- On my coffee table - Sadly, I'm almost at the end of "We are all made of glue" by Marina Lewycka. I'm trying to make it last another day even though my reading pile has way too many volumes waiting for me. It was Marina who wrote "A short history of tractors in Ukrainian" which has to be one of the most unlikely titles ever to have drawn me. I've also just started "Seeing stars" by Simon Armitage which is unlike his other work, but full of memorable images and I had a lucky find in the library - "Adverbs" by Daniel Handler - aka Lemony Snicket. Time off work and new reads on the table. Good timing.
- On my music stand - Well, I have some precious time off work (day job) at the moment so I am making sure that I have a proper break. However......
- On my radio - The BBC Proms are filling our Summer airwaves with great sounds, every night until mid September from The Royal Albert Hall. I've been a fan since I was a tiny child who wanted to play the violin. All the concerts are available on play again settings as well, so you can imagine, lots of music in the house. Highlights so far have been an amazing concert of Beethoven fueled with absolute fun and passion by the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen aiming to perform as in Beethoven's time. The soloist was one of my favourite violinists - Hilary Hahn who seemed to be inspired to play beyond herself. I would love to have been there that night. And tonight was a Sondheim 80th birthday celebration that was fun from start to finish.
- At the allotment - Green and yellow courgettes, green and yellow zucchini, green and yellow courgettes, green and yellow zucchini. YES!! we have a glut. THEN we had some half decent rain, which has been a very rare thing in this part of the UK for way too long, so I guess there will be some more courgettes tomorrow. They've been making family, friends and neighbours very happy so far, but I think we might have to start leaving them in the park or something. Oak leaf lettuce which is delicious. The last few blueberries. French beans. Sweet peas which I can smell from across the room. They look so gorgeous as well.
Saturday, 31 July 2010
Tuesday, 27 July 2010
Sunday, 25 July 2010
Friday, 16 July 2010
Thursday, 15 July 2010
Out under the travelling sky, when I kicked them up from damp grit, wrenched them from the mud with bare hands and put them in my pocket, still damp. When I sat on a rock and scribbled with a stub of pencil on the damp pages of my notebook, speckled with the first spit of rain. The images were more alive when the wind was in my hair.
Time at the desk brings something else. And it made me think that my "real" desk is the world. These words came to me yesterday when I was choosing a new image for my blog banner. Tough to choose, but this is a sketch done out on the moor near Malham in the Yorkshire Dales, when the sky was looming low and it was time to head indoors after a productive day in the hills.
Wild weather was shadowing my back. I remember hoping that the ink would dry before the rain swept in as I carried my paintings strapped onto the back of my rucksack. The words in the notebook came later when I was doing some free writing.
a wild day out in the elements on Boss Moor on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales, when the sky came down as well. Acrylics, grit, sand, wind, hail and fury.
One of my happiest times ever, was up high on the Lancashire moors, in an August gale, wearing every item of clothing I had with me, wrestling with a wonderful handmade piece of A1 rag paper that I imprisoned beneath rocks. I was up there with a group of artists who huddled behind walls like moaning grumbling sheep. I spent the day in a ditch, so warm out of the wind in such a painting frenzy that they didn't see me until it was time to go home. I felt tearful at the thought of that day being over.