Archive for August, 2010

Trogir view reworked – a painting a day

August 19, 2010 Leave a comment

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

Eyelashes, as of today there are fewer than ever; that is because I woke up this morning with a clump of plastic lashes missing in the bedclothes, others were diving off in odd directions and some were bent out of shape. The overall effect was completely insane, I can be a heavy sleeper but I did not know I was heavy on the eyelashes as well. Sadly, I decided to have a bath and remove them, sadly because from certain angles they were really rather jaunty and sweetly curved. Removing with solvent them took a while and made me realise just how difficult it must have been to stick the blighters on. They need to be stuck to your own lashes but in my case the lashes are both short and very pale so hard to find in the first place. In the business of removing the fakes I dislodged a few real eye lashes….damn it they are an endangered species. Incidentally in case you think I am exaggerating, the falsies are the shortest in the box and they are about three to four times longer than my lashes. The next time I feel the need to remind the children that life is not fair I will be doing so with a slight self pitying catch in my voice.

I have been a very poor blogger this month, there have been days when I been busy with school holiday type things, days when there was no option but to be ill or look after the sick and I have also wanted to sort my pictures out. The second file needed organising for the second hundred pictures, it’s astonishing how long it takes to number a load of plastic sleeves and get them all in a lever arch file ready for the paintings. I could easily have done a painting with that slot.

The space where the door into the downstairs loo used to be, has now been mostly plasterboarded, a cupboard will fill the space where the short corridor once was and I am very excited, any increase in storage space is a bonus in this house which has a real lack of built in cupboards. Well for a pair of china, tool and equipment  hoarders with children it is inadequate. It might have been fine for the previous occupant. Our last house had three built in wardrobes and they were well used.

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


Autumn growth, a Bolete – a painting a day

August 18, 2010 Leave a comment

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

Eyelashes, I never had many and never very dark or very long, all that has changed now- they are simply evaporating. I have possibly hit upon a solution…stick on individual fakes, my good friend B came round and we had a real laugh…it looks slightly mad and the children say they prefer me without…”Honest Mum you look fine as you are normally…” Sweet, but easy to say from behind a fortress of lush thick lashes which they both got from their (smug) father. I will have to have a second go after this trial…in the meantime dare I leave the house?

Nails, another of my filings (get it?). I have only ever painted my toe nails as my finger nails are weak and never grow long…(and they are also  inky and grubby from weeding ) My dress is green and navy and white so red toe nails would be OK…but I thought metallic green would be funkier and it is. The nails were done by my friend B. who also helped with the technicalities of the dress….now I just have to relay her skills to my husband who will have to do and do it up on the day.

Toadstools are coming up in all sorts of places, here is the biggest so far in a pencil and paint depiction of autumn. Grim but true, it is autumnal. I need to check out what this fungus is, obviously it is a bolete but this garden has a variety of weird and dodgy looking Boletus species and they are not at all easy to nail. This looks like the iodine bolete but it does not have the right smell. It stains blue so I would not try and eat it. I have scattered the spores of Sussex ceps in the woody bit but no home grown porcini yet. Blewits and Chanterelles I may have introduced however, I will let you know if they reappear this year.

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

Across the lake, evening light – a painting a day

August 16, 2010 Leave a comment


 size 7 in x 9 in 18cm x23cm watercolour on heavy weight rag paper

The time today has flown by, it tends to when you are having a spectacularly rotten time. The nasty bug has been coming and going for some of us, which means it’s impossible to know from one meal to the next who will be able to eat or what they might manage.
This was all, fortunately in a way, broken up with my brother’s belated fiftieth birthday celebration. He came south and so did my sister which was lovely. We spent some time discussing exactly how we used to break into the house when we didn’t have a key…it involved shinning up a pipe above some hard looking concrete…I’d read the riot act if I caught my kids doing it- which just goes to show I’ve turned into an old hypocrite. The window’s changed now so even a child couldn’t get through it.
In the middle of the mass vomiting outbreak I noticed that the pears were ready to pick and that the birds had also noticed this fact. I started picking last Thursday and got some help by Friday. There are about 35 pounds of good pears and another eight or so of damaged fruit. The pears have to sit inside until suddenly the yellow tone brightens under the red streaks and they sweeten and soften. We can’t possibly eat them all; so some get given away and some go in the fridge to delay their ripening. Some I will dry in the dessicator as they have a very strong flavour and are good dried. The damaged fruit have almost all been cooked either in a crumble or stewed in red wine with cinnamon, sugar and cloves . I will freeze some for future crumbles and/ or my own favourite chocolate pear pudding, an upside down sponge pudding. We think the variety is French, Precoce de Trevoux, it is the strongest pear I have ever tasted having a real affinity with the yellow and red pear drops we all adored as children. The apples are ripening very fast so lots of them need distributing to relatives, friends and neighbours as well.
This picture is of the view across the sea lagoon from Babine Kuce in Croatia, the house is rented out in the summer we were told. I have only just remembered to make the final changes to this painting so it has not been blogged before. I started it on the same day as the view across the lake to the monastery, it is the view looking the other direction from the view of the village and moored boats.
We have a wedding coming up …clothes shopping with teenagers oh horror horror horror.

