Wednesday, 4 July 2012

My 5 Favourite "Panoramic" Prints

My "Panoramic" sized prints are the response to being asked for longer format images suitable to be used as a focal point or "statement piece" over a mantlepiece or a sofa. 

These prints are 30 x 60 cm  (unmounted size) and are sold window mounted into ivory coloured board for £95. They are also available ready framed here at Crown Studio Gallery. 

1 Beech Woods

Northumberland has a number of stands of beautiful beech trees- often where  ancient beech hedges have been partially removed and the once regularly trimmed beeches have been allowed to develop into full sized trees. In other places once-coppiced trees have grown into a dense tracery of multiple trunks and interwoven boughs. Underfoot the woodland floor is as soft and springy as the most luxurious carpet, the multiple layers of shed leaves giving an added bounce to one’s silent footsteps. The iron ochre reds and warm russets of the fallen autumn leaves catch the winter sunlight and sometimes look almost scarlet.  

2 Foxgloves in Summer Sunshine

I’ve painted this stand of trees with their stately foxgloves a number of times, because it looks so different depending on the intensity and direction of the light. In this diffused summer sunshine, it has a drowsy, dream like air, confirming it in my mind as the perfect setting for Shakespeare’s “Midsummer Night’s Dream”.
I’ve always loved the sculptural, almost architectural form of foxgloves. The rigid, upright stems are surrounded by delicate bells of cochineal pink or white, with pale speckled throats and deep inside, as velvety and soft as bubble bees. 

3 Springtime Bluebells

I’ve painted these bluebell woods many times because I love them. When the bluebells are flowering, the trees are just developing their fresh Spring leaves, which are a vibrant, and still translucent, green. This canopy of new leaves allows a soft emerald light to filter through to the ground below, creating a lush, almost magical environment, unlike any other time of the year. Add to this the sight of swathes of azure bluebells with their heady perfume and you have the most wonderful sensory experience.

4 Harbottle, a Coquetdale Village

(High resolution image temporarily unavailable)
The lovely Northumbrian village of Harbottle nestles in the Coquet Valley on the banks of the River Coquet. This view is from the pathway up to The Drakestone, a monumental, flat topped sandstone rock which stands overlooking the valley and which has a longstanding mystical reputation as being a place used by the ancient druids for healing sick children.  This viewpoint shows how the village sits in the fertile Coquetdale landscape, with its now ruined castle still dominating the narrow settlement. The tents are erected ready for Harbottle Show.  

5 Waiting for the Next Leaf to Fall

These trees stand on the steep banks of The River Coquet in Harbottle where it carves its inexorable way behind the castle and village. This was an October day when the leaves had turned an unusually rich variety of oranges, russets, peaches and yellows. As it was very windy I knew that there was a risk of the leaves being ripped from the trees and all those colours disappearing overnight. So I went to sketch and take photos to use to paint from. After a strong gust very nearly pushed me into the river, I decided to work further across the field in the safety of the sun bleached grass.