Rottingdean beach watercolour – sold!

When the weather was as its recent best, we took a short trip along the coast to Rottingdean. The main aim was to try to avoid Brighton’s increasingly crowded beaches.

It was a good move for lots of reasons – not least because towards the end of the afternoon we took some ice creams for a walk along the promenade. We came across a row of fabulous concrete beach huts built right at the base of the chalk cliffs. They’re quite incongruous really but I also think they’re quite beautiful! On this particular occasion there were some friends enjoying each other’s company outside one of the beach huts beneath a red umbrella.

I took some reference pictures of the scene and, the following day, painted this view:

Watercolour painting of Rottingdean beach by artist John Haywood
Beach Life, Rottingdean style

I posted this to my Instagram account on Sunday evening and to my surprise, it was shared on the Art_at_Zerbs account from the open house that I participated in last year.

It was here that an owner of one of the beach huts saw the painting and contacted me to enquire whether it was available to buy.

A few emails later and, almost before I knew it, this painting was mounted framed and distance delivered.

Here are some of the images I sent to show the painting mounted and framed.

I can’t imagine what the odds of all this must be considering how few of these beach huts there are in Rottingdean!

I’ve since received some wonderful feedback about the painting that included one of my new most prized compliments:

“Concrete has never been rendered so atmospheric and alluring!”

It’s fair to say that the whole unexpected experience has lifted my spirits immeasurably!


Now, if all of this wasn’t enough of a coincidence, it turns out that the buyer of the painting actually shares the beach hut with a friend.

When the friend saw this painting, she liked it so much that she approached me to see if I could replicate it.

I’ve subsequently done two more versions of the same view that are currently under consideration.

Episodes like this are pretty rare in my experience, which makes them all the more exciting and important to celebrate when they do occur!

Here then is my toast: to unlikely occurrences and happenstances of the most fortunate and delightful kind!

Thoughts on Rottingdean beach watercolour – sold!

21 thoughts on “Rottingdean beach watercolour – sold!”

  1. Pingback: Train station watercolour paintings

  2. Congrats John— a lot of really nice elements came together here: love the atmosphere, the shadow shapes, bicycle, and red awning spilling out of its edge. Your confident strokes really come through on this piece.

    1. Wow, thanks so much Jean – I really appreciate this. It’s funny how sometimes one’s best efforts come from the most unlikely and unexpected of subjects! There are other subjects that I’ve been much more confident about me creating a ‘masterpiece’ from only to see my efforts fall disappointingly flat!

  3. Congratulations John! Actually, SPECIAL congratulations! It’s always nice to sell one but really special when someone goes to this extent to find you to buy it! I’m sure you’re on cloud 9 now! I’m especially happy for you since these past 2 weeks have been so terrible here in the US

  4. Congratulations. 🙂Patience and great flair in artistic pay off, isn’t it?
    Glad to know that you can go out and mingle to enjoy the summer. Over here we can’t quite do that yet, though things are under control.

    1. Thanks so much for very kind comments, they’re much appreciated. Sorry to hear that your restrictions are still strict but, as you say, at least things are under control – I still fear that the UK has some terrible times ahead.

  5. Congratulations John. It gives a lovely warm feeling when someone chooses to buy your work… Hug yourself!!

  6. Congratulations on your sales, John. It’s a very atmospheric painting and the location brings the best out of your contre-jour style. I wonder, though, whether you should have delayed the second two paintings for a week or two just to maintain the illusion that it takes time to produce a masterpiece!

    1. Thanks Rob and yes, you’re quite right! I think the excitement may have got the better of me – leading me to play more towards my ‘pile ‘em high sell ‘em cheap’ philosophy rather than my quality over quantity philosophy!

  7. Magdalena French

    Congratulations! What a wonderful feeling when someone loves your work enough to seek you out to buy it. May you have many more such co-incidences…

    1. Hi Magdalena and thanks so much for this! You’re quite right about the feeling you get whenever someone wants to buy a painting – I always feel so happy and so humbled! Thanks so much for getting in touch and yes – my fingers are crossed for many more such coincidences!

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