Shetland, July 2018

Shetland is a place of sky and water. I was working on reflections.

Here are reflections of rocks:

Here’s one that is almost abstract. Perhaps it reflects a mood.

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The rocks round Burrastow each have a skirt of yellow and brown seaweed. So does the pier. There are lobsters down there.

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I am using a new paintbox and experimenting with the colours.

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You see the brown seaweed on the shore.

The island of Foula is sometimes visible from nearby cliffs. It is about 20 miles away, so it floats on the horizon. Foula is a mysterious place.

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Here is another picture of Foula. The island disappeared while I was making these photos of my painting things.

I walked to Footabrough. Here’s the route, and some pictures of Footabrough.

On the way, there is a lagoon where the seals live. The arrow on the map shows the direction of the view in this drawing. The weird dots on the map are because I drew it on the left hand page of the sketchbook. I’d previously used that left-hand page to try out colours (see photo below). Note I am wearing gloves. This is July, in Shetland.

Here are the headlands north of Footabrough. They have marvellous names: Knowe of Banascord, The Hamar and West Stack, Gerdipaddle, Skerries of Watsness. The picture is from Braganess, south of Footabrough.

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Headlands north of Footabrough

This is a characteristic Shetland scene. It shows the remembered view across the Weisdale Voe.IMG_2909

As you see, there was a lot of wind and fine rain. Here are some local drawings around Burrastow (click to enlarge).

On the way to Burrastow I stayed in my favourite Shetland B&B: Hayhoull, in Bigton in South Mainland. It is right next to the amazing St Ninian’s Isle, which is connected to the Mainland by a strip of sand.

On this trip I also did quick sketches using pen and ink. Each of these takes about 10-20 minutes.

These pen sketches are done in the Travelers Company Sketchbook. The other sketchbook I used, shown in some of the photos in this article,  is the Seawhite Watercolour Journal. I also did some drawings on a thick spiral pad from Jacksons Art Supplies. All watercolours are Daniel Smith, from Watercolour Box 3, July 2019.

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Mostly I use just one brush, the marvellous L. Cornelissen 1855 Kolinsky No. 12.

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Cornelissen brush and water pot, on beach near St Ninian’s.

I stay in Burrastow, near Walls on the West Mainland.

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