Tuesday, 27 September 2011

This morning

I walked through the village early this morning and was reminded how beautiful it is at this time of day. If I could bottle this enchantment and bring it home it would raise my spirits during the cold days of winter. As it is, I have my paintings to remind me of the golden days and dazzling sunshine until I return next year. Last night I was prepared to leave; today I have a touch of sadness at going. I think of leaving my terrace where I sit in the evenings with friends listening to the sounds of the village around me. I think of neighbours calling in at all times during the day and then again I think of the mornings walking through the village - to the baker, the post-office - of meeting people I know sitting in the cafe. But, I'm not painting and that makes me restless.

Monday, 26 September 2011

My last week

The days are very hot but the mornings start with a heavy mist over the rooftops in the village. I am packing things away ready to leave next week. I have a list of things to get in Cahors and some things like wine I will buy in the village.
The paintings will be packed at the very last moment. The early ones should already be dry.
I am leaving behind long days of sunshine and an idyllic lifestyle but being contrary, as my name implies, I long to see the streets of Cardiff and I want to get back to work. Being on holiday doesn't sit comfortably with me!

Saturday, 17 September 2011


I did complete another painting and now there are five on the wall drying. The paints are finally packed away ready to load into the car. I'll carry on taking photographs of the countryside as I do the round of goodbyes. There are already new images for paintings forming in my mind and there will be may more before I reach Britain. Next weekend I'm travelling by train to the Corrèze region. It's an area familiar to me only as a landmark on my route down to Montcuq. I'm looking forward to new scenery and new ideas for paintings.

Friday, 9 September 2011

September in France

I have completed a fourth painting and it's something of a relief. Until late last night I couldn't feel totally satisfied with it. Around 10pm as I passed through the studio to shut the doors for the night I had to start working on it again. The night was warm and the studio doors were open onto the terrace and somewhere below me people were having a party.
This morning when I went to open the shutters I expected to still feel a sense of incompleteness when I looked at the painting; it often happens. I looked at it, moved away, looked again. It is finished.
Now I'm anxious to move on to the next canvas even though I should stop or the paintings won't have time to dry. But, whilst the canvas is there and the palette is already heavy with paint it's going to be hard to resist continuing to work.