111 a painting a day by Alison Warner on her lemon a day art blog

Trio of early apples – a painting a day

August 11, 2010 1 comment

 this painting is framed and for sale in the burgess hill open house event see blog June 4th

Day One Hundred and ten –   a painting a day

size 6 in x 11 in 15cm x 28cm watercolour on heavy weight rag paper

Oh fantastic, we all get back from holiday and THEN we all go down like in sequence with something akin to the winter vomiting- starting before the holiday wash is complete but after DIY Dad has partially demolished the downstairs loo. He has removed the door giving an uninterrupted view of the hall and front door.

I think I have the less serious version I feel dreadful but not as if I am going to die (unlike the people I have been mopping up for).

There have been some very kind comments on my holiday pictures, for which thank you. I can whole heartedly recommend the beautiful landscape  between Dubrovnik and Split, that is the order to do it in as the ferries can be booked in advance going north but NOT going south, unless you are as persuasive as I am….

The garden looked like an autumn scene this morning, the dew was so thick a shining drop hung on every blade of grass, red apples lay on the ground and branches hung low with fruit. How can this have happened?

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

Karbuni: Abroad thoughts from home – a painting a day

August 7, 2010 Leave a comment

NFS Watercolour, size 30cm x 15cm

This is the view from the second place we stayed. The sea really was this colour, I am not putting this picture on eBay as I want to keep it for myself. I may even try and work it into an etched image, it would be a companion piece to an old set of plates which are pigs to print but give a lovely image of the seaside. However I am going to put some of the other pictures from the holiday on eBay to start the ball rolling again.

This painting makes me think of the people at Karbuni, little Prijam with his astute questions, Darka and Mary who were so kind.
I have my little bouquet of wild rosemary and other flowers which was a parting gift. It’s about thirty years since a friend told me how beautiful his home island was and now I know what he was talking about.

In the meantime I am going round removing dead stuff from the garden, I have a wheelbarrow full of deadheading and weeds piled high.

The fruit trees have filled out massively and are now drooping down with the weight of the apples and pears. The early apples are ready and the pears are almost ready to pick.

I am amazed at how well the flowers have survived but I have a very good neighbour, who has watered the pots and the beds.
The dahlias are good, the potentillas are making a fluffy bank of deep red. My best surprise is the Eucryphia which has a mass of white poppy like flowers. Next year when it grows beyond the damage caused by the snow last January it will be magnificent.

Some things have struggled but on the whole things are great. The first flower has come on the herbaceous clematis I grew from seed…… It’s only taken three years, I reckon it should be grateful that I have an occasional patient streak.
Getting back to a garden after a while away is fascinating things may well improve, houses merely get dustier and fusty.


Leaving Dubrovnik – a painting a day

August 5, 2010 Leave a comment

Leaving Dubrovnik

That’s it I should be home surveying the shrivelled remains of my garden. It might have rained but I hear not.

Dubrovnik was amazing but much too busy and hot to paint besides I was far too busy people watching. The national income must go on outrageous shoes and underwear good enough to be on permanent display due to the slashed /shirt length dresses. They all spent ages being photographed sitting in poses borrowed from Page 3. Asking when the icecream parlour closed, we discovered it was 2am!!!!

This is a working sketch of Babine Kuche.

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

Looking back – a painting a day

August 4, 2010 Leave a comment

Looking back to Mljet from Dubrovnik.

This is the view from the Mali Raj restaurant where we had an amazing meal of traditional roast kid with vegetables.
The previous day I had sketched the view over an expresso break.
At the moment I am sitting in the shade outside the Orthdox church in Dubrovnik recovering from the walk round the walls.This place is all steps but very beautiful . There are huge numbers of tourists here and if I came again I would make sure it was earlier in the year or autumn.

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