Colin Bentley is an East Devon-based fine artist working on a three-year art project in collaboration with the Jurassic Coast Trust. In the latest of his regular blogs, Colin writes of the excitement leading up to this year’s exhibition.
Colin’s Jurassic Coast art exhibition is at Symondsbury Estate’s Tithe Barn near Bridport from Sunday 21 to Wednesday 24 October. Entry is free.
It’s always an exciting time when a painting is finished, so it’s great to get the first of the west Dorset paintings finally done. Currently, I’ve got everything for the October exhibition hanging in my studio waiting for the finial touches to get ready for the show.
This painting of Lyme Bay has been a favourite of mine in the studio for some time now. It hung on the the wall surrounded by rough seas and dramatic cliffs and seemed to glow with warmth. I’ve always had a weakness for sunsets, they remind me of summer holidays and late evening kayaking trips.
On the day I took the photograph, the weather wasn’t great and I’d spent most of the afternoon walking from Charmouth over the steep coastline towards Seatown with some friends. I was out to take photographs and nothing on that particular day took my fancy. I know I shouldn’t, but I’m always a little disappointed if I come back from a trip empty handed. So, we retreated to the pub at Seatown and I drowned my photographic sorrows with a pint. On the way back the camera was now firmly packed away in my bag as I’d given up on the day’s dull weather. Then, as we approached the final descent into Charmouth, the sun suddenly decided to stage one of the most spectacular sunsets I’ve seen on this coastline. It’s often the surprising moments when out on the Jurassic Coast that give us the most pleasure. The Dorset coastline when lit from a setting or rising sun is always stunning and I encourage you to make the effort to view this amazing light show.
With now only a couple of months to go until the exhibition, the preparations are well under way. This is the largest exhibition I’ve ever staged and I’m very excited, but understandably a little nervous! The West Dorset coastline hasn’t disappointed and it’s constantly inspired me. Getting to know this epic coastline intimately is something everybody should try and do. You’d be amazed at the rewards you’d get from taking on your own Jurassic Coast adventure.