Putney Bridge, London, morning


Watercolour 18"x12"

Yesterday’s post was painted last Saturdsy night. Early on  Sunday morning I crossed the bridge to Bishop’s Park just on the left of the picture, climbed over the rails with the “No Entry” sign (to be accurate, and I believe my memory serves me on this, it said “No entry except for watercolourists”) and very gingerly descended the slimy steps on the left of the painting above. It was low tide, and beginning to come in so I reckoned on about an hour to paint. I would call this style “hommage” to David Gentleman, who produced some lovely books in the 1980’s of watercolours, tracing an artistic travelogue across the UK.  His style is characterised by very loose watercolour washes, with just sufficient detail penned in afterwards to explain the subject.

Here I outlined in pencil first – very necessary to get the shapes of the arches right and in fact the left hand arch is not quite right – then applied loose watercolour washes with my old shaving brush, and finally completed with fine detail with a fine long-haired sable. After an hour and a half the tide was lapping around my folding seat, and the runners were out in swarms. I think London, or Putney anyway, must be packed solid with thrusting young professionals  whose drive leaks out on Sundays with a panicky urge to run their socks off before Monday arrives. Anyway, I don’t suffer from this problem as you may imagine, and back at home all I did to this was erase the pencil lines and sign it.

P.S. I’ve just noticed that I have painted two buses on the bridge in exactly the same position on the bridge as I placed two buses in the nocturne I painted in oils the previous evening, and that’s even accounting for the completely different angle. What on earth goes on in the subconscious?

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~ by noelgarner on September 9, 2010.

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