Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Paradise in Overstrand

Life has been pretty busy lately so it's nice to finally post a finished painting!  This is a studio piece that I started earlier in the year and finished today.  Unbelievably the only studio piece I've completed all year (it wasn't touched for months).  The rest of my work was completed outdoors which is something I love and will continue but perhaps I should make more studio work too...  

Norfolk isn't all about grey skies and mist, there are times when it looks like paradise!  When the tide glides in over the wet and flat sand the reflections are mirror like.  If you know Overstrand you will see that you are on the East side.  As you look ahead you can see rocks piled up as sea defence, below where the Overstrand Hotel once stood. Above those is a little footpath up to top where you can see Pete's stargazing hut.  From there down is also the slope to the promenade.  Well, feels like paradise to me!

Paradise in Overstrand oil on board 48cm x 48cm ©Tanya Pawsey 2016

Thursday, 20 October 2016

Another Win at Paint Out!

I took part in the Paint Out Norwich Core competition on Monday and Tuesday, completing two paintings per day, each within three hours.  Monday morning was glorious, and feeling tired, I headed for a tranquil spot by the river in my favourite part of the City.  I had planned to paint Pull's Ferry, but after viewing it from both sides of the river I felt uninspired.  Instead, I opted for the serene vista from Bishop's Bridge, the only remaining medieval bridge in Norwich.  I felt joyous in my sublime workplace as suits rushed past behind and was captivated by the challenge before me.  I was delighted when  a game of swans carved the surface water and hurried to capture them. A fellow competition artist, Paul Alcock, came to paint from the side of the bridge and I was thrilled when I saw the finished piece as he had painted me, painting on the bridge!

Swans From Bishop's Bridge, oil on board 10 x 12 inches
Paul Alcock's painting showing me on the bridge
 Feeling more alert and brave, I went into the City centre for the afternoon to look for a spot on the market.  I was lured by the contre jour vista of  flags, canopy and banners glowing in the light, against the dark mass of buildings behind.  Many people stopped to take a look including the owner of the Ice Cream Parlour (shown in his pink apron) who expressed a keen interest in buying my piece from the exhibition.

Ice Cream on the Market, oil on board 10 x 12 inches
It rained the following morning so I took shelter painting the Cathedral Cloisters.  When I began the painting an orange glow shone over the door but the lights were soon turned off.  The afternoon was clear and bright and I went to check out what is widely claimed to be the oldest pub in the City, The Adam and Eve.  The pretty pub and garden were in complete shade and I was put off by the flat wall of tone.  As I walked away I was taken by the striking silhouette of the Cathedral tower and interesting walls and chimneys. I was by a churchyard so I climbed over the wall and set up.  I thought another Cathedral scene would be fitting for the exhibition at the Hostry Festival.

Painting The Cloisters. 
Norwich Skyline oil on board 10 x 12 inches.  This piece was submitted to the Silent Auction.

Last night was the Gala Evening at the Cathedral Hostry, this was the exhibition opening, silent auction and awards ceremony.  I was awarded a Judges Commendation cheque for £100 by Sue Grayson Ford for my favourite piece from the competition, Swans from Bishop's Bridge.  I relished my moment of glory as my work was critiqued and praised by the judges.  David Curtis telling me he'd considered choosing my piece for his commendation has to be the highlight of my career so far!  
My work exhibited in the Oils Category
Receiving my award from Sue Grayson Ford
The winning artists.
With the incredibly talented David Curtis ROI, RSMA,
Paint Out has been such an enriching experience for me that I would thoroughly recommend it to other aspiring artists.  I've learnt a lot from watching others tackle the challenges of plein air painting and look forward to taking part next year.  

Tuesday, 11 October 2016

I'm in the IEA Open Exhibition!

I'd love to become a member of the Institute of East Anglian Artists so I submitted a couple of plein air paintings to test the water and one was accepted!  The oil painting below titled Overstrand #3 will be exhibited at The Picturecraft Gallery Holt Friday 14th October to Tuesday 25th October.  

Sunday, 18 September 2016

I'm a Winner at Paint Out Wells!

