David Parfitt: Painting Plein Air


This year, in celebration of the 30th anniversary of The Sunday Times Watercolour Competition and in collaboration with St Cuthberts Mill, specialists in the manufacture of high quality artists papers, we have produced a series of three watercolour films.  In this, the first film, former Sunday Times exhibitor David Parfitt paints plein air in the heart of the Somerset countryside and is given a guided tour of St Cuthberts Mill, where he experiences the paper-making process in action.

In the video, David chooses to paint on Millford Watercolour Paper, as he likes the way in which the paint sits on top off, and skips along this particular paper: he is a great believer in allowing the ‘paint to do its own thing on the surface of the paper’.  He begins with loose washes – into which he isn’t afraid to add dark colours – and gradually builds these up over the course of the day.  When painting plein air, he makes sure that he is sensitive to the nuances of the moment – the sounds and the smells – so that the the ‘experience of the days soaks in’ to his painting.

The Sunday Times Watercolour Competition 2017 is currently calling for entries.  Visit sundaytimeswatercolour.artopps.co.uk to enter – deadline 26 June 2017, 5pm.

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