Friday, 20 May 2011

Richmond Hill - a view protected by an Act of Parliament

The View from Richmond Hill by Alison Staite

I was absolutely delighted to receive a watercolour painting of the view from the top of Richmond Hill from Alison.

This is an absolutely classic landscape view.  So much so that it's actually the only view of a landscape in the UK that is protected by an Act of Parliament - the Richmond, Ham and Petersham Open Spaces Act passed in 1902 - to protect the land on and below Richmond Hill and thus preserve the fine foreground views to the west and south. This might possibly have had something to do with the fact that Sir Joshua Reynolds who was President of the Royal Academy of Arts used to have his home in a large house at the top of Richmond Hill and this was the view from his house!  Plus Turner painted this view.  It's certainly been painted by a lot of other artists since - and now that list includes Alison.
I know you loved views and vistas so it seemed appropriate for you!
Then I remembered that I'd had in mind to do the same view for her when her turn came round - so I guess I'm going to have think of something else now! :)

Alison has gone for an extended landscape format and she describes it as a rather oversized postcard.  She has painted the view on khadi which is a handmade cotton rag paper with an interesting deckle edge.
It was the first time I'd tried it for sketching, so what with all the greens to mix and an unfamiliar paper I was way out of my comfort zone.  The paper is really good fun though and I'll definitely be having another go.  I need Robyn's help so I can make a proper bound sketchbook out of it.
Looks to me like Alison has had a great time and I certainly recognised the view straight out of the envelope!

9 comments:

Robyn said...

Such a beautiful, subtle landscape, Alison. And I love that paper. What a sketchbook that would make.

Africantapestry and Myfrenchkitchen said...

rob7n said it all Alison...beautiful and subtle.
Ronell

Cathy Gatland said...

I've just been given a small sketchbook of this paper and am so looking forward to using it, having seen this lovely landscape - beautiful soft edges and gentle gradations!

Desiree said...

Beautifully done! I know Katherine must be thrilled. Allison you have done a wonder job showing so much of the area in such a small space, great paper!

Alison Staite said...

Thanks for the nice words! :o) Desiree - I have to come clean! It's an oversize 'postcard' The height is fine but length wise it's around 11" I was playing with the paper to get a feel for it, and intended to do a smaller version, but ran out of time! Luckily Katherine is way too nice to rap my knuckles! :o)

vivien said...

beautifully subtle and perfect for Katherine :>)

Bridget Hunter said...

A really good use of both the paper and watercolour. What a lovely English "Spring greens" card.

Albrecht Rissler said...

It must be great to walk there...

Pat said...

Beautiful and peaceful. I am with you Albrecht, I just want to walk up and down these hills.

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