This weekend I will set up a proper still life and do something more ambitious.
The Old Gaol opening night
Fresias 8 x 6

Sunday, 7 November 2010

Back in the beautiful Kent Landscape.

Well in the last month Ive painted all over the inclnuding Maine and London but have not painted the place I love best..home! I live in a truly beautiful area and sometimes it takes me a few trips away to realise Im taking it for granted. I havent painted much the last week but was joined by my friend Roy Connelly for an hour on the river Rother yesterday and today I went to the neighbouring village of Peasmarsh and did two paintings before being rained off. Id hoped to have stayed out all day but stulpidloly I forgot my coat and just got too cold.  For a change today I did something I felt reasonably happy with .My first one was really just a tree study, but with the autumn colours it was begging to be painted. As my friend Roy said These autumn colours are natures gift to painters :-) Thats it for now..lets :-)

4pm on the Rother  8 x 10

Afternoon Light Peasmarsh  8 x 16

Autumn Trees Peasmarsh 12 x 16

Saturday, 30 October 2010

First post for ages!

Well since I returned from the states I  have had very little time to paint. Infact Ive only done 4 paintings in the last two weeks, which is probably the least productive Ive been in the last 4 years! Ive had so much to do not least trying to get The Old Gaol studios ready for my forthcoming show that statrs on 12th November. I hope its going to be a good event and I have been very well supported by my painting friends. There are going to be some real gems on display. John Stillman, Trevor Chamberlain , David Bachmann and Peter Robson have already delivered their work and now Im just waiting for Roy connelly, Chris Daynes, Mike Richardson and Rowan Crews. Im excited to see what they will bring. Last week I joined Mike Richardson at Strand on the Green where we painted all day and then we visited the Affordable Art Fair at Batterse where we were both exhibiting with Enid Lawson. I had a dissapointing show there this year and only sold one. Compared to the 7 I sold last year it wasnt very good. Worst of all I thought I gave better work this year...maybe Im getting worse not better! Anyway below Ive posted 3 from last sunday and a couple of tasters of whats going to be in the Old Gaol :-)
Strand on the Green 16 x 12
Dusk Battersea Embankment 8 x 10
Morning light, Strand on the Green 12 x 16
Pines at Alatar Seville by David Bachmann...I love this!
Working Tug at Gravesend, watercolour by Trevor Chamberlain

Monday, 11 October 2010


Well Ive just returned from 8 great days in MAine. The weather was very mixed but managed to paint everyday even in the rain. When it got to bad too stand out Chris and I just sat in the front seat of the Dodge Charger hire car..not a great idea when you are as messy as me. It was fantastic meeting up with my American friends and to have the opportunity to paint with them. As well as meeting Skip Whitcomb, George Strickland, Ken Bachaus, John Budicin and Don Demers that I already know I got to meet and make friends with Stuart Fullerton, Steve Curry, Mark Rittorno, Ray Roberts and Christopher Blossom. It was very interesting to see everybodies different kit and approach , especially choice of subject matter. As usual the week went far to quickly but hopefully this will now be an annual event. Not necessarily in Maine but at different locations throughout the States. Anyway below Ive posted some images of my work and painting friends. I didnt do as much painting as I ordinarily would have as we also spent alot of time sightseeing, eating, drinking and talking :-)
Before the rain, East Boothbay 12 x16
Boat House East Boothbay 12 x 12
Another boat House 12 x 12
Afternoon light Boothbay Harbour 8 x 16
George Strickland, Cosy Harbour
Wet day Ocean Point boothebay 8 x 10
Add captionohn Budicin at Pemaquid Rocks, with Chris Daynes, Skip Whitcomb and George Strickland
Ken Backhaus at Cosy Harbour.
Late Afternoon Light Cosy Harbour 8 x 16
Mark Rittorno at Pemaquid

Morning light, King Phillips Trail, Boothbay 12 x 16

Parked up by the rocks on Southport Island 8 x 10

Towards Monhegan Island 8 x 10

A great new friend..Stuart Fullerton

Cosy harbour fishermans huts 12 x 12

Lobster boat 8 x 10
Pemaquid Rocks 12 x 16
Skip Whitcombs painting of Pemaquid Rocks
Skip at work