Today was a productive Friday, artwise. Early this morning I took off to paint the poppies plein air. Took the car to Midas for serice.  While Hartman saw to the oiling and fixing, I had 2 hours on my hand, so I walked to the art store to buy Liquin.

They weren’t open yet, so I continued walking to Biocoop, where I always buy my turps – pressed from orange peel. On my way there, I passed by a farm with some geese and remembered that this WALK could serve as my “Sketchercise” contribution  for this Friday.



I usually carry a rotring pen and moleskine in my bag, as well as my compact watercolour palette and brush.

So. Took out the molekine and pen and asked the geese to hold still. They refused and left. Now my sketches look odd.

Sulking, I continued on to the Biocoop, just to find they were not open yet. Everything closes up between noon and 14:00 and sometimes even up until 14:30. The further south you go, the later the reopening in the afternoon…maybe 15:00, but most likely 16:00.

Anyway! I turned on my heels and walked all the way back to  the art store, passing the geese again. Being a bit more sensitive in my approach, I managed to squiggle a few lines before they noticed me and swaggled off.  I shrugged my houlders and turned to a wild rose/prickly rose.

…a second try…


With my art and bio stuff heavy on my arm and my feet burning from wearing light sandals not fit for walking, I limped off to the nearest bistro for a coffee and water. After a walk up en down of roughly 4 km, I met up with Hartman, plonked in the car, stopped off at the boucherie for a medium rare steak over hot coals for dinner tonight, and kicked off the sandals to let my sorry blisters breathe.

The sun was still invitingly high in the sky. Along with Hartman on our bikes, we set off in  search of a plein air painting spot by the Loire for tomorrow morning, since the sun had promised to be present this weekend. I stole a quick sketch of a fisherman with his back to me. He smiled at me, thinking I was sketching the Loire.

…an unsuspecting fisherman…

fisherman by Loire

I found my painting spot for tomorrow, we enjoyed our peach and Coke, I gave Liandri a lift home on my bike, we lit up the fire, opened a red wine and scorched our steak. A perfect day.

15 thoughts on “Sketches on a perfect Friday.

  1. That does indeed sound like a lovely day, in spite of the blisters. The geese may not have stood still long enough to become perfect drawings nonetheless they are lovely vignettes of a fleeting moment, full of life and spontaneity.

  2. “The geese swaggled off…” what a great verb! (And they look exactly like geese who wont stay still.) Sounds like a lovely day.

  3. Perfect, Ronell! I couldn’t believe how everything shut down in France at midday – but what a pleasure to be able to walk and cycle so freely. Your first lot of geese are quirky and cute, and the second lot just… perfect! Loved hearing about your day.

  4. What a great post – and it sounds like a great day too!

    I’ve found something new for blisters – and it works really well – I’ll find it and tell you tomorrow

  5. I agree with dinahmow, “The geese swaggled off” says it perfectly. I am glad that these geese did not behave like the ones that I have known– they had an aggressive biting style before they swaggled off. But as everyone says, you
    captured the look of them despite your fleeting opportunity.

  6. Oh Ronell, what a wonderful day! And tomorrow sounds fun too, I hope it’s going to turn out as good!

    Your geese are great! Full of life! I’m sure you wouldn’t have sketched them as well if they had stood still!

    It’s lovely of you to remind me of France’s traditionnal midday nap; it reminds me of wonderfully hot days when even flies seem too tired to fly at nap time!

  7. I smile every time I read your delicious posts. I love hearing about life in your neck of the woods. It sounds lovely. (although I do hope you soothed those sore feet!) Your sketches are charming.

  8. Your poppies are wonderful! We were in Tuscany at the end of May and the poppies were appearing there but nothing like your fields. Your oils have encouraged me to try my hand at them this summer. Thanks for all of your inspiration.

Tthank you for your visit and comment, II appreciate it!

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