Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Gooseberry Fool

I could just tuck into one of those right now... Instead I am making do with a sausage roll from a petrol station. It's not quite 'albondigas', but it's giving me the 'carne' fix I need after a couple of weeks staying with my pescetarian dad. So what on earth have I been up to for the past fortnight (certainly feels like more than that to me...)? Well I got on a plane and arrived in the UK and it was cold. I went to the Chelsea Physic Garden, and decided that I want my ashes spread over the garden after I spent most of two days there, collecting as much information from their live collections as possible. Since then I really have come to realise that it is the place to be and renewed my membership.

After a couple of days of 'field work', I caught the train down from Victoria station to my hometown, Bognor Regis, and started my next commission - a gooseberry. I missed the season, so this piece is being painted from photographs - seven different ones to be precise  -from gooseberries all over the country. So far I have spent roughly 70 hours on it and am about half way. I hope to have it complete before the 10th when I pop up to London again to show it to the client. 

Gooseberry - Ribes uva-crispa
Gooseberry (Ribes uva-crispa) - a work in progress. J R Shepherd ©

I bought some new blue pigments which were waiting for me when I arrived. I am using one of them in this piece - Manganese Blue (121) Daler Rowney. Other colours are from the Daley and Rowney range: Rose Madder and Cobalt Blue and from W&N: Transparent Yellow, Hooker Green, Aureolin Yellow, Permanent Magenta and Olive Green. The fruits have every single one of these colours in them, and the leaves have less Aureolin and Olive Green.

After the 10th I am off to Norfolk for a weekend off. I am hoping to dash to Suffolk to see some hops farms, but it is all weather dependent and so far I don't really rate the weather. Can you blame me?! I have a robin outside my window in Bognor singing it's winter tune and, while I liked it at first, it is now starting to make me feel rather confused. Is it really that time of the year already?


  1. Hi Jess

    You can almost smell the dew on those 'Goozgogs' ! I'm sure you will have a very pleased customer - Well Done.

    And keep those pigments away from your mouth.

  2. Beautiful gooseberries, Jess! :)