Often, during the summer months, I make trips locally to the North Norfolk coast. There, the promontories overlooking the beach at Cromer offer the chance to tilt the canvas, as it were, and test the graphic legibility of figures as they diminish in size across flat open space, away from the constraints of the built environment.
The beach scape, and occasionally the sea scape, acts as a kind of tabula rasa on which to sketch and ruminate upon the formulation of new ideas. I try to maintain a density, balance and even distribution of the figures in each composition, an approach carried over from my work with figures in urban settings. The open nature of the beach allows for an exploration of scale compared with the closer confines of city streets.
I use an 80-200mm AF zoom which can obviously get me further out to sea, but it’s a heavy beast with which to play the waiting game. I’m happy to endure that though when I can get the kind of painterliness in some of the shots included here.