Jurassic Coast , 95 miles of coastline

3 years of art

The sea has always been a major part of my life, and painting the coastline is an important aspect of my artwork. I’ve spent time painting in Cornwall and most of Devon, but the Jurassic Coast was an area that I hadn’t explored enough.

The geology had always fascinated me but it’s something I had very little knowledge of. Since late 2016 I’ve been working with the Jurassic Coast Trust’s volunteer Ambassadors to gain an understanding of the geology, history and people that comprise this incredible World Heritage Site.

This culminated in an exhibition at Sidmouth’s Kennaway House in October 2017, showcasing landscapes from East Devon’s section of the Jurassic Coast, as well as portraits of eight of the Ambassadors.

In 2018, I’m turning my attention to West Dorset, painting iconic landmarks like Golden Cap, Chesil Beach and the Isle of Portland as well as a new set of Jurassic Coast Ambassadors’ portraits.

For further information about the Jurassic Coast Art Project


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Ambassador Portraits

In collaboration with the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site. A four year project.

John Wokersien by Colin BentleyTony Lambert by Colin Bentley

The Jurassic Coast Ambassadors are a diverse group of people who give their time voluntarily to further the cause of the Jurassic Coast Trust by leading walks, giving talks, assisting at events or writing articles. They also act as advocates in their local communities, telling people about the World Heritage Site and what makes it globally unique.

The Jurassic Coast’s landscapes are an obvious starting point for an artist to explore its character, but its people are often overlooked.
Working with the Ambassadors over the past year has made me realise that this coast’s human connection is equally as important as its dramatic geology.

The portraits are my way of recording the people I encounter on my journey across the World Heritage Site; their input and enthusiasm has made me look at this coast in a whole new light.

Colin Bentley.


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Jurassic Coast | The Journey Begins

In collaboration with the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site




The sea has always been a major part of my life and painting the coastline is an important aspect of my artwork.

I’ve spent time painting in Cornwall and most of Devon, but the Jurassic coast is an area that I haven’t explored enough. The geology has always fascinated me but it’s something I’ve got very little knowledge of.

When studying life drawing, an artist is encouraged to look at anatomy. This knowledge of bone and organ structure will enhance the way the body is drawn. Without that knowledge the outcome would seem lifeless.

Producing paintings of the Jurassic Coast without exploring its geology would be difficult. Understanding a landscape is as important as a knowledge of the anatomy when drawing the human figure.

Without this understanding, a landscape is just a view.

I don’t paint views.

I paint landscapes, and landscapes are places full of history, drama, emotion and life.

In this project I’m going to tell the story of the Jurassic Coast by exploring its geology and history. The 95 miles of coastline divides up into 3 sections, the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous. Each geological section will have a major exhibition.

Working on this 3 year project will allow me to have a deeper understanding of this amazing World Heritage site.

Colin Bentley


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