Sun & storm clouds (ii)…

Stormy sky towards Thornham

Stormy sky towards Thornham. © Mari French 2016

On my second recent sketching trip to Thornham Saltmarsh, I wanted to try out my new Posca paint pens with gouache and ink, as a change from the watercolours I normally use outdoors. 

I encountered Posca pens for the first time back in January on the Emily Ball workshop I attended in Cambridge, but this was the first time I’ve used them out sketching. They come in a range of colours and types of nib/width etc and at first look like felt markers. However, what I particularly like about them is their ability to be used over other colours without losing their clarity (see the fine blue lines and the white thicker ones in the sketch above). They seem to combine well with gouache, but I’ve seen them used effectively on acrylics, collage and so on.

Although the yellow rape had gone over, you could still detect its balmy, honeyed, slightly medicinal aroma along the raised paths around the marsh. Many other wildflowers were out – purple mallow, yellow rattle, white clover, ox-eye daisies, cow parsley and the stunning blue chicory,  with sea lavender blushing the marsh with mauve.

Butterflies flickered along the margins of the paths (one landed on my sketch), and many plants were studded with tiny button-like snails. The wind rustling through the reedbeds and the grasses emphasised the peace and quiet.

Ragged Marsh. © Mari French 2016

Ragged Marsh. © Mari French 2016

 

Hot day, windy with skylarks and jets. © Mari French 2016

Hot day, windy with skylarks and jets. © Mari French 2016

I didn’t walk as far as the beach this time, but spent an hour observing and sketching the weather over the marsh. From distant Thornham village, acrid woodsmoke drifted in, giving rise to the brownish smudge on the abstract sketch above. A jet zipped through the sky ripping it open, but the skylarks continued spiralling upwards casting their songs into the air.

Chicory, Holme dunes. © Mari French 2016

Chicory, Holme dunes. © Mari French 2016

 

Bench & signpost. © Mari French 2016

Bench & signpost. © Mari French 2016


Sketchbook © Mari French 2016

Sketchbook © Mari French 2016


Sketch in gouache and Posca pen © Mari French 2016

Sketch in gouache and Posca pen © Mari French 2016

 

Sketch in gouache, ink and Posca pen. © Mari French 2016

Sketch in gouache, ink and Posca pen. © Mari French 2016

 

 

4 thoughts on “Sun & storm clouds (ii)…

  1. Another gorgeous post – you really capture the landscape beautifully. Could I be cheeky and ask what sketchbook you use? I have recently returned to painting after a break of nearly 20 years of teaching and my previous favourite is no longer produced. I am having real difficulty in finding smooth, robust paper that allows the paint to flood. Any suggestion would be greatly appreciated.

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