It’s Grey Outside.
I find myself painting without ‘colours’ this week. I speech-mark this because I do artfully consider black and white to be colours – ‘non-colours’, I call them, like my hair. Recently my topic has been oceans. I find I am painting black to grey to white waves and grey skies with dank hanging mists. I’m normally determined to use colours, especially when I usually feel so inspired by Gustav Klimt and my friend Suzanne’s work. She makes the most vibrant and happy landscapes of sea, sand, flowers and weather. We need these colours in our homes – especially those who must bring something of the outdoors in (along with Vitamin D3 capsules) for their lack of eye-food in the office.
But, woefully, I find my canvases laden with thick slatey dorbs. I can feel the weight of the mists in my head and behind my eyes and in my sinuses. Good Lordy-loo where has this come from?! And it comes to me as I gaze mournfully out of the window that the sky is feeling the same mournful melancholy as I. I find myself counting the months on my fingers since our last day of real summer… 14 months!! Winter has been here forever! Here in Wellington, New Zealand, Better-Half and I seem to have found a gaping patch of United Kingdom Home. In recent googling for weather maps of the area, Wellington does look to be the only truly moist region of New Zealand – correction, “Sodden” would definitely be befitting – gusts of cold South-Poley wind slapping the waters along the Cook Straight reaching the 165km per hour mark before it woofs into Wellington on a NORMAL day. It’s hard to believe now that our summer here post arrival from South East Asia, gave us a year long heatwave. Beautifully blue, clear skies, delicious scorching sun and sandy beaches, succulent sea-food and Sauvignon Blanc… OH MY SAINTED TROUSERS IT WAS SO GORGEOUS! So can it be that this is the Karma I have heard so much about? Have we had our slice of heaven, and now it’s time to be back with reality?! And then I look around me and, yes, I find we’ve somehow fallen back into our Monday-Friday, messy-house-gameofthrones-Nintendo-facebook-chocolate pattern! We worked hard to leave that behind in the May of 2015 and somehow we’ve reverted!
Our intention here was to work for one year, enjoy the Mountains, and rolling landscapes, the walks, the skis and the seas! And then move onto India, Caribbean, Canada, Alaska (not necessarily in that order). Those are what colours I should be painting – golds and reds of India; turquoise, lime-greens, blues and oranges of the Caribbean etc etc. Since becoming an Artist I have become a sit-on-bum, coffee-sipper. I netflix-on-in-the-background Rosy-Lander. It occurs to me that there is more fun to be had and more journeys to travel.
So, my Sam and me look at the costs of house-busses and even just normal old ones to rip the interior out of and re-fill with comfy, squishy sofa, neat and compact storage units, futon, tiny kitchen and log-burner. The hippy inside us is screaming to be set free and suddenly I have a rainbow of colour swimming back through my veins! I’m even reading about how one travels with their cat – It’s a thing! It can be done! Murray (our snugly, happy, chatty, spotty and striped tabby) would love it! All I need to do is train him to enjoy being on a lead and we can do it! (We can do it, we can do it, build a bus for Cinerellie, dum-de-dum-de-dum-de-dum-dum…!) So, it’s on the list, rubbing shoulders with the others in the bucket.
I am lucky that I was raised in a family who told me that life is short, so you must live. I find this hard sometimes, what with being slightly on the spectrum. I feel more secure in my own surroundings which makes it hard to step out of the door even though I desperately want to be out there and not stuck inside. If it goes on much longer this time, the walls will be covered in grey paintings and I’ll have developed a character for my cabin-fever and called it Arthur or Ned or something terribly ordinary… And once I’m out there, I’m okay.
Next week, my Sam and me will break the fourth wall and travel to Wanaka where there’s some of NZ’s best skiing! Yes there will be a lot of white and grey, but they’ll be only the best and purest forms. Best of all, I’ll be IN them, touching them, breathing them in and the vibrant, happy colours will be flying down the blue, green, red, black runs like phoenixes in their wacky skis, salopettes, jackets and goggles. I’ll be exercised and jolly.
Picture from http://www.lakewanaka.co.nz
I might just ditch the canvas for a bit and go for a walk around the botanicals. I might drink some too…