David Bellamy – Sketching with pen and watercolour

One of the most effective ways of sketching is by using pen and wash. I carry around hardback bound sketchbooks of cartridge paper amongst the many odd items in my rucsack, and these accept pen drawings well. While the dip-pen and bottle of ink are the ideal way, it is less practicable to carry around bottle of ink, so I normally resort to a technical pen, although this has a uniform line.

This sketch was done in evening light in the Maritime Alps, on cartridge paper. I began with the ink drawing using a .02 nib. Where you have considerable depth in a scene, and especially with distant mountains, or wish to draw clouds, it is imperative not to be too heavy-handed with the pen on these distant elements. I prefer more intermittent line work rather than continuous lines as seen on the building, as this will suggest distance. In places I have totally omitted the line work and relied solely on the watercolour wash outline to describe the shape of far ridges and trees. The ink line is also an excellent way of rescuing a painting or watercolour sketch that is too weak in tones.

My recent trip to the Alps was aimed at capturing snow scenes, but there was no snow until the final day when I had to leave. Somehow the snow appears to have been deliberately eluding me this winter!

There are still one or two spaces left on my Croatian painting holiday in September. This is an easy, relaxed painting holiday in congenial surrounding amidst lovely scenery, and will not involve any wild mountain work! For details check out my website at http://www.davidbellamy.co.uk/painting-holiday-to-croatia-2016/

4 thoughts on “David Bellamy – Sketching with pen and watercolour

  1. I realy enjoy your work, living in the heart of the fjord country in Norway been trying to capture these mountains that we have which ever way we look. I have your dvd and book.Mountains and moorlands that has helped me a great deal.If you dont mind i would like to post some of my results on th saa group.

    • Hello Royston – you have such fabulous fjords and mountain scenery in Norway – some of my favourite scenery. I shall look forward to seeing your work on the SAA site/magazine. All best wishes, David

  2. david idk you but i think were realated if we are tht would be really cool and it could be true the bellamys are a big family and are spread everywhere good luck and i like the picture
    signed, Ivin Bellamy

    • Hello Ivin,

      Sorry, I somehow missed your message till now. Yes, there are Bellamys everywhere and I do bump into ‘new’ ones now and again. Although I come from west Wales many of the ancestors on my Bellamy side come from Eastern England. Best wishes, David

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