This was very interesting, because I struggled mightily to add expression using charcoal. The tutor gave me a pot of ink and said try this, which I did, and hated it. I tried to wipe it all off which gave me a grey smudge of a drawing, but in literally the last minute of the post I scraped my soft charcoal lines into the mess and it turned out rather well I think 🙂



We were supposed to be using expressionist techniques to add emotion to our drawings. I found I’m not very expressionistic or emotional in my attempts but the model, Sue. was lovely to draw.

Our last day in Lanzarote with time to kill. I randomly chose a little village in the middle of nowhere hoping there would be a quiet spot to paint. I was rewarded with the very pretty church although Sandra got a bit bored after a couple of hours waiting for me to finished. So its a nearly finished painting.

The sea was very rough and I wasn’t sure how to capture the look of the waves washing round the rocks. I ended up with a rather japanesey looking style but quite pleased I had done something out of character!


This  is my first attempt at recession and hills. As this was from a camping holiday in 2008, it was done from a photo I took at the time.  I’ve tried to keep to a limited palette and started off by giving the whole painting a wash of naples yellow with some raw sienna thrown in for variation.  Then it was onto the scary/exciting bit of putting in various washes of naples yellow mixed with varying amounts of French Ultramarine and Burnt Umber on the castle walls.

DSC01820I’ve got a soft spot for Hastings and its pier.  I’ve been there several times this year, but never been able to paint it there and then.  The person with me has not been amenable to sitting around watching “paint dry”. Fair enough.  I obviously need a solo trip. Anyway, this is the old pier from a photo at low tide.  I’m fairly pleased with it, especially the glassy reflections, but the sea on the left could do with something – I just don’t know what.


Started the class drawing with my left hand, which was a revelation – did better drawing with my left hand than my right. Then tried to carry through the freedom into my watercolour sketch, which worked well. The tutor was very good encouraging me to keep it loose and use only 3 colours. My scanner won’t work unless it has ink in it, so I’m afraid it’s another poor phone photo.IMG_20171003_152433970-2

Painted on our last day. I deliberately reverted to a more realistic view. Again the circumstances of the painting were unusual. It was very hot and windy on the beach. I painted this standing up holding the pad and the palette in one hand constantly fighting the wind which kept flipping the pages. I had nearly ‘finished’ when I was summoned to the cafe for lunch, so I may add some extra touches.

Pluses – looks quite like the view

Minuses – I couldn’t get the tone / colour of the big background tree correct and it went from quite pale to quite dark and overworked. The hills in the distance were very dark where they were in cloud shadow and very light in the sun. I couldn’t capture that without risking spoiling completely.


Have re-uploaded a better scan of this pic.

Here’s another one. It’s not a very good photo of the painting. This time I only used a fat brush and tried to paint quickly without worrying if shapes were right. The colours came out a bit too bright!

This was my going mad attempt from real life. I used almost any colours I had to hand which I thought had the right tonal values. I was surprised it retained some semblance of reality.

I will post photo I took of scene when I get back .

Some aspects of this I quite like and I think there is something I could work on.

Here is the reference photo taken after i finished – the shadows are darker and longer.



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