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Seaside Painting - Beach Paintings by Cornwall's Favourite Artists

  • 3 min read

Detail of Joanne Short seaside oil painting of sailing boats at Fowey

Seaside Art

The John Dyer Gallery in Falmouth, Cornwall has a large collection of paintings of the seaside. All three of our gallery artists, John Dyer, Joanne Short and Ted Dyer have been painting the Cornish seaside art for many years. Our gallery has a large range of paintings, posters and prints of the stunning Cornish coastline.

"I love painting the coast. I am lucky enough to call Cornwall my home and spent much of my childhood enjoying time at the beach and in the sea. I loved going to the seaside; painting it now is a joy. For me, my love of the coast is highlighted by the beauty of the wildflowers that grow along the cliffs in Cornwall. Capturing the changing seasons through the variety and changing natural colour palette of the clifftops is one of my main focuses when painting."

Joanne Short




In her remarkable painting of Godrevy lighthouse, Joanne captures the radiance and hues of a balmy spring sunset. The boats circle the lighthouse while the colourful flowers sway on the cliffs above in the gentle breeze. With its entrancing selection of colours, this artwork evokes special memories from carefree holidays spent by Cornwall's seaside.

What are paintings of the ocean called?

Paintings of the sea and ocean are generally called 'seascapes'. Historically artists have often been attracted to the coast for their inspiration - there is a constant change of light and colour which adds interest to an artist's palette and subsequent panting.

When there is a focus on boats and ships at sea the work is referred to as 'Maritime art'. Over the years Ted Dyer has often focused his art around sailing boats and yachts.

In this image by artist Ted Dyer captures the soft light of an early morning on the river Fal. The misty light in this painting creates a feeling of tranquility and calm.

This seaside painting, however, although based on the same subject, is clear and bright and creates more of an uplifting joyful feeling of summer holidays and sailing on the river.

How do you find artistic inspiration?

When asked how he finds his artistic inspiration, Cornish artist John Dyer replied:

“I have always been inspired by the joy of nature, the amazing colours of the seaside, the extraordinary that hides in the ordinary, the fun and life of being on the beach and watching people enjoying the sea, architectural plants and bright flowers, dogs and cats, fishing boats and sailing boats and blue skies and sunny days. Inspiration is all around me; I have to paint it.”

John Dyer

Who are the British sea artists?

Throughout history, artists have used their brushes to immortalize the majestic beauty of Britain's seaside. For centuries, the awe-inspiring beaches and seascapes of Britain's coastline, especially in Cornwall, have been a source of endless inspiration for artists.

Possibly the most famous of all British seascape painters of is J. M. W. Turner who spent his career trying to capture the character of the sea with his energetic seaside paintings.

Turner's most famous paintings are part imagination (and emotion) and part reality. A mixture of imagination, emotion and reality is what makes a painting a true work of art.

A number of contemporary British sea artists have made a significant contribution to the genre. Cornish seaside artists Joanne Short, Ted Dyer and John Dyer are well known for their unique depictions and reactions to the sea.

These three artists are based in Falmouth, Cornwall and have all been inspired by the beauty of the Cornish sea throughout their lives. They explore themes such as life on the coast, fishing boats, fun on the beach, sailing boats and the wildlife and plants around the coast. They all capture the essence of their subjects and the essence of the seaside in their paintings. 

Buy your perfect seaside art and seaside painting online

We have a unique collection of seaside art in stock that you can purchase online. Discover your perfect painting or art print on our acclaimed Cornish based gallery.

Here are five popular seaside painting examples that are available as open edition art prints. These are all museum-quality reproductions of well known seaside art that can last 100+ years in perfect conditions so they can last a lifetime and will bring the sea into your home every day.

Discover a seaside painting for your home

All of the available original seaside seascape paintings currently available on the gallery can be seen below.