30 October 2011

more from the white night

More photos from yesterday (and comments added to last night's post below)
or, more correctly, the flavours of autumn and endless day (white night, when it doesn't get dark).
This was a very large group, one of at least four providers of live music. A band was set up at either end of the street and itinerant groups and musicians wandered between them.
Most were dressed in traditional costume with the distinctive leather shoes of Ciociaria.
Later in the evening a huge crowd gathered around a part of this group as they seemed to engage in a theatre sports type of sing-off. Three of the singers tried to out-sing one another in a tit-for-tat song. Occasionally I heard murmers of "he's won" yet still the competition went on. The lyrics became more outrageous, but as they were in dialect I understood only a quarter of it. That might have been lucky, as the ladies in the crowd were covering their faces and looking shocked while trying to stifle their laughter. The local men occasionally looked across to see how this foreigner might be reacting, but I was able to look quite innocent as I truly hadn't heard this language before!

And below, the reward for beautiful dancing? The "light on his feet" musician quickly hopped back up onto the stage and the lovely dancer continued the next dance with her female companions.
Some musicians are simply too fast to photograph, but the I think that the effect is a work of art. (Note the white coffee pot on a stick in the background - apparently disjointed in this photo, but it wasn't - that is a percussion instrument).
And when is a carved pumpkin not a jack-o-lantern? When it too observes the "bella figura" that is Italy!

Today I am grateful for community.

white night

When is a railway station not a station? When it becomes party central, of course. Captions tomorrow, maybe. Buonanotte :-)
Apparently all the food was organically grown and prepared to traditional recipes, a real taste of the region (but I had eaten dinner before deciding to venture out).
Trains on one side of the station, a wood-fired oven on the other. Nothing unusual about that in this town!

Now that's what you call a good sized BBQ, and the fire behind was keeping up the supply of hot embers over the 8 or 9 hours of the festival.

The instruments were just gorgeous, each one an amazing creation. They hardly stayed still long enough to be photographed though.

And then there was dancing, with kids in the middle and a watching crowd about 6 people deep (luckily I am quite tall in this town!) This particular dance is a delightfully flirtatious one with a scarf - the ladies tease and run away, and the man circles around, coming close, pulling back, trying again (like peacocks really), not touching her until the last note is played, and they he is likely to earn a huge hug and a kiss for his efforts. One of the band players danced with the lady with the white scarf and it was such a beautiful display to watch. Light on their feet, both knowing the dance so well. Apologies for photo quality, I didn't want to use the flash and break the moment and I was watching from well back in the crowd.



The clown looked so sad, watching life going by...

and one of my favourite instruments, the pot and spray unit. The player was a tall man and the shiny pot could be seen well down the street, the lid popping up and down to the beat. Another, very hard to catch on camera, was a coffee perc...

Gotta love it!

to blog or not?

I didn't paint today. It was one of those days where the weight of the world was closing in on me. The only thing to do then is to shift furniture. I'm good at that! But this house has stairs, so there is an up-ended couch in the passageway making it a little awkward for me to get to the bathroom... a good reminder to hold in those stomach muscles!

Anyway, I now have my studio much closer to how I would like it. There is room to breathe in it again. The compromise today was to surrender the lovely display shelves - that I see when I open the door - to make some kind of office area. No pretty display of brushes and small works, just boxes, books and the computer. But hopefully this will keep my work spaces job specific and I might get some order (and therefore less stress) at last.

This evening a neighbour called in and I showed her my new paintings. She happily chatted, describing them as in the naive genre. That surprised me, but it is a label I don't mind, when I think it through. If that means that the works are coming from my inner child, I hope that they appeal to the inner child of future clients. Certainly the stylised trees in their present form are naive. Food for thought! Her preference, however, was for the original commissioned work, the first of the series.

Same neighbour (she lives in Rome so is only here occasionally) hadn't been into my house before so I showed her around. Opened the door into the cantina... strange smell. That's odd, not a bad smell, just not a fresh one. She admired the (seemingly wooden) floor tiles, and I went to get a sample one from where it hides under the table. I leave it there because people are fascinated by the floor, first thinking it is timber. The carpet under the table was sodden! That's what the smell was. All that wonderful rain had seeped through the wall somehow, formed a river, and run straight to the carpet. The floor had dried, and only a slight tell-tale mark showed where the river had been. Oh dear, so the lake problem in downpours hasn't gone away.

