Tuesday, 22 May 2018


Abstract Landscape Painter.  Rural Dweller.  Lover of Modernist Art and Design.


22 May


Bright light and a clear sky, but a strong breeze.  The tops of the oaks rustle and sway; the scented hawthorn moves like a wave.  Out of sight, but nearby, the croaky call of a pheasant, followed by the short, muffled drumbeat of its wings.

An Orange Tip butterfly haphazardly crosses our path - like a scrap of dip-dyed paper, blown by the wind.

Buffetted by the vigorous air, a sounds like the sea in my ears, we press on down the path.  In a sheltered spot further along, the waterfall song of the skylark drips over me, while the first swallows dip and dive and skim the surface of the green.


All text & images ©2018 Carol Saunderson


http://anartistinthelandscape.blogspot.co.uk/

Wednesday, 16 May 2018


Abstract Landscape Painter.  Rural Dweller.  Lover of Modernist Art and Design.


16 May


The meadow is alive with goldfinches.  These bright little birds are so tiny that they can hang onto the dandelion stems and eat the "clocks".  The flit around with their undulating flight, chattering away with their high-pitched voices.  I count ten.  Their collective noun is a "charm"  –  a suitable word on so many levels.

The scent of the may is sweet and heady.  The hawthorn hedges are thick with white, refulgent blooms.  Turning a corner, I suddenly hear a strange cacophony coming from the sky on my right.  It's all happening!  The clicking/gurgling sound is being emitted by two crows that are trying to see off a buzzard.  One flies above it, the other below.   Their commotion sets a hare running directly beneath them.   They are engaged in a display of aerial acrobatics, like two spitfires above the curve of the earth.  The large bird turns this way and that, but eventually gives up and glides off to perch on a telegraph pole in the middle of the field.

This great field has been sown with "green manure"  –  clover, bird's foot trefoil and chicory.  Also in abundance –  the ubiquitous dandelion clocks.  The buzzard, who has been sitting like Simeon the Stylite, suddenly dives into the green, resulting in the immediate rising of a little cloud of noisy and excited birds.  They form one shape, whose elements move around each other like atoms.  The bird of prey is unlucky again, and with a flap of its great wings, it returns to its post, while the little cloud chitter-chatters away, as if blown by the breeze, over the surface of the sward.




All text & images ©2018 Carol Saunderson


http://anartistinthelandscape.blogspot.co.uk/

Friday, 11 May 2018


Abstract Landscape Painter.  Rural Dweller.  Lover of Modernist Art and Design.


11 May


Suddenly the leaves of the apple trees and the beech hedge have appeared, to fill the space in front of the cottage.  They are interspersed with the narrow batons of a collapsing fence.  The bright, morning light is filtered through patches of luminous green.  In the bed at their feet, irises have bloomed.  Rich, luxurious purple.  I examine them closely.  The petals are striped with white at their bases, contrasted with yolk-coloured pollen that sits atop the slender, white stamens.  Fabric is a beautiful thing, but could any woven silk really be as magnificent as these flowers?

In equal measure to this grand display, I am attracted to the buds of the iris.  The furled, compact petals are a deep, dark indigo – one of my favourite colours.  They sit on their stems like tall and elegant sculptures – the Vogue models of the flower world.


It is windy and bright out on the lane.  I pause beneath an oak tree and look up at its structure.  Then I just stand and listen to the powerful rush of the air, moving through the tender leaves.  It sounds so fresh.  If only it could blow between my ears and clear the fuzziness from my head!

Deep yellow dots of buttercups are beginning to emerge from the growing grass verges, and where the snow once lay, there are great drifts of cow parsley.




All text & images ©2018 Carol Saunderson


http://anartistinthelandscape.blogspot.co.uk/

Monday, 7 May 2018


Abstract Landscape Painter.  Rural Dweller.  Lover of Modernist Art and Design.


7 May


There is a deep crimson skyline to the east, and above it a pale cerulean, turning to deep cobalt at the zenith.  It is 4.25am and we are walking across open fields towards the nearest wood, in order to listen to the dawn chorus.  The sun will not rise for almost an hour, but the twilight affords visibility enough to find our way with ease and the blackbirds and robins have already begun to sing.  The weather forecast promises a glorious day, and certainly there is complete clarity in the atmosphere and not a breath of air movement.

As we cross from one field to the next, and turn along a hedge line, we put a pair of partridges to noisy flight.  Then, as our silent little procession passes beneath an oak tree, a tawny owl launches itself into the blue and floats away beneath the half moon and the morning star.  When we reach the edge of the wood, the wrens have joined in and the occasional pheasant call is echoing eerily across the surrounding valley.

