Tuesday 11 October 2016

Coastal Creativity at Cober Hill

Now that's what I call charcoal! No other company creates charcoal this size and of this fine quality like Nitram Charcoal from Canada do! 
I've just returned from a fabulous weeks teaching 14 enthusiastic students at the wonderful venue of Cober Hill, Cloughton near Scarborough recently on the Yorkshire East Coast.

A truly inspirational week sharing lots of quality time together getting to know one another and creating mixed media paintings together. 

Fun in the studio at Cober Hill on our mixed media art holiday together

Being receptive to new ideas the work everyone created on a regular and daily basis was an absolute joy to guide everyone through each stage to create some wonderful paintings.

Relaxing outdoors in the Autumn sunshine at Cober Hill - a well earned break for all the great mixed media paintings created in the studio!
Not only did we have some great times in the bright conservatory studio at Cober Hill, but with glorious weather all week (especially on our two painting days we went out) being kind to us, our field trips paintings and sketching outdoors was a rewarding experience for all.

On the moors overlooking Whitby sketching and painting - a great mornings work ladies!

With an acrylic moor and coast painting theme for our art week, the wonderful North York Moors National park close to Cober Hill was a real inspiration. 

Our field trips painting at Robin Hoods Bay in full sun with the tide out was fantastic. There was a painting view just about everywhere!

Crisp light and detail means using a sharp charcoal stick. Nothing better than using the Nitram sharpening block to prepare everything the night before so no time is wasted out in the field

Demonstration mixed media painting at Robin Hoods Bay. A great morning for everyone sketching in this beautiful location close to Cober Hill
Explaining why and what I'm using to help create my expressive mixed media painting to include Nitram Charcoal drawing tools and charcoal

Explaining the importance of clean water for water media techniques to include using Quink ink (black) and acrylic ink (black and white and metallic colours).

Making a start with Nitram Charcoal on Canson Moulin du Roy 300gsm (140lb) 'rough' 100% rag content watercolour paper

The beautiful scenic low tide view at Robin Hoods Bay many chose to paint too

Again on another day during the week we took a trip to a vantage point overlooking the village of Sleights, the valley of Iburndale and the village of Ugglebarnby to distant Whitby to sketch and paint too.

Sketching on the moors above Whitby - a fabulous and rewarding experience for everyone!
I got the chance to demonstrate how working outdoors directly in front of the subject helps create paintings and studies full of energy, vigour and life. By choosing to work with different black and white media to include Nitram charcoal (a really superior high grade charcoal from Canada) on each occasion on Canson Moulin du roy 300gsm (140lb) not and rough 100% rag content watercolour papers, students could see the merits of choosing such versatile papers to work on for different approaches to mixed media landscape painting.

Mornings demonstration painting using mixed media to include Nitram Charcoal from Canada, Derwent XL Blocks charcoal (black and white), pastels and inks. Drawing really is good for the soul, especially with a view like this!

The week flew by but we made every minute of it by packing lots into the week to include quality studio painting time, field trips, evening demonstrations and of course evening get togethers amongst friends.

Celebrating a wonderful weeks painting together - come join the party next year!

I'm really looking forward to coming back next year to teach lots more exciting mixed media painting techniques on my two planned holidays at Cober Hill.

This time we will be using watercolour, gouache, soft pastel and acrylic inks to create some more fabulous paintings along the Heritage Coast of East Yorkshire to visit the pretty villages of Sandsend near Whitby and Staithes a little further along the coast, to name but a few.

For further details of next years painting adventures at Cober Hill along the East Coast visit

Canson Moulin du Roy 100% rag content watercolour papers and Nitram Charcoal from Canada available from https://www.jacksonsart.com/


  1. What a great and productive time you all had, we look forward to welcoming you back! :)

  2. Delighted! The continual improvements you are all making 'ploughing the money back in' to Cober Hill everyone notices and loves! See you all in March for another successful art holiday at Cober hill!

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