March proved to be a productive month. The weather improved and I was able to get out and about. Whilst I continued to create some paintings in acrylic I also started to paint in oils – something I had only otherwise contemplated doing in the studio.
Fineshade Woods proved to be an inspiration early in the month. As a family we often cycle the off road family route through these popular Forestry Commission pine woods and the light passing through the pines onto the forest floor one early March morning was irresistible.
The fine weather also encouraged me to get out the pochade box again and create a couple of small studies in acrylic of the south shore of Rutland Water.
Enthused by the plein air painting experience and wowed by the achievements of the painters contributing to it I joined the UK Plein Air Society on Facebook. On the group page I was surprised to find a number of paintings posted of Stamford by a talented artist named Terry Preen. Further investigation led me to discover that Terry lives just down the road! Terry has been painting plein air for some time now and was happy to share his experience. This led to a couple of really enjoyable joint painting sessions with Terry at The Meadows in Stamford. Although Terry was working at a larger scale – and will sometimes sell his paintings directly from the easel – my intentions were much more modest. I brought along my trusty pochade box and created a couple of small studies in oil.
A minor diversion – and something new for me – was the challenge of creating a logo for Warriors at the Water, a fundraising event for the Motor Neurone Disease Association. This fantastic cause is one that I have supported in the past by walking the 23 mile Yorkshire Three Peak challenge and doing the Burghley Santa fun run! This year the family and I will be taking part in the Warriors event – a 23 mile cycle around beautiful Rutland Water in June. Here’s hoping the sun shines and we raise lots of money!