Since hitting the 1,000 mark with my Watercolour Sketch a day, I’ve been attempting to do less tutorials and also less working from reference photos. I’ve enjoyed doing the tutorials but I thought it was time to start challenging myself more by doing my own original compositions whilst attempting to apply the techniques I’ve been learning within the tutorials.
One of the challenges I have with the daily sketches is that sometimes, I do not get a lot of time to spend on them. Sometimes it can be as little as 15 minutes, sometimes up to an hour. I love doing the daily sketches but am conscious that when time is short, I don’t get the chance to do the multiple layer washes are required.
I still want to do the daily sketches as I want to keep my daily art practice going (Art is not my full-time occupation) as I want to continue to improve and I find the practice quite meditative.
One of the things I am aiming to do is more A4 size Watercolour and Line and Wash paintings. These will need to be done on weekends.
Below are a few of my original sketches since passing the 1,000 day mark.
I’ve been thinking about doing this type of post for awhile now and I have been trying to keep busy in light of the recent sadness that has befallen our Family this week.
My love for Poetry dates back to my school years and I always enjoyed borrowing Poetry books from the Library but often thought it would be great if I had some on my own bookshelf. I know I can look up the Internet at any time and view some but I’m also a ‘real book’ lover and love to curl up with one. I love the feel, the smell and conciseness of a single book in the hands.
That being said, I also have a couple of Poetry apps on my phone, ‘Poem Hunter’, which provides a daily Poem; ‘Famous Poetry’, which offers the Poetry of 36 different Poets. The apps are for those times when I cannot or do not have a book with me.
I also have a few books on the mechanics of Poetry and how to write them and I thought I would share a list of my Poetry books with you.
The Australian and Other Verses by W.H.Ogilvie
Poetical Works of Henry Lawson
Selected Poems of Adam Lindsay Gordon
The Collins Book of Australian Poetry
Collected Verse – John Manifold
The Poet’s Word – An Anthology of English Poetry
Chaucer to Gray – The Harvard Classics
The Golden Treasury of English Verse
Morla el Do (Tomorrow Will Do) – A Collection of Norfolk Island Poems
William Blake – Selected Poems
Quatrains of Omar Khayyam
The Poetical Works of John Keats
Poetical Works of Mrs Browning Volume 1
A Book of Poetry – Anthology of English Poetry (Textbook 1961)
Collected Shorter Poems 1930 -1944 of W.H.Auden
A.D.Hope – Selected Poems
Selected Poems & Letters of Emily Dickinson
Leaves From Australian Forests – Poetical Works of Henry Kendall
Yet More Comic & Curious Verse – The Penguin Poets
Enjoying Poetry 1 – Silver and Gold
Matthew Arnold – A Selection Of His Finest Poems
The English and Scottish Popular Ballads Volume 1
Seven Centuries of Poetry in English
The Great Modern Poets – An Anthology of the Best Poets & Poetry since 1900
Collected Poems of Henry Thoreau
James McCauley – Collected Poems 1936 – 1970
The Golden Book of Modern English Poetry – Everyman’s Library – 921
The Poet’s Pen – A Historical and Chronological Anthology – 13th to 20th Century
Walt Whitman – Leaves of Grass
Judith Wright – Collected Poems
Poems and Poets – David Aloian – Headmaster, Concord Academy (Textbook 1965)
Country Verse – 16th to 19th Century
Introduction to Poetry: British, American, Canadian
Writing and Enjoying Haiku – A Hands-on Guide
The Making of a Poem – A Norton Anthology of Poetic Forms
How To Read A Poem and Fall in Love with Poetry
Poetry: Tools & Techniques – A Practical Guide to Writing Engaging Poetry
Mary Oliver – A Poetry Handbook – A Prose Guide to Understanding & Writing Poetry
It would be very hard for me to pick out a favourite Poet or Poem so I’m not going to try. There are some of my favourite Poets missing from the list, though. Some are contained within the anthologies and it would be nice to have them in their own separate books. I know I can go out and purchase brand new books but I prefer to hunt out second-hand books as they have more character than a brand new book and there is something about ‘the hunt’ in a second-hand bookstore that makes it all the more exciting when you ‘uncover some book treasure…’.
It’s been a phenomenally sad last few days as, and our Family’s collective Hearts are aching at present as, in the early hours of the morning on 24 November 2021 our beloved Mum, Iris passed away, having just turned 91 on the 15 November 2021.
Mum was born on 15 November 1930 and grew up in the Depression years, was 15 when World War II finished, married Dad on 8 December 1951 and had five children, losing two of them as infants. There would be no greater pain, I think for a parent to lose one of their children, alone, let alone two. So much to go through yet they did get through all that and provided a wonderful home for their children. Dad passed away on 16 January 2015. They had been married for 63 years.
They have two great-grandchildren and sadly, Mum has passed away without seeing her first great, great-grandchild who was due to arrive on 21 November 2021 but was late as, at date the birth has not happened yet.
