Donegal, Holiday, On Location, Workshops

Donegal Sketching Holiday 2017

The weather gods were kind this year although if I were one to bite my nails they would be down to the quick! For painters it was perfect – windy, cloudy and sunny all in one Donegal day. Motifs are always plentiful, satisfying every taste whether landscape, water, fishing ropes, scudding clouds, busy, colourful, towns or sweeping mountain passes.

 

Below is a slideshow of some of the work produced

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                                          This year we had a guest tutor, the ceramic artist Alan Snape, who gave a masterclass in modelling in clay. Results were stunning as you can see…

All over for another year. My thanks to Alan Snape, the Potter, for his excellent tuition, to Gerry (Mrs Potter and my big sis) for her help making thousands of sandwiches and gallons of coffee and tea and of course to all those who took part for your work, the laughs, the wine and the company!

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Donegal, Holiday, On Location, Sketching, Uncategorized

Donegal Sketching August 2016

Another long overdue blog!20160808_115644_resized

Monday August 8  – The deserted fishing village of Port was our first venue. A windswept but sunny day creating a continually changing light show….

       Tuesday August 9     Assaranca Waterfall and Ardara Town

 

Wednesday August 10 – A wet day so drawing exercises inside the cottage using Donegal’s wild flowers20160825_161811_resized

‘Losing control’- Sketching with charcoal taped onto the end of a paintbrush                   (left to right Margaret F, Kay McC, Karen W, Gavin H)

‘Large and Small Scale’ – drawing with a paintbrush and black ink on scrolled paper, pen and ink on small scale card. (left Kay McC, right Pamela G)

Subtraction drawings with charcoal and putty rubber.(left Pamela G, right Gavin H)

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Brambles (Margaret)

Thank you to all who took part!

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Donegal, Holiday, On Location, Workshops

Sketching in Donegal August 2015

IMG_8346Margaret FinlayJanet Clarke

The summer already seems like a lifetime ago but before the Autumn draws in completely here is a little reminder of the August sketching holiday in Donegal.

I don’t think I could get away with saying the weather was brilliant (the photos of raincoats and warm jackets are a testament to that) but we certainly weren’t washed out and Donegal is beautiful and inspirational no matter what.

Our locations this year were Killybegs Harbour, Fintra Beach, Port, Muckross and an “invigorating” sea outing with Sliabh Liag Boat Trips.

Donegal, On Location, Workshops

Donegal Sketching Holidays 2015

It might be snowing outside but it’s time to think about summer sketching in beautiful Donegal

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Location:    Largy in SW Donegal lying between Ireland’s largest fishing town of Killybegs and the beautiful village of Kilcar in the heart of Donegal’s Gaeltacht
Dates:           Sunday July 5 – Wednesday July 8
Sunday August 9 – Wednesday August 12
Tuition Fee: £195 (£50 deposit with booking-form and balance to be paid 4 weeks before beginning  (Euros 260, deposit Euro 80)

The weekend starts with light refreshments on the Sunday evening, continuing with painting on location on Monday Tuesday and Wednesday from 10am – 5pm with a break for lunch from 1–2pm (sandwich lunch included in price)
The course is suitable for all levels

There is excellent accommodation in the area at reasonable prices
Contact me for further info and a booking-form

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Donegal

Silver Strand

On the south west corner of Donegal lies a cove with pink sand and humbug rocks.

Yes I know, the name suggests silver sand but the day I went it was definitely pink!

On sunny, summer days tourists, hikers and locals climb down the steep steps to sunbathe and swim in the clear water. But even on a dull day, if your ageing knees will allow it, it’s well worth the effort to descend those steps and walk along the strand surrounded by a somewhat claustrophobic, horseshoe of majestic cliffs.

What fascinates me down here are the unusual humbug-like metamorphic rock formations. Last winter, with the storms and tidal surges, earth from the cliffs was washed away to reveal evidence of a 7000 yr old petrified forest. I was positively beside myself to find this! I just hope the good people of Donegal find some way of protecting this – the temptation to take a sample home is so great I practically had to tie my hands behind my back!

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silver strand muckross 227 silver strand muckross 228

silver strand muckross 252 silver strand muckross 256 silver strand muckross 261

 

Donegal, drawing, Drawings, Holiday, On Location, Workshops

Sketching in Donegal in the Sun (part 2)

Another few images from July’s sketching workshop.

MUCKROSS

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Just before I took this photo (below) at Muckross beach, we watched, astounded and thrilled, as a school (pod?) of dolphins leapt above the waves in the direction of Muckross Head. Unfortunately I didn’t have a good enough lens with me to capture it but we found them again later as we headed round to Muckross Head tumbling and playing in the bay and I believe they may still be there.

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I love the close tonal values of this image

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IMG_6948Watercolour sketch Harry Foy

IMG_6955Charcoal sketches Kay Cullen

IMG_6927Pencil sketch Aileen Hull

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Water flows down from the mountains cutting a path through the sand and when the tide is out it creates a universal pattern as it weakens to a trickle.  It looks like a delta, roots of a tree, tresses – how often nature repeats itself!

KILBEG HARBOUR

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The perspective of boats can be difficult to capture so I suggested some “blind” drawing i.e. not looking at the paper when you’re drawing. This can be challenging as there is an automatic reflex to look down at your sketch book. However, as is seen in the sketches below,  the results are worth it – strong flowing lines, spatial awareness and perspective “seen” without realising it!

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Kay sat for ages studying the movement of the water for this sketch and I really think she captured it.

IMG_6960Pencil sketch Kay Cullen

IMG_6957Watercolour sketch Harry Foy

Of course there were lots of interesting subjects to draw other than boats….

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Pencil sketch Anne Marie

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Looking forward now to August’s workshop. I am under no illusion that the weather will be as stunningly warm and sunny but Donegal offers so much more than good weather!

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Donegal, Holiday, On Location, Workshops

Sketching in Donegal in the sun

Dolphins leaping, long, white sands, rusty rivers, waterfalls, salmon, guiness, sunbathers – hang on a minute – SUNBATHERS! Yes, that’s right, Donegal was hotter than the Costas last week and 10 times more beautiful! It isn’t often that I don’t have to pray, cross fingers and toes and do a fair amount of cosmic ordering for good weather on my Donegal sketching breaks but this time it was a piece of cake.

Seven painters (and one spouse) met up at my place on Sunday evening for three days of sketching on location. I like to choose some of my favourite spots where there is plenty of subject matter to suit all tastes.

Below are a few images from our day at the Glen river

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Before they started I asked them to do some quick line drawings showing the flow and direction of the water’s movement and to be aware of how dark the river and river bank actually is despite the bright sunshine.

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Pastel sketch – Harry Foy

IMG_6929Pencil and watercolour – Aileen Hull

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Charcoal sketch – Kay Cullen

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Black pen – Lillian Weatherup

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Pastels – Lillian Weatherup

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Black pen

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Soft pastels – Georgie Lilley

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Black pen Joan Hull

At the end of the day we took a trip up to Sliabh Liag to the highest sea cliffs in Europe

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and what do you think we found there?

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Nothing like a delicious cool ice-cream after a hard day’s sketching in the sun!

Another blog will follow with more of the week’s sketches