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Archive for June, 2010

Three white peaches – a painting a day

June 13, 2010 Leave a comment

SOLD.   size 6 in x 3.5 in 15cm x 9cm watercolour on heavy weight rag paper

 Today we went swimming at the local leisure pool, which has an outdoor bit, the wind was nippy, the palms are being taken over by ivy but apart from that, in the blue water in the sunshine it could have been…the Med. I dutifully did my aqua exercises so fully expect to feel terrible tomorrow.

Here are the peaches which smell heavenly. In France you pay extra for white fleshed peaches as they are tastier or rather more aromatic. Here, if you find them, on a market or in LIDL! they cost the same as yellow peaches.

We made ice creams with the strawberries today, one with goats cream as a special treat for me and one with ordinary cream. Heaven was in a glass dish.

Today we picked three pounds of strawberries and there are more to come.

Alison

#75 a painting a day by Alison Warner on her lemon a day art blog

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A Blush Pear – a painting a day

June 12, 2010 Leave a comment

http://www.etsy.com/shop/lemonaday.   size 6 in x 4.5 in 15cm x 12cm watercolour on heavy weight rag paper

I am going to compile my list of the top ten genera or plant families that form the backbone of the garden for me, then I shall see if there are gardening forums out there who beg to differ.

I think I have to start with the roses:

1)       Rosa or roses

2)       Geranium

3)      Penstemon, important as they take you through from June to October

4)      Papaver or poppies these are just such brilliant show offs, but delicate with it

5)      Clematis I think I have nine different ones and there are more that I want( like the one in that mans shopping trolley in the supermarket)

6)      Lilium or lilies I don’t have many at the moment that that could be changed at the stroke of a key on the computer this autumn,the ones I have I have had for ten years and I love them they are regaining strength again after being dug up three times in four years.

7)      Narcissus or daffodils and jonquils etc

8)      Tulipa

9)      Allium they steal the bed in a way little else can do.

10)   Lonicera or honeysuckle this is a canny choice as it can give you hedging plants climbers winter flowering shrubs and summer flowering shrubs.

11)    Lavendula sorry I can’t leave this out.

This list will need revising….

We did not go to the allotment today. I went to the market stall in Burgesshill and today I painted this pear, the white peaches will maybe do tomorrow.

Alison

#74 a painting a day by Alison Warner on her lemon a day art blog

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Dianthus for the Rainbow Nation – a painting a day

June 11, 2010 Leave a comment

 this painting is framed and for sale £50

.   size 5 in x 8 in 13cm x 20cm watercolour on heavy weight rag paper

It rained and then it rained some more, but it will be dry for the weekend and it was dry for birthday boy’s barbeque. I am certainly not complaining as the watering was showing up as water on my knee.

It was wonderful to see the winter sunshine in Cape Town and spot how they shifted Gary Linnaker around all the time to get the shots. When No1 son was a baby we went to Cape Town for a long weekend one September (Presidents Day Holiday in Botswana) the queues to get up the mountain on the cable car were huge so we decided to take a stroll up a path, found it went to the top and walked up with the baby in a carrier frame. Amazing place, there’s a different climate on the top even though it’s so close to the town, and the plants…..

The most spectacular things in this garden at the moment are Allium schubertii and the climbing rose William Morris which is heartbreakingly beautiful. It flowers on the corner of the house on the path leading to the front door. I will make an etching from one of the Allium flowers to go with an older steel plate which used an impress of an Allium flower in soft ground (that’s an etching soft ground not boggy flower bed).

I hesitate to mention it but I have not seen a lily beetle here yet this year. The Mina lobata did have a flower which was lily beetle scarlet but something attacked it and it will need to grow back from the base. I have looked for culprits but can find no clear evidence.

One other extraordinary thing, the Nicotianum sylvestris which I neglected to pull up last autumn is sprouting from the base!! I thought it was an annual. The leaves are very strong smelling-tobacco bitter-and no snail has so much as nibbled it. An amazing survivor, it is definitely listed as an annual. It is growing in a bit of a rain shadow so would have been dry for much of the winter and not quite as cold as elsewhere in the garden but I lost things only three foot further out into the same border. N.sylvestris is one of my favourite plants growing about four feet high with hanging flowers of white which perfume the evening air. It is strategically planted near the covered sitting area which can be used for breakfast or a meal on a cooler or even damp evening. Once when some friends were over we sat there drinking coffee in a thunder storm and it was brilliant.

Today we picked three pounds of strawberries. Oh and I slipped and fell over crashing right through the bird netting….damn suffered complete loss of good humour.

Alison

#73 a painting a day by Alison Warner on her lemon a day art blog

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Dianthus Rainbow Loveliness – a painting a day

June 10, 2010 Leave a comment

http://www.etsy.com/shop/lemonaday.   size 5 in x 8 in 13cm x 20cm watercolour on heavy weight rag paper

Today was another family birthday, all day today little snippets of the day he was born jump in and out of focus. I look at where I held my hand against his and compared the size and then look across the table at his hand now.

Today’s flower is Dianthus Rainbow Loveliness a subtle beauty if ever there was one.

