Monday, December 31, 2007

Playing with paint

It was so hot I was up early and doing the watering and decided to have another try at the far end of the Penneshaw Bay working from a tonal sketch I had made.
Still not satisfied with it but something to put up.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Quick sketch

This is a very quick sketch of the back garden at Penneshaw.
We have been very busy all day and what with house cleaning and going out for a social and very delicious lunch no time for anything.
Probably not much time tomorrow either, I think I will be glad when I have the house to myself!

Friday, December 28, 2007

From Antechabmer Bay

I did this in my sketchbook so it is a bit runkled and it was a photo not a scan but it was of the mainland and the rocks and hillside at the northern end of the bay.
I am totally pooped today, we packed up, it has been very hot, we loaded the car, caught an earlier ferry and drove home and then unpacked the car and I have been unpacking stuff ever since. Jill and John have gone in to get a pizza as I couldnt thin enough to make dinner.
Last nights dinner was so good I dont think I could do another!
Weather is really hotting up, 41degrees for Adelaide on New years Day, so I am not sure what we are going to do, I am not very good if it is too hot, my feet and generally my body doesnt like it.
Photos of the week are on my backvalleyseasons blog.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Aftermath of the fire

Today I painted what had been in my mind all day, the image of burnt trees and fire blackened banksia's. I just wanted to leave the one really burnt looking shrub as that is what had really hit me.
A slow day today catching up on things and friends, tomorrow we leave.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Burnt Banksia's

Today we went to see what the fires in Flinder's Chase had done. We really wanted to go to Cape Borda and Harvey's Return as we have never been down to that far end before.
No sign of fires as we went along the main central road, and not until we got to the Chase did we see it, and then mostly on one side of the road, but there you could see hectares and hectares of burnt scrub.
It even went around the front of the Cape Borda lighthouse.
I have seen the aftermath of many fires but what really got me was the look of the Banksia's with their candles blackened on the blackened bushes. They however are the lucky ones, they need fire to regenerate.There were tales from the fishermen around the coast of dead kangaroos for miles out around that end of the Island as they were driven to the cliffs by the fire. I hate to think of the small birds, lizards etc that didnt make it as almost all of Flinders Chase was burnt and that is a huge area of National Park on the end of the Island.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas, Seasons Greetings from Kangaroo Island

This is the bit of coast we can see from the right hand side of the house.
I painted it yesterday while Jill and John were playing golf.
Merry Christmas to all who read my blog and you are valued for the bits of encouragement you give me throughout the year.
Blowing a gale but blue sky today.
We went exploring some lovely bits we hadnt seen before this morning, over to what is called Redcliffs.We have had a cold lunch and I am girding up to cook the duck tonight.
Jill keeps on complaining of the cold and John and I are revelling in the mild conditions. These Queenslanders are so thin blooded!
Oh bother I have just looked at this and it says the 24th of December and I am actually writing this on the 25th.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Antechamber Bay, Kangaroo Island

I painted this this morning sitting on a low sand dune, while John fished (and caught two nice little mullet) and Jill walked. Not a lot of difference between sea and air and I took a photo so its not the same as using the scanner. It seemed to wash out the centre and the right side.
I didnt quite have the right colours as I was using a very limited palette and a few things happened to it that were not supposed to, but I rather like the very mistyness of it.
Holiday mode is to the fore, we are walking, eating, sleeping, playing pool and drinking we hope in moderation!
I have another painting I would like to do tomorrow but I have to go to Kingscote and shop while Jill and John play golf so we will see and we have friends in tomorrow night. The cook has responsibilities!!

Saturday, December 22, 2007


With no scanner the sketches will have to wait but I did want to put up a few photos, the first was taken at about 9 pm from the front of our little house and the other was of John on his birthday holding our youngest grandchild Millie with me looking on.
We are having a wonderful time and holiday mode has now set in.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Where I am

I took the first photo this morning in mid Gulf this morning and the second from outside the house we rent on Kangaroo Island at Penneshaw.
I know they are not sketches I did actually manage a small painting on the ferry this morning but we dont have a scanner here so they will have to wait until I get home on the 28th.
We are over here for John's 70th tomorrow and some of the family are coming over for the day, the forecast doesnt sound very promising but it was a lovely day today. We will then relax and have Christmas here and a few days afterwards, not sure how much exploring we will do this time as a lot of the island conservation parks were burnt out in the last few weeks.
I cant believe John will be 70, he certainly doesnt look it or behave like it.

