Wednesday, 29 June 2011

Favourite view of the day

We've spent the days enjoying sunshine, eating good Italian food and painting masterpieces of course. Using the ferry to deliver us to superb locations, mostly quiet with local people passing their days in beautiful small Italian villages. Tonight a big thunderstorm is forcast but I'm hoping to make it back from Cacciatore dry!
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Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Painting Monte Isola in watercolour

Very quick hello, having a wonderful time in Lake Iseo, it's been very exciting, we've had fantastic, dare I say hot weather. Painting Monte Isola found us sitting at first peacefully then a few Italians came along, lots of Buona and Brava which is always good.

Saturday, 25 June 2011

Italian Painting holiday at Rivalago

We are here! Now can you see why I needed Opera Rose, for those of you who aren't up to date with Winsor and Newton colours it's a gorgeous pink! This is the fifth year I've based my Italian painting holiday at the Rivalago Hotel and each year I'm spellbound by the view, quaintness, quality and friendliness of everyone. Tonight is the welcome buffet, served with chilled Prosecca and lots of scrummy Italian nibbles. I've had a good wander around, checked painting locations, bus and ferry timetables sorted out restaurants and now it's time just to paint and enjoy. I'll keep you posted how it's going along. Ciao Tutti
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Thursday, 23 June 2011

It should have been a relaxing day

What started with a cycle ride round Lake Iseo which is approx 45 miles enjoying the scenery relaxing thinking of where we could lunch. Suddenly changed at Riva di Solta.The cyle route was closed and the detour was up a mountain pass and then down into a thunderstorm at Lovere, we carried on cycling getting wetter and wetter and then reached the next cycle path to find this was closed due to rock fall. The only way was cycling through 1 mile tunnel, which was terrifying at this point the road was a foot deep in water. Just when I thought I could'nt be any wetter a giant wave from a lorry completly covered us with water. We carried on to the next village and sheltered in a shop door until a train came and delivered us safely back to Iseo. I did wonder about telling you this, but I did say yesterday I'll let you know how Italy trip is going!

So today gentle coffee drinking a leisurely ice cream and a little sketching is all this fearful artist is going to do!!I'll keep you posted!

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Wednesday, 22 June 2011

waiting for artists

Three days of driving 7 countries crossed we are at last here in wonderful Lake Iseo.
The sun is out, and the views just waiting patiently for the artists to arrive on Saturday.
The paints have been out very briefly Cereulean blue and Opera rose were introduced to a little Italian culture and behaved with great flare. I'll keep you informed on how it''s going. Arrivederci tutti
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Thursday, 16 June 2011

Ladies Lunch Italian style

Ladies Lunch Italian Style

Not quite finished yet but I wanted to show you how it was coming on. Again a full imperial piece so it's kept be busy for a while! It's based in a tiny borgo called Riva di Solta on Lake Iseo. I was told when painting there last year that it is twinned with 'Coniston' around 25 miles from Keswick.
I'm getting ready for our trip to Italy and trying not to pack the kitchen sink, well there is one in the Campervan! I was talking last week to one of my artist friends about  Arthur Melville and low and behold he had the book, which is out of print. This week has found me catching moments of reading when a 100 and other things should be done!! I will tell you very quickly about one of his adventures he rode from Damascus to Contantinople along the caravan route with escorted Arab gendarmes, along the way he was shot at by  bandits, fell off his horse, waited in a village for five days until the outlaws had gone, then he was attacked and robbed, then finally sent to prison believed to be a spy! Now can you imagine the painting he did when he returned safely home.

Monday, 13 June 2011

Painting a Lakeland wall using a palette knife

Easels and tripods at the ready.

With sunny skies my intrepid artists made their way to our first painting spot beside Derwentwater. Only to be met on route by a tiny Dormouse, struggling in the middle of the path. However cute he was I could not pick him up and put him in the grass verge. So thank goodness for the  brave artist Carol who deposited him safely. A very enjoyable morning was spent near Friars crag painting 'Jaws of Borrowdale.

Jaws of Borrowdale

The second day with rain for cast we enjoyed a morning painting above Millbeck with views extensively down to Derwentwater. Fields, trees and farm buildings inspired our first location. The afternoon found an intimate pathway with Foxgloves and stonewalls making a glorious entry. The sketches had just started, when heavy raindrops also decided to appear. We battled on trying to get a little detail down and then hot footed back to the warm hall for Coffee. Below is the quick demonstration I did using only Winsor Blue, Lemon Yellow and Permanent Rose with the help of a palette knife to show a stone wall.


Friday, 10 June 2011

The drought in Keswick

What a busy week, I'm getting ready for this weekend watercolour workshop with one eye on the weather and the other eye on painting. In between all this I was lent an Arthur Melville book and so had to have a quick go at his technique of applying Chinese white to the paper before starting to paint. Well the above painting was this and it is photographed in the 'sink technique' !!I think that says it all, but I'm going to have another go when I've a little more time.

Sorry for making you look sideways and creaking your neck, but has I said it's been a busy old week and the photo decided it would'nt rotate! Another Italian vista this time of a beautiful sleepy hole called
Riva di Solta. I'm hoping to do some more work on this next week.

And this is one of the views I'm hoping we may see this weekend, taken this afternoon from Millbeck, my only words on this are ' we are not suffering from a drought!' The golfing brolly is at the ready.

Monday, 6 June 2011

Pretty in Pink

All the Bluebells are over but now it's the Foxgloves turn, and they look stunning at the moment.
Had a walk around Rydal yesterday and everywhere I turned, there was
PINK Campion's, wild Geraniums, Azealea  and Foxgloves.
Looking forward to the this weekends watercolour outdoor course in Keswick, I feel that we may need to find splashes of pink. I've one place left if you fancy joining us, just email me for more details.

Saturday, 4 June 2011

Hard Knott not an easy Knott!

The mighty Scafell seen from Eskdale Needle (see below) on the way up a tough or should I say Hard!
Hard Knott which is situated in the beautiful Eskdale valley. Struggling up the fell side I turned round and saw this wonderful view just floating out of the cloud, what a birthday present!
We are leaving Scafell for the last Wainwright and with only 8 left, this mighty mountain is going to be climbed soonish. But for now I've started on a watercolour painting of it.I'll let you know how it comes on.