Took my time getting to the sunrise session as there was no sun forecast.  Arrived at about 7.45 knowing I had to submit a piece before brunch at 10.30.  I was gutted when I found the car park toilets locked on arrival as I had no time to find an alternative place to 'go'.  When I got to the quayside I saw that many artists had been working for some time and began to feel a little worried.  The sun had began creeping through the clouds so I headed east to find a contre jour vista.  I began to sketch the composition in when the sun shone so brightly that I felt compelled to capture the light on the water.  I soon realized that I had sketched in more than I felt I had time to paint and also that I'd find great difficulty in painting the dark of the water around the highlights.  Determined to submit a piece, I started a new one but zoomed in on the view and got the dark of the water in first.  I'm still struggling with my process of painting and spent a while switching pieces trying to decide which was best to go with but stuck with the second.  At 9.45 it began to spit with rain  which does not bode well when painting in water mixable oils.  After checking the forecast and watching the sky brighten during my journey, I'd decided to leave my umbrella (which I'd purposely bought for this event) in the car!  Thankfully I'd kept the painting simple so I quickly put in the final strokes and left.  When I got back to our hub at Congregational Hall I took out my painting and decided that despite the difficulties I liked this piece the best.  

The sun came out to greet us at the Buttlands and we all felt hopeful of some sales.  I wanted to paint on the green to gain attention to the exhibition but felt uninspired.  I settled on a view of my new friend Jennifer Sendall, painting under the shade of a tree, but as the sun disappeared as did my enthusiasm.  I gave the piece to Jen and packed up so that I could watch others work.  Shortly after, we were called in for the prize awards.  Brian Korteling won a much much deserved third prize then it was announced that I'd won the second prize of £500 for the piece I painted this morning!  It was no surprise that Alfie Carpenter won first prize as his work is amazing and all pieces had sold.  I'm over the moon that I've won a prize as I was already buzzing with pride at having the courage to take part.  I've won new friends, encouragement, inspiration and funds to invest into new equipment!  So thankful to everyone involved in the running of Paint Out and looking forward to Norwich next month.
Dancing Boats, Wells oil on board 10" x 12" ©Tanya Pawsey

Brunch on the Albatros with Jennifer Sendall, Eloise O'Hare and Christina Sabberton

Mary Brady and Michael Richardson

setting up

exhibition on the Buttlands

My prize!

Saturday, 17 September 2016

Paint Out Wells

Had a great time taking part in my first competition! Met some lovely people and completed two paint out sessions in Brancaster Staithe and Wells.  I'm keeping this short and sweet as I'm up at the break of dawn to return to Wells quayside for a morning paint out before brunch with the Paint Out Wells team on the Albatros!  All works from the weekend will be exhibited on the Buttlands tomorrow afternoon, during which, we'll be painting our final session.  

Brancaster Staithe oil on board 10" x 12" ©Tanya Pawsey

From the Huts, Wells oil on board 10"x 12" ©Tanya Pawsey

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

Paddling Seagulls, Cromer

I sold another painting at the Garden House Gallery yesterday and as I was there to collect my earnings I thought I'd paint on Cromer beach.  I felt inspired by the fishing boats and tractors and the view of the town and pier, but as I had little time I set myself a less ambitious subject.  It was a bright yet hazy day and I was drawn to the brilliant colours of the water and the white gulls paddling.  I'm going to return to Cromer more often and further afield on Friday when I take part in Paint Out Wells.

The forecast was a sweltering twenty-six degrees and I  regretted donning my skinny black jeans.  Yesterday was a scorcher but I got the shivers painting in my vest, shorts and flip flops.  It's best to set out in minimal clothing and carry as many layers as possible.  Lately I've been wearing cut off denim shorts and a vest and carrying a selection of the following: a loose pair of linen trousers, a pair of loose wind and waterproof trousers, long sleeved T shirt, fleece gillet, fleece long sleeved top and lightweight wind and waterproof jacket.

Paddling Seagulls, Cromer oil on canvas 10 x 12 inches ©Tanya Pawsey 2016

Tuesday, 13 September 2016

Overstrand #5

Felt a little rusty today as I hadn't painted during the school Summer holiday.  I've run out of palette paper and have tried mixing on my wooden pochade palette a couple of times.  I think I should have cleaned it well the previous time as mixing colour over stains of another was not easy.  I'm out to buy a new palette pad in the morning! 
Overstrand #5 oil on board 10" x 12", ©Tanya Pawsey 2016

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

Ruby Tuesday, Overstrand

The red beach hut in the foreground is my favourite here in Overstrand and it's named Ruby Tuesday.  I sketched it in a couple of weeks ago and have been waiting for sun at the right time of day to paint it.  I had previously gone to paint it early in the morning but with the sun shining directly at it, it was too bright with little contrast.  I was glad when I saw the hut being used, and the owner who was there with family, came over to see me.  He told me that he was an architect and had designed the hut.  When I asked if he was a Rolling Stones fan, he said that he and his wife got the hut to celebrate their ruby wedding anniversary and that their children had come up with the name.  Now I love that hut even more!

