Tuesday, 20 June 2017

Heat Wave

 "Summer Haze"
Inspired by the wild flowers in our cottage woodland garden.


I am trying to work on my new book but a heatwave has hit UK. As much as I adore writing, concentration isn't coming very easily to me right now. I still get the urge to go "freckle collecting" when the sun shines even though I know it is supposed to be bad for me. But it feels so good to have sunshine on my shoulders especially when I live in England and these very hot temperatures are so few and far between.

But I did work on my book today and the section I have been putting together is almost complete and it looks beautiful. To be honest. I am learning so much from writing this new publication. I am having to think about why I paint in the way that I do in order to share techniques and tips that work for me. Also, trying to write in a way that readers can gain successful results rather than just look at pretty pictures means each word written has to be brilliantly explanatory and inspirational. I am a tough task master when it comes to writing each new book I take on as a project. And I am being very hard on myself with this one because it is gorgeous and I want everyone who reads it to feel they simply have to paint after reading each section.

But at the end of today I felt I deserved a treat. So I went and sat quietly in the woodland section of our cottage garden with the intention of painting the white ox eye daisies growing wild there. This section of our garden has been deliberately left to grow wild for the wildlife to enjoy. Before I even picked up my brushes a pair of dancing copper butterflies drifted past and before I knew it I was sat silently watching butterflies and not painting. But this silent time drew me into a beautiful mood of silence where only bird song interrupted the connection between me and my brushstrokes.

Soon the hazy daisies came to life on my paper and I felt peaceful, happy and relaxed.

As always I cannot wait to paint tomorrow.

I am inspired with new energy to pour into the next pages of my new book.

My artists tip for today?

Stop what you are doing, find something beautiful and paint it in silence. Just for a few minutes clear your mind and escape into the world of watercolour. It is after all the most magical of worlds. And we are so privileged to be able to escape into it from time to time.



 Woodland section of our cottage garden. A grass pathway leads you through beautiful wild flowers and natural grasses.


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Tuesday, 13 June 2017

The Dreaded Words

"Delphinium Rhapsody"
Delphinium painted in my cottage garden this afternoon

An exhausting day. I have tidied my studio. And every single time I do this I have an incredible urge to paint and mess it up again which actually isn't a good idea, or is it.

Why is my blog post called " The Dreaded Words" you may ask.  Well when I had the first meeting with my publisher for my next new book they told me that they would come to me this time with the photography crew, to film the step by steps. In my studio. Wow, I thought at the time. That's fantastic. No packing my car and worrying about leaving anything important behind. No unpacking and packing again at the photography studio. No having to stay in hotels overnight while the filming was taking place. And how easy this would be with everything I need at hand, here in my studio.

Then the dreaded words sunk in.

" In my studio"

Wait.

"IN MY STUDIO"

Aaaargh!

I have been putting off tidying up and making room for the cameras etc. Constantly making excuses of more important things to do. Like collecting freckles in my garden if the sun is shining, as well as painting of course.

 I kept putting it off, until today when I could put it off no longer. Last night I went to bed imagining how enthusiastically I would race to my studio this morning and set about  tidying. Re arranging things and making it look wonderful.

But when I woke this morning all my good intentions of heading to my studio seemed to evaporate within minutes as my feet headed straight for the potting shed in my garden and the next thing I knew I was gardening. While I was gardening I fell in love with the above delphinium and just had to paint it straight away. All the while telling myself that afterwards I would definitely sort out my studio. But then a sale came through which meant wrapping a painting for a gallery urgently. And then a second gallery contacted me asking me if I had any Venice scenes but the one the gallery's client wanted had just sold, only minutes before.  So instead of sorting out my studio I helped the second gallery by forwarding images of paintings that may be suitable for their client instead.

Finally as evening drew near I made myself get on with the task I had been putting off all day. Now my studio looks fabulous. In fact, it looks too fabulous.

A tidy studio?

What kind of artist works in a tidy studio?

This won't do at all.


Tonight I am going to bed with the notion of waking to mess my studio back up again.

I am sure you will be eager to see whether my studio is a mess or organised in my new book.

But what the heck, I actually just want to paint delphiniums now so my studio, messy or tidy will have to wait.

Happy painting!


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Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Every Life Matters

"So Small"
Butterfly on wild flower in our cottage garden.


As always I am busy. I am now totally engrossed in writing my new book. I am at the middle of creating this next exciting publication and I am afraid each new chapter draws me further into the book. So much so that I find it impossible to leave it. Even to share posts here on my blog. This often happens when you really fall in love with what you are doing. It consumes you. You eat, sleep and wake thinking of what is going to happen next. It is a fantastic and energising feeling. But, I know there will be a stage in the process where I feel very unhappy. And that will be when I know I am about to write the last few chapters. A part I dread when writing any book. Because the process is like a love affair between the creation and the creator.  Or the bond between a Mother and a child. It is hard to let go when the time comes, as it has to. But that time is way off in the distance. For now I am in the ecstatic mode of wanting to write and paint every single minute of each day and I love it.

In our cottage garden there is so much in the way of wildlife to distract me from my goal of writing each day. Happily this just gives me another excuse to paint.

Today I watched a tiny delicate butterfly as it danced around the flowers in our garden. So small, so dainty and yet so beautiful.

With an election in UK this week I can't help but wonder just who is looking out for our environment in the world. So that for generations to come in the years ahead, our grandchildrens' grandchildren can feel the thrill I do when I observe the beauty of nature.

Yes, there are many important issues our world leaders need to  consider. 
I just wish one would seriously consider the planet and protect oru wildlife too.

But for now, I am back to writing and painting which is far more relaxing.

Happy painting!


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