Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Winter is here brrrrr!

We had our first snow a couple of weeks ago and the need for extra heating and eating comfort food has increased dramatically. Hungry birds are being fed homemade 'birdcake', fruit, sugar water and leftovers. We have been repaid with their beautiful bird song from tuis and bellbirds. Heaps of tiny waxeyes and Sparrows line up on branches to eat the peeled apples that are speared on to the gnarled branches of the banksia Rose near the back door.

Just after Easter this year a small abandoned kitten appeared eating the stale Hot Cross buns which I had thrown out for the birds. She was a very alert little thing but very scared; she moved at the speed of light and disappeared under the house as soon as we appeared. With temperatures approaching freezing we became increasing concerned for her welfare. We fed her cat  biscuits daily on a small plastic plate which was pushed under the house. We could hear her eating from the plate when we were inside our living room (the sound underneath the floorboards). After 6 weeks we were starting to despair that she would ever trust us enough to come out and allow us to stroke her.

The night before the first snowfall was bitterly cold. She had started to mew looking through the bathroom window but still resistant to entering the house. We went to bed that night hearing her mewing. Early the next morning winter's blanket had arrived. We managed to pick her up when she was eating and took her inside into the warm. The first day she spent behind the huge pine dresser unreachable from human hands. Late the same day she ventured out to investigate. The following day she had undergone a complete character change. Purring and biffing around us, she was so happy to have found a home where she could be loved. It was amazing that a little kitten which had such a rough start to life could be so affectionate.  We have called her Tilly. Here are some photos of her.

With cats and winter dominating my thoughts I felt inspired to create an artwork incorporating them both and came up with this below.  I have called it Cats in Winter Hats. It is a work on watercolour paper using watercolour paint and pen.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Brush down, pen up...

Not sure how long it has been since I picked up a pen and sketched.  Inspired by a haunting photograph by William Hallett called 'The Sea Captain' which can be viewed on www.redbubble.com  this sketch emerged.  I have named it 'Sailor's Rest' and hope to develop it later into a painting complete with background.  A Staedtler Fineliner was used for this and ordinary copy paper used.

Not a seasoned blogger but...

I will try and improve :)
November has been changeable weather wise and I have been sluggish creatively. Last month I squeezed out another whimsical nun painting called 'Having a Whale of a Time'.  It came about by hearing an out hand remark by someone and I had a vision in my mind.  Fortunately it didn't take long to get it down on canvas. It is currently at the Art Station, Dunedin, New Zealand in the 2011 City of Dunedin Art Awards which runs from 19 November until the 11 December 2011.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Candy Pink Camelias in Bloom

This week has seen the flowering of two huge camelia bushes in the garden. Their blooms are so blousy and 'in your face' but the candy pink petals look impressive against the dark green shiny leaves. I am unsure of the varieties as they were already in the garden when we moved in in November 2002.
Another pretty discovery is a  blue Barnhaven Primula that seems to have multiplied since being planted in a green bucket:

Mrs Duck and Mr Drake are always around.  They normally camp out near the back door, where the kitchen is.  They are fed by us and soon she will have her ducklings and they will be paraded and marched in front of us.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Birth of my Blog

I know this has taken me sometime but I have finally done it. My blog is born.
Over time I hope to share thoughts, inspirations on many things, some of which you may find of interest.
It is a little window into my world.
We are officially several days into spring here in the south of New Zealand.  A great passion and love is the cottage garden here.  Crocuses are in flower, cherry blossom abounds and blousy pink camelias are very showy in the front garden. I made a 'bird cake' the otherday (melted dripping and added wild bird seed, some dried fruit and nuts) and hung it up in a tree. It seems to be very popular with the waxeyes who are quickly demolishing it. Bellbirds, Tuis and Waxeyes drink nectar water (sugar and water mix, one part sugar to 4 parts water) at an alarming rate. 3 kgs of sugar seems to last for only 10 days!

A few evenings ago I could hear the wind whipping around the house and streets. I found if quite unsettling, it made me remember back to theThe Great Storm of 1987 which occurred on the night of 15/16 October 1987, when an unusually strong weather system caused winds to hit much of southern England and northern France. It was the worst storm to hit England since the Great Storm of 1703 (284 years earlier) and was responsible for the deaths of at least 22 people in England and France.

I was visiting one of my brothers in England at the time, several months earlier I had been at the epi centre of an earthquake in Edgecumbe, New Zealand. I was starting to think natural disasters were following me around.
Anyway, this short poem emerged this evening when I was listening to the gusts outside.

Wild Night
I remember when the night was wild
And the wind blew the black sky inside out
Like a magician’s hat.
The moon ghost scurried above
Negotiating troubled clouds.
Trees raised their arthritic limbs upwards.
Knotted fingers creaked on weathered arms
Signaling their annoyance.
Great gusts of air took breath away
Oblivious, with Goliath strength.
I remember when the night was wild.

~ Anni Morris 2 September 2010