Saturday, April 11, 2015

Sundown Tree

Sunshine. Makes a pleasant change from the chilly grey of winter. I've even been tempted to throw caution to the wind and step outdoors. Georgie, of course, being a gardeny-type, has been outdoors nearly every day, braving wind, rain and snow, digging, pruning, weeding, rock moving and doing whatever else gardeny-types do. Gained a few brownie points by blasting the old lawn mower from its winter slumber and demolishing the green stuff that pretends to be a lawn. Then returned to my indoor sanctuary. Felt a bit guilty when I peered out through the cobwebby window to see Georgie crowbarring rocks to form a rockery while I sipped an indoor tea. Then spotted my easel gathering dust in a corner. Dug out my bag of paints and brushes from under a pile of boxes. Checked to see if the paints had gone solid since I last used them. Must have been about eighteen months ago. Or maybe longer. Luckily they were still squeezable, or whatever the technical term might be. Then found an unused canvas lurking behind a chair in the indoor shed. So now I had all the equipment for a painting foray in the sunshine. What I didn't have was an excuse to stay indoors. But would I still be able to paint? Was the old magic still there? (Er, what magic?) There's only one way to find out... straight in at the deep end.

Spent three late afternoons and evenings sploshing paint in the shadow of the old tree up at Sprocket Hill. Couldn't get it right. The light kept changing as the sun descended. Browns turned to pinky orange and rusty reds, then back to browny grey, all in a matter of minutes. Shadows grew, light areas disappeared. With every change came a rub out with a turpsy rag. Then the sun went down and arty stuff was thrown in the dogwagon and driven back home in a frustrated rage. Looks like the old magic's been and gone. Maybe it'll return tomorrow evening. Or maybe not. Providing the sunny weather holds.

Today, the fourth day, the sun has gone. So the colours won't be there. And neither will I. Instead, I'll wait for the next sunny soirée before attacking the painting again and hopefully applying the finishing touches. Or maybe I'll just leave it unfinished. And start another one. Or maybe not.

Took a few photos of the canvassy mess. Interestingly, the snaps look completely different to the painting. The colours are all wrong. Anyways..., I'll load up one of the photos cos it's better than nothing. Or maybe it ain't!

Thursday, April 9, 2015


Brilliant weather at the moment. Four days of sunshine without a cloud in the sky. Pretty hot too. It all comes after a long, dull, grey, chilly spell so the village washing lines are full of clothing, bedding and towelly stuff all flapping under a hot sun. Neighbour Collette was first out with the pegs at crack of dawn when the sun arrived. She's always hot off the marks with her washing. We, on the other hand, are slow to get the suds going, so quite often the sun's clouded over or gone down by the time we emerge from the house with our soggy washing. Er, when I say 'we' I actually mean Georgie. And one of the drawbacks of being a bit too late to get hanging in the sun is that one ends up with a basket or two of soggy washing that slowly gets a bit mildewy while waiting for the next blast of sunshine that inevitably takes weeks to arrive. Er, I'm waffling.

Anyways..., yes, big sunshine recently. Daffodils sprouting up all over le magasin. Standing to attention and facing south, basking in the sun's rays. And not only daffodils. Up t'other end of the village there's a house with millions of narcissises..., narcissisae..., er, small daffodils. Well, when I say 'house' I actually mean 'garden'. It's a bit odd though. The house faces east while most of the houses up this way sort of face south. Or, if they're on the opposite side of the road and face north, their backs face south. Personally, I prefer a west facing plot so you get the sun in the soirée. But, as I said, that house faces east so it gets the morning sun but it's in the shadow of a bank in the evening. Not good for enjoying a soirée aperitif or deux. Good view though in the morning sun. Er, I'm waffling again. Better stop.

More photos taken around 4pm when the light changed and the Narcissii really stood out...