Daylight saving ends tonight, so I can sleep in. Ha! I can sleep in any day, I don't do "alarm clocks" unless there are trains and planes to catch!

It was a "White Night" tonight, in fact it still is. Shops are open until 3.30am, musicians are playing, the town is rocking. It's almost 1am and I am home though, enough of a good thing!

Maybe I'll upload some photos, so you can have a white night too!

Today I am grateful for folk music.

28 October 2011


Tomorrow I will attack the trees. Some need to be removed completely as they are too distracting, others will be softened up. I have spent most of this evening touching up tiny details, straightening edges, and putting in a few highlights. In daylight I will look at it with fresh eyes and see what changes need to be made. It isn't far from finished. Another couple of days, maybe? Goodnight :-)

grinding away at rocks

It's cuppa time, I'm struggling to keep on task. It's a glorious day outside the studio, lizards on the balcony, the sun streaming in, I've even stripped to one layer! I want to be up in the hills, hair blowing in the wind... oh, that's right, short hair these days. Ah well, at least it doesn't get into my paint any more...Later, and yet another cuppa... would rather it were a beer but... I am sitting here at the computer, looking at the photograph then gazing at my painting. It starts to glow. I've done it! I've found the 'Wow' factor in this one... excitement... and then I put my glasses back on. Drat. Why do the colours look better slightly out of focus? OK, back to work again...The light was failing, day was turning into dusk. And then she thought "Why not?" and went downstairs to get that beer that has been lurking in the back of the fridge since her last Kiwi visitors were here.

(The night photo, the last one, looks quite green. This evening I think it is the more accurate one, but as I painted the picture I was using yellow and really thought that I had loaded it with a lot of yellow. A light sensitive series of paintings, it seems! The daylight lets the underpainting show through, and the artificial light picks out the surface colour, maybe? )

Today I am grateful for
interesting blogs from all over Italy. I have uploaded a few on the sidebar for ease of access. I am sure there were more that I used to follow before I got painting again. These are mostly stolen from one blog, and I have loaded them "sight unseen". I will delve into them later, and add the ones I used to follow when I find them again.


I was happily back "into" my painting, having gone "through the pain barrier" and talked myself through the conflicting emotions I was having with this work. (More later on that maybe). But then, thanks to a zealous art lover on Facebook, over lunch I discovered the work of Steve Hanks.

Aaaaargh... the suppressed watercolourist in me is screaming to get out again. WHY am I muddling around trying to earn a living with these works? I have always promised myself that I would work to support my art rather than compromise my art, but putting my effort into "my real art" and "my day-job artmaking" categories just doesn't work. I can justify it rationally, and recgonise the fact that it all feeds into my technique and art practice, but.....................

These landscapes in acrylic and oil may be the last for a while!

Today I am grateful for truly wonderful artists all over the world.

is music my artistic white noise?

Without a cd playing I keep popping back to the computer, putting on something from Youtube, and disrupting my work. With a CD on I hear the first few songs and then don't realise that the music has even finished until I emerge to wash my brushes or contemplate my work from a different part of the room.

What effect is the music having on my brain? Is it like the "white noise" that is used to get a baby to sleep?

OK, so this morning I have learnt that I simply don't paint at all well to Tina Turner even if she is telling me that I am "Simply the Best" so it is back to Max Bygraves I go... later in the day it will be classical music, but for now I need to bounce along a little, "South of the Border" and other wanderings.

Back to work now, this brush in my mouth is loaded! Aye aye aye aye...


aussie aussie aussie

Sometimes I can go for several days without receiving an email other than blog posts from writers I have subscribed to. I have become invisible. "But do you write emails yourself?" you might ask. My blog is my collective email for family and friends, and yes, sometimes I do send individual emails.

My NZ friends say "but there is nothing happening in my life to write about" ... and I ask, what makes you think that there is anything happening in mine? We all work hard, pay the bills, go shopping (OK, so I avoid it if I can) and cook meals (when I remember how to do so). Daily routines of survival, that's what we all do. It's only that mine are in a different language and on the other side of the world.

Today, with various family members away from their respective computers for lovely reasons I know that there will be even less contact. In my inbox this morning was a blog with a really negative posting and the NZ newspapers gave no cheer. So, it was time to go back to ex-pat blogs I haven't had time to look at recently, to feel positively connected again.

