After two days of brilliant sunshine and temperatures reaching 29 degrees C, today was overcast and windy. At around 7.30am each morning, as the sun comes over the mountain, we see this little squirrel in the garden. This morning it came and paid us a visit on the patio. The sketch was from memory – it moves at the speed of light and seems to hop along with all four feet off the ground at once.
I spent most of the day helping around the house with the new baby, but in the afternoon I took time out to repaint yesterday’s mountain, from memory. I realised that part of my problem yesterday was that a mountain in bright sunshine is much harder to paint than one in dull weather. I had to grossly simplify the shapes and I still don’t think this is simple enough. It took me about 40 minutes, with breaks.
I finally went for a walk at 5pm and within 200 metres from the house I stopped dead in my tracks and had to draw this. It’s viewed from the lawn of somebody’s house and the lady is just a statue. As I stood there the light kept changing but I decided on one lighting effect that captured the drama of the scene most of all. This sketch took me less than half an hour with a 2B pencil. During that time an eagle and a heron flew overhead. As I was finishing, large drops of rain started to fall, and the mountains kept losing and finding their faces. I continued my walk, snapping views with my iPhone but determined not to draw from the photos while I have the real thing in front of me. I will try and work this sketch up into a watercolour.