Saturday, 13 August 2016

Safe as houses...

Well, OK, this en plein air sketch of some of the lovely cottages at Sandsend near Whitby is probably a bit safe. 

Lets face it though, there is nothing wrong with a bit of 'proper' drawing one in a fact, its good for the soul and good in many other ways too showing my students from Cober Hill near Scarborough solid techniques in draftsmanship, perspective, tone and more on which to base further abstract work in the studio.

This mixed drawing has been created on Canson Moulin du Roy 300gsm (140lb) not watercolour paper - a paper with a very unique surface quality unlike any other. With just the right amount of surface texture (not too heavily grained or textured nor too smooth not to adhere pastel or 'soft' drawing media to the surface) the paper once again proves how versatile it is for detailed work too.

Marker pens have been used during the creative process too. See if you can spot where they have been used.

You can try these techniques for yourself at Cober Hill with me. I have a great art holiday planned for October this year (just 6 places left now) and another two choices for 2017 if you cannot make the October '16 holiday.

I look forward to exploring the East Yorkshire Coast with you...and teaching you lots of painting and drawing techniques too at great locations and in the Cober Hill studio too.

For further details visit

Featured drawing
'Cottages at Sandsend, near Whitby'
Mixed media black and white on Canson Moulin du Roy 300gsm (140lb) 'not' watercolour paper
20 x 20 inches (51 x 51cm)

Make it a mixed media moorland!

Ahh...the good ol' Yorkshire Moors! 

I'm compelled to paint their wild beauty...except this time this was created indoors for a wonderful art group in Cheshire at the start of the week, and a good way to start it too!

A wonderful workshop teaching an Maple Lodge Art Group lots and lots of mixed media techniques using Acrylic Inks (to include metallics), combining Watercolour, Gouache and Pastel all in the same painting. 

Here are some close ups to show all those wonderful layering techniques on Canson Moulin du Roy 300gsm (140lb) 100% rag content watercolour paper - such a fab responsive paper that everyone just took too!

A great day had by all with great work created by all who came...I even made a good start myself!

Hope to be back again in the future. Thanks again Maple Lodge!

Finally finished...

At long last I've managed to find a gap amongst all my art endeavours for some real 'creative space' and finish this one off.

Started as a demo pastel painting using Unison colour pastels on the Canson stand at Patchings Art Centre near Nottingham earlier in the year (more about that by following this link, it felt great to put those finishing marks to the pastel painting and present it for sale.

If you like it and want it then get in touch! offered at a great price of £300 mounted.
(We can sort out the delivery between us - the easy and usual way I do things for you).

Interested? Contact me on 0113 2252381 (studio) or email

I look forward to hearing from you!

Featured painting
'The Gannets are back!'
Bempton cliffs, East Yorkshire Coast
Pastel on Canson Mi-Tientes 'Touch' 350gsm pastel paper
Painting: 21.5 X 18.5 inches (55cm x 47cm)

Original pastel painting mounted - £300 VAT inclusive 

A breath of creative fresh air...

A sketch at a favourite location of mine high above Grosmont in the North York Moors National Park.

Took my students there from Cober Hill whilst on a weeks residential sketching and painting holiday last year near Scarborough before dropping down to the lovely 'steam train' village for a nice cup of tea and a cake with everyone! 

I love the speed and simplicity of using marker pens with a dash of watercolour - you can quickly visually interpret so much in rapid time in a really relaxing way with no added pressure and just enjoy the physicality of drawing in colour directly in the landscape - fab!

To be featured in 'The Artist' magazine (December '16) issue with a focussed article all about the joys of using marker pens in a bold and direct way to improve your colour awareness and drawing skills.

Come and join me for the next art holiday at Cober Hill sketching along the Yorkshire Heritage Coast - it's going to be fab!

Further details here:

(6 places now only remaining!)

Featured sketch
Autumn Landscape above Grosmont, North York Moors.

Marker pen, Gouache and Watercolour on Arches 300gsm 140lb 'not' watercolour paper hardback sketching album. (Bought from The Royal Academy with a nice ribbon fastener too!)