Sketchurchbook – Tree in central Sofia

Landscapes and scenes, Landscapes and scenes

After a day walking around Sofia scoping out the art supply shops I have come to terms that there is no Sennelier oil pastels out there.  So I sat on a bench to finally tackle a church that I have wanted to draw for about a year and consequently run out of white. I know it looks like I’m over indulging with the creative licence but the camera was totally failing to capture the luminosity of the light on the trees .When I left I realised that I  had left a big smudge of Naples yellow (my fav) on the bench. It was a relief that the woman sitting next to me offered up a tissue without prompt. That was nice.

Sketchbook – Balcony view, Rila – Oil Pastel

Landscapes and scenes, Pleinair

When on a weekend trip to Rila I had to squeeze in the opportunity to draw the view from the hotels terrace. Thought it might be a simple undertaking to start with but the constant shift of light and the need to convey distance was a trouble. Overall a good session. I feel like my oil pastels are less drawing or painting and more finger-painting.

Islington canal 2019 – Lost

Landscapes and scenes

It was changeable weather at my favorite canal spot. I loved it more with the sun shining through. There were lots of pleasant passers by as well. I took this back to work on aswell and it was starting to look good. Unfortunately it was one of the paintings lost when I transferred my easel and other pieces over to Bulgaria. I’ll obviously start on this again but I can only hope that it turns up one day at Luton airport.

The Village (Walthamstow) – lost

Landscapes and scenes

Picked a house in Walthamstow to paint. I saw this spot first and it was lit wonderfully BUT the weather had other plans for me. Rained on twice and the shadows I wanted which were present at 4, quickly ran away from me. At least I have the base light. Now I have the original moments captured and it’s time to work on it from the protection of the studio/kitchen. This was unfortunately one of the paintings lost in my luggage on the transfer over to Sofia I will start again though.

London Colney bridge – Ben Saunders

Landscapes and scenes

Tackling a childhood spot. The greens during this sitting were otherworldly.

City from Walthamstow

Landscapes and scenes, Pleinair
‘City from Walthamstow’ – Ben Saunders (Acrylic on board – 40 x 40 cm)

Painting a distant horizon from St James Park, Walthamstow. I couldn’t for the life of me figure out what that pointy building was. I settled on the Shard obviously BUT was still curious . Whilst taking the overground into Liverpool Street the next day it turns out it’s The Guerkin, The Walkie Talkie and The Shard blended together in silhouette. Will have to settle on finishing this. One day.

Sketchbook – Islington canal with houses – oil pastel

Landscapes and scenes
“Canal side left” – Ben Saunders (Oil Pastel on paper – 30 x 40 cm)

I’d been eyeing up this location for quite sometime. It’s complexity scares the crap out of me but after seeing contemporary artist Melissa Scott-Miller painting it so well I’ve been working my way up to the challenge. Unfortunately this is one of the sketches I lost in the luggage whilst moving to Sofia. As with all drawing the experience itself is etched on my being so the loss isn’t the end. I will have to tackle again.

Sketchbook – Plovdiv blossom (18/03/2019)

Landscapes and scenes

I took the opportunity to draw this blossom in Plovdiv – Sofia. That’s definitely not how I feel I would say complete to it but 20 mins out isn’t enough. I feel like I was capturing it.

On the sea – Oil pastel on paper, Egmond on zee

Landscapes and scenes

Whilst at a work conference in the Netherlands I left the safety of my hotel room in Egmond on Zee to see if I could get some oil pastel sketching done. The wind was so strong I had to retreat back to my hotel room and sketch from there. Back in the warmth I remember thinking it was good that I had at least felt those elements before hand since it really helped capture the threat those waves had. Hope you feel it to.

Miss Me – Acrylic on canvas board (40 x 30 cm)

Landscapes and scenes

This boat has been present in Aberystwyth harbour from when I first lived there (2000) until when I returned to paint it (2018).  It is etched in my memory as unaged.  I have many photos of it, taken from my undergraduate life through to the present and it feels as if its a question from Aberystwyth itself but it’s more likely a command.

Whilst painting on location people always stop to talk to you.  During this sitting a group of walkers stopped and asked if I was commissioned to paint the boat.  On replying no I was told that it was in owned by an retired nurse who’s belated husband had owned it and that she had never wanted to remove it.  These are the wonderful splatters of existence that painting on location provide and what started as a study of form became something else entirely.