Friday, July 16, 2010


I'll mostly remember this place along the California coastline for the 11 Sea Otters we saw there floating amongst the kelp. Also there were seals, gulls, cormorants, pelicans and guillemots etc - a real wildlife bounty! The seas were crystal clear taking on an emerald colour close to the beach and becoming a darker cobalt blue further out. Unbelievable weather and amazing views led to a perfect day. I completed this study back in the studio trying to capture my thoughts and feelings remembered from that day. Initially I thought I'd do a quick study but the painting turned out a little more than that - I was still working on it a week later! I just couldn't help myself as I really wanted to capture what I had seen there and I enjoyed working on the intricacies of the rocks as well as that beautiful water. Painted on a gessoed board, I'll most likely do a larger version later on canvas. Size is 8" X 8".

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


Keeping with the seaside theme for the time being, this is another small study I recently finished. There was something special about the light and texture of these rocks which I wanted to try and capture. I found the scene most attractive with different patterns that they formed along with the gentle swell of the sea. This oil was done on a 5" X 7" gesso-primed board (as was Coastal Mist posted earlier) - a surface I am not entirely happy with. Perhaps it is just a matter of getting used to the smoother surface - this should come I suppose as I spend more time using them. In the past I mostly used canvas for my oils but the other day I remembered that I had some smooth un-primed canvas stashed away somewhere and thought that it was time to get it out, slop on a couple of coats of gesso and use it for smaller studies. Well I did find the canvas along with some un-primed linen - Hmmm... Thinking back a few years ago, I remember doing a few paintings on linen but for some reason didn't keep at it so along with priming the canvas, I did a few small pieces of linen at the same time. Well, to make along story short, the resulting work completed on that linen board was all that I could have asked for in a painting surface! And the painting came out great too! I was very happy with how the paint laid on the surface and will definitely be using more of it. I'll show you that painting sometime soon when I get through posting the rest of the earlier studies I did from California.

Saturday, July 10, 2010


Since returning back to the studio, I have suddenly become very busy and have not had much of a chance to post new work. Well, here is the first of several new paintings. Visiting the SanFrancisco area was one of the best trips I have taken recently in the US and was very inspiring. It truly is a beautiful city and now I can see why so many artists have painted there, with its luminescent views across the bay and interesting streets, there is so much subject matter. I'm sure that I'll be doing a lot more painting and although we weren't there for that long, I feel that I did managed to absorb much of the landscape in and around the bay including that unique western light. I'll write more about the trip in due course but for now I wanted to show this small study I did from a view along the coast just south of the city. Using a small gessoed panel, the painting was done alla prima and captures the lifting mist as the fog clears from the bay. I was intrigued by the way the lower landscape was becoming clearer while the top of the cliff and trees were still in mist and barely visible. I may do a larger version of this one but for now, it stands alone as a finished work. Size is 5"X7".