HELE BAY

HELE BAY painted on a canvas panel 500 x 250mm, using some pigments sourced at Fremington Quay. I am presently working on smaller scale pictures to keep my enthusiasm whilst planning larger compositions which move away from my usual landscape work. Hele is a favourite place of ours to search for seaglass and is a short pleasurable walk along the coast from Ilfracombe Harbour. There is free parking here and is a great place to sit in the sun or explore the rock pools.

PIGMENTS FROM ROCK TO BLACK

I’ve spent an interesting afternoon looking through the rock strata at Fremington Quay. I’ve collected Bideford Black from Greencliff at Abbotsham and used the blackish colour called Poor Man’s Coal from here at Fremington too. A renowned pigment artist called Peter Ward mentions that there are other distinct colours to collect here too, namely, Yellow Ochre, Burnt Umber, White Clay and Grey. On inspection these pigments are quite evident here so after collecting some samples I will prepare them for future painting projects. Below is a link to an interesting article by Peter Ward.

LESSON PREPERATIONS

An afternoon of running through lesson ideas in the use of Bideford Black and paint application techniques with Adrian Beasley. Adrian used assorted brushes, rags, scalpels and spattering techniques to produce these two wonderful images of the boardwalk at Crow Point. The subject is a particular favourite of mine but in a few weeks with other students other ideas and compositions will be explored with regard to Westward Ho, pebbles and beachscapes in both black and white photography and paint.

JUST A PERFECT DAY

We spent a warm sunny day celebrating our 35th wedding anniversary and as Lou Reed sang it was Just a perfect day. First we visited Tapely Park where an old vintage sale was underway, we had cream tea under the sun and looked around the many stalls there. Later in the day we had dinner at the Boathouse in Instow and watched the sunsetting over Appledore. Once the sun had disappeared into the sea we walked the beach in the warmth and enjoyed the last Bank Holiday of the year! Al

THE BLACK ARTS RETURN

I’m pleased to be part of another Black Art’s project organised by photographer Adrian Beasley. This residential course will run from the 12th to the 16th September and will be based in North Devon. The project will feature the following artists.

Adrian Beasley who will be based at Hartland Quay featuring landscape photography and computer enhancement of images.
Stephen Raff, will be taking students through the wet plate photographic process and creating glass plate images.
Al Brown will show how to make and use the local Bideford Black pigment and use it to create landscape paintings of the North Devon coast.

These few days should prove to be an exciting challenge to create memorable black and white images of North Devon. There are still a few places left! Al

LEE BAY

A smaller composition 10 x 20″ just to keep my motivation going whilst I plan my latest large scale project! Image painted from a recent visit to Lee Bay with my wife for a glass hunting forage. My wife Donna makes sea glass jewellery under the name Flotsam & Then Some! We had the usual beer and lunch at The Grampus pub then ventured onto Sandy Cove, for a rare afternoon we had the beach to ourselves and we felt like we were on a deserted island.

SEAGLASS HUNTING

Another visit to Lee Bay in North Devon in search of seaglass, known locally as Mermaid’s Tears. First a very enjoyable lunch at The Grampus pub consisting of ploughman’s lunches washed down with their own brewed ale then on to Sandy Cove. Once there we discovered that we had the beach to ourselves and we made the most of the situation by searching amongst the rocks and crevices. The climb back up the steep cliff steps was rewarded with a fabulous panorama of the North Devon Coast and on the walk back sloe berries were already on the trees lining the pathway waiting for the gin makers harvest.

MULLION COVE

An hour of getting rid of the blank white canvas and laying out the basic tones and colours for this painting. It’s been quite a while, for various reasons, since I daubed paint on canvas so this initial start should commit me to action.
We loved our stay here a few weeks ago and the coastline along this particular part of the Cornish coast is stunning. I sat sketching the sea from ontop a cliff here and watched a sailing ship weight anchor and it’s small boat venture into Mullion Harbour over the crystal clear turquoise water.
The final acrylic painting is 24 x 30″ on canvas please note that the colours are not as the original painting! Al