This is an original collagraph print made from a combination of my photo of Vernacher Loch in the Trossachs placed as textures of the trees and the loch within in the form of a rutting stag. These beasts naturally inhabit both the Highlands and the North Lowlands of Scotland. We were there in 2017 visiting friends when we went to Vernacher Loch for a walk and a lochside supper when I took the photo; such a serene and beautiful location.
I have just managed to get totally distracted by this new editor, trying out all the new blocks for text, images, galleries, calendars and lots more. I was supposed to be checking out some photos on my PC of a trip to Dartmoor a few years ago as I want to integrate a Dartmoor scene with a rook profile.
Now I am back on track I have popped some photos in the new editor’s gallery below. Just click to enlarge and get a close up of these Rooky characters. As we drove over the moors the cheeky rooks were waiting in the pull-ins up on the hills and making begging noises for bits of sandwich! It was a great photo opportunity for me. They are such characterful birds.
Yesterday I was watching a Brian Cox programme about the discovery of treatments for diseases; catching up on things recorded last summer! Brian Cox was describing how these days our investment in research is focused only on the cure or solution to the problem, ie discarding any negative results as irrelevant. The unfortunate problem with this is that scientists and researchers are not being given free rein to discover things by accident when inadvertent discoveries can also lead to the creation of useful results.
The permanent dye for the colour mauve was accidentally discovered by a scientist (William Henry Perkin) who was trying to create a synthetic quinine which is a cure for malaria. He made his future wealth out of producing this dye particularly after Queen Victoria wore a silk gown dyed with his creation mauveine. He failed in his original task, yet this discovery was deemed to be a success!
Essentially, both successes and also the detailed records of failures can be of great use to other research in the future.
The same could be applied to artistic endeavours couldn’t they?
I do divide my failures into those which are possibly useful to refer to in the future and rubbish definitely to be binned! It just would not be possible for me to store everything especially since switching from painting to printmaking. Photos of work in progress and experimentation can make it easier to store information, or even just notes.
I hung onto this trio of tom cats below which was created simply to test a printmaking texture. It was useful yesterday in convincing me to use a particular texture for some mountains on a new piece I am working on at the moment.
I see these swans from Spring onwards on our nearby canal on my regular walks; they are called Mute Swans because they are not so vocal as other swan species. The serene beauty as they glide across the water hiding a ferocious guarding nature that you would not wish to mess with if their nest was nearby and they thought you a threat. They mate usually for life, and if you want to identify the male of a pair he is the one with the much larger knob on top of his orange beak.
I have rarely painted a swan, but I found this very old painting which was intended to be part of a story called The Crow, The Castle and The Beanstalk. This is Gretel waiting to be rescued…..
My walk today was bright and dry and full of birdsong. The usual suspects showed up robins, blackbird, blue and coal tits.
Along with crows and wood pigeon, and a crow’s encounter with a low flying buzzard dipping sideways to shake the crow off his tail. Our local canal has a resident heron who is very used to people walking the tow path; he continued his fishing activities unfazed in this morning’s sunshine.
One of my favourite bird calls is that of the Goldcrest. They are very small, our smallest european bird, and usually situated very high up in conifer trees. You might see them from below if you are lucky, but then only their olive coloured underside, and unless you learn their call you would not know that they were there at all. Their call is high pitched, jingling sound, listen here to find out what it sounds like…..
The goldcrest is a tiny cute little bird that looks slightly glum don’t you think?