Another Day Outside

It’s Friday again! Although, as I write this, it is raining once more – truly an unusual event for our coastline – this morning was pretty perfect for sitting outside and drawing.

If you remember, my post last Friday was of visiting our en plein air location in the pouring rain. I ran around and took reference photos then retreated to the dry interior of my vehicle. Today, being much nicer weather, brought quite a parade of visitors to our painting spot.

Mermaid Cove access ramp and artists

Mermaid Cove is named for a divers’ attraction. A mermaid stands up from the floor of the ocean about 50 feet below the surface. A concrete ramp leads down into the water, which I presume the divers use, and which no doubt works well for wheelchairs, too.

Two of my colleagues chose the ramp as a setup place for their work. Their view along the jagged coastline was beautiful.

For me, I went to a spot I had found last week and narrowed down the view considerably to just include a bit of island, headland and rocks. I am still on a mission to “master” rocks.

I am not sure whether you can tell, but there is a person in the photo. In fact, there were lots of people. This is one of the “joys” of painting in public outdoor spaces. Within 10 minutes of setting up, children were everywhere. An inflatable made its way into the water with kids inside, rowing out to the marker buoy above the mermaid. Their delightful banter and excitement was quite lovely company. They were good at finding snakes – there were a few basking in the warmth – and crabs and starfish.

Anyway, I quickly sketched out a thumbnail to make sure I wanted to spend a few hours on the scene, then drew it out on the Strathmore 400 mixed media card I used once before. Using the Promarkers, I set about mapping tones as best I could. These granite rocks are ideal for drawing, but they are difficult to get right with colour. If I did this again, I would not use the salmon colour on the rocks as it stands out too much from the rest of the scene – in fact, that’s all I see when I look at this. But, with pens there is no going back. I might grey over it to dull it down. I am getting more used to the Promarkers and like them for these short, small creations.

Have you been out yet to sketch/draw/paint a local scene? If so, feel free to post the image on The Artists’ Journey Facebook page.