The Entrance To Attingham Park

The Entrance To Attingham Park

Lovely pen and wash painting

Very nice sketch, Attingham Park brings back memories does that.

Thank you Glennis and Robert - very kind of you. If I hadn't done this plein air I doubt I would have posted it but I thought I would reward myself for braving the elements on such a ghastly day by hopefully getting a bit of feedback on the gallery, which always lifts my (in this case rather damp) spirits.

It's good! I like the slightly spidery lines - probably caused by your having to work outdoors on a rotten day - because they add life and movement; yes, the perspective isn't perfect but it doesn't matter at all because it all adds to the freedom of the drawing, which you had to get down quickly. This is a great way of loosening up: you're like me a bit, you like to get things 'right' - but I have a feeling we could both do with importing a bit more freedom into our work.

Thank you, Robert. I think you have caught the mood and purpose of the drawing perfectly. I find that pen and wash gives me a rest from the sometimes intense concentration that my normal painting seems to demand. I am also a keen gardener and when I am planning a new flower border, I have learned to punctuate the colours with areas of white flowers as these provide rest for the eyes as the gaze travels along the length of the planting. I find that pen and wash is my 'white flower moment' in that I can relax a bit and be free-er and not worry so much about perfect lines, perfect perspective, etc as the whole point seems to me to be that nothing is like that. I do find myself trying to tidy the lines up and get everything straight and I have to give myself a good slap on the wrist and tell myself to let go and just let the pen run. Plein air drawing is perfect for that especially when you are dying to get it finished and get back inside in front of the fire!

Nice free drawing Thea which sits rather well across the open pages of your sketch book. Also, well done for actually setting foot outdoors in this cold weather and taking the sketch book with you! Sketching like this and looking hard at the subject as you have here, is all good practice as you're actually absorbing a lot of information I feel.

Nice drama going on in that sky and well done for braving the wind and rain!

An unusual subject, that works well in this format, I like the old tree, and the black sky, with the touches of colors in the trees and bushes. You make me feel very lazy, and guilty not going out in this weather.

Posted by K 0 on Sun 09 Feb 17:24:58

Love the unruliness of your sketch Thea, especially the left hand distant tree and sky, that area is superb.

Thank you very much Louise, Debs, Kevin and Fiona for all your encouraging comments. Louise, as you know I am not a plein air sort of gal - so this is a real departure for me but I am rather enjoying the freedom of it. Kevin, don't feel lazy as it really is a daft thing for me to do in this ghastly weather. Wait until the sun comes out! Fiona, I really like your description of the sketch as 'unruly' which is exactly what it is! Also glad that you like the tree and sky as I am not known to like painting either with any degree of boldness so any approval of my efforts goes down well with me.

This so good Thea! My English is not always up to much when I would like to describe my feelings about paintings but I love the freshness and the kind of playfulness in this sketch. I wish I could do something like this, outside and all! More, please.

I do envy you Thea....... a walk with your dog in a lovely place AND a great little drawing so full of interest and colour. Just love it.

Thea, thank you for both your comments on my latest 'soggy tree' postings. I hope you are above the water line of the Severn were you are. You could maybe capture some of the waterlogged scenes around you in your sketch book......but don't forget your wellies. It isn't so easy to use the dip pen because of having to load it with ink often but I like the scratchy and intermittent effect it has in a sketch. I went to a very old fashioned and strict catholic school (nuns and all), and probably short on funds, hence the dip pens but we did graduate onto fountain pens....eventually, and yes you are right they leaked everywhere! It must have been old fashioned because I'm only talking of the sixties. I do have a couple of Rotring pens (fine) Mia recommended that particular make, it's the ones she uses. The ink catridges are watersoluble and come in three colours; sepia, red and black. Thanks again.

What a lovely bright scene, Thea - I love the contrast of the foreboding background with the light on the gateway, it adds just the right amount of tension to the painting.

Thank you very much Satu, Avril and Seok for your lovely comments. I am really just experimenting with being a bit less worried when I sketch and learning to be prepared to be inaccurate, immediate and unstructured to get that 'devil may care' feel into the work. The thing is that work should only look like that and not actually done like that and that's the tricky bit I find!

Love the new style Thea.

Spontaneous and dramatic with that stormy sky. You are a brave lady Thea painting outside in this weather :)

Super landscape format Thea. Did you work left to right, or just all over? I love it all - not least the wuthering tree on the left and the delightful cronky perspective. Quibbling is superfluous when the brave artist works at this speed. Had it been a 'studio' piece (heaven forbid), you'd might have cooled the foliage to stop it clashing with the foreground, and perhaps just hinted at one of the 4 pilasters instead of repeating them. But as I said: who's quibbling ;-)

Lovely piece Thea, and great to see you spreading your wings and painting new subjects, this does look super spread across the dual pages of your sketchbook

Thank you very much Carole, Val, Kim, Annette and Ros for your lovely comments. I did really enjoy doing this little sketch even if the rain was trickling down my neck at one point. Kim, to answer your question, I started in the middle with the main arch and then worked right and then left. I hear what you say about the foliage, but hadn't realised that it clashed with the foreground - just shows what I don't know yet! I know you are right because you are so good with colour so I will bear that in mind when I do another one like this.

Hang on Studio Wall

I took my dog to walk at Attingham Park yesterday. It is our local NT house and park and my various dogs have walked there for over 20 years and actually now think it is an extension of their back garden (I wish!). The sky was dark with rain clouds and it cast an odd light on the entrance building and gates, so I whipped out my sketch book and did a very quick pen drawing in between dodging showers. I had to retire to my car in the end and finish it from there. It is only a quick doodle really and I definitely need to hone my drawing and perspective skills - going to work on those. I added a bit more wash when I got home into the warm. Pen and Wash in my Sketchbook.

About the Artist
Thea Cable

I am a watercolourist first and foremost as I love the qualities of the medium, its riskiness and unpredictability. I started painting about 8 years ago and it has now become an integral part of my life. Hopefully, I will continue to paint into my dotage as I am given to understand that you can…

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