We went out at the request of both boys and tried the menu on a midweek special at one of the nearest chinese restaurants, the China Brasserie, the deal is that for £12 you can order as many dishes as you want but you will be charged extra for any leftover food . Now that is the kind of challenge my boys can get their feet under. It was a brilliant way to test the menu,we ordered ten starters, liking the crispy wontun so much we ordered it twice. They had wrapped a prawn in a piece of fine pastry, tied a knot and deep fried it, it was crisp and very delicate.

The best of the main dishes was the beef with ginger and spring onions which had that zing so often missing from chinese food these days. The last takeaway we had was from a bigger restaurant the Tai Kar and it nearly put us off Chinese food for ever…the chicken bang bang grated on your teeth from the granulated sugar in it -vile,vile,vile,the sauces smelt like school dinner gravy and were underseasoned.

Alison

#72 a painting a day by Alison Warner on her lemon a day art blog

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Allotment Strawberries–a painting a day

June 9, 2010 Leave a comment

SOLD.   size 5.5 in x 6 in 14cm x 15cm watercolour on heavy weight rag paper

Yesterday was a family birthday (so sorry no blog) and I picked one and three quarter pounds of strawberries, lucky then that everyone likes strawberries for pudding. We had barbecued chicken and sausages with asparagus risotto and a salad. We kicked off with a special bottle of Ridgeview Knightsbridge which was lovely. No2 son made the canapés to go with this…rye biscuits, soft goats’ cheese and smoked salmon. My meringues went dreadfully wrong; I ended up incinerating them in the microwave as I got distracted into searching for something. Burnt from the inside out and smelling really dreadful- just as the first guests arrived. “Hello, sorry about the smell” is never a good opener.

Because two main items came from the allotment this feast came to £3.60 a head excluding wine, and the cheese board which was only really for one person who is on an Atkins type diet. I include the birthday cake and burnt meringues in the calculation….cooking from scratch saves shed loads of money.

My in-laws came back from France with loads of what they call ‘bits’, I call them goodies- jars of rillettes and pate, macaroons, virulent goats cheese, olive bread and palmiers . Actually, thinking about it, I should paint a few cakes ; the only thing I have done in that subgenre is the hot cross bun.

Today there were strawberries for tea and for the painting a day…only one pound two ounces however, perhaps they have peaked. I lost the light as I was waiting for a layer of this to dry, it may be repictured tomorrow with a tweak or two. The variety is Cambridge Favourite.

Alison

#71 a painting a day by Alison Warner on her lemon a day art blog

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Allium bulgaricum – a painting a day

June 7, 2010 Leave a comment

 a detail from this painting is framed and for sale

size 4 in x 6 in 12cm x 15cm watercolour on heavy weight rag paper

Today I picked one and a half pounds of strawberries.

I planted out about twelve late things: tender fuchsias and dahlias. Found a Canna lily that has overwintered in the ground!!

I painted this unusual Allium which is sometimes known as the other name in the tags. I think the other name means garlic with nectar or it would in Greek not sure what they called garlic in Latin. It’s quite tricky as it’s so floppy(hard to get an angle on it). I’ve seen it standing tall in other gardens but mine is coy and retiring.

Seventieth painting today! I think I shall give myself a treat when I get to one hundred.

Alison

#70 a painting a day by Alison Warner on her lemon a day art blog

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Portland rose–a painting a day

June 6, 2010 Leave a comment

SOLD   size 3 in x 4.5 in 8cm x 12cm watercolour on heavy weight rag paper

Today I picked two and a half pounds of strawberries with help from No2 son. No1 son was tying himself in knots with quadratic equations. I know I used to be good at these but I can’t remember how without more concentration than I have to spare. Luckily for all of us his father is very good at maths. I had no problems with maths at O level as our teacher got us through the syllabus a year early and then made us do every paper from 1952 to the previous year; the exam was in no way terrifying after that marathon. Miss Delaney was tiny, a reformed nun and so Irish she had had to learn English at school as a second language. Her hero was Pythagoras who, she told us, had been a methodical thinker and she wanted us gels to be like him and think methodically. She had never got her tongue round the’ th’ sound and so what she asked us to do was to” tink metodically” She had a wonderful kind but sharp sense of humour in addition …she did need it with us.

Today’s picture is also tiny- about life size, it’s the lovely round or rather spherical (maths, it gets to you) buds of the Portland Rose. This is an old rose with a very bushy shape. It has a lovely smell and it loves the clay soil here, it has just got fatter and fatter.

I went into Burgess Hill today and visited some open studios, they were very kind and friendly and there was some good work there. I especially liked the felted image of the sky after the planes started flying again in Crescent Road and the lovely wooden bowls that had been turned at another house opposite. The houses had been busy today and yesterday; I only got round four but enjoyed meeting them all. It seems most places near here have open studio events but not here. Could I face having an open studio, could my family? I think on the whole it’s a very noble thing to do and pretty brave.

Alison

#69 a painting a day by Alison Warner on her lemon a day art blog

Geraniums in the half moon bed,in the foreground G.Clarkei Kashmir white and purple,in the middle G.Patricia and all over the place G.pyranaicum.The taller pink flowers are the fluffy heads of Thalitricum aquilegifolium,the maroon is an aquilegia. This bed was dug out and planted up April/May last year.

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