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All Ashore

All Ashore is a painting of yachts at my local sailing club in Dalgety Bay, Fife. When the season’s sailing is over, the owners bring the boats up out of the water for winter storage. Then they keep them securely cradled on wheeled trailers.

These particular five boats are grouped in an arc on a corner of the sailing club’s property. The water’s edge is just behind them, a few feet lower down (out of sight from our viewpoint.) I happened to walk by on a sunny winter morning and saw them silhouetted against a blazing sun. So I took several photos with my trusty Panasonic Lumix camera and the painting is my interpretation of those photo references.

I once did a smaller, 6-inch-square version of the same scene. However, the square format forced me to show only half of the yacht on the right and half of the yacht on the left. I’ve always felt that I could have done better. And I feel now that I have done better, showing all the yachts fully in landscape format, with ‘room to breathe’ on the sides.

Done mainly in shades of blue and brown, All Ashore let me indulge my love of light and shadow. I put quite a lot of detail into the boats, excepting maybe the middle one. I wanted that boat to look more indistinct in the sun’s glare.  The yachts’ rigging I added with a ruler and a sharp pencil. Conversely I painted the ground shadows more loosely and freely, for the sake of contrast.

Unframed watercolour painting. Size 8.5 x 11.8 inches / 21.5 x 30 centimetres.

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