• Becky Hodgkin

Behind the print: Pink Bay, Porthcawl

My latest illustration as part of the South Wales range is inspired by our beach days at Rest Bay in Porthcawl. We've had a crazy heatwave in Wales this week - 5 days in a row hitting 30 degrees. Which is absolutely unheard of in this country!

To illustrate how out of character this week has been, I actually went swimming in the sea for the first time ever. I am a wuss when it comes to temperatures, I grew up in Hong Kong and holidaying in the sea in Thailand so I find the water in the UK incredibly cold. I would rather wait with the bags while everyone else goes into the ocean!

To add another level to this, Jacob doesn't do well in the heat and hasn't been enjoying napping in the pram. So these beach days were pretty risky when it came to having a good day. Jacob has one nap a day and if he doesn't sleep, (or takes a while to go down), we find it pretty stressful.

Rest Bay in Porthcawl has a surf hut / cafe that has recently gone through an overhaul. We usually check the tides before we go, because at high tide you can pitch up on the grass above.

We went to the beach 3 days in a row, and made the most of the good weather. Usually when we are in new-ish situations, I take charge of the nap (doesn't every mum have a special zsushz that helps the bab fall asleep?).

Nap time came and I walked him away from the sun, down the boardwalk past a number of stunning, quiet beaches and it was one of the most enjoyable nap walks I've ever had. Baking sunshine, the sound of the sea (which sounds just like Jacob's white noise machine) and a lovely quiet break for 45 minutes before the chaos starts again.

It was the nicest 'beach day' I've had in the UK and everything went perfectly. I snapped a couple photos on my phone because I knew I wanted to immortalise that memory with a print. Then I found out that one of the beaches was called Pink Bay and I knew I was sold.

Below is the original photograph I took that inspired the illustration -

And then here is the illustration I drew - it had to be pink! It is now available to buy online here.

I've been exploring more landscape based illustrations and I've been really enjoying looking at the natural shapes. For example, things like clouds I would have avoided drawing previously, so I'm enjoying seeing my style evolve.

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