When I first started as a professional painter I would travel the world and take photographs for working back in the studio that has all changed a long time ago. I never take photos now, instead I will draw or paint, and I paint locally now. Maybe it's an age thing or just that it seems more real to me. An artist should paint what's around him. So here are a few of the locations I can be found. Plus some of my old haunts that I still paint from memory.
Hayle is again stunning but there is a lot of building going on which is ruining it. I love it here once I’ve moaned about the parking or the building works. It’s a great place to paint on the dunes with BIG skies and peace and tranquillity once your settled. There is a real feeling of openness and tranquillity with the Estuary and the occasional chug of the coastal train service to St Ives.
Carbis Bay has a nice little beach, and lovely houses and is the next town inland from St Ives well it’s more of a residential area.The views over the bay to Godrevy are stunning
St Ives takes a lot of stick from the locals but there’s no getting away from the fact that it’s just mind-blowingly an eye-opener. If the light doesn’t get you the views will. Parking is impossible but I know a few tricks. The painting is great as there are just so many views and angles to work with. No wonder it has a reputation as an artist's destination. I would avoid the Tate, not my cuppa tea, but I am old fashioned and the young would love it. There are good little family galleries around. Fish and Chips are brilliant especially down by the Sloop Inn
Marazion is changing .Last year the locals could park in the winter for free but now it’s 24/7 with cameras. All things change. It’s a great place to get to St Michaels Mount with the little ferries and has a super beach. It’s a great place to plein air paint or just enjoy the amazing scenery. In the Summer it’s packed with tourists going to the Mount which I love. I like sitting on the dunes and painting or just under the car park.
Newlyn is my most painted subject and I love it it is a great mass of land with tiny buildings that change with the light. It is a working Port and has a modern and ancient harbour.It is full of interesting characters and so far has proved endless in things to paint and draw. From the Prom at Penzance, you see it magically twinkling at night and in the daytime it is faded and blue with Fishing boats spewing in and out. Just wonderful
Penzance is my hometown. Lorraine and I have been here 16 years and we moved from Brighton. Lorraine is a Cornish lass and has so many connections here. When we first moved I thought it was a bit of a scruffy place and the people dressed very down and dowdy. Nothing much changes there but outside influences are appearing. It is a stunning place to live and I don’t know where to start. Maybe the new Prom that got battered in the storms and has just been built and where I love to paint in the warmer months or the beautiful Morrab Gardens where I also love to paint.
Mousehole is a funny old place. It’s typically Cornish and very circular. It is nearly always quiet and there are a few great spots to paint. Down on the beach is a small gentle and lapping tide and up on the Quayside with all the houses meandering up the steep hill there are unexpected cafes and places of interest. It is much busier in the summer when the second homeowners take up residence but never too busy for comfort. It is a favourite place for artists which you will often see on the seafront beach.
Torquay for me is the English Riviera. The town my Grandparents lived in when I was a boy and would summer holidays there every year. They say it isn't what it used to be but nowhere is. I love this town and the seafront area is great for painting. I'll stay in a nice hotel and go out every day with my plein air painting kit and just have a ball. In the evenings I would enjoy a nice meal with a glass or two of wine and hope to meet people to pass the time. Most people are up for a chat.
I used to live in London so I know it quite well and I like the area around Westminster right in the centre of the city with the Houses of Parliament and the broad walks, the boats, the cafés, the people and the River Thames and the whole majesty of this ancient city. Indeed, I don’t get up there as much as I used to but I still like to paint it from memory and imagination.
I have been to Marrakech twice. I found it a shock with so much going on and so different from England. I stayed in a nice Hotel on both occasions and would go out and sketch and draw every day, The second trip I went with my son Sam and we had a great time. I had to find a way to paint it that wasn't a traditional take on it. So I just figured it out when I got back and looked at other artists and saw different ways to interpret it. I finally settled on a blocky abstracted style. The Atlas Mountains caught my eye and the pools which I thought would add to a composition