I had many people stop to chat today including a couple of  local artists and although it's terribly distracting I really enjoyed it!  I was glad to have business cards with me as it helps cut conversations shorter but wished I'd taken more as the handful I'd taken ran out. It was quite a struggle in the glaring hot sun and blustery wind.  I arrived in vest and shorts and left in trousers, shirt and windproof coat.  I keep loose clothing in my bag so that I can layer up if I'm getting burnt or cold.  

Ruby Tuesday, Overstrand oil on board 10" x 12" ©Tanya Pawsey 2016

Wednesday, 13 July 2016

No.30 Overstrand Promenade

I completed this painting over two days, the first was spent sketching which took a couple of hours, the second a few hours of painting in.  I made the sketch a couple of weeks ago and have been waiting to get over a cold and for the sun to shine on my day off work - oh the great British Summertime!  It was certainly sunny but hard to keep a steady hand with a gusty wind blowing and my bouts of coughing!  No.30 in the foreground belongs to some friends I've made in the village.

No.30 Overstrand Promenade oil on board 10"x 12" ©Tanya Pawsey

Sketch completed in the first sitting.

Friday, 24 June 2016

Magical Morning

After waking up to a frenzy of bullsh**t over the EU, it felt so good to leave the media at home and head out to the beach.  I felt thankful for my freedom and quality of life as I watched the sunlight dance upon the waves.  

Magical Morning oil on board 10 x 12 inch ©Tanya Pawsey

Wednesday, 22 June 2016

Jayne Marie #2

It was a lovely morning so I set out to get a quick painting in before work.  Tide was high so I decided to paint the fishing boats lined up along the promenade.  The last time I painted this scene I completed it in two sittings over two days.  It was quite a challenge to complete it in a couple of hours due to the complex drawing involved.   It started to spit with rain the moment I'd finished!

Jayne Marie #2 oil on board 10" x 12". ©Tanya Pawsey 2016

Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Overstrand #4

Summer is finally here!  I was comfortable in shorts and a vest for the first time this year but not so comfortable now that I'm sun-burnt.  It struck me that the beach pretty much looks the same in all seasons - very different to the landscape.  The cliffs no longer cast a mass of shadow which I prefer, and there are more people about which I'm not so sure about.  A few crossed my path but I didn't want to add them.  Generally I prefer landscapes without figures but I'm starting to warm to the idea of adding them.  I arrived just as the tide began to recede so I wanted to capture the streams at the foot of the promenade before they vanished.  They are evaporating more quickly now and I don't remember seeing them at all when I moved here last August. 

Overstrand #4 10" x 12" oil on board. ©Tanya Pawsey 2016

Wednesday, 8 June 2016

From Cromer Pier #1

As I'm exhibiting in the Garden House Gallery in Cromer I thought I'd paint nearby in a hope to drum up business.  I've spent the last couple of days painting on the pier and have attracted many admirers, most of whom I've told about the exhibition.  Today I had a class of school children beside me who were out sketching, and although they didn't approach me I hoped I might be an inspiration to any aspiring artists amongst them.  

Only got a couple of hours in yesterday as I'd braved the Summer wear and the cold wind got the better of me.  The second image shows how far I'd got and I quite like it for it's simplicity but felt it needed more.  I found it a real challenge to finish it today as although I'd returned at the same time of day the light was completely different.  Yesterday it was bright and sunny but today was overcast and misty.  I had sketched in the shadow areas on the first day but it still left me a little baffled.  What I like most about this piece is how the seagulls appear white against the land and black against the sky.

