Yellow flowers cluster on the side of a path out of the dunes at Bamburgh Castle.
The daisy-like flowers were a lovely surprise. It was a hot sunny day – out of the biting wind – in June. This was a quiet warm oasis to settle into and paint. I discovered there was also Plantain and Thrift among the dune grass, too.
There are many paths through the dunes that sit between the car parks and the epic Bamburgh beach. I've spent many hours exploring these paths looking at the surprising richness of plant life in the dunes as well as scouting for views that will make great art.
- Image size: 29.7 x 42.0cm (11.69" x 16.53") - A3
- Kind: Study
- Medium: acrylic
- Ground: 300lb watercolour paper
The paint dried really quickly while I was painting this. So quickly it was challenging. However, the path leading to the beach, and a classic view of Bamburgh Castle created such a compelling composition for a painting, I stayed put in the heat of the sheltered dip in the dunes.
Because dunes are made of sand, over time they're always moving because any breeze blows the sand into new shapes. In the three years since I was last there, I could see a new set of dunes had become more distinctive. Beach dunes are a uniquely shifting animated landscape – the dune grass always full of movement as though constantly responding to the sea. I'd like to study dunes more carefully regardless of the castle. There aren't any landscapes like this closer to home more's the pity, so I'll just have to go to Bamburgh again. That's my excuse and I'm sticking to it.