This afternoon I had the best of fun. We stayed over with friends of our in Betty’s Bay. In the morning Calvin and Jonty asked me to take them down for a surf at the local break. It was a very beautiful morning with a stiff Northwest wind a blowing directly offshore as we paddled out. The tide was out and the waves were breaking fast on a shallow sand bank. The boys had some great waves – out of the pages of surf magazines. It was too fast and steep for me but I loved being out looking at the mountains and the clouds billowing through the gap at Luiperds Kloof (Leopard ravine I guess). People sometimes see leopards around there still. There was one that got quite friendly until some ignorant idiot shot it. But – I digress.
I was just going to go out and get my stuff and do a painting when Calvin broke his board in half! So I took the boys home. As we drove back the rain came in and by the time we got to the cottage it was chucking down.
I really enjoy the paintings of David Bellamy who does the beautiful watercolour sketches in the most extreme conditions. I have always wanted to do the same so I got warmly dressed with my waterproof gear and went back to the beach. I found shelter from the wind and did a quick painting with my squirrel hair mop – it must have taken about 2 minutes at the most. As I finished the rain started and I just had time to take a photo before the downpour cleaned up:
By the time I packed up the page was all but clean.
I decided to sit and wait for a break in the rain. It was just so beautiful. I was warm and mostly dry sitting in flip-flops and rain gear. Eventually I realised the rain would not stop so I found another place to sit under a slightly overhanging bush at the top of a dune. The rain moderated a little and I was able to do another sixty second watercolour. I could not actually see the mountain but as I finished it cleared enough for me to get a bit of the shape in. And that was it. Last night I was reading a book about the teaching of Edgar Whitney – what a guy! He used to say “if you feel afraid – do it! Morale is more important than success” I like that. And so I did it. And this is how it looks:
The paper was too wet to do more and I began to think about how I could prepare to do this better. I knew if I tilted the paper all the colour would run off so I carefully lifted it off the surface of my paint box and put it inside. I loaded my palette on top and covered it with a plastic bag (thanks K for the suggestion – it came in V. handy). I put the painting the back of my bakkie (truck) and stood under the beach shower to wash off all the sand. (o:
Then I took off the wet stuff and shot home – what a cool way to spend a couple of hours.
I took the page the rain cleaned off and repainted the watercolour, using my squirrel-hair mop – what a lekker brush. The rain had washed off all the seizing which made the paper work slightly differently but not too badly.
When the rain cleared there are some beautiful rock cliffs on the mountain – but that will be for next time.