Featured Artist Andrea England

Artist Andrea England captures the beauty of the ocean in her colorful, stylized watercolor paintings. Learn more by visiting her website.

 

Watercolor of a sunset over the water and a sailboat by Andrea England

“Beneath a Setting Sun” Watercolor, 14″ x 11″

 

When you think of an art studio, a sailboat might not be what comes to mind. Painting aboard a boat does come with unique challenges, but being a live-aboard cruiser is also a great way to ensure I never run out of inspiration!

 

Watercolor of Harlequin Cove in Gods Pocket Marine Park by Andrea England

“Harlequin Cove (Gods Pocket Marine Park)” Watercolor, 20″ x 16″

 

I’ve always loved the sea, so it’s probably only natural that I prefer to work in watercolour. I’m drawn to the glowing colours and translucency, the granulations and the intentional back runs. I don’t tend to follow the rules when I’m painting, and love to let the paint and water insert their own personality into each piece.

 

Watercolor of three dolphins in the ocean by Andrea England

“Wandering Souls” Watercolor, 16″ x 20″

 

For an artist on a boat, watercolour has the advantages of being compact and relatively quick drying. Finished pieces are easy to stow safely in a folder.

 

Watercolor of Tuesday Cove by Andrea England

“Following the Curve of Time (Tuesday Cove)” Watercolor, 20″ x 16′

 

Because the materials are lightweight and mobile, I can work in the main cabin, outside on deck, or easily take my paints ashore.

 

Watercolor of three rays swimming over the reef by Andrea England

“Reef Keepers” Watercolor, 16″ x 20″

 

I avoid toxic colours such as cadmiums and substances with strong fumes, and paints that require lots of clean up. I don’t want my art supplies to get into the ocean. Whilst our water tanks hold 100 gallons, it’s important not to waste it—especially when we’re cruising remote islands!

 

Watercolor of the sun over the water and a sailboat by Andrea England

“Adventure Awaits” Watercolor, 14″ x 11″

 

As we travel, I keep a sketchbook, creating at anchor or as we sail. I’ve learned to be flexible and fairly fast when painting landscapes and wildlife from a moving boat. Within each image I try to interpret the colours, the feel and the elements that really drew me to the scene.

 

Watercolor of a whale leaping out of the water in front of a Polynesian rig by Andrea England

“Beautiful Moment” Watercolor, 16″ x 20″

 

My sketchbooks become pictoral logs of our adventures. They are also a source of inspiration that I can delve back into when creating a finished piece. From the intense technicolour hues of French Polynesia and Hawaii to the cool blues and greens of Vancouver Island, my sketches can carry me back to a place in a way that my photos rarely do.

 

Watercolor of the view of the ocean through trees by Andrea England

“Joy” Watercolor, 14″ x 11″

 

My full size watercolours are full of rippling white lines which help to give a sense of movement and life. In French Polynesia I spent many months drawing local carvings, which make strong use of negative space. I began to play with the idea of what is and isn’t there within my own paintings, and over time my flowing lines developed.

 

“Fakarava” Watercolor, 11″ x 14″

 

I start each painting with a rough drawing of where the main elements will be. As I paint, I build up the shapes and details, painting around the white areas. I don’t use a resist but choose brushes which let me paint a careful edge.

 

Watercolor of a rocky seashore by Andrea England

“I Must Go Down to the Sea Again” Watercolor, 14″ x 11″

 

As each painting develops, I build the feeling of motion and the intensity of the colours. I try to help my viewer feel the salty breeze and the movement of the waves. Whether I’m painting boats, coastlines or underwater views, I hope to share the beauty of the world’s coasts and oceans and create a sense of adventure.

 

Artist Andrea England invites you to follow her on Instagram.

 

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