From Cromer Pier #1  oil on board 10"x 12" ©Tanya Pawsey 2016

Friday, 27 May 2016

Norfolk and Norwich Open Studios Exhibition

The Garden House Gallery and Shop in Cromer has invited me to exhibit during Open Studios.  My work will be exhibited as part of the Cromer Art Trail from 28th May to 12th June.  I'm not officially listed with this trail so the link to my work is under Brian Wienle - click here for more details.  Just been to the gallery to deliver my paintings and one was put in the window.  It's on the easel, bottom left of the window.

Tuesday, 24 May 2016

Never Settle for "That'll do".

A couple of weeks ago I was walking the footpath to Northrepps and was amazed by the vast spread of bluebells.  Today I went back to capture them but was disappointed by the extent to which they'd withered.  I could no longer look out to rolling slopes of blue as many ferns had sprouted up and over the flowers.  It seemed the best of what was left could be found within the shade of the woods so I paced about for ages trying to find a good viewpoint.  The sun broke through the clouds in a couple of flashes which gave an interesting dappled light, but for most of the time I was in complete shade.  The ground was very uneven and it was so difficult to find a comfortable place to stand that I settled for a "that'll do". I was so determined to paint what I'd set out for that I risked painting a scene that I found uninspiring.  As suspected a boring subject resulted in a boring painting and I wiped it off.  I hadn't noticed that I'd placed my tin of paints down onto bird poo and spread it to the contents of my bag whilst packing up.  You win some, you lose some, but to win more, trust your instinct!

Didn't cut the mustard!

Tuesday, 17 May 2016

Overstrand #3

I set out to paint more beach huts today but was captivated by the beauty of the beach at low tide.  Facing the sun, I was drawn to the contrast of tones and found interest in the structure of the groyne and the reflections in the streams.  At one point I was surrounded by children and staff from Langham Primary School, admiring my work as they passed.  They were so sweet and complimentary, it really made my day.

Overstrand #3 oil on board 10"x 12" ©Tanya Pawsey 2016

Thursday, 12 May 2016

Beach Huts Overstrand #1

I started this painting yesterday morning and was attracted to the bright colours of the huts glowing in the sun light.  I also chose this view as it includes the promenade - a prominent feature of Overstrand.  I got a couple of hours in before the sky became overcast and I decided to finish off the next morning.  The sun shone bright today, so I managed to finish it off in another couple of hours.  The tide rose higher as I painted and waves crashed beside me, high above my head.  I realised that I was in a very risky spot when a wave splashed across the promenade onto the ground before me.  If that had have happened over me, my painting would be gone!  

Beach Huts Overstrand #1 oil on board 10" x 12" ©Tanya Pawsey 2016

The puddle of the wave that almost got me!

Thursday, 5 May 2016

My First Gallery Exhibition!

I've been invited to exhibit at The Garden House Gallery and Shop in Cromer during Norfolk and Norwich Open Studios and I'm thrilled!  I have three plein air paintings in the Open Studios taster exhibition for the Cromer and Around Art Trail and will be exhibiting more work from 28th May when Open Studios begins.  Today was very special as it was the first time I've seen my work exhibited in a gallery.  

Tuesday, 3 May 2016

Overstrand #2

What I love about the beach here in Overstrand is that it changes from day to day.  Lately, the most beautiful pools and streams have been carved out of the sand which are streaking when reflecting the sky.  I walked along the thick mound of shingle which the sea had dumped against the defence wall.  It was good to see such interest at the foot of the promenade as this area is often flat and bare sand.  The tide crept in after a couple of hours painting and cut me short of time, so I tweaked it a little once home.  It's the first time I've done that and I found it pretty difficult as my memory of the scene wasn't clear - I think it's something I'd rather avoid.

Overstrand #2 oil on board 10" x 12" ©Tanya Pawsey 2016

Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Footpath to Sidestrand #2

Another windy day with high tide, so I walked along the cliff until I was struck by this magical contre-jour vision of joy!  Facing the bright morning sun, I was excited by the composition of contrasting tones and colours that lay before me.  The fresh green of Spring was glowing and the sea shone a brilliant white. When the sun was at it's brightest, sparkles appeared along the path, on the rocks and in the stream of water in the foreground.  The rocks, fence and cliffs cast a shadowy frame to the path, leading the eye into the distance.  I was gripped for three and a half hours and faced the problem of having to remember how the light was when I'd first arrived, as by the time I'd left the magic had gone.

