Bejabbers, I’ve had my first vaccine. Suddenly, things are looking up. The world, long empty, is again filling up with possibilities. Restrictions are being eased and in about a month al fresco drinking and dining will return. So, in case any of yiz have forgotten what that’s like, I’ve painted this scene outside the Harbour Bar from about two years back. It is after the Bray Air Show on a blazing summer’s day and tens of thousands of thirsty folk go looking for a pint. And what better place than Bray?
I am alone in a crowd and it is a very pleasant place to be. I hope I’ve conveyed the feeling of being inside the scene, as distinct from the remote artist observing from the outside. I’m thinking of those great group paintings of Auguste Renoir: the Luncheon of the Boating Party and the Moulin de la Galette. That was late nineteenth century Paris and Renoir and his mates were changing the way we look on life, love and art, and the whole damned thing. But people are the same all over, throughout space and time. After the plague year, the world will open again. I’m celebrating.
Simply, this is what people do and always have. This is what makes life fun. The painting is quite different from the more isolated feel I usually go for, and I’ve needed to adjust my technique to accommodate that. It’s in acrylics, as usual, but has more of a watercolour feel to it. I laid out the composition precisely, but went for a freer brushstroke to capture that atmosphere of movement and joy. I hope this works. Of course, nothing beats the real thing. Bring it on!
Just got back in from having my jab and am reading your post whilst tucking into a hot cross bun (Tesco seem to sell them year round). We were planning on enjoying drinks in a beer garden afterwards but as it started raining we decided to return home instead. I just love your style of painting Shane, you are so talented! Are you a member of a local art club and have you always enjoyed art? Marion.
Thanks Marion. Glad your jab went well. A few weeks yet before we enjoy the pleasures of beer gardens. I’ve been painting since I was a teenager and graduated from the National College thirty years ago. Over the last five years I’ve taken up painting seriously again. I’m having an exhibition next January.
That’s brilliant! Do please keep me posted about it!