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England

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View From the Cloister

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View From the Cloister, A Watercolor of Westminster Abbey By Jenny Armitage

View From The Cloister (watercolor 15 x 23) $600

This is Westminster Abbey as seen through the wrought iron work of the cloister.  It is the view visitors now see just before they exit the abbey complex.   But for hundreds of years it was the view seen by the monks on their way to services.


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Brasenose Lane

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Brasenose Lane, Original Painting of Oxford, by Jenny Armitage

Brasenose Lane (watercolor 15 x 21) $650

Another painting of Oxford.  It is after all one of the most beautiful cities to walk there is. 


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Oxford Bike

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Oxford Bike, Original Painting by Jenny Armitage

Oxford Bike (watercolor 17 x 19) SOLD

I poured this painting at the Oregon State Fair on yesterday and spent this afternoon finishing up the brushwork.   I rather like it.  The greens feel very England to me.

This painting has sold, but you may still purchase a fine art print.

 

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Saint Pauls Cathedral

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A Spire of Saint Pauls, Painting the Cathedral by Jenny Armitage

A Spire of Saint Paul's (11 x 15 watercolor) $300

This is one of the twin clock tower spires of Saint Paul’s Cathedral in London.  I love Saint Paul’s Cathedral though it is nothing like the Gothic Cathedrals I fell in love with on my first trip the England.  Unlike England’s early cathedrals, Saint Paul’s was designed by a single man, Sir Christopher Wren and built over just thirty years.  The result is a clean coherent building rather unlike the the quirky cathedrals I first admired.

Wren designed and saw built numerous churches in the vicinity to compliment and be complimented by the cathedral.   But in the London Blitz practically the entire neighborhood was bombed and burned to the ground.  The cathedral is now surrounded by modern offices.  The Millennium Bridge now leads directly to it providing a very modern show case for Wren’s jewel.


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Pausing Before the Bridge

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Pausing Before the Bridge, Watercolor of the Bridge of Sighs by Jenny Armitage

Bridge of Sighs (13 x 19 watercolor) SOLD

This is Hertford Bridge, more commonly known as the The Bridge o Sighs, after the The Bridge of Sighs in Venice.   It connects the two quads of Hertford College, in Oxford, England.  It doesn’t really resemble Venice’s Bridge of Sighs, but it is beautiful, and quintessentially Oxford.  We visited in the late afternoon when street was beautifully shadowed.

This painting has sold but you can still  purchase a fine art print.
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Oxford Street

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Oxford Lane, Original Painting by Jenny Armitage

Oxford Lane (watercolor 13 x 19) SOLD

A little taste of Oxford—another poured painting.

This painting has sold, but you may still purchase a fine art print.

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Gothic Specter

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Gothic Specter, Painting of Christchurch, by Jenny Armitage

Gothic Specter (11 x 15 watercolor) $200

The Gothic archways surrounding the quads in churches and colleges have always intrigued me.  This one happens to be at Christchurch, in Oxford, but it could be one of hundreds in Britain.  The ribbed ceilings and the slanting light from the quad are always both beautiful and romantic.

In this painting I exaggerated the contrast poured the colors.


 

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Pilgrims at the Gate

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"Pilgrims at the Gate" a watercolor of Canterbury by Jenny Armitage

Pilgrims and the Gate (watercolor 15 x 20) SOLD

 

 

This is Canterbury.   I began with reference photos showing  Canterbury Cathedral’s spires rising above the gate, but in the end I cut back to the gate itself.   The gate is now the only approach for tourists, and  the streets leading up to it are charming.   But despite the Tudor buildings, it is modern.  There are Starbucks and Subways.  These tourist use smart phones and get their cash for ATMs.  Rather than providing a refuge and a place to sleep for pilgrims, the cathedral charges  a fee to tour the cathedral and view the place where Thomas a Becket was murdered.

Like the Arch of Titus below, this painting is primarily poured rather than painted with a brush.  The result is rich color with a graphic feel.

This painting has sold, but you may purchase an art print.

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Sketch Diary Part One: London

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Title Page

I decided to try to add watercolor sketches to my usual travel diary on our trip to England and Europe this summer.  I bought a little eight half-pan watercolor set and couple of waterproof black markers for the purpose.   I didn’t get more than about  two sketches every three days in because our days were full and no one wanted to drop everything and wait while I sketched.  So I sketched on the fly in pencil and added ink and watercolor in the evenings.

The journal paper while intended for sketching  isn’t really intended for water-media, so I had to work pretty dry.  The results are more whimsical than accurate and the colors are often downright fanciful.  So without further ado, or  apology, here are my sketches of London and surrounding cities:

St. Paul's, London

White Tower with Knight

Canterbury Cathedral

Bridge of Sighs, Oxford

Tower Bridge Opening

The London part of our trip was pretty much a WWII extravaganza.   The highlights included The Imperial War Museum, The Churchill War Rooms, and St. Paul’s Cathedral.  St. Paul’s was a symbol of hope during the Blitz, and though everything around it was destroyed by bomb and fire, the Cathedral remained almost unharmed.

In addition to London itself we visited Hampton Court, Oxford, and Canterbury by train.

I took over seven hundred photos during the trip, and I to make many paintings of England, Italy, France, and Switzerland.  In the meantime I will post my travel sketches one city at a time.

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