Footpath to Sidestrand #2. oil on board 10" x 12" ©Tanya Pawsey 2016

Tuesday, 26 April 2016

April Showers

I braved the twenty-five mile-per-hour winds and managed to find a sheltered spot to paint from on Overstrand promenade.  Although a predominantly bright day, it had been raining before I'd left home and there were still black rain-clouds out at sea.  I love this kind of weather for the atmospheric shapes, tones and colours it provides.  What I most adore is the contrast between a dark grey sky and bright sunlit land or sea.  I'd never seen the sea so white with froth as the waves crashed about and hit the promenade.  I was in awe at the rapidly changing views of one amazing seascape after another and manged to capture something of it before it started to hail!

April Showers oil on board 10"x 12". ©Tanya Pawsey 2016

Tuesday, 19 April 2016

Overstrand Promenade #1

I can't believe it's been three months since I last painted out!  Motivation has been low as I was very unhappy at the Belfry Art Centre where I was working on a studio painting for an exhibition for Open Studios.  I left my studio and the centre faces closure due to poor management.  I've since had an offer to exhibit at a gallery in Cromer during Open Studios so I'm on mission to paint as much as possible over the next couple of weeks.  It was go good to paint out again, although a cold day the sun warmed my soul, I felt invigorated, challenged and so much better than I had been feeling in my studio.  

When I first set up there were three tractors lined up along the beach, but as I started to sketch the composition the fishermen came in from sea taking the tractors away!  I hastily painted the two remaining tractors before they disappeared, and then painted the boats upon the promenade once they were parked.  On the way home I passed Andy in his boat on the promenade, and jokingly exclaimed "How dare you move your tractors whilst I'm painting them!"  Andy Davies is from a family of fisherman who have been catching crab and lobster in Overstrand for generations.  

Overstrand Promenade #1 oil on board 10"x 12". ©Tanya Pawsey 2016

Friday, 5 February 2016

My Flower Child

Finished this studio painting of my daughter this morning.  It's copied from a photograph taken when she was two years old, nearby to our previous home during a scooter ride around the neighborhood.  Emma is clasping a bunch of wild flowers which she'd picked for me and is dressed a little hippyish - hence the title 'My Flower Child'.  I left the background light and simple as I wanted to leave out the wooden fencing and metal barrier and create less contrast between the faded straw hat and the ground.  

My Flower Child 11"x14" oil on paper. ©Tanya Pawsey 2016

Monday, 25 January 2016

Overstrand Cliffs #1

My first day in my part time job at the local shop but still managed to get out in the afternoon to paint.  I walked a bit further along the cliff top path from where I'd last painted out.  A surprisingly warm day for the time of year, the air was filled with birdsong and the waves slid onto the shore.  I painted for two hours, however a fair amount of that time was spent talking to passers-by.

Overstrand Cliffs#1 oil on board 10"x 12". ©Tanya Pawsey 2016

Friday, 8 January 2016

Cromer Lighthouse #1

After working in the studio during the run up to Christmas and not finding the time to work over the holiday, I couldn't wait to get out into the glorious sunshine to paint.  I visited Cromer, just two miles away, to paint there for the first time.  I've not yet bought my tide times book and wasn't aware of the them, neither was I sure of the height of high tide in Cromer.  This left me in a bit of a pickle as I was unsure about where would be safe to set up.  Most of the sand was so wet that I was sure my tripod would sink, there were workmen and diggers working by the pier and the cliff cast a mass of shade beneath.  For a while I felt quite uninspired but I was desperate to capture something that could only be Cromer.  

I decided to return to the cliff top path which took me to Warren Woods where I finally met my Happy Valley view of the lighthouse.  I love the colours of Winter and here I was pleased with the contrast between the dark shadows and the brights of the lime grass and orange seabuckthorn.  Now considered an important Winter food source for birds these plants have an interesting history of being used by humans for medical purposes for hundreds of years.  Most interesting to me is the natural sun protective properties of the oil, made from the berries - just what's needed by the sea. Nature is so amazing and inspiring to me! 

From today, I decided to cut down on the number of paints I take out with me.  I'm going to stick to a limited palette of two blues, two yellows, two reds and a white.  I was taught to paint this way but after being used to the addition of more earthy tones it was quite a challenge.  Didn't manage to stick to my hour and a half time limit but I completed this in two hours.

Cromer Lighthouse #1, oil on board 10"x 12", ©Tanya Pawsey 2016