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Venice by Night

I’ve been fortunate to paint on location in Venice many times since my first visit in 1991. A small box of watercolour paints, travelling brush and a hand made sketchbook is all you need to capture its wonderful light, mood and atmosphere. 

On a trip there in 2012 I recall taking the vaporetto across the dark waters of the lagoon to St Marks Square. This original watercolour has been inspired by my observations travelling on the vaporetto and my sketchbook studies and photographs of Venice. 

You can watch a video on YouTube of me painting this watercolour.


Via dell'Orso, Perugia

On a recent Painting Holiday to Italy we took our guests to Perugia, a large town in Umbria which has lots of narrow streets winding their way to the top. I noticed this particular street called Via dell'Orso which was mainly in shadow apart from a shaft of sunlight breaking out to catch different aspects of the architecture in the distance.

I quickly whipped out my sketchbook and did this small watercolour making sure that I captured not only the sunlight and shadows but also the figure to provide a sense of scale and interest.

This larger studio painting has been painted on beautiful handmade watercolour paper from Fabriano.

Watch a short video painting different aspects of this watercolour.

To enquire about this original painting please contact


Via Roma, Montone, Umbria

Montone is a beautiful medieval hilltop town in the region of Umbria, the green heart of Italy. We often take our guests there during our painting holidays in Italy as it has some wonderful street scenes to paint.

In May 2016 I did a tiny watercolour in my handmade sketchbook which became the inspiration for this larger study painted on deckled edged watercolour paper.

I've used a limited palette in keeping with my "en plein air" study to capture the strong sense of afternoon sunlight streaming down Via Roma. The long shadows and the couple strolling down the hill add movement to the scene.


View from San Gimignano, Early Evening

The medieval Tuscan town San Gimignano is famous for its towers which make for a very distinctive skyline. However looking from San Gimignano across the countryside into the early evening sunlight can be just as enchanting.

This simple composition is an exercise in ariel perspective, allowing the distant washes to create a sense of depth. The dark foreground allows the viewer to rest on the main area of interest, the picturesque buildings, some in shadow, some highlighted by the low evening light.