Monday, January 29, 2007

Marine Subjects By A Fine Seafarer

I knew John through a watercolour forum and I must say I am amazed by his marine subjects, particularly boats and ships and seascapes. Not many artists know how to execute this well and I will tell you why.

Unlike most subjects are usually still or nearly still, as in landscapes, save for the moving sunlight and shadows, the sea is one of the most difficult to depict simply because waves are in constant motion. If there is a boat or a ship, even if it is nicely docked, it is never easy to paint - more so in watercolour, given other factors affecting the composition such as sunlight etc.

Here you can see how John excel in his art, particularly the atmospherics. Take for instance the piece Calm Before The Storm - Worried Fishing Smacks.

Look at how the artist leave some parts of the last lights peering from the storming trooping clouds. John's exposure to the sea during his career at the Royal Navy certainly helps a lot in his artictic journey. And there are many of his works at his online gallery.

You cannot paint something which you don't know like the back of your palm, and this is very true here. I bet John knew which swell was coming by the sound of the lapping waves.

If you love marine subjects, I suggest you look up John's gallery here

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Floating Mosque of Terengganu

This structure is one of the most beautiful religious edifices I have ever seen. It was built a number of years ago in Terengganu by the sea. This view is taken from the sea, as we were trying to reach land before the storm unleashes its full force. I painted this scene last year. Most of the work was done in the studio. A photo captured the intensity and mood of the moment which I hope I have successfully rendered in this scene. The water was made especially calm - depicting the calm before the storm. Hope you like it.