Posts Tagged ‘marine paintings’

Artist of the moment….Fantastic painter of the sea Montague Dawson….

In the gallery the first painting is by Henry Dawson, the artist’s grandfather. The second painting is by Charles Napier Hemy. The third painting from top is by John Stobart. The rest of the paintings are by Montague Dawson.


Montague Dawson was born in Chiswick, London in 1895 . He is my favorite British painter of marine works from the United Kingdom. J.M.W. Turner is also a great painter marine paintings, but his are slightly more impressionistic. Both do a great job of capturing the atmosphere and the many greys of the English skies. Dawson was born into a family of painters of marine works much like the Gruppe family in the United States. Both had multiple generations of professional painters.

Below is a work by Henry Dawson, Montague Dawson’s grandfather, who was highly collected in England  and lived from 1811 to 1878. This spectacular seascape brings us to Venice and was painted in the last year of his life.

In this clip a representative from an auction house talks about a painting done by Montague dealing the America’s Cup race titled “The Sporting Contest.”

Dawson grew up studying the local areas of Southampton, learning to paint seascapes. Whilst he was fifteen he was employed by a commercial art studio in London. Then came the first world war and Dawson entered the Royal Navy. In the Navy he befriended another well known British marine painter named Charles Hemy. Below is a work by Charles Napier Hemy. Hemy has two works included in the Tate Museum of Art in London.

In 1924 he was employed as the official artist of an Expedition to the South Seas. He also illustrated for Graphic magazine. During the second world war he found work as a war artist.

Eventually Montague Dawson was considered the best painter of marine works in England and he had well known patrons such as the British Royal family and American Presidents Lyndon B. Johnson and Dwight D. Eisenhower.

The artist passed away in 1973.

Price range info: Montague Dawson worked in watercolors which range from $5,000 to  $25,000. Lithographs start at a few hundred dollars. Oils can range from $5,000 to $420,000.

In this clip view a montage of the artist’s wonder marine paintings.

What modern painter does the artist remind me of? No question John Stobart. Stobart is the most sought after living marine artist having works easily reach six figures. He works both in plein air and also makes longer studies. You may have seen a series of his on PBS where he painted with other artists such as Charles Movalli, Michael Karas, and Erik Jacobsen. Very inspirational and loaded with tips for painting out of doors. Below is a great example of a John Stobart marine painting.

Montague Dawson is without a doubt my favorite deceased painter of marine works from England. You can tell this was an artist who was in love with the sea and coast. What a pedigree for a marine artist. Grandfather a well known painter, his father a yachtsman, he studied under Charles Hemy, and served in the Royal Navy. Montague Dawson can surely provide some inspiration when you are working on your next marine painting! What a painter of reflected light on water!



Artist of the moment….Edward Potthast….


The artist was best known for his marine paintings of people at leisure mainly taking place at the coastal areas of the eastern United States. He was a great Impressionist painter. Potthast was born in Cincinatti, Ohio in 1857.

In the gallery all paintings by Potthast except the last one painted by C.W. Mundy.

For his artistic education the artist was a student of many. His first mentor was Thomas Noble. Noble hated slavery, yet because he grew up in the south ended up fighting for the Confederate Army. Noble was best known for painting emotion and romance in his works. He lived on a large plantation in the south growing hemp and cotton, Noble saw firsthand the emotions and pitfalls of slavery.


One such painting depicted a fugitive slave mother who had just murdered her offspring rather than send them back to slavery. This painting was inspiration for Toni Morrison to pen the book “Beloved” which was the movie made famous by Oprah Winfrey being the producer and also a lead role.


In this clip, gallery owner Ira Spanierman talks about a work titled “The Shade,” painted by the artist Potthast.

Potthast was known for painting very bright sunny days at the beach with people enjoying themselves. In this clip take notice of his fantastic handling of painting water. The people sure seem happy and appear to be enjoying themselves immensely. Notice the wonderful lighting and the handling of complimentary colors in his coastal paintings.

Potthast worked in oils, ink, crayons, pastels, watercolor, pencil, and chalk.  His highest output was in oils and they range from $1,000 to $1.161 million dollars. Watercolors range from $1,000 to $20,000. Pencils also range from $1,000 to $5,000.  Works in crayon range from $10,000 to $30,000.

The artist reminds me of contemporary artist C.W. Mundy. Mundy has some DVDs out which are very helpful for the plein air painter. For his beach paintings Mundy tends to paint children that are at sea playing with small wooden boats. I would call them the “matchbox” cars or Cabbage Patch kids  of their time. Below is a great example of one of Mundy’s beach paintings.

Potthast  studied with an American expatriate living in Germany named Carl Von Marr. Marr lived in Europe most of his professional life and painted poorer people working the land.

Finally the artist studied with Fernand Cormon. Cormon was highly saught after in France for his paintings as a teacher.  As he was well received for his paintings in his school he helped artist to design and paint works that would be accepted into the Salon. Cormon’s most oustanding talent was painting the female figure.

From all of these great teachers who all achieved a great deal of success professionally, the artist was able to learn to paint a variety of subjects.  The artist was also well schooled in the art of printmaking. Until nearly forty years of age he earned his living as a lithographer.

Potthast passed away in 1927 at the age of seventy.

How about trying to place some figures in your next beach or harbor scene!

Keep painting!