Direct watercolour (no ink)….

Having a go at Marc Holme’s #30x30DirectWatercolor2018 challenge (and it is a challenge) – the idea is to paint something (anything) in watercolour only – no ink or pencil lines and post the painting each day for the month of June. Here’s a few efforts painted down at my favourite place – the local beach. The thing that’s tricky with painting directly with paint is that there’s no drawing “scaffolding” to guide where to place the paint – you have to have a pretty good idea of the finished painting in your head. It’s harder to fix up mistakes in watercolour than other paint mediums so planning ahead is a really important part of the process (which is a good thing to learn and practise).

City Beach Sketches

A couple of sketches from City Beach (Perth) today and yesterday. It’s been a bit of a strange seasonal change here…. summer has been relatively cool over the last few months but we’ve had a hot and dry start to autumn….the ocean was like glass at midday but the “Fremantle Doctor” arrived at exactly 3pm … I could see the sea breeze slowly approaching….little ripples out a sea, getting closer until suddenly the wind changed direction from East to West.

Rail Heritage Museum Bassendean

Urban Sketchers Perth met at the Rail Heritage Museum WA in Bassendean yesterday afternoon, it’s right next to the train line, packed with old locomotives and carriages from bygone days. Volunteers do a fantastic job to restore and maintain everything, apparently some of the Locos do still work but the insurance is too high to allow the volunteers to start them up.

Perth World Fringe Festival

Out with the Urban Sketchers Perth yesterday morning in the heart of Perth – The Cultural Centre (next to the state Art Gallery and State Library). Lots of bright and colourful tents and kiosks for the entertainment (shows and bars only open in the evenings). The pink fence was back again this year (I sketched it 2 years ago on our inaugural sketch-meet, don’t have much opportunity to use Permanent Rose straight from the pan, contrasted with the golden yellow of the tent below….

South Western Australia

It’s been a while since I last posted….here are some sketches and photos of a holiday over Christmas and New Year to the South West of Western Australia. We visited Margaret River, Walpole (Warren River National Park), Denmark, Albany and Esperance. It is a truly beautiful part of the world with stunning sea-scapes and the whitest sand imaginable…..

Top of Bluff Knoll in the Stirling Ranges… Flowers clinging to the summit of Bluff Knoll…Top of Bluff Knoll in the Stirling Ranges…. Albany windfarm…  “The Gap” in Torndirrup National Park…Raging water beneath the lookout platform….hypnotizing…

Karri forrest drive… The “Giant Tingle Tree”….estimated to be 400 years old and is still alive despite the middle hollowed out…the outer edges of the tree carry nutrients to the top….  Circular Pool, North of Walpole… “The Old Northcliffe Trading Company”….looks like it is undergoing very necessary restoration….Close up of the door, and beautiful cracked paint…..The “Bicentennial Tree” just outside of Pemberton…. a 75m (246ft) tall Karri tree originally used as a fire look out (the view from the platform fixed to the top is spectacular). But you have to climb up 165 metal spikes that have been hammered into the trunk to get there (and there is no safety net between each spike!) 

 Rope and plank bridge next to “The Cascades” Pemberton… View looking North from Stoney Peak (Torndirrup National Park)Trail to Stoney Peak, looks like a bush fire has gone through here at some time…. View of “King George Sound” Albany from the top of Mount Clarence….Local kids playing in the beach (I forget where) somewhere near Denmark WAView from the top of “Monkey Rock” Denmark… (and my feet!) Greens Pool (Denmark)….a still and hot afternoon…Horse riding lesson with Justin from “Brumbies Run Horseriding Tours, Denmark (https://www.brumbiesrun.com/). I highly recommend Justin for his horse knowledge and calm teaching. Three boys who had never been on a horse before thoroughly enjoyed their first ride and learnt so much about horse mindset, character, temperament and behaviour in a 3 hour lesson….highly recommended (again)….   More Karri trees…..they’re everywhere! Even in the rain the trees are beautiful…..luscious olive greens turn into yellow ochre, burnt sienna and quin gold…

One of the 3 caves that you can explore along Caves Road just outside of Margaret River….(I forget which one this one was in…a spooky face…) More trees (in the rain)… View from inside Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse, it was “blowing a hoolie” when we were there…over 50 knot winds (more than 100 km/hr) so we couldn’t go outside at the top of the lighthouse (too dangerous) but wonderful stormy seas….where the Indian Ocean meets the Southern Ocean…. Getting blown off your feet…hard to stand your ground… Pounding sea…  Thistle Cove in Cape Le Grand National Park….simply gorgeous beach wich dazzling white sand and turquoise sea… Tin shed at Northcliffe rail yard… Lucky Bay, Esperance….officially the whitest sand in all of Australia (according to National Geographic Australia)…Cheynes Beach Historic Whaling Station, Albany….the Cheynes IV is thankfully now permanently moored at the former whaling station and whales are no longer slaughtered for whale oil or fertilizer….It’s well worth a visit around the station, it has a fascinating history…Whalers Cove, Albany..  Original fibro and weatheboard house along The Esplanade in Esperance…. Big guns at the Albany War Memorial…Banksia mural painted by Amokisland on the side of grain silos in Ravensthorpe…. Kerosine Lamp sketched at dusk on our campsite in the Warren River National Park…..love camping