Three sketches, 12th May, 2018

A day of early morning spring sunshine followed by heavy showers and dramatic clouds at sunset.


Plein air, oil on board apprx. 15  x 20 cm

6.30 am


Plein air, oil on board apprx. 15  x 20 cm

2.40 pm


Plein air, oil on board apprx. 15  x 20 cm

8.40 pm


Moonset, 30th April 2018, 5.50am

Plein air, oil on board apprx. 15  x 20 cm

For a few months in spring and autumn the Moon, just after full, sets over the ocean overlooking the cape a little before the first light of the rising sun touches the landscape.  In the 15 minutes or so after completing this sketch, scattered, ragged-edged clouds came up from the south and caught the light of the sun, the colours running quickly up the spectrum from red to orange to yellow through to creamy white, the light mirrored in the ocean while bathing the shadowed landscape in subtle, warm, shades. A morning to be long remembered.

Waves at dusk, April 18th, 2018, 8.30pm

Plein air, apprx. 20 x 15cm

After a lengthy spell of poor weather, the jet stream has shifted again and we have had some fine ( if windy! ) days once the fog lifts in the afternoons. Rather unusually for this coastline and time of year easterly and southerly gales have generated nice waves at Porth Nanven, the cliffs providing shelter from the high winds. Making my way back after sunset, a beautiful crescent Moon with earthshine, Venus and the setting winter constellations marked my return home accompanied by the first bats to emerge from hibernation, flitting past in near silence as they hunted for insects in the falling darkness.

Snow at the Cape, 28th February, 2018, 3.50pm

Plein air, oil on board apprx. 15  x 20 cm

It’s been almost 10 years since the last significant fall of snow this far west, this latest fall rather heavier than the last and extending right down to the shoreline. I was reminded again what a fascinating subject snow is to depict and how difficult it is to paint, the subtle shifts in colour temperature in areas receiving sunlight and those in the shade picking up reflected light and skylight, seem to change with each glance. Drifting powder snow, blown from the fields across the valley in the strong blustery wind would partially obscure the view making for challenging painting conditions.