Picturesque Mousehole Harbor a favorite of artists

Picturesque Mousehole Harbor a favorite of artists

Picturesque Mousehole is one of many quaint fishing villages on the south coast of Cornwall. In the 1800s, Mousehole was a bustling port, not the sleepy harbor town that it is today attracting throngs of tourists and artists.

The subject: Mousehole has retained much of its charm with narrow streets, art galleries, quaint shops and half-timber cottages. The harbor wall and two breakwaters are there to shield the Mousehole village from winter gales and pounding waves as well as to create a peaceful shelter for visitors to sit and stroll. Hard to believe waves actually crash over these walls in the winter. But in the spring, summer and fall, the walls serve as a perfect perch for artists, seeking to capture the colorful magic of bobbing boats and buildings that cling to the inner edges of the tranquil harbor.

The inspiration: Poet Dylan Thomas referred to picturesque Mousehole (pronounced “mowzole,” with accent on the first syllable) as the loveliest village in England. From this view in the quaint harbor on a warm summer day, gazing up at the village, it was hard to argue. To my eyes, this was certainly Cornwall at its best, no doubt. And it had to be painted. So, I joined dozens of other artists, all with their easels and paints, who gazed humorously at me wielding nothing but an iPad and a stylus.

Artist’s tools: I used the program Paper53 on my iPad combined with a Bamboo stylus for this ink and watercolor. I leaned against the harbor wall and quickly sketched using an ink pen for the outlines of the buildings, boats and harbor edge. I then selected a watercolor brush using a layered light wash and some smudging for the reflections in the water and textured color of the building walls and trees.

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About The Author

Michael Hodgson

Adventurer, curious traveler, photojournalist, and lover of gin. Winner of multiple gold, silver, and bronze medals from NATJA for travel writing & photography excellence -- earning medals every year since 2018. Gold medal winner 2021 to 2023 in the IFWTWA Travel Photography Awards, Best in Show award winner in the 2023 photography awards, and winner of the Excellence in Journalism award in 2022. Winner of a Juror's Award and Best in Show in the 2023 California State Fair photography competition. Still searching for the perfect gin and tonic.