Welcome to Harvest Moon, a place where the creatures and landscapes of my imagination take form and meet the world. Nestled in beneath the wild craggy tors of Dartmoor inspiration comes on chilly winds from moonlit landscapes of other realms which share this rugged, ancient land of gorse and granite. Living here I sometimes feel on a bridge between worlds and ages as the land speaks from spluttering streams and wind-beaten tors, telling stories of folk and beast, but only in snatches before the endings are whipped away down the valley with the broad river and out to sea. So here I will share these stories and characters and they can dwell in your own imagination, continuing their stories with infinite outcomes. This is how they live, enjoy them!

Monday, 5 December 2011

busy birds...

I am still finding myself captivated by the busy wren making the bushes twitch as she goes about her important business. I love our little birds here in Britain, so full of energy, character and colour, even when they could be described as the proverbial 'little brown bird'. Some of the finches are like miniature parrots with their showy pink breasts and flashes of gold, and the tits are unmistakable with their vivid blues and yellows. Yet, I find myself drawn to the less brazen birds, those who take a little more attention to discover a chestnut glow in the evening sunlight and a chequered wing....it feels like a reward for drawing your eye away from the brightly coloured display around the bird feeders. I've enjoyed simplifying the backdrop that I draw them upon, keeping the focus on the distictive shape that tells us from a distance who is making all the rustling.

I realise that I have taken some influence from the beautiful chinese bird & flower paintings, which I have always admired. They are so simple and yet not so abstract or stylised that they lose the identity of the subject - above is an example of what is clearly bamboo with sparrows. What is always so impressive is the apparent speed and grace with which this is communicated - I'm sure this superior painting took a fraction of the time of my quirky drawings!

I did manage to tear my gaze from the wrens for a moment and enjoy a flock of pink and black long-tailed tits storming through the garden like a marauding hoard of fairies! They are tiny but feisty, just like the wren and are so distinctive with their fluffy lollipop shape, always travelling in groups going from tree to tree in search of bugs. Now that the leaves have finally fallen, I can spy them more easily, so I expect this preoccupation to continue for some time.

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