Cliffs at Étretat. The coastline around Étretat is truly magnificent. During a recent visit there were several photography exhibitions going on throughout Normandy and it was a popular subject for many excellent works on display. This watercolour is based on one of them.
The church of St. Valéry in Varengeville-sur-Mer on the Normandy coast is picturesquely situated on top of a cliff. Alongside it, there are magnificent views over the sea far below and of the Normandy coastline with its high chalk cliffs which, not surprisingly, attracted many artists to this spot. Georges Braque designed a stained glass window for the church and is buried in the churchyard. Claude Monet painted the church and its surroundings several times. Here’s an attempt of catching it in a watercolour myself.
This sunlit patch of grass between the trees caught my eye in the beautiful village of Varengeville-sur-Mer during a trip to Normandy. I in turn tried to catch it in a watercolour.
Hungry beaks. A few weeks ago a couple of blue tits occupied a nest box in my mother’s backyard. Judging by the frequency with which they now are flying in food there must be a lot of hungry beaks to feed inside. I used a picture in a magazine, conveniently showing a blue tit feeding its young, for a sketch of what it must look like in there. Ink pen and watercolour.
Bottles. Looking for possible subject matters for an indoor sketch on a rainy afternoon I didn’t have to look any further than the kitchensink.
Shoes. These guys are waiting for winter to end so they can start to enjoy a well deserved rest. Ink pen and watercolour.
Sleeping Cat Nemuri-Neko. The figure of a sleeping cat has a special meaning and status in Japan and in Japanese art. Nemuri-neko [眠猫] is Japanese for sleeping or peaceful cat but it also is the name of a famous sculpture of such a cat in the Shinto Tosho-gu shrine in Nikko, Japan and has been an inspiration to Japanese artists. The first time I came accross such a sleeping cat figurine was in the house of Claude Monet in Giverny (now a museum). He had a special interest for Japanese art and received a sleeping cat figurine as a present from a Japanese. It lay very peacefully and cozyly on a cushion in the dining room and I found it very striking. I kept it in mind and later on bought one myself and now used it as a model for a watercolour.
Flamenco. Inspired by some fine “mixed drawings” I saw lately (especially those by Ester Wilson) I set out to do something like that myself. With my old spanish guitar as the basis for an idea this is the result. It’s actually not the loose and casual mix up I had intended and which I appreciate in the kind of works mentioned before. Pencils with the occasional use of a ballpoint pen.
Cat. I like the way many artists have made cats a subject in their art. Théophile Steinlen and Pierre Bonnard are just two artists whose depictions of cats I find really special. And here on skineart there are many who also do great cat-art. So when, in an ad for pet supplies, I saw a picture of a cat lying in this very majestic pose, I just had to try it out myself and catch it in a (ink pen-) watercolour.
Speaking Eyes. Thinking of possible subject matters for a sketch I had this rather surrealistic idea. Here’s an attempt to catch it in a simple moleskine-watercolour.