I’ve been so impressed by the fleeting glimpses that we have of the mountains on these semi cloudy days that I’m doing a quick pencil sketch from the back patio every time I’m inspired. Sometimes you wouldn’t know there’s a mountain there at all: other times you suddenly notice a ridge on the mountain that you didn’t know was there, brought into relief by the cloud behind it. I’m thinking of the Japanese and Chinese masters now, and I’m contemplating doing some very simple Mokuhanga woodcuts on this theme.
I tried translating my pencil drawing of the Crow Tree into a watercolour. That tree is full of crows in the evening: they all go there to roost and communicate, then in the morning they fly off in separate groups to find food. Like ravens, crows are very intelligent birds and they have a highly sophisticated way of communicating with each other.
I fell in love with a book of American/Canadian songbirds with sound effects and bought it for Leo. I hope he grows up listening to the real birdsong. The birds here are much more subtle with their calls than the raucous flocks we see in Australian back yards, but if you listen quietly, you can hear them.
I did some babysitting today while Leo’s parents got back into some renovating. He went to sleep for 30 minutes – long enough for me to do this sketch.
One evening I counted over a hundred crows fly from one pine tree. They all went in one direction, up the valley and behind a hill. Maybe to another tree? You couldn’t see them in the pine, before they moved. The world is an amazing place.