Reflections of Marsden Rock

Reflections of Marsden Rock

That's great. What's particularly impressive is the thin layer of water on the sand. Excellent work.

Thank you very much, Lewis, for looking so closely at this effort. Appreciated, as always. It's such a lovely place to walk on a day like this, when those reflective moments appear out of nowhere. Bri

Impressive pastel work which captures the wide open spaces of the South Shields coastline.

Your pastel work is amazing Brian! The sky is wonderful with the cloud formations and as Seth said, the water on the sand is so impressive. The rock is pretty marvellous too!!

Don't know the place Brian, but it's all nicely painted. Good work.

Brian you make your pastel paintings look like very convincing oil paintings. The whole of it is superb but I have to agree with Lewis, it’s the shallow run back of the sea that is fascinating.

Thank you very much indeed, Ronald, Margaret, Jim and Fiona, for the very encouraging comments. I'm tickled pink that you like this one. This stretch of the NE coast is particularly impressive, Ronald, all the way up to the Scottish border. My pastel work is slowly improving, Margaret. I'm so pleased you liked this this effort. It's looked after by the National Trust now, Jim, and they do a marvellous job of conserving the coastal area for wildlife and visitors alike. It's worth a look if you're ever up that way. I think that some of the oil painting techniques are showing through, Fiona, especially the blending on canvas and the light touches for broken water. The only thing I've noticed is you don't get many chances before the paper clogs up and the pastel begins to slip off the surface. Best to all Bri

What a sky! The colours in the rock are superb. Love this, Brian.

Thank you very much, Seth, for the great comments. Really pleased you noticed the colours because it changes to a much lighter colour after the first ten feet or so. Those dark caves run through the entire rock, tunnels everywhere, leaving the bulk of it standing on rock stilts. There used to be a fantastic arch but it collapsed during the winter of 1996. Such is the power of the sea. Bri

Solid as a rock Brian, beautiful beach there.

Thanks a lot, Carole. Appreciated. The beaches are wonderful at South Shields. There's the main bathing beach at Sandhaven, which we just called "The Beach", with the Little/Pebble Beach next door (see Target Rock painting). Further south, a mile or so, there's Marsden Beach/Bay and that's where you'll find Marsden Rock. All Blue Flag beaches. Bri

Like this very much Brian. I had a go at painting Marsden Rock from loads of angles but they were rubbish so it's very interesting to see how you have achieved this impressive painting. Love the way you have done the water and reflections.

Thank you very much, Carole, for the kind comments. Appreciated. I started with a pencil sketch, a fairly loose one, marked in the horizon, waves and cloud banks then started with the pastel, layering and blending as I went. I've seen your wonderful Northumberland paintings and I'd be amazed if anything you did was "rubbish" *smile* Thanks again Brian

Oh Brian how very nice of you. Believe me I've struggled sometimes and find cliffs and rocks extremely difficult which end up looking like ugly, great lumps. We are lucky to have such a spectacular coastline in the NE. I live 100 yards from the sea and it's ever changing moods are enthralling.

You're welcome, Carole. It was nothing but the truth. I tend to just take my time with these very realistic paintings and hope for the best. lol Brian

Love the wet sand - great picture.

Absolutely stunning work, Brian. Magical use and total control of your medium. Love it! Your observation of the foreground is just perfect.

Thank you very much, Maureen, for the kind comments. Appreciated, as always. Bri

Wow! Thalia, what a marvellous review to read on a Saturday afternoon. Thank you very much indeed for your generous comments. I'm liking this medium more and more, and I'm sure my charcoal work has helped. But I'm still working on my oils. There's one on the easel 90 x 90 cms, half finished, and I've hit the wall. *smile* Bri

Love it :)

Hang on Studio Wall

Pastel painting with Rembrandt and Unison soft pastels on Canson, Mi-Tientes, 32 x 24 cms (white)160g/m2 75lb. This is one of a series of the coastline of South Shields. It shows the world famous (locally known, actually, but I like the build up) Marsden Rock, Marsden Bay, South Shields. It's a nationally important kittiwake colony and on a calm day you can see gulls circling the rock all day long. I used a CCo image and two of my own photos for the painting.

About the Artist
Brian J Mackay

I'm a retired FE lecturer (62), having taught Marketing and Geography to Travel & Tourism students for twenty years or so, and I DO miss it a bit. My wife, Diane, is from Kendal, where she introduced me to the Lake District fells, tarns and lakes. They have been a source of inspiration for me (and…

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