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Catching the Moment!

Updated: Feb 16, 2022

I have just got back from my morning run / walk. It is Autumn, it is raining, it is damp.. and I love it!

There is nothing like running the in the rain. I’ve been working a lot on my site and still have a lot to do in loading previous work up, but I cannot wait to get out on a painting day in the outdoors. Winter is drawing in, but that will not deter!

Why do I love painting from real experience, rather than a photo?

I like recording what ALL the senses are taking in. A photo is OK (I love taking photos too!) but it isn't the same as live note taking . . . In taking down the moment in a sketch, or in other forms of creativity, it's taking it all in..and creating a solid memory.

There is NOTHING like getting the feel of the “moment”. We all have moments throughout the day.

This morning it is misty, damp and grey. A perfect day to go painting! (if I had the time today) Yes I get a bit wet, the paper might get soggy - but I can take in ALL the elements.

A few years ago I painted in the nearby Nescliffe Woods. We had been for a nice pub lunch, then it started raining. So we went for a walk in the woods. So magical! It was quiet, and quite dry. The trees gave a lot of shelter. The sounds were different while it was raining. The earth smelt different, the air smelt different. I could not get these experiences from a photograph! In painting in rapid fire succession, for about an hour with my paints strewn on the forest floor, it also created a memory. There was a hush in the woods and we could hear the tinkle of the raindrops, and soft patter as they fell to the ground.

We were able to have a little holiday in Verona, Italy a few years ago, in cool October. On my previous trip to Florence, I had taken my big camera plus my phone. I snapped every little nook and side street, as only a tourist can! However on this next trip, we decided to take only our phones, and limit ourselves to about 30 shots… and I would sketch instead. This little picture was done sitting in a beautiful little piazza, off a main street in Verona. It was so peaceful, and just a typical Italian little window view. Those memories are etched in my mind. I’m glad I was not weighed down with a heavy camera and feeling beholden to photograph everything I saw.

Last Autumn, I was busy with lots of other things to do, and I realised I had not got out and recorded any autumn moments! It was getting late in the day, the sun was getting low in the sky, my favourite “Golden hour”, so I grabbed my paints and deckchair and went to the nearby Quarry Park. They are memories stuck down on paper. I’m glad I did it, I got cold and a bit stiff. The warm indoors was soon my reward and pictures to remind me of the autumn days.

For those of you who dread winter coming, I’d encourage you to see if you can experience it in a different way.. Note the colours of the earth after the rain. The sounds the wind makes on the trees as you pass by..I often get into a staring match with the local squirrels in our park. They seem undeterred by me, but we have a moment eyeballing each other!

I want to introduce you to another artist I admire. Morgan Harper Nichols is an artist/ writer/ poet & musician. In her podcasts she shares the things she is learning in her creative journey. She talks a lot about capturing the moment and BEING in the moment!

My computer had a glitch this morning and kept repeating this sentence: In taking down the moment in a sketch, or in other forms of creativity, it is taking it ALL in....

creativity, it is taking it ALL in

creativity, it is taking it ALL in..

creativity, it is taking it ALL in... I had to laugh at the serendipitous glitch!

I hope you enjoy getting the warm, winter clothes out, the lovely knitted sweaters and winter colours!.. and maybe you will see things in the winter days you had not seen before..x

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