I went first to a blog I used to really enjoy - but haven't checked on for over a year - written by a young Australian living in southern Italy. Would you believe it? She's going back to Aussie and taking her Italian husband and son with her.

What is this, an Aussie take-over? On the way home from the war the ship carrying NZers berthed in Australia. The soldiers were bussed out into the country and back to the ship, to stop them from jumping ship in the land of opportunity. They were almost home, and Australia looked great! It's been happening ever since.

Oh dear... No, I'm not about to jump ship. Italy is my home, for better or worse. But as winter approaches the attractions of Australia are growing! Rent a Nonna, anyone?

PS Don't worry, I'm fine. I'm just procrastinating... get to work, Kay, it's an all-day painting day on Fridays.

Today I am grateful for Australia, the land of opportunity.

27 October 2011

it's thursday and winter is a'coming...

This is where I stopped last night after an interrupted afternoon. I want this one to be very much a day-time painting, but the problem that that gives me is the huge expanse of blue, not a colour that sits well in most homes. Clouds are the obvious answer, but I need enough sunlight to throw a light on the ruins and trees. I don't want the clouds to dominate, nor to be such that they demand shadows across the land. Hopefully with this approach one can imagine that there is plenty of blue sky behind the viewer and no need for cloud shadows.
Also, by extending the composition to include the restored tower I have a big expanse of trees. These are a mixture of bigger trees and olives. They need to carry a lot of light to maintain the summery feeling I want in this work. I have sketched them in quickly, and now must decide on how much importance they can have without over-balancing the "weights" of the parts of the painting.

Trees blocked in:

And underpainted:Lunch time! (Yes, Jackerd, my day is still punctuated by food stops! Still on the mangia, heading for prega, and eventually... chi sa?)
4.30, stopping for fading light and taking a break. It's just not going so well this afternoon. Even the trees don't want to be painted... that's it for a while, need to get back on track somehow, but it's not been a great painting day! Twice visited by a very peaceful but scary, big and potentially dangerous bee so I'm closing the doors and windows for the evening.

Today I am grateful for exhibition offers.

26 October 2011

on easels and preparation

Preparation is a most important thing for successful painting, and possibly has been one of my weaknesses. (Who am I kidding? It is definitely one of my weaknesses!) I've always been too impatient, wanting to grab what little time was available and dive straight into the painting. I've probably developed some bad habits doing that.

Today, however, I am focusing on being well prepared. This is a large painting, and my space is a little small compared to my previous studio. I'm not complaining, it has other things going for it, like the fabulous view and the location. But, without the space and the work benches which I miss quite frequently, this new work was going to be quite demanding.

First, the furniture had to be shifted to give me a clear "walk way"... I pace a lot when I paint. It's my looking, thinking, deciding space. I like to have four - five metres; here I have only two - three. Then I needed a way of supporting the canvas.

I am still working on borrowed easels, for which I am really grateful. My preferred work ones are home made, weathered, and sturdy. They were built to display panels for historical displays out and about in the countryside, commemorating the Battles of Cassino in WWII. The next time the owner borrows them back I really will have to make my own.

I didn't want to stick nails into these, or alter the height of the supports. So this morning I focused on studio preparation. This is the result, a perfect height, two easel, non-damaging system. I have put the little hanger loops on the painting, and used sausage hooks to attach them to the top of the easels. Now I have worked into the sky a little, and am taking a break before drawing in the ruins.
Preparation, my word for the day. I am aiming for a more detailed sketch than usual for this work, and calm, peaceful painting days. The next work will take a completely different approach, a little more abstract I suspect. The ideas are fermenting in glorious colour as I paint this one.

Today I am grateful for generous easel owners.

an interesting blog

I have discovered a wonderful blog for lovers of Italy. I am posting this particular link to remind me to explore Napoli properly.

Grazie, Francesca Maggi, for your delightful blog "Burnt by the Tuscan Sun". I'm looking forward to reading the book :-)

Now, on with the (rainy) day, painting with the lights on (she said not quite believing that she can muster the energy). Lights, music, let the painting flow!

Today I am grateful for fascinating blogs.

25 October 2011

good news or bad news?

Called in at the supermarket to find:
Grancereale on a grande speciale
Ritter Sport chocolate on special
Pre-prepared rice risotto on special

and the fegato (liver) I had gone to buy was there as well.