Mum was shining light in our Family, and as a long-time (54 years) best friend of mine said the other day, he always thought of Mum as an Angel. I can think of no better way to describe Mum.
As mentioned in the previous post, last Sunday, my Wife and I were down at Berrima to celebrate the 27th anniversary of us going out to dinner for the first time.
One of the places we always go to is Berkelouw’s Book Barn which is located just outside Berrima on the Old Hume Highway. It holds a special place in our Hearts as we went there for the first time back on the 19 November 1994 and whilst browsing, Susan found a book called ‘The Drover’ which was outside the budget. She loved it but put it back on the shelf. I took a mental note of the book (no Smart phones back then to take a picture of it) and the next day, I rang Berkelouw’s and had them put the book aside. I picked it up the next weekend and gave it to Susan as a present. She was delighted and surprised! 🙂
Berkelouw’s used to have about 250,000 books but after diversification, they now have about 100,000 books. Still plenty to tantalise the avid bookworm.
Normally, we would be there for at least two hours, searching, uncovering and discovering book treasure but we both exceeded expectations and walked away with 11 books between us.
Here are my six below:
In all the years we have been going down there I have kept an eye out for writings of Henry David Thoreau and in consecutive years have picked up a book of his. Last year it was a book of his Poetry. It delights me to have picked up the book on some of his ‘meditations’.
I started reading the ‘Discworld’ series some time ago and have been keeping watch in second-hand bookstores so it was great to pick up another couple. 🙂
Am always on the lookout for Poetry books, especially anthologies and specific subject matter. I didn’t have any ‘humour-orientated’ Poetry so I was very pleased to add this to my collection. Anthologies are great, especially if like this one, there are a lot of Poets in it that I haven’t heard of. There a few Poems for each author so the book is a bit of a ‘taster’.
The final book to discuss is ‘New Worlds From Old’ which accompanied an exhibition of paintings some twenty years ago in Australia and the U.S.A. It has some wonderful plates of paintings from both American and Australian Landscape Artists from the 19th Century plus detailed information on the Artworks and the Artists themselves.
I’m looking forward this weekend and/or whenever I get the chance before to grab a cuppa and sit down to enjoy, particularly the Poetry, Painting and meditations books.
Yesterday, we embarked on our annual pilgrimage to Berrima which is a small village in the Southern Highlands of NSW, Australia. It is approx. 1 hour South of where we live. We drive down there on this weekend every year, sometimes for the weekend, sometimes to spend the day there like we did this year.
Why Berrima? It is the place that my (now) Wife, Susan finally said ‘Yes’ to me asking her out to dinner, after declining me 5 times back in 1994. We were down there as friends collecting some items for a Christmas party that a Dog Club (that Susan was the Social Secretary of) was holding.
We had lunch at The White Horse Inn and it had such a romantic feel that I felt compelled to ask her out ‘just one more time…’. I did and she said yes! 🙂 After that we visited some of the shops (which are tourist orientated) and then went off to Berkelouw’s Book Barn at Berrima, which, back then held about 250,000 books. Unfortunately, the White Horse Inn has not been open for a number of years now.
Fast forward to this weekend, we have to do it in reverse these days as Berkelouw’s had to change to economically survive by reducing the amount of books (to about 100,000) and diversifying into a Wedding Reception venue, a restaurant/cafe and a wine-tasting venue. They close at 3.00pm each day for functions, hence the earlier visiting time. This was a shorter visit for us this time as we both found 6 books each within 1 1/4 hours. Normally it takes us longer.
After that, we took off to one of our favourite ‘Vintage-ware’ shops called “Sticky Beaks.’ We love visiting shops like these as they bring back a multitude of memories of things that were used in the past and one can pick up interesting curios, as we did again today.
Susan managed to pick up a tray that converts into a Grazing platter. Functional and artistic, I’m sure we will pit it to good use.
From there we set off to our lunch booking at Josh’s Cafe & Restaurant for a sumptious meal of Grilled Barramundi (a highly recommended fish in Australia), salad and then we shared a couple of desserts, ‘Pear and Rhubarb Crumble’ and Hot Chocolate Fondant, mainly because I couldn’t make up my mind on which one to have. 🙂 Deliciously decadent!
From there we visited Mrs Oldbucks Jam & Food shop and several other shops including a relatively new Berrima shop called, ‘Six Impossible Things’, the name coming from a Lewis Carroll story. It is set in an old Colonial cottage down a short pathway.
It was there that I purchased a glass Inkwell and some Calligraphy Ink. I had been looking for one of these for about 18 months. 🙂
It was a tremendous way to celebrate 27 years since we went out to dinner and for us there is no better place to celebrate it than where Susan said ‘Yes’ all those years ago.
Poetry and Prose by Author of #1 Amazon New Release, Nature Speaks of Love and Sorrow, Co-Author, #1 Amazon Bestseller, Wounds I Healed: The Poetry of Strong Women, Spillwords Press Author of the Month, Jan/Feb 2022, and Monthly Contributor to MasticadoresIndia/USA, 2022.