Carmel-by-the Sea'. I've always been intrigued by it as a place, ever since I learned about it when Clint Eastwood was Mayor!
The above sketch is as colourful as it got that day as the whole of the Monterey peninsula seemed to be suffering from a marine inversion. The sky was grey, the clouds were very low, the sea was grey - and the 'plein air' was hovering just above 60 degrees - where was the sunshine?
I did try to do a plein air pastel painting on the beach - honest - but it was soooooooooooo cold! Sitting still means you get a lot colder than when moving around. I found after not very long that I just couldn't focus and was continuously thinking about long it would take to turn back to my hotel and go and find as many layers as I could. It wasn't as if I hadn't come out prepared - but I was still very cold. So I have a pastel which has been started and which I will probably try and finish - but it'll have to be with the aid of photos and my very vivid memories of that morning on the beach! This is the view I would have been doing if it had been warmer - and the view would have been bluer instead of grey!
This is the very uninteresting sketch of the view from table at lunch at the Portabella restaurant. I had the option of sitting outside but inside was warmer! This was compensated for by the much more interesting view on my plate - the remnants of which you can see in the sketch at the top of the blog. The restaurant gets great reviews in Trip Adviser whereas I'd have characterised is as good but not stunning.
In the afternoon, I decided to have a tour of the art galleries in Carmel to see what rated as art in a place like Carmel given that it is a small community which was founded by artists and writers. There are an enormous number of artists associated with the galleries - and there was a very wide range of work on offer. However most of the art had little or no association with Carmel or Northern California and I didn't 'rate' quite a lot of it.
Looking back there's only one gallery where I can remember contemporary and/or plein air local landscapes which I liked. Given its location and artists, I think it was the Nancy Dodds Gallery which describes itself as a world away from the rest of Carmel Galleries - which this gallery certainly was!
This sketch of a tree at one of the intersections on Ocean was largely done because I'd been on my feet for too long and desperately needed to sit down for at 10 minutes!
In the evening I decided to walk around the corner from the inn I was staying at in Monterey and visited Stokes restaurant. It has some appalling reviews in its entry in Trip Adviser and I can only assume that it has changed hands or management recently as my own experience was very much better. In fact I'd go so far as to say it was probably the best restaurant meal on the whole three weeks.
art , coloured pencils , colored pencils , drawing , landscape painting , painting , plein air , plein air painting , sketching , sketchbook