I am back from Spain.
I had a wonderful time, very busy (i will tell you a little bit about that in a minute) and it was very warm so I am FREEZING now back in Norway!
I decided to use this picture today because that is how i am feeling. A little bit sleepy and introspective and I would dearly love to curl up in my duvet and have a little sleep today. As you can probably guess this is a little study of Metamoth curled up in her pupa, still dozing but pretty close to being reborn.
There is not a whole lot more to say about this picture except that I really like those colours. I use them quite a lot, especially those sap and olive greens with the pale pink and flesh tones of madder and rose dore. Rose dore was my latest discovery, the last time I was buying watercolours. I love it because it works so well as a flesh tone and then you can blush it up with a little rose madder.
I told you last week that I was off to Spain for a little holiday, this was strictly speaking not quite true as it was in fact a working holiday and fact finding mission.
Two years ago I took the plunge of buying a little house in a pretty little town in Andalucia.
My faithful and patient man, who just happened along as the sale was closing, therefore inherited a vast project that he never envisaged when he asked me out on that first date. You see - being me - I did not buy a ready house that you could walk into, but rather more a shell of a house. That said we have camped there over the last couple of years quite happily - except for the first time trying to sleep on an airbed! Nightmare, as the air just would not stay in it so that in the morning we were sleeping directly on a hard tiled floor. Not very good for my back at all!
About a year ago we began work with a really nice Spanish architect and finally after an awful lot of planning and discussion work has just begun on the house. Only demolition at the moment, but you know you have to break eggs to make omelettes. We have all really enjoyed the process, as there was no real rush at first, although now I have to admit I am just aching for the house to be finished so that we can take up residence there and start having all our friends coming to stay.
This trip was first and foremost a mission to seek out tiles, doors and other such fixtures and fittings. The week flew by in a bit of a whirlwind and I am still trying to remember and process all we viewed and discussed. Of course the couple of glasses of wine with a late lunch every day did not really help my energy levels, but I am still maintaining that it was the sunshine and heat that did for me in the afternoon!
Now, I have for some time been planning to run art holidays when we finally move down there and that was the other aspect of the trip - a fact-finding mission for these art holidays. This could not have been more successful as I had by chance booked into a lovely Bed and Breakfast (Casa de Orange http://www.casadeorange.com/_en/main.html) just around the corner, which has exactly the right ambience that I was looking for. That takes care of the residence for the students.
As further luck would have it there was also another artist staying there at the same time (Natalia Romero http://www.nataliaromero.nl/) and would you believe it, she was actually giving painting lessons to a couple of students who were with her. As you can imagine we got talking and after sharing conversations and ideas we finally got down to the real business of discussing a new plan of running holidays together in future.
I could not be happier as I can be a bit shy, so the thought of setting the whole thing up on my own was a bit daunting. With someone else, with relevant experience it will be a real joy!
She was also delighted at the thought of having the company of another tutor in future so we are really looking forward to making proper plans over the next few months with the hope of taking bookings for next summer. An added plus is the fact that as she is a painter and I am primarily a sculptor we should be able to devise some very interesting programs of study for our students.
So now you can probably understand why I am so physically and mentally exhausted - but also quietly really excited. Life suddenly got more interesting!