Monday, 5 January 2015

It's all over again

Had a good Christmas and New Year?

I started a heavy cold on about 26th December and am still coughing and spluttering with some way to go before I'm healthy again - health not being only a condition, but also a state of mind, I suppose. But colds have their good side. Not chasing around means the Baker's cyst behind my left knee has gone away completely and once I get my breath back from all the cold symptoms,  I could go to the gym again!

My best Xmas deal was a blender.

I can make smoothies in it till the cows come home, and have been instructed to do just that. Yesterday I made one with a sharon, half a banana and a large orange and it is really delicious. At least I will get to know some of the great tropical fruits on offer. If I don't like the mixture, I can hold my nose and drink it in one gulp. That hasn't happened so far, but I'm not onto veg yet....

So what do you do at Xmas when you have a stinking cold? Nothing much. I've been playing the piano a bit, having chosen J.S.Bach as my composer of the month for January. This system came to me long ago. I explore at least some of the works of these great composers, maybe with a dabble at something else on the way, but basically I'm devoting a month to thinking about that particular composer. Haydn or Mozart often occur, Beethoven less often because he's really hard to play with arthritic hands, and Rameau occurs along with other Baroque composers quite frequently because their music is nto so difficult (some of it needs more practice than I give it!). I love Chopin, Schumann, Schubert etc. so they all get an airing, and if I decide I need more of one composer and less of another, I do break my own rules!

Then there's the art thing. I have a painting on the easel at the moment. Another abstract, really meant to finish a series of "windows", has already joined another series of moons, of which I include a couple here and now:

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I'm not sure what I enjoy most. When I'm painting more realistically I think I should be delving more into my unconscious and working abstractly, but when I'm painting an abstract, I often yearn for it to look like something else! I'm trying to capture the stages of the new painting and will post them later.

The Zen doodling has also been part of my convelescence, as usual hampered by Georgie, my lovely cat who insists on sitting on the paper, preferably exactly where I'm about to work! How does he know? He's also interested in the shadows he makes when he gets between me and the light! Ever so sweet, really, but can be a nuisance!

New Years' Resolutions? I want to get some of my painted-over paintings repainted. The canvases are just lying around ready-to-go at the moment, and I will not buy any new ones unless I decide I need large squares, as that shape is scarce in my store (but I prefer abstracts on a square format). I also hope to do some pastel drawings and use up some of many pastels I have sorted in plastic containers! The problem is that I really only like painting with soft pastels (Rembrandt usually) so my stock of those is meagre and would have to be replenished. The cheaper pastels simply don't do the job - too little pigment and far too much binder. But another of my resolutions is to spend less money on art stuff.........Pan Pastels are lovely to use, but I only have a few of them and they are very expensive. On the other hand, I still have lotso f coloured paper left over from my last pastel attack.... That included some heads copied from saurces such as Modiglani, but also some photos. I love recreating artists' work in part or whole in different media. It's always a challange and arguably the best way of learning how to paint!

after Modigliani
Not wanting to waste any time except when playing scrabble on the computer, I need my writing. I'm restructuring all the (5) novels I've written - a huge task, but one I hope will leave me better informed about my characters, since the novels are a series using the same people plus extras who then often appear in the next book, unless they are felons and ended up in prison, or characters I dislikes and therefore killed off.. I will then proceed with a new book, but I fear it will not be until April, at the rate I'm working.