Its springtime the birds are spinning into action and song as the migrants return and the quest for a breeding partner resumes. Its time to get the paints out after a serious bout of artistic “bloc” – or perhaps sheer laziness. My creative energies have been channelled into music of late for sure – but its now lovely to splash a few watercolours around and make a real mess on paper!
The hum of the lawn blurs with the sweet chitterlings of birds – worn out from their chasing, mating, sitting, watching, dashing, singing, struggling lives of springtime as we move into summer. The garden grows wilder by the second, ferning and fronting in an explosion of green, highlighted by the coming flowers of the high season. In the absence of any more immediate inspiration I take my watercolorist outside and play at capturing my experience of the garden into a small series of humble sketches.
The coming of autumn heralds a change. The daffodils fade out of the picture to be replaced with the russet siennas of the trees’ lament. There is moisture in the air as the Atlantic breeze kisses our land and the season brings a foretelling of the cold to come. But only a hint, as the warmth of the summer lingers through the fading year.
The garden is brimming with delights at the moment. Its a wild place to be honest – with gushings of green of all different textures, shades and forms. Yet dotted in amongst all this foliage are flowers, some completely wild, others those that have been planted, but all revealing something of nature’s beauty. Trying to capture, or respond to, the sensuous essence of these blooms is a challenge to any artist. Too loose – and there’s no definition, too formal – and there’s a lack of naturalness. After a number of attempts to paint this collection of blossoms and foliage, perhaps its the final sketch that I’m most pleased with.
The garden bakes in a flurry of late growth, aching to make up for time lost in the belated arrival of Spring. The greens amaze us, and the shapes of leaves contoured to meet the demands of their individual genetic niches, form perfect geometry with the blue space that surrounds them. Who could imagine the changes in our surroundings and mood that the seasons inspire? It all seems too good to let go of. So … to attempt to capture a sense of this passing glorious moment the paints come out, and the brushes get a bit of well earned exercise.