Welcome to Postcards from Pembrokeshire (Day 5)
Today's Postcard: "The Caldey punt".
This small, kindly battered, oft-mended tender to the Caldey Abbey II has been in the harbour by the steps on the far wall for as long as I can remember. Can a boat be slightly down-at-heel? I know for a fact that my lovely grumpy friend Steve has put a new keel plate on it at least twice over the past few years.
Painting in forever-changing light like today's is a little challenging, especially getting the contrasts strong enough to suggest a bright sun and rich shadows. Squinting into the white areas and trying to analyse the colours "inside" the white has made me a little dizzy...Tenby was really busy today and I had to try to juggle my paints, my time, my concentration and my politeness to well-meaning holidaymakers' questions. I prefer the children, they just come straight up and fire from the hip. "What is it"? (It's that little boat down there. Because I like it.) "Can I have a go"? (Yes, paint a line on that bit. No you won't spoil it.)"Are you famous"? (Yes hugely, I was on Strictly last week...)
Paint: the beautiful turquoise I bought in an art shop in Venice (I know it sounds pretentious but it's true); Phthalocynanine Blue/Zinc White mix (I think Phthalo' Blue used to be called by the slightly more magical name of "Monestial Blue").
Top tip: when pronouncing "Phthalo" don't stand too close to anyone. The homemade ground pigment (I called it "Ritec Red") made from the soil from my friend's farm near Penally provides the perfect underpainting for the shallow water. Flesh Tint and Indian Red helped too.
Brush: my trusty Size 2 filbert, small round (size 0) synthetic sable. And a child's thumb.
Hope you like the painting, it was accompanied by Amy Winehouse's "Back to Black" album, sublime.