Showing posts with label Sketchbook Journal. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Sketchbook Journal. Show all posts

03 May 2016

Welcome to the month of May.

The garden is full of birds singing and flitting about feeding their young.

The Robins nest we found in the shed. How long must it have taken
 these birds to build this nest, tucked in the hanging hosepipe 

We thought it had been abandoned.
Last week we saw a little head and two bright eyes staring at us 
it is the female sitting on her eggs, they have been very discreet.
We can't wait to see the feeding activity. 

After a lot if hard work, the Rose garden is now finished.

 Lots of flower buds are showing on the Clematis.

Here we used some of the willow frames, to replace the rotten ones.
This small area was planted up last year, and is now looking well established.
The small lavender plants have now doubled their size. so I'm looking forward 
to some nice perfume wafting my way when I'm relaxing near by.
 When the plants are in bloom, it will be a nice show of pink and blue
with a white climbing rose against the stone wall.
I'm glad the hard work is finished, now I can taking it a bit easy for a few days.
Hoping the warm sun we had yesterday,
 enabling Mr France and I to have lunch on the terrace will continue.

This seems like a good time for me to get my sketch books and Ink-tense pencils out.

Yesterday I saw this post from Quinn on her blog about getting back into painting.
Quinn is an incredible lady who has so many talents at her finger tips.
She lives and works looking after her goats in severe winter weather conditions.
She keeps her family of goats for their wool which she processes and 
then knits into the most lovely items, especially the lacy shawls.
Tell her I suggested you pop over to share her blog.

 My back is telling me I've done too much.
I will need  to just potter in the garden for awhile
So I'm hoping the sunny weather is here for awhile, then I will relax.
I'll be back soon.

à bientôt
Barbara Lilian

13 February 2016

Raindrops and Snowdrops

 snowdrops images free use

We've had so much rain, I've been in doors all week.
What do you do when your at home and it rains everyday?

It seems like most of you clean the house from top to bottom.
Have you met Daphne she decided to wash all her blue and white
crockery that she has on display. I didn't want to do things like that,
although she did make it sound a pleasure, pop over and take a look at her blog.
Every week she shares a tasty recipe, along with the music she listens to while
cooking/baking and she can make a visit to the dentist into an interesting story.

Those of you know me well,
know I'd rather be doing things in the garden, than dusting.
I'm always looking forward to Spring.

In between the few times it stopped raining, I had a quick wander around
the garden, and made a note of some of the things that I need to do
as soon as we get some dry days. Looking at the weather forecast
it won't be until the middle if next week.

I did another search to see if I could the find any snowdrops in bloom
 this is the variety I planted 2 years ago.

I still only managed to find one in flower, which had been
battered by the heavy rain, so I brought it indoors.

 Daphne spotted this lonely snowdrop amongst the
tete a tete daffodils in a photo I shared on my Facebook page.

I had hopes of the garden being full of white clusters of snowdrops.
Just like this.

 snowdrops images free use

There are so many different species. all so dainty.
Maybe I should have chosen a more hardy type similar to these.

 snowdrops images free use

I'll have to ask my friends if I can dig up some of theirs after they have
 finished flowering, to plant for next spring. Which is called planting
 'in the green' or wait till next Autumn and plant some more bulbs.

No gardening has been done, so I did the next best thing.
As I'd left my watercolour paints and journals handy
I had a great time sketching & painting Snowdrops.

This was painted in a Stillman & Birn Beta journal.
using Winsor & Newton pan paints.
I really like this paper it's thick so you can paint on both sides.

The next sketch was done in a  10 cm x 15 cm  sketch book made for me
by Valerie Gardener who has a lovely Sketching blog,
called Colours in the Briezh at the moment she is sharing sketches
 from her clothes  designed in the 60's.
She lives in northern France and travels a lot with her husband. She records
all their trips with sketches in situé. Her posts vary from time to time,
 I look forward to seeing her next posts as she is travelling again.

This sketch I did in the lovely handmade sketch book she sent to me.
All the pages are different types of paper.

 It's still raining,
and  while I've been doing these sketches, no dusting has been done.
Who cares, I'm back into watercolour painting,
and if we do have any unexpected visitors,
I'm sure they'll have come
 to see Mr France and I
'Not the dust'

All snowdrops images
are from snowdrops images free use

Have you got lots of snow drops in your garden ?
if so take some photos, I'd love to see them.

à bientôt

Barbara Lilian

01 February 2016

Vegetable sketches.

Saturday morning after shopping, I was having my mid morning coffee,
and reading the blogs I follow.
 I saw that Ronelle from africantapestry
who writes and paints was
also having a mental block with her painting.
So I wasn't feeling so bad after reading that.
She describes this as losing her 'mojo'
Her post that day was vegetables.
ah - ha  I thought !

I'd just emptied the shopping bag,
full of colourful fruit & vegetables onto the kitchen worktop, 
and although I don't particularly like painting still life
the colours certainly looked tempting to paint. 
As I'd been lacking ideas to re-start watercolour sketch painting,
 and Ronelle who's style of painting I love
I thought this was an omen, I decided to get painting.

I'd recently been to a craft shop and bought a basic sketch pad, 
thinking this will get me started again.

Then when I feel I've really got my interest back,
I can go back to using my Moleskine journal again.

Paints and palette all ready.

A nice fresh bunch of Radish, almost like a posy of flowers
just waiting to be painted,
and delicious as well.

