A Wild Card on a Wild Day

Last year I decide to take the plunge and enter 'Sky Landscape Artist of the Year'. I submitted  a painting and waited.....I then found out although I didn't make the short list I was able to apply to be a 'Wildcard' which I did and got in.
Hosted by Joan Bakewell and Frank Skinner, the competition is judged by award-winning artist Tai Shan Schierenberg, independent curator, Kathleen Soriano and art historian Kate Bryan.

Each of the locations that are chosen have the shortlisted artists and an additional 50 'Wildcard' artists. We were able to choose which location we applied for and although I would have preferred 'the Gower Peninsular' I felt it was probably better that I went to a nearer location on this occasion. This was 'Paddy's Hole' a small harbour apparently named after the many Irishmen who helped build 'South Gare', an area of reclaimed land and breakwater on the South side of the River Tees.

A few days before I thought I had better try my hand at 'Plein Air' painting as I usually paint from the comfort of my studio.
I visited Seaham Harbour, did a small sketch and then went on to do a very large scale painting shown below:)

That was it my preparation for this momentous occasion!!

When I knew I was definitely going to 'Paddy's Hole I decided to check out the location to hopefully calm the old nerves. The area was along a rather foreboding private road. When I arrived, talk about being exposed to the elements! It was an extremely brisk day and definitely blew the old cobwebs away.

I took lots of photos and felt a little more prepared for the next day if only knowing where it was!
Early the next day the weather was extremely changeable. I headed out not knowing what to expect and took everything but the kitchen sink. We were filmed carrying all our gubbins in groups and led to one of the view points.
Thankfully I had a far less industrial view. I had the lovely sand dunes and sea view with a group of wind farms in the distance. I chose a spot a bit further down from the road and boy was I glad as I found we were thankfully sheltered from the elements. One minute it would look like the heavens were going to open, the next it was beautiful blue sky.

The industrial view point.

The Fishermen's Huts.

I had some brilliant company to my left and right which really made the day fun and calmed the nerves.  Brenda Ward was painting to my right and Sarah Watson was to my left. 
Every now and again the judges would do their rounds and talk to various artists.

Brenda ward

Sarah Watson

Progress being made.

 We only had four hours but I seemed to paint a lot faster on this particular day.

'Wild at Heart' by Linda Vine

At the end of the day we were invited to go and have a look at the shortlisted artists. Shortly after this Brenda and I were asked to comment on camera about one of the artists work. You can see this highlight of the show for about 2 seconds on the series.  If you day 2 of the episode from Paddy's hole about 45 minutes in you will see our debut performance:)