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Thought Gathering

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Tuesday 21 August 2012

Thought Gathering

I am embarking on a couple of projects. One is to create a body of work about this area, exactly what, is not quite clear to me yet. The other is to write some teaching notes, both for my own classes and for a Local Authority “Starting Painting and Drawing” class in St Ives.

Luckily for me these two projects dovetail in nicely as I can begin at the beginning of all things creative, for both projects. I love the “The Beginning”. It’s that exciting, all-things-are-possible stage where you dream and for me starting something new is all about gathering thoughts and visual info. I decided to try to blog about the process as it keeps my otherwise random methods on track and may be interesting to look back on…it may not.

Good Intention Walks

So for thought gathering I have started to take a walk every morning and make notes as I go along.
Working on the excellent KISS principal I just carry a pocket note book, pen and camera. I vary my route a little and, as the walk has to be long enough to act as a thinking space to separate the night and the working day, it takes about an hour.

walking kit bg

Camera, note book and pen and a page from yesterday. 20th August. The bird is the pied blackbird that we often see. It has one white feather in its wing. The bottom line says, ominously, “the conkers are falling”….

To start with, the notes are just words and a few diagrams. Sketching may come later but, I think sketching outings are something different. 
I may transcribe the scribbles and keep the notes as a separate Page on the blog. They are just random words and thoughts, so would be indescribably boring, and might appear contrived as a daily blog post but it will be interesting for me and for my students to see the process, if/how it works and what develops as a result.

After only 5 days some foibles are emerging. For some reason it seems important for me to know when dawn and sunrise are. I think it’s because I regard light as my lifeblood.  So I record the times, today for example:
Dawn:( from Old English  dagian "to become day) is 5.18 am   
Sunrise: 5.53 am
The difference? Well, dawn is the time after which the sky is no longer completely dark, astrologically when the sun is 18 degrees below the horizon. and sunrise is when the upper rim of the sun first emerges above the horizon, in reality a fleeting second.
The sun did not appear until later this morning due to thick cloud but it comforts me to know its official, if unseen, arrival time.

A neat diagram from Wiki “Types of Twilight” It’s rather simple and beautiful I thought.

My walks are paved with my good intentions. Some will hopefully grow and flourish and some, inevitably, are destined to be toast.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Valerie, I've been reading your blog , and lurking, since I retired, with the intention of resurrecting my interest in botanical art, in 2008. This week I have flu, so I went right back to the beginning and enjoyed it again. The thought occurred that it would make a great book of interest to both budding artists and naturalists. Thanks for the pleasure, Franinoz.

22 August 2012 at 01:29  
Blogger sharp green pencil said...

How very kind of you to think I could do a book like that. I really admire your stamina in going back to the beginning of the blog. I look back fondly on those times when life was simpler! I loved the drawings of the leaves and the research into all the history of the plants. Now things are different but I am hoping that next year, maybe, I will get back into my painting rhythm!

14 September 2012 at 05:36  

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