Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Spring Update

One of the things I do here is paint. In particular, flower paintings are what are of interest to me presently. Of course the new chalet with its north-facing roof lights provides a very good studio, in addition to being private and quiet.
I paint in acrylics but hope to try my hand with oils soon. This image (above ) is titled 'nasturtiums'. I painted it last year on 24 inches x 20 inches board. I am in the process of painting more flower images and have managed to put aside at least one day a week dedicated to my painting - though even that can be difficult to achieve at times.
Spring flowers are coming into their own at the cottage. The weather has grown milder - 10 C in the day - and the pussy willow are swelling into their silvery loveliness. Crocus tomasinius Whitewell purple is putting on a good display as is the miniature alpine téte-a-téte narcissi. Our helleborus orientalis are sending their slim-stemmed deep-maroon flowers up through these grey days. Our 'native' narcissi 'van sion' is also cautiously sending its yellow-budded spears skywards.
Gold and green-finches have become more frequent visitors to our peanut boxes since the New Year, and we have observed a few long-tailed-tits which we don't see very often here.
Our local woodcock is patrolling at dusk - a flittery silhouette passing the cottage each evening - a minute later each evening as spring lengthens the days.

Eileen found an old dunnock’s nest beneath a pittosporum bush a few days ago – it must have been blown out by the last storm. Each year we are discovering more birds are deciding to breed in the garden. So far we have been aware of successful wrens, dunnocks and robins but each summer there are gangs of young tits and blackbirds, chaffinches, thrushes, and swallows around, so they must also be breeding very locally.

Have a lovely day - I'm going back to my painting.

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