I am still in Mljet, I have seen lots of evidence of flowers which have finished, tiny alliums, muscari seedheads, Nigella seed heads. Last night I was woken up by the biggest thunderstorm which started with a ferocious wind and huge drops of rain. Several women emerged in their night clothes to rescue towels and swimming clothes. Luckily it was still dark as my night dress blew up round my ears in the wind.
Tonight a cat climbed up the trellis and then landed splat on the table…..before the food came luckily. The thought of a beautiful dish of fish with scrawny cat face down in it did not appeal .
This is a five minute beach sketch of a ferry on ar small island.I will rework it later as there are some nice things going on in the foreground.
#106 a painting a day by Alison Warner on her lemon a day art blog
Yesterday I arrived in Mljet after having a bit of an altercation in the queue for very limited numbers of tickets. The quieter but very annoyed English and Spanish people in the queue seemed pleased when I did my outraged English matriarch turn on a queue jumper. He tried to brazen it out but gave in.
This is an exquisite island, there is a nature reserve where the woodland is composed of Aleppo pines, strawberry trees, Viburnum tinus, myrtle, tree heather, junipers various and cistus. There are figs, carobs and olives too. If I had been here in the spring there would have been thousands of flowers,but now it is just a yellow thistle( the Caroline Thistle? ), and what looks like a wild carrot. The fish in sea make snorkeling addictive. I am still pretending to be a feeding octopus by making a little cloud of sediment – it attracts some lovely fish who are then under my nose for a while. There is also a salt water lagoon which is warmer than the sea, in that there are fewer fish but there are some giant bivalves, fan mussels? They look about a foot long.
Here are some pictures one of the tomato and one of Lastovo from Korcula.
size 6 in x 6 in 15cm x 15cm watercolour on heavy weight rag paper
#105- a painting a day by Alison Warner on her lemon a day art blog
104-a painting a day by Alison Warner on her lemon a day art blog
I am in Trogir which is pretty enough to double for Venice in Dr Who. Here is my first sketch. The only other thing to say is that it is extremely hot. Off to an island for a swim.
#103 a painting a day on holiday
size 6 in x 4.5 in 15cm x 12cm watercolour on heavy weight rag paper
The wind continues and slowly weakens. There was enough rain in the night to refill the waterbutt, things do at least look damp again for the first time in a month. Lots of apples have blown off the trees so I made an apple sauce by quartering them and coring them…it was edible but tart, not fluffy as it will be when the cookers are ripe.
I have sold a number of pictures in the last fortnight, this has led me to revise the prices on some in order to slow down the sale of the paintings that fit well into a particular niche. I may hold some back altogether in order to make coherent sets for framing and exhibition later.
On the subject of sales I am going away for a while to do some painting. If I can master the technology I will post as often as possible. However I will not be able to post i.e. mail any sold items so will lengthen all the e-bay auctions and put Etsy on vacation mode.
Today I painted some more cherries but from a photographic reference posted on Rookie Painter challenge. Is it possible to tell that these are from a photo and the previous cherries were from life? I can’t tell until my eye is detuned from the new painting and sees it fresh.
#102 a painting a day by Alison Warner on her lemon a day art blog
SOLD size 7 in x 6 in 17cm x 15cm watercolour on heavy weight rag paper
I am completely out of sorts today, however I have produced this picture. There are more of the beautiful curlicues found on the tendrils which a pea uses to scramble up other plants or pea netting in this case.
The wind in the night and most of the day has kept me from sleep and made me fume at the slightest thing. My mother was a teacher latterly of infants she said wind always changed the mood in the playground making the children madder and wilder. Clearly I have not moved on from this phase.
#101 a painting a day by Alison Warner on her lemon a day art blog
size 6 in x 8 in 15cm x 19cm watercolour on heavy weight rag paper Fabriano
I really am quite surprised with myself, one hundred little paintings today, I should be celebrating but as I haven’t finished my picture yet and it’s really late I doubt I will. To put the icing on it a picture sold today, the tiny red poppy one. I do like it so I will send it on its way a little sadly. At least with modern technology everything is photographed and I have a record; in the distant past I once walked into a person’s house, admired a picture only to be told it was one of mine! I had forgotten all about once it left my care (Yes it was deeply embarrassing, in fact my stomach is curdling now thinking about it).
I picked the last of the currants today with help from No2 son, just over twelve ounces. While I was on the allotment I begged these lovely fresh peas from a neighbours plot. The tendrils are perfect. I put some plants in, late of course, but then theres a chance of rain so they might hack it.
It seems like there has been some rain today- until the rain gauge is checked and that shows we have been lightly sprinkled with water droplets- not rained on at all. The soil tells the same story, it’s rock hard.
I think my wash will be dry now, so I will finish there for the night.
