A Day at the Beach

When March feels like January and the urge to go outside and sketch no longer seems sane, I’m in trouble. I could use a change of scenery and fresh artistic inspiration, but, alas, there’s nowhere to go. So I’ve turned to my collection of beach finds to take me to warmer places and sunnier days. I like imagining whelks and horseshoe crabs crawling on sandy bottomed shores and blue mussels, sea stars, and urchins crammed into rocky cervices. Out there in the Atlantic, summer is just a dream away.   

Tips and Techniques– A collection like this is perfect for rainy days and times when you just want to practice. I decided to sketch directly in pen and use a size 12 round brush to keep this loose and spontaneous. Had I gone for a more precise approach, I’d still be working on it. When you sketch a collection, start with one of the largest objects first. Then add your second and third objects close to it. Build out from there. You can always tuck smaller items into tight spaces or fill gaps in the design.

16 Comments on “A Day at the Beach

  1. Hi Jean,
    Love seeing what you did this time with your collection after watching you sketch some of the treasures in your zoom classes for the conservation organizations recently. It’s even better now after seeing and drawing some of your beach finds. Thanks again for a couple of great classes!

    • Thanks Dory! This collection has come in very handy recently. I decided to dig into the bottom of the basket to see what was at the bottom and just put as much in as I could. Glad you had fun with it too.

  2. So beautiful. There is such a lovely delicacy to your drawing/watercolours.

    • Oh…I can’t even imagine! It has been in the low teens with the wind chill this week. Temps supposed to climb this week– can’t wait, although it will be temporary. Spring won’t really come until late April.

  3. I hear you – both in weather and the itch to find new experiences. This is beautiful, as always.

  4. I totally get it! I find that I’ve developed a pattern to my sketches. February I do all things winter. March I dream of spring and…you probably guessed …the Oceanside. Our daughter lives on Mt. Dessert, Maine a five minute drive from the Atlantic and fills me in on The changing seasons there. Thanx for the inspiration! I’m on it!

  5. Hi Jean,

    Of course we love this! Summer is coming!! This year I am definitely planning to get out of the car and wander on the beach for a while. I hope you can do your Hog Island program and am sorry the date was changed. Maybe vaccinations will speed up. . .in any case you can maybe find something else on Horseneck to paint.

    We are imagining Ben and Jonah having some great expeditions out west and look forward to hearing of their adventures.

    xx, Nancy


  6. Lovely to see this – I am in the planning stages of a large drawing very like this, using my sketchbook drawings. The beach collections provide so many strange and interesting as well as beautiful objects. It is such a pleasure going back through old boxes of finds, as well as the sketchbooks, reminding me of where I have been, I’m sure you would be finding the same thing!

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