Original Oil Painting, Wells-Next-The-Sea, North Norfolk, England

This is an original oil painting, based on a scene in the harbour at Wells, North Norfolk, England.

img_0410-1.jpg

Blow up of painting.

It has been completed on stretched canvas and is unframed, size 51 x 41 cm.

copyright Francis Barker 2019.

Advertisements

Original Oil Painting, Heacham beach, West Norfolk

This is an original oil painting of Heacham beach in west Norfolk, completed on stretched canvas, unframed. Size 51 x 41 cm.

IMG_0420

Blow up of painting.

copyright Francis Barker 2019

Original Oil Painting, Bamburgh, Northumberland Coast, England

The coast of Northumberland in north east England is quite spectacular.

IMG_0416

This is a painting based on a view of that coast near Bamburgh castle, the silhouette featured in this painting.

It is completed in oil on stretched canvas, size 41 x 31 cm, unframed.

copyright Francis Barker 2019

Poem: ‘Love Shack’

DSC_0010 (2).JPG

Once more we are here, leaving our mark in the sand,
each time like a beginning, distant memories
of our first sight of the sea and the stretching beach.
It’s a smile you can’t stop, a sense of freedom
among the elements and primary colour,
dead pan voices of young and old
muffled by wind and rolling wave.
We look out on that flat horizon
spoilt by scattered wind farms, feathered
by painterly coasts
and we walk and talk along the strand,
laugh at the silly names of beach huts
and wonder what we would call our own,
to sit in the sun
on one of those few good days of summer
with our rug and thermos,
munching make-do cream teas
bought on a budget.
It would be a life, I suppose

copyright Leofwine Tanner 2019

The Giant’s Causeway, Northern Ireland

IMG_1472

Part of our trip around Northern Ireland’s gorgeous County Antrim coast involved a stop at the world famous Giant’s Causeway.

I have to say that it was indeed everything I was expecting, from the cool, wet weather to the very touristy atmosphere.

Simply Stunning

That said, the place is simply stunning. Nothing can prepare you for walking over those truncated basalt columns, watching your step, while eyeing in disbelief that such a place actually exists, spreading out ahead of you towards the sea.

Made a World Heritage Site in 1986, the Giant’s Causeway lies right at the northern end of Northern Ireland.

Official Story

The official story is that it’s between 50 and 60 million years old. In a nutshell, it’s the result of strong volcanic activity causing lava flows which formed a plateau, cooling relatively quickly, resulting in the distinctive hexagonal columns.

IMG_1475 (1)

A similar process or effect occurs when mud dries in extreme heat, though you don’t get the height of the columns of course.

So much for the ‘official’ story. Any self respecting local here would tell you that’s all hogwash.

A Battle of Giants

What really happened, perhaps not that many generations ago, is that Finn MacCool, an Irish giant, was confronted by a Scottish giant challenger, called Benandonner. Finn, who couldn’t wait to tackle this upstart, built the causeway to get across the North Channel to Scotland.

IMG_1476

There are basically two versions of the story. In one, Finn beats Benandonner conclusively. In the other Finn runs away from Benandonner after realising that he’s even bigger than himself.

Feminine Guile

So, using some feminine guile, Finn’s wife, called Oonagh, makes out her husband to be a baby, even going to the extent of placing him in a cradle.

Benandonner is fooled by this, thinking that if the baby is this big, then how big is the father? In shock, Benandonner trudges back across the causeway, taking it down on the way so Finn cannot follow him.

Science versus ‘Myth’

Strangely enough, in the corresponding part of Scotland around Fingal’s Cave on the isle of Staffa, there are some very similar columns of basalt.

Now, the scientific community would have us believe that this is merely part of the same lava flow from many millions of years ago. Of course it is.

But I know which explanation I prefer.

copyright Leofwine Tanner 2019

Poem: At Cromer

boatsoffcromer©dfbarker

When I look down toward the beach,
the distant pier seems to stride
forward from the shining sea.
I like to look beyond,
to the bands of turquoise and blue,
an ocean painted in bold,
abandoned strokes.

Why are we drawn to the waves?
Those elemental rhythms,
sounds and colours
of a primary world,
where sparse pointillist spots
busy themselves on
yellow-ochre sands.

Some days the morning
unfolds through mists,
groynes spacing out
the distances along the strand,
until a final fade-out,
well before the sea
can meet the sky.

Overhead, pterodactyl shapes
patrol against fresh patches
of blue. As I approach,
the blurred semblances
of buildings appear, rectangles
feathered violet or grey,
as if stepping off the cliff.

copyright Leofwine Tanner 2019, 2011

The Elemental North Norfolk Coast

boatsoffcromer©dfbarker

Cromer, North Norfolk

No excuses, just thought I’d share again a couple of my past impressions of one of my favourite places.

foam

Titchwell, North Norfolk

If I ever got serious about oil painting and painting in general again, I think I would have to visit more places abroad. Like the south of France where the light is glorious, so I am told!

Of course North Norfolk’s geographical position is almost unique in England, which gives it its particularly quality of light, strong blues; whereas in the Mediterranean, for example, the brighter colours predominate.