A Pair of Sailors

Eighteen months ago, was it really 18 months ago, I posted here about some of my early attempts at painting and what was my first attempt at a style in which to paint, having well and truly decided that I was never going to be satisfied with my attempts at painting realistically.  Since then I have dabbled with various degrees of success acceptance.

While we were on holiday back in April on the Isle of Lewis there were two things which I wanted to capture, the incredible colours of the hillside, and sun rise/set, is that really three?  Any way, I tried a couple of things while away and was majorly disappointed, the picture in my head wasn’t the one which ended up on the paper.  Despite painting quite a bit when we were away I was so disheartened that upon my return every time I thought of picking up a paint brush the thought of more disappointment took away any enjoyment and stopped me.  Then two things happened.

Firstly I discovered Canvas boards, not the box frame things but boards covered in canvas, I really like working on them suddenly things I had been attempting worked, the second was colour.  Those who know me in real life know I am not afraid of a bit of colour and it wasn’t really an issue in my painting either, except and until those sun sets, sun rises and hillsides.  The splashes of bright yellows, oranges, lime greens in hillsides, the greens and purples in skies, the pinks and lemons in the sea, all looked out of place when I dabbed on the paint, when I piled on the paint, when I did anything with the paint, it just wasn’t working.  Then I suddenly one day everything came together, well I say one day, it actually took over three weeks to produce the picture now known as ‘Sailors Delight’ to the right below and probably even longer to produce ‘Sailors Warning’ on the left.  I know that they are no Turner’s but these pictures are the first I have been truly happy with indeed I was happy enough with them to fork out real money and get them framed.

a pair of sailors

The strange thing about all this is, I don’t like the photograph, I have spent days on and off trying to photograph them in the right light so they look like they do in real life but have finally decided to give up.  Maybe with these two pictures some kind of threshold has been discovered, I used to photograph things because I couldn’t capture them in paint or pencil, now I can’t capture the paint in a photograph.  Indeed I am happy enough with them to go public with them and they will be appearing along with some other of my dabblings and many others art work in All Saints Art Show, tonight and tomorrow morning.


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