I'm allowing only one packet of Grancereale and one packet of Ritters into the studio at a time. The rest of them have to wait for me downstairs. They had better behave and not sneak up here when I am asleep!

Today I am grateful for grocery bargains.

24 October 2011

ruins number two finished

and the next one is underway, but slowly.

monday, work day

Back to finish off the second of the series. It is a much more limited palette, and I am not sure that it is singing yet.

From thisI've picked out some highlights and deepened some shadows. I think it's nearly there. I keep changing my mind about that though, so obviously there is room for improvement yet. Sigh...

...so I added back the tree I had removed in the tower and a bit more pre-fire vegetation and touched up a few more areas. Then, convinced the problem was the colour of the shadows bleeding into the grass colour, I took a very light wash of a plum colour (cadmium red and ultramarine blue) and glazed it very quickly. Suddenly I had a painting! (Darn, I needn't have put the tree back into the tower after all).

to this: When it is dry I'll check it again, but I think it's finished. Whew! These ruins works are more challenging than they look!

Today I am grateful for the positive response to the third of these paintings.

23 October 2011

it was nearly all my fault

or "How I almost lost us the RWC".

Sometimes you get premonitions. Call them what you will, intuition, superstition, premonition... I've learnt that it pays to listen to them.

Well, I was invited up to Rome to watch (shhhh) THE game, in a pub, with Kiwis, Australians, Canadians, English, Italians and... French!

To go, or not to go? You see, it was a very hard call for me to make. I had this premonition that if I went to Roma, the AB's would (you know, that unmentionable word). If I stayed home, the NZ economy would be OK a bit longer.

But the call of Rome, of company, of Kiwi accents, of meeting up again with good people and new good people... heck it's only a game, isn't it?

Anyway, premonition became superstition. By the time the train arrived at Termini I was convinced that the Jonaress was on it. In fact, I had even packed into my bag three NZ caps to give to the victors after the game. (I'm a generous soul, really).

It was a heavy weight on my shoulders as I, dressed all in sombre black, went off to put that gloom on the NZ psyche.

At the door of the wonderful "Scholars' Lounge" the burly bouncer looked at me and said "France". Impudent sod, I thought, and shook my head. "All BLacks", I said, sweeping a scornful hand down my black coat. He frowned.

Inside the pub I could see people giving me odd looks. OK, so I am a country bumpkin in Rome, but surely in my big black coat it was clear that I was here for the rugby? Then I saw French people giving me curious smiles. (I'm most definitely not a chic French woman).

I glanced down... and caught sight of my beautiful handcrafted New Zealand native tree frog that lives on my coat lapel. Uh oh! Ummm... Ooops!

I straightened my shoulders and eased out of the coat, folding it twice as carefully as usual... once so the holes in the lining didn't show, and twice to protect my precious frog.

Ok, with my frog and my French surname, one would think I would sit there happily with my bets covered. But no, I still had the weight of the nation on my conscience. Should I pretend that the squash was claustrophic and go for a walk around the block? Would that help alleviate the pain of the oil on our beaches?

But a message was imprinted in my mind. I had to be there, orders from Christchurch. Perhaps Uncle P would share the blame when the world discovered it was all my fault?

Ah well, too late now. Settled in the middle of a bar with 3 gigantic screens, two big screens and 3 little screens, I was well and truly sardined and there was no escape. Best send positive vibes and focus on the game.


It is only when I hear the music or see the haka or the poi that I feel truly a "Kiwi". I would like to be near family, of course, but my home is here. But while other kiwis around me were clearly getting more homesick by the minute, I was calm, totally at peace with where I live. I'm sure the only person who noticed a leak in one of my eyes during the anthem was the kiwi opposite me pretending that she wasn't crying. I don't get homesick, except for Roccasecca, and there I am proudly an ex-pat New Zealander at home in Italy.


Anyway, the atmosphere was wonderful. An Aussie at our table (actually, we muscled in on her table) called out just before the start "Leave the Pacific alone, you §§§§§". I don't think it was my lapel friend she was talking to. (She turned out to be really nice, so later I thanked her for her support).

As soon as the French anthem started you could have heard a pin drop. Well, you can imagine the scene from here on. The haka was awesome, the response in our part of the world more than appropriate, emotion and tension are inadequate words. We began the game on a high.

