May 06, 2017



Welcome to the wilderness of Africa!



Photos can be so dissapointing, but I include this one because a panaromic can atleast be inspected closer, and seeing the sum 180 degrees at once is also sort of close to describing the impact of the location.

I have traveled a bit up and down, within our borders. Not nearly enough, but I have seen some of it, and enjoyed it. And to me its quite important at the moment in handling the landscape. My point is that it is so extraordinary to see these landscapes, and feel the mood of them. Of course light and thus time of day, everything considored, I am not sure that many greater pleasures await me ahead, than getting down to it and painting, on location, in whatever medium.


        


Recently, I had a good deal of fun and did some painting at ‘Asante Sana’ (of Lion King fame), a Swahili word for ‘thanks, or thank you very much’. Also ‘jambo” as in howsit! or habariaco is ‘how are you’. Anyway, Forgotten St. Petersburg (renamed Asante Sana), which in part turns 200 years old very shortly is just three hundred stone throws from the (R63) gravel road, as the crow flies going north. This area is a constant inspiration. It is peace and quiet and a blanket of beauty.


Here are the co ordinates.





The park is nestled at the very end, in a cul-de-sac of mountains, right under the Sneuberg range, who's peaks are laden with snow come the winter time, a famous landmark of the old frontier. It is a timeless and present place.






I was kindly taken into this lovely setting by the most unlikely of people, a household of very proficient creatives and friendly conservation enthusiasts, monkey and baboon types and some normal ones. All very hospitable and awesome. It has been so wondeful, so just in way of thanks as well to those who may read this, Asante sana!



photo by Kitty Viljoen


Now on to art.
Feeding grounds

This sketch is done plein air, fairly saturated washes of colour, from the tube this time, but quite soft due to my working it more and more wet, making the most of the atomizing spray-bottle I had on hand. A very crucial watercolour outdoor or anywhere painting tool to be sure. 

I thought about just adding maybe; a Rhino but then decided it was better left as said!





18.5' x 10'
Reserve view at Dusk


This one was done very much on the spot, and that was at the top of a little elevation overhung by trees (for neutral light to paint under) on the side of a road, and looking streight across at the Sneuberge. It was framed in leaves although I didnt include those, licence they say!

This view and composition was so beautiful to my eye, I simply got stuck in. It was really one of those thrilling moments.




6' x 5'
Peppertree house



On the right, done from photo reference back in the studio of
one of the old cottages.

It was so much fun and in happily recounting it I only hope Ive conveyed at least some practical information, my intention as
always the art and that certainly makes it worth my while!




 

More on the region and landscapes of the karoo next time.