Within the wood, the lush grass is drenched with a heavy dew, which soon passes through my old leather walking boots and soaks into my socks – it is pleasantly cooling.  My trousers wick up the moisture and the damp climbs towards my shins.  It is darker in here.  The moon peeps at us between the trees.  In the densest area, we disturb slumbering pigeons, who leave their roosts with a deep clapping sounds.  Not wanting to alarm them further, we move back into a more open area and pause to listen to a song thrush singing mellifluously, high up and to our left.

We are outside the wood now, following its southern edge.  Suddenly B spots something loping along ahead of us.  It is a fox.  Its coat looks thick and rough and glows a deep red in the rosy light. 

Taking the bridle path to out left, we hear warblers in the hedgerow.  Three hares run along the far edge of the field to our right and then three to our left.  They chase each other along the horizon line, under a pale pink sky.  

As we near the cottage, shortly before 5.30am, we are walking due east and into the face of the fully risen sun.  We are forced to avert our eyes in deference to the fiery globe, which is covering the landscape in liquid gold.




All text & images ©2018 Carol Saunderson


http://anartistinthelandscape.blogspot.co.uk/

Friday, 4 May 2018


Abstract Landscape Painter.  Rural Dweller.  Lover of Modernist Art and Design.


4 May


Two Orange Tip butterflies are nosing the white flowers of a patch of nettles, and from the grassy path ahead, a Skipper rises up and alights on a clod in the newly cultivated field.  It all but disappears against the pale, brown earth.  Three Small Whites ripple down the line of cowslips as we walk, and a Peacock butterfly seems so enamoured with Millie that, at one point, I think that it is going to land on her head!  The heat is bringing out the butterflies and, I notice, the small mauvy-blue flowers of the Self-Heal - a contrast to the vivid dandelion yellow.

At a high point along the path, I stop and sit down.  It is a step above the field margin, and thus provides a ready seat.  The air is perfectly still.  It is silent, save for the “hummm” of bees and flies, going about their business.  I gaze into the hazy distance, watch the flight patterns of birds and absorb the warmth of the afternoon sun.  I can feel it soaking into my bones.  Millie snuffles about in the grass – eating dandelions and rabbit droppings, if truth be told.  The peace is welcome and therapeutic.

As we reach the first dwellings, on our way back along the lane, the smell of a barbecue scents the evening air – the first outdoor cooking of the year has begun.


All text & images ©2018 Carol Saunderson


http://anartistinthelandscape.blogspot.co.uk/

Wednesday, 2 May 2018


Abstract Landscape Painter.  Rural Dweller.  Lover of Modernist Art and Design.


2 May


Millie and I are out early, in order to avoid the oncoming rain.  I’m aware of the increase in open flowers that have begun to decorate the verges and bases of the hedgerows – some paths have literally hundreds of cowslips along their edges.  I see also patches of tiny, blue, forget-me-nots, newly emerged red campion, primroses, garlic mustard and still partially enclosed bluebells.  There are dog violets too, and soon the sides of the lane and the field margins will be frothing with white cow parsley.  And then there is Bellis Perennis, the “everlasting beauty”, the “eye of day” – it closes its petals at night and opens them every morning.  A rather underrated, cheery little flower, in my opinion.

The trees are coming into leaf too.  The views across the landscape are changing accordingly, as they put on their garments and take up more space.  Gaps are closing and light is filtered through the tender green.  The weeping willow, by the village hall, cascades down in a rush of pale, slender leaves.  Together they are so dense and full of movement that it looks as if spray from a great wave is about to break over me.  But there, in the centre of it all, sits a pigeon, perfectly still and eying me warily.



All text & images ©2018 Carol Saunderson


http://anartistinthelandscape.blogspot.co.uk/

Wednesday, 25 April 2018


Abstract Landscape Painter.  Rural Dweller.  Lover of Modernist Art and Design.


25 April


The wind is sending the clouds scudding across the sky as we take the footpath across a newly planted field and uphill towards the wood.  We travel carefully along the narrow ribbon between the tiny green shoots until the path disappears though an archway in a high hedge, frothing with may blossom.

Once on the other side, Millie pulls on the lead towards the field ahead of us and stands up on her back legs like a meerkat, emitting a whine of excitement.  What has she seen?  There seems to be only brown earth, until.....something moves on the skyline.  I drop down and squat on my haunches in order to put the object directly into my eyeline.  There is only the sound of the wind and the low-toned handclap of rooks leaving the boughs of a nearby oak tree.

In this open landscape, on this bright morning, there seems to be only we three creatures on the earth - Millie, me, and the running hare.



All text & images ©2018 Carol Saunderson


http://anartistinthelandscape.blogspot.co.uk/