The first 15 minutes were grim. There were mutterings, but softly. I am sure you know the rest. But beside me were two charming young Frenchmen, later joined by another. Every time they got carried away with "Allez Allez Allez" two of them would sheepishly apologize in English. It was very sweet to see. I kept my frog hidden, but I was tempted to let it escape in quiet solidarity... (did I say that?)

When full time came (you remember it? The last ten minutes were made up of 8 minutes that flew, 1 minute 20 seconds at normal speed, and the last 40 seconds that took nearly twenty minutes to pass), anyway when full time came I shook hands with these gorgeous young men, and gave a lovely NZ cap to the one who was ready to spring to my rescue when some rude person nearly knocked this frail little old lady over on his way to the bar. He looked most surprised. I hope he likes it, but I don't for a minute expect him to wear it.

My French friends then quietly disappeared, and it seemed that only Kiwis and Aussies remained.

Well, I don't know how it happened, but something went right. But, so very very nearly, I could have lost it for you. I wonder if it was those hats in my bag to hand to the victors or my little friend who hitch-hiked in on my coat that really won the day?

Today I am grateful for new friends.

22 October 2011

as good as done? this time, yes

and now it's back to finish the other one, and on with the next one after a two day break... I'm having a weekend off. Go ABs!

Today I am grateful for a critical eye and high standards.

21 October 2011

big oops little oops

I am sure I will have mentioned how exacting the Italian viewing public is. Accuracy in landscapes is more than expected, it is demanded; artistic licence is not an excuse to change what you see. Well, even though I was painting from my own photograph, and have been up and down those rocks often enough to know them well, I still managed to get this one wrong.

I checked, and double checked. My wall and the church were in line. Perhaps I had made the angle of the wall a little too steep. It checked out ok. What was it?

In fact, I had simply removed a few trees to suit my composition, but those trees were hiding a turn in the wall and a few rock retaining walls. It made all the difference to the accuracy of my painting.

So, reluctantly, I have started to put trees back in. I've had to paint over a part I particularly liked. I woke up this morning thinking that this one was as good as finished! Sigh.

Today I am grateful for big quantities of paint.

20 October 2011

and now for something completely different...

I have spent some of the afternoon on this and have called it finished with a mixture of relief and disappointment. It is not up to the standard I would like, and I haven't included some of the things I wanted to put in, but while this languishes unfinished in my studio little Michele is growing bigger and doesn't have it on his wall.

It is based on varying numbers and patterns, hopefully helpful for counting and other mathematical and conversational ideas.

When it is sprayed and shiny I think it will look just fine, and only (you and) I know that my dreams were far bigger than this turned out to be. The hippopotamus was a last minute change because apparently he is crazy about them. I'm not!

This is a very overdue gift for a little boy (Michele = Michael) who was adopted into our village some time ago. My dream was to fill it with all the things from his native Vietnam, but I ended up painting most of it in down-time at outdoor events away from here and had to rely on my imagination instead.

Now there is a very special one to do, an overdue first birthday present. That one might have to be completed on holiday one day soon. I need expert advice before I start that one!

Today I am grateful for diminishing lists.

time for a break

Now I need to go back to the photo to see what I have lost, exaggerated, or completely missed out in my painterly zeal!

I have darkened the rocks under the foreground building (the first church in the world to be dedicated to Thomas Aquinas who was born in this village) to stop the eye from going into that corner too much. I liked the rocks but it works better as a composition now. The eye will track around the shape of the original walled town, with attention staying on the ruins which is the whole point of the painting. I hope that the olive trees and the clouds simply add interest and richness to it.I am not sure that I have finished with the rocks in the middle of the work. Before the fires they were almost covered with vegetation, and now they have black charred stalks around them. A bit confusing for an addled brain... before or after photos? Which one should I use?

People who have climbed here recently will notice that I have completely ignored the wooden walkways and not even hinted at them in the painting. The railings are a distraction to me and while they might make it all more recognisable this work is about the historic walled town built for the Count of Aquinium (Aquino), the family of Thomas Aquinas, not about today and tourisim.

(And it's still raining... yes, this rain is real!)

it's raining...

Break open the champagne, call in the ducks... it's raining REAL rain! The valley is blotted out. May it last a good few hours please! Surely this will reach my poor citrus trees better than my hose did. Reach for the winter clothes, deck the faces with smiles. It should even mean the end of the fires in the mountains.

