After all the rain lately we woke to blue skies and sunshine today. It promised to be a short respite as more bad weather is forecast. Seemed too good to waste so Laura, Amelie and I escaped for a few hours to one of our favourite places - a nearby arboretum.
I know it sounds ludicrous but I've worked from home for so long I haven't really noticed how beautiful our local winter landscape can be. There have been times when I haven't left the house for weeks on end so now that we work out of Laura's new studio it's almost like having a proper job. I have to get up in the mornings and get dressed rather than make coffee, check my email and then find myself still in my bathrobe at lunchtime! It's quite a shock to be honest. The bonus however is that I enjoy the short journey between our homes at varying times of day and in all weathers. I am suddenly aware of the amazing quality of light when the afternoon sun is low in the sky, of rainbows when the air is moist and most of all of the gnarly old trees that are everywhere in our landscape.
Our plan was to walk Amelie in the pushchair till she had her nap and then take lots of lovely tree photos while she dozed. Trouble was the arboretum is also a farm and there were far too many distractions like these noisy geese who hissed and grumbled at us till we moved away.
The fields are so saturated that these ewes had been brought into the farmyard. Posing like that they remind me of a Pre Raphaelite painting.Do you know the one I mean with the rosy cheeked shepherdess? I want to get my brushes and watercolours out and have a go!
By the time we'd had lunch in the arboretum restaurant and then driven back home it was getting quite late and I didn't think there was time to start painting but I made time to carve a new print block of a bee. Who knew there were so many types?
Well actually this fellow obviously did - the illustrations in his book are wonderful. I was lucky enough to find it for £3 at a flea market!
I've tried the block out by making a graphite rubbing - that's the quickest way to see if it will work when I print with it using acrylic paint. We're having a play day tomorrow and plan to print till we run out of things to print on! I'll let you see how it all turns out soon.
bye for now - Linda