Painting palette, not touched for so long, all the blobs of paint dried up.
but amazingly just a few drops of water brought most of them back.

After a wobbly beginning, I used my Micron pens
and then mixed a few different shades of green.

 I roasted the Fennel with the potatoes, it was very tasty.

So thank you  Ronelle for the vegetable sketch you shared.
and my followers who have been encouraging me 
to do some painting. at least I've made a start.

When the weather improves 
I'll get out and try some scenic views and buildings for a change.
 I've joined an on-line painting course given by
who paints wonderful street sketches and snow scenes.
I'm hoping I'll learn something.
This is one of her paintings.

Winter snow scene by Shari Blaukopf

I'll be doing some (I mean a lot of ) practise lessons first,
before I show any of my efforts.

I'll say good bye
I hope you liked my sketches
and will come back again soon.

à bientôt
Barbara Lilian

22 April 2015

Taking a short break from my garden.

This time of the year is always busy in the garden.
We are leaving for a trip and everything is growing so fast,
I wanted to do so much, but time is running out.
I feel like the mad hatter in 'Alice in Wonderland'

These days everything seems to take us so much longer to do.
We have shrubs that have grown so big they need to be cut back or moved.
They'll have to wait a little while longer.
 Fortunately the new roses have been planted at the replacement arbour.
They should have settled in nicely while we are missing
 and hopefully will have signs of buds when we return.

We do take a break now and again, to sit here
 and drink a mid morning cup of coffee and early evening 
after our day working in the garden we have an aperitif,

or as Mr France says.'Him doing the hard work and me titivating'.
Well someone has to give the orders.

I'm hoping that these climbing roses will do better this year.
After a year of neglect, I've given them lots of TLC which they were
in desperate need of, so I'm looking forward to seeing the reward.
Also I must stake up the peonies before they get too big.
I have Day Lilies & some Penstemon that a friend gave me still to plant.
Can you see my garden whimsy peeping out from behind the Euphorbia ?
I still haven't decided, whether she stays or goes.
Take a look here it was my gift from the floral committee. 

A gift from my daughter three Ranunculus in a pot.
Their petals are so pretty, wrapped round and round and so paper thin.

At the moment this is our view from the terrace.
We can see the wild Cherry trees in blossom  Food for the birds.
When we get back, I'm sure this view will be very different,
 all the trees will be dressed in their green robes,

I did manage to find some time to paint a sketch in my garden journal
of one of my Camellia flowers, before it turned brown & fell off.

I'll be taking this small sketch journal with me
 and a few ink pencils .

This lovely hand bound sketchbook was sent to me by Valerie Gardiner 
who has a lovely blog called Colours in the Breizh
 On her travels she doesn't use a camera, only the
detailed sketches she does 'en situe' in her own hand bound sketchbooks.

If I miss your posts, while I'm away, I'll try and catch up when I get back.
Enjoy your gardens,
especially those who have only just stopped having snow.

à bientôt
Barbara Lilian

25 January 2015

Grow Your Blog

Hello to my regular followers
If this is the first time you have visited my blog

Open the gate and step inside.

It's that time of the year again when Vicki who hosts  Grow Your Blog
does such a wonderful job doing exactly what it says.
If you are here to grow your blog  I hope you'll enjoy what you see.
and have fun checking out many of the other blogs taking part..
This is my second time of joining.Grow your blog.
If you would like to find out more about me take a look here
from when I joined the 2014 Grow your Blog Party.

I live in rural France so I show a lot of photos I take of interesting buildings
and also the beautiful countryside near where I live.

We often walk along this pathway, it used to be the old railway line.
There are lots of walking groups I could join, but I prefer to walk with my husband,
who I affectionately refer to as Mr France, he appears from time to time in my posts.
I spend lots of time watching the birds that come to feed
from the many bird feeders in our garden.

My favourite walk, winter or summer is only 15 mins..from my home.
Maybe you are like me and dabble in watercolour painting.
I try to remember ( I must admit I often forget ) to take my pocket camera
with me on my walks. Then later I can paint  the wild flowers I see.

I'm not an artist but I do enjoy watercolour sketching.

One of my early sketches in a journal with brown paper,
 it's easier for sketching than to paint on,

I share lots of pictures of my garden throughout the different seasons.
I love my garden, but don't make myself a slave to it.
It's certainly not a sculptured garden all neat and tidy
.I leave a lot of the wild flowers to grow, like these wild Foxgloves 
which adds colour and fills in a bare space.

During the summer months I like to have plenty of hanging baskets around our home
 and the holiday cottage. Mainly I use the simple Pelargonium which grow well here in France.
They don't need to be watered everyday and withstands the heat. 

As I live in France it wouldn't seem right if I didn't show the vines,
which are not too far from my home.
We plan to take more short trips away this year. now that I am back in good health.
We are planning be visit Denmark again
and if we can fit it in, a trip back to England to catch up with family and old friends.
so there will be lots of photos taken for you to see.

I took this photo last October on one of our short trips away.

During the summer months we have fields and fields of sunflowers around where we live,
so I couldn't resist showing this lonely sunflower growing on the edge of the road.

There will be a Give Away gift as a thank you
The give away will be open to everyone who leaves a comment on this post. 
The winner will be announced on the 15th February.
So look out for your name it might be you.

I'm looking forward to seeing lots of new blogs.

I hope you've enjoyed seeing my Grow your blog post.
Thank you Vicki and all those who volunteered  to help.

à bientôt

Barbara Lilian