While in Yorkshire we took a trip out to the coast near Whitby, the aim being to hunt for fossils on a very particular beach. However, since the beach was closed due to a landslip our well-laid plan required adaptation. The day turned instead into lovely breezy coastal walk in full sunshine, followed by a sketching session on the beautiful beach at Runswick Bay. The beach offers views of either houses clustered picturesquely on the cliffside, or the unspoiled semi-circle of bay. Two of our party sketched the architectural view, while I chose the emptier landscape, and the photographer went for variety. The teenager hunted for (and found) fossils. There was definitely something for everyone (and ice creams!).
On this day the water looked amazing. None of your customary British leaden waters here – the sea was a turquoise and blue medley, setting off the green-clothed cliffs perfectly. I was so pleased that I’d lugged my watercolour paints and papers with me (my fear is always that I’ll have the ‘wrong’ equipment for any sketching opportunity, so I do tend to pack rather heavy).
Having first reserved a little white foam with masking fluid, I started with the sky, working down to the sand and cliffs. The sea was next and finally some darkening of the shore where the seaweed line was and the shadow of the adjacent cliff moving over the sand. As so often, it took a bit of work and layering to get the darks deep enough in both the cliffs and sea.
The breeze was whisking sand into my watercolour pans, but that’s always an occupational hazard of painting at the beach. Needless to say, our picnic suffered the same fate!