It's raining, it's raining, it's raining...

(NOW can I put romantic candles in my mandarine tree Krista? Oh wait, you need fine weather to dine outside!)

But it's raining, it's raining...


cloudy skies today

Working on the sky a little, changing brush size as I work to or from the horizon. I think I might have to look more at the downward direction of the clouds, I want to follow the land, but not let the viewer's eye slide right out of the picture. Then it will be time to work on the wall around the castle ruins, and with a little luck will get it finished today, final check tomorrow, and take it to my critic for an honest opinion tomorrow afternoon.I think that the painted sky is done, and real thunder is rolling outside. Time to turn off the computer. There are about 8 sparrows on the terrace enjoying the little bit of misty rain that has come back. Gorgeous! (More thunder, sparrows have gone... we might be about to get REAL rain. Yeeehaaaa!!!!!)

morning light

Today is overcast. Our promised rain is still to come I hope. At 3am we had some soft rain, and outside the terrace and ground is wet, but there hasn't been enough rain to soak in to our parched land. Under the trees, even the olives with their tiny leaves, it is dusty and dry. The citrus still cry out with furled leaves, hiding them from the sun.

Today, at least, there shouldn't be any evaporation of the little rain we had this morning. We haven't had any real rain since May. The occasional short sharp thunderstorm didn't ever penetrate the trees or soak the ground. My "monitor rock" that I have left uncovered, the piece of mountainside in my cantina, is so dry that there are spiders enjoying the corner. That is a first!

And in the studio the light is dull and my eyes are bleary (3am bedtimes are not good!) But the critical eye says that it is almost time to work on the sky. I set it strong in the early stages because I wanted this to be a strong painting. Now it is time to develop the cloud forms and integrate that section of the painting into the whole. Then it will be time to adjust a few things in the middle section, turn some rocks towards the valley, and check that it all works together. But going out yesterday did turn my miseries into a real cold I think. Achoo!! Running eyes. Let's hope it's a good painting day despite this.

The good thing this morning is that I am still as happy with the section of trees I painted yesterday as I was last night. You can almost pick them off the canvas. They might look a little stylised and too round to a purist, but I like them anyway! When I first came here I found olive trees difficult to paint. Now they seem to be finding their way off my brush in different forms depending on the painting with relative ease. I guess that's what knowing your subject really well does for the painter.

Back later... :-)
This is a pre-work of the clouds, just checking the tonal values and the lines to see that they sit well with the overall painting. The most important thing to remember is not what the photos of sunsets might look like, but that to be convincing in the painting rules must be followed! The top of the painting is almost the reverse of the bottom, with the foremost clouds being bigger and stronger in colour, with more contrast. Often painters get carried away with unusual and dramatic sunsets, then wonder why the paintings don't quite work. Nature breaks its own rules occasionally, and artists should break them only when they understand them well.

Thanks for the vegemite, my Kiwi/Aussie friend, I enjoyed my breakfast! Fresh Roccasecca bread, a light smear of butter, and lashings of the black gooey stuff :-)

Today I am grateful for tubes of vegemite from Australia.

19 October 2011

a new day, new eyes

Constantly people ask what living in Italy has done to my art. Usually my response is that it has taken me back a good twenty years. This morning, looking at this work with fresh eyes, I am remembering a work I painted almost 40 years ago. For a moment this was scary; dementia sufferers who are artists also revert to how they once painted, and their progress can be tracked retrospectively as this sad condition takes over.

But no, I choose to think it is simply that the colours and tools I am using, and the subject, are similar to those of my painting of the Desert Rd many long years ago. I know, when I look at the wine glass painting (ten days ago) that my skill level is not regressing. On a good day I can pull off a convincingly 3D result, it is merely that all this painting fast outdoors has altered my approach a little. Let's see what today brings. Here it is at the first "change the music and have a cuppa tea" break for the day.
and at apple break, about an hour and a half later, 11am.
and I'm a bit zonked. This is turning into an early lunch break. ciao ciao :-)1pm and the trees are blocked in but it's rest time again, I'm not as well as I thought I was. I hate wasting paint but that might be it for the day.

2pm, OK, so I couldn't stop there. Trees are in. But this time I have used up the paint on another canvas and washed the brushes. That's it until tomorrow.

Today I am grateful for better news about a sick friend.