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Sea notes

Norman Trewhitt Posted: january 21, 2017 / Modified: january 25, 2017
Sea notes
The sea has an energy of its own which is unique to itself. Waves rise and fall and the light constantly changes. The sea appears at its most active as it nears the shore. Waves become larger then break into surf-crested breakers. On calm days the disturbance is barely perceptible but when driven by the wind and surging currents it is mighty and magnificent. Like the forest mentioned previously it is a living thing in its own right and comprising so many separate living components. Even in the wildest storms it has a harmony of movement which as a drawing or photograph, though frozen in time, - conveys the harmonics of a symphony.
“La Mere” by Claude Debussy or “Peter Grimes” by Benjamin Britten to my mind are the musical equivalents.
To draw and paint the sea is to make a static image of endless movement. One needs to learn its ebb and flow, its constant changes in light and form, - fluid sculpture.
However, when observed over time it is seen that the waves form a series of repeating patterns which have a rhythm of their own. This forms the basis for the sea’s “song” and how it sings. Sometimes tranquil and calm, - sometimes wild and boisterous and sometimes displays awe-inspiring power. Long hours spent on the beach watching and rapidly sketching this endless ebb and flow and sometimes quickly applying watercolour help to record this fleeting imagery. Photographs, or a sequence of them, freeze this into single units of time. Combining, or blending all these elements, like components of a musical piece, - brings together a harmonious whole.
Continually shifting patterns of light, form, colour and tone combine to portray this movement within a single static image.
When we stand on the beach watching the waves’ advance we see that far out from the shore they begin to roll in as an impending surge. There is a hidden strength which increases as these rollers approach until the energy begins to manifest on the crests of the waves as they become more vertical. Then the crash as it falls over itself in a thunderous tumble of surf and spray. Yet ever onwards it comes, - its energy beginning to dissipate until at last it much more gently comes to rest on the beach itself before retreating to re-group with the new advancing breakers.
A constant rising and falling.
+44 7975927064
More information: www.normantrewhitt.co.uk

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