Friday, December 14, 2007

A small bit of seasonal finery

I have at last made it back to a sketch of sorts. It has been a mad few days, baby sitting the grumpy baby, setting up the decorations, all to be seen on the back valley seasons blog and a frantic day today with a feeling of awful (cant spell It!!) nausia ok, sickness, I think it was watching Sarah's effort on an old video I get sea sick and car sick at the drop of a hat, so video' s do it to me too!! any way this hit in the middle of the afternoon, dont ask!!
Any way this is the smaller secondary tree on top of the butlers what not, dont know what it is called but that is what we call it.
I had to do something this blog has been sadly neglected.
It has finally cooled down and we have had a totally useless shower of rain, a few heavy spots, and the weather bureau was so far out on their estimated temperatures today it wasnt funny.
My poor chooks have been fed at night not the morning, and tomorrow I think we will be off all day, delivering presents far and wide! The only window of opportunity. I dont give many but only to very old and dear friends but they dont exactly live near by.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Kangaroo Paws from the garden

Love Kangaroo Paws, and so do the honey eaters, I felt rather bad about cutting these for the house but I need something inside.
Still cool and damp, fires still raging on the Island, hope your place is ok Tony.
About to go out so getting this up in a hurry.
Pre Christmas is hitting with a rush.

Monday, December 10, 2007

This morning in Victor

I had a blood test this morning which means being in at 8 am with no breakfast. I do this about every 3 months.
John wanted the mail and I needed some things from the shops, some of which didnt open until 9 am so I went down to the beach near the Hindmarsh River opening to the sea and sat and sketched these groins which are rotting away. Had a walk and got a damp and sandy bottom. It was quite cool but very pleasant, the odd person walking a dog who obviously thought I was mad sitting with sketch and painting stuff on my knee.
Well I have made a Christmas (boiled fruit) cake and done some washing and am progressing with Millies first Christmas ornament, which is taking more time than I thought.
With awful fires on Kangaroo Island I am wondering what it will be like when we get over there next week.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Agaves at Aldinga Beach

John was going fishing with D'Arry today and as they were going off Aldinga Beach I went too and spent some of the time with a friend. I sketched these agaves on the cliff just near the boat launching area. I love the way they send their flower spikes up to the sky but dont like their spiky leaves. Some people call them century plants as they believe they only flower once a century but this is not correct.
A lovely day for the beach and the fellows came in with some lovely fish and a squid which we had for dinner tonight, crumbed with a salad.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

From my sketchbook

I have been playing around with some faces, possibly for some new dolls I want to make.
Very very hot today, fires all over, I could smell the smoke when I went out to water the pots and put some water in the hanging pot for the willy wagtail family who are nesting in the tree close by.
I had a lunch to go to today, and John had one at another venue so it worked out reasonably well.
I am trying to find a cheap stamp album for my youngest grand son, I dont think people collect stamps any more, the toy shop and newsagent had nothing, the post office a bit but no albums. How odd, one of the best ways of learning where countries are.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Cliffs near Ardrossan

I love using these strong colours, our cliffs are sand or rock but these wonderful red ones blew me away.
Too busy for much today, boy will I be glad when all this Festive season is over.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Part of Paddy's garden

A very quick sketch yesterday with a bit of colour added today. I am not in the mood for doing anything that requires thought!
The build up for Christmas is getting worse with more and more things being thrown at both of us, I cant see that I will have everything done in time, but the Christmas cards are now done, one to mentally cross off the list.
Now to make a cake, and finish off some more decorations.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Henry the fifth

Damn damn damn, I have lost the first part of this post. I hate it when that happens.
Any way I noticed that this afternoon on ABC there was my most favorite film of all time Henry the Fifth with Laurence Olivier.
Well the new TV and probably digitally enhancing of the film made a huge difference. It always amazes me that when I see Shakespere he is so modern in his outlook.
When Henry was doing his bit at night wandering amongst his soldiers and worrying about the outcome, it really could be a modern leader doing the same thing (I wonder if Kevin Rudd has watched it and felt the same!!)
I really get quite emotional about that film, the loss of the boys, and the way the whole thing was done, starting in the Globe theater and then going into almost Breughel like backdrops in France.
So I had a wonderful time getting a lot of hand stitching done, John was away fishing and just me and Larry. My sister actually met him and his then wife Vivien Leigh when they came to Adelaide.
So a few quick scribbles to commemorate a wonderful film. I even found Robert Helpmann there as the Bishop of Ely. The music of the battle is quite magnificent.
I remember seeing it in the theatre, then on our awful small tv and it wasnt a patch on what I saw today.

Irises and strelizia

These Irises are nearly over in the garden and there have been a succession of strelizia flowers.
we have been cool but a bit humid down here, in the low 20's while Adelaide has been in the 30's all week, and we are only about 50 kms away. Amazing, and lovely for us.
I have been so busy getting ready for Christmas, I make a lot of my presents (jewelery for the girls) but there are never enough and as it gets closer I have more to do.
We went out to dinner for the Business Association Awards last night, it was a 60's theme so I hauled out my mothers old wrap around Marimekko skirt, it looked great although it didnt fit as well as it once did! The date on the skirt material was 1967.