I looked at some of the suggested artists and how they interpret landscapes. I find Stanley Spencer's work full of detail. You can look for hours and still find things you missed earlier.
I had two postcards of Hockney's work. The tall trees is an inkjet printed computer drawing and photo collage which I think is brilliant. The small postcard of trees is a watercolour and the stitched piece above it is one I did from the postcard for an exhibition. I chose the other three pieces from the internet as they are the opposite of the Spencer paintings. To me they are calm depictions of a country lane of which there are many near me.
Choosing my theme was quite difficult and I am still not sure if I have made the right choice. I went over lots of places I have visited and loved such as Venice, Peru and New York but discarded them because even though I have the photographs, I wouldn't be able to revisit them to check on a detail. Also, the photographs don't always create the atmosphere that you remember. So I reduced my choices to two - Scarborough and Forge Valley. Scarborough is set around two bays that are very different to each other. The north bay is quiet with Victorian hotels and beach huts and a long sandy beach with rock pools. The south bay is all amusement arcades, fun fairs, ice cream and fish and chips. Forge Valley is a deep ravine forged by melt water at the end of the ice age. It has a road running through it alongside a river and is full of trees and vegetation. I set out my arguments in my sketchbook.
I have several books as well as some by Jan Beaney and Jean Littlejohn to help me with this project.
Having decided what I am going to do, I took my camera down into the valley on bank holiday monday when the weather was glorious.
Masses of wild garlic around.
It really is a beautiful place and it is such a shame that you can't photograph birdsong. A bit further on from where I walked there are bird tables out and you can park there and watch the birds come to feed. I used to take my daughter there when she was little. I have found lots of lichens in the woods here and have done some pieces of work for our next exhibition based on them. In the autumn the ground is just a mass of red and bronze leaves and in the winter it gets very cold down there and snow can last for quite a while. I sneaked a crayon into my pocket and a couple of pieces of paper and did some of tree rubbings.
I think these might come in useful. I also have a collection of leaves that I collected last autumn, I need to go and find them.
I don't usually do a lot with flora and fauna but having just worked on lichens, I have got a bit more of an interest in it so I think this topic will be good for me. The Scarborough one would have been a challenge as I think perspective would have come into it a bit more and that is something I am not very good at. Maybe I will do that when I have got more confidence.