#100 a painting a day by Alison Warner on her lemon a day art blog
size 6 in x 6 in 15cm x 15cm pen & watercolour on heavy weight rag paper
So I finally went to town to sort out a bit of money transfer malarkey for No1 son. His grandparents wanted to move money they are saving for his illustrious future from one account to another. I discovered two things:
One: He would not be able to access his money without a passport. As he has never signed on the account before they had no comparison on the signature. My word as his mother was of no interest to them. Without a passport they tell me they would keep the money forever…..a new form of taxation? If you desperately needed your money and you were at school with no bills or anything in your name, you certainly wouldn’t be able to fork out the eighty pounds + needed for a passport.
Two: they have without a signature or any declaration started taking tax from him as though he is earning more than £6000pa (I wish) Other institutions assume that school children are non-taxpayers and send a form to fill in- in case you are liable. That seems more reasonable to me.
The best thing in the garden at the moment is a delicate Kniphofia, common name Red hot poker, mine is not as tall or chunky as some and it’s not red either; more of a luke warm poker. It is a plant from my phase of collecting apricot coloured flowers in order to have a lavender and apricot border. I struggled to make a viable bed due to the lack of a backbone species of long flowering habit. It is easy to get that in a pink purple or a white. The Kniphofias are splendid but brief ditto the apricot Irises. Apricot Diascias are small and tend to the pink end of apricot, I bought a Jacobs Ladder which said it was apricot but it was blue. I think it needs a group of really good repeat flowering apricot roses and work out from there. Mrs Oakley Fisher looks very promising. She has just produced a shoot with about ten small buds.
The honeysuckle is another linear subject so I have done it in pen and wash.
#99 a painting a day by Alison Warner on her lemon a day art blog
SOLD size 12in x 6 in , 29cm x 15cm pen & watercolour on heavy weight rag paper
The rain was rubbish, not nearly enough, the garden is still wilting. There’s always tomorrow however.
Have had a second go at the orchid today, I’m trying to get some better lines with the pen. More work needed on a sloped surface I think.
Took mother back to London where the grass is entirely brown even though they have had more rain than we have had.
Returned home to find the kitchen devastated by no1 son making 3 gallons of pancake mixture…”I’ve run out of milk!” Worked out as we had visitors who got more than just a cup of tea.
#98 a painting a day by Alison Warner on her lemon a day art blog
this is now for sale on ETSY:
size 12in x 6 in , 29cm x 15cm pen & watercolour on heavy weight rag paper
It has not rained today but it has been hot. Everything in the garden is liable to wilt and look miserable and that includes me.
The boys have had a great time in the giant paddling pool with a friend, I have been in myself long enough to get dizzy going round and round in a circle.
My mother is visiting so I bought fresh peas as she likes podding them. I should have grown some but germination of everything has been dismal this year. Very glad indeed that we do not attempt anything more than adding to the bought food with what we grow.
The double poppies stop me every time I walk past but they are dauntingly complex so I have taken a picture rather than tried to paint them.
I really like the string of buds on this little orchid. I say little, it is about twelve inches high; visiting a friend who really is into orchids once, as I looked at a tiny orchid he handed a jewellers glass over my shoulder and pointed out that the orchid had flowers if you looked closely enough. Yes the flowers were barely visible to the naked eye. Needless to say it was a valuable and collectable item.
I should paint some fresh peas though, if only to make a companion piece to the carrots.
#97 a painting a day by Alison Warner on her lemon a day art blog
size 7 in x 6 in 19cm x 15cm watercolour on heavy weight rag paper
A very hot day, I spent some time with the niece of my elderly neighbour, she showed me old pictures of the road and the people who used to live in this house. From the pictures it is possible to make out the apple trees in their youth and the beginnings of some of the leylandii monsters that had taken over by the time we moved here.
It is 25 degrees in the studio which awhile back would have seemed unbearable but today seemed ok. I must be acclimatising.
Today’s picture is of the cornflowers which did not bleach in the sun and some corn marigolds. Last year I grew another cornfield weed corncockle and they were really striking. It is a very quick sketch as I hated the first one I did.
I also went to buy more pads of blocked watercolour paper as I am getting through it like there’s no tomorrow. Luckily for me there is a paper place where they make up their own blocks in 350g paper and it’s quite reasonable. The blocks of Fabriano paper I also use can cost a lot depending on where you get them. I got mine in a decorators shop in Florence, they were 25% of the UK price at the time!!
Tonight we had a scratch barbeque…i.e. raid the freezer, get a bit of salad out of the fridge and the red wine.No1 son decided that there was a lack in the pudding dept. So we made bananas in brown sugar and butter in foil on the coals and then he wondered what barbequed gooseberries would be like AND barbequed peaches! He foil wrapped the peaches and kebabed the gooseberries (what else?) Tike ate all the gooseberries saying they were really sour and that was a good thing. He gave me a peach which was excellent.
#96 a painting a day by Alison Warner on her lemon a day art blog