Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Staying Close, Gardening, and the Gloaming

I have been laboring in my new garden mostly non-stop for the last week.

Some progress is being made.  But not really enough to merit much in the way of photography.

i.e., any pic I would show you would only reveal so much still UNDONE.

And lots that is not so very beautiful.  But in the evenings....

I allow myself a wander around to capture that for which I am NOT responsible:

The little whisper of evening light.

That is blessedly transforming.

And poetic.  It makes up for the hard labors of the day.  And it's a promise of what to come.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Picture IT!

Hello March!!!!  How was everybody's weekend?

We had a rainy one in L.A. but fun anyway.  Today I'm posting about, PICTURES!  (What a surprise - not!)

I have to say this is something I've wanted to do on my walls for ages, and never got around to. Why?  One reason might be because I think I'd find it impossible to settle on a single picture.  I've thought of permanently installing a slide projector in my living room so that I could change pictures according to whim......

sort of like this.  But it's not very green is it?  To be running a projector at all times.  Maybe I could get away with just evenings, or weekends.

If I did something on paper and permanent, I'd have a hard time, too, choosing between black and white and color.

I'd love to have one of those Florence Henri photos from my last post.  The black and whites tend to pack that graphic punch that pulls everything in a room together.  Like in this picture.  (Is it just me or have the last three pictures tilted slightly to the left?)

I'm less fond of close up portraits.  But it depends.

Yes mostly I think I favor a landscape....or streets cape.

And of course - you needn't limit yourself to walls.  Anybody done this at home?

(All pics variously from around the web.) 

Friday, February 27, 2015

Florence Henri - Musee du Jeu de Paume, Paris through 17 May 2015

What are you doing this weekend?

It's supposed to rain in L.A. so we are thinking of going to a museum.

If we were in Paris, we would definitely go to this:

"Florence Henri (New York 1893 – Compiègne (France) 1982) was a multi-faceted artist, who was first known for her paintings before making a name for herself as a major figure in avant-garde photography between the end of the 1920s and the beginning of the 1940s........

The Jeu de Paume is presenting a vast panorama of Florence Henri’s photographic production 

from 1927 to 1940, including her self-portraits, abstract compositions, portraits of artists, nudes, photomontages, photocollages, as well as documentary photos taken in Rome, Paris and Brittany."  (From the Jeu de Paume website.)

I had never heard of her before.  Had you?  

Have a wonderful week end!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Bucolic Splendour

More of that: just in case anyone is.........


of snowy, sleety

(Top three pics: the amazing Sarah Ryhanen at Saipua)

chilly city life.

Just remind yourself......

you're in the home stretch now.

Just a few

short months.........

(last 3 pics: Artemis at Junkaholique)

Have you planned your summer holidays yet?

I think you might already know that about me:

(last two pics: moi-meme)

My idea of getting away is going

(pics 2 and 3 and this last, via Gardenista)

to the country.

(pic: Ben Pentreath via his blog Inspiration)

What about you?  City mouse or country mouse?

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Osterley Park - Got Cabin Fever - How's About a Lovely Walk?

Can't tell you how many times I've gone past the Osterley Park stop on the way from Heathrow.

I've talked so many times of visiting there.  So finally last fall, I DID.  It was a proper English afternoon.

The brief journey from the tube station takes you past a little parade of shops including a very intriguing book and vintage clothing source.  It was closed when we went by so I couldn't tell you for certain if the designer bargains were the real thing.

The flora and fauna of Osterley House however were not kidding.  What about this magnificent creature?  The photo doesn't do him/her justice.

It's a lazy stroll walk along another parade - of trees.....

to a lovely farm shop, of the charming old school English kind.

"Marrows"?  Otherwise possibly known as "zucchini" to you.  Beautiful and perfectly fresh.

Oh look!  Don't you just want to grab some handfuls and go home to a sizzling hot pan of chips?

Everyone can be accommodated, from horse fanciers to gardeners.

The Paradis family had to take a moment to count a few rings and pay our respects to a mammoth old ex-tree.

Osterley is a celebration of water and tree.  A stream runs through the park.

And in the sky above, flights in and out of Heathrow.  They never bother me, these planes over West London.  I LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE them.  Don't ask me why.  They are somehow more poetic than planes over Newark, or, LAX.  Years ago it was always a festive moment when Concorde hurtled past.

The planes never seem to break the peace.

The beauty of an English wood endures.  And lures.  And welcomes.

Choose your fiction: Winnie the Pooh, Robin Hood, Alice in Wonderland....you can live them here.

Or you can just celebrate the usual and the routine.   With one

or many.  Of your very best friends.  I won't tell you how long our mostly cat family, spent on a nearby bench enjoying OTHER PEOPLES' DOGS.

Yes, Osterley has a little of everything.  Mushrooms, old tree trunks for fairies to hide in.  I had to keep this post short-ish so I won't show you the ping-pong table we spent about 45 minutes at.

Of course there is a little tea shop at Osterley Park - or cafe - if you prefer.  With all the requisites: scones and clotted cream.  The perennial English COLD SANDWICH.

Ooooh a lovely bit of cheese and Branston pickle.  Nothing makes Mr. Paradis a happier camper.

And speaking of camping?  Why don't all American parks have picnic benches that look like this?  Aren't the English genius at turning a homely, ordinary, supremely functional something into a comfy welcoming thing of beauty?  Both futuristically geometric and sophisticated AND something your cuddly-plump-and-pink Auntie would love to plop her generous botty upon.

Now, there IS an Osterley House.  But I was on vacation and did not want to rush.  Next time I will dedicate my visit to the house.

But on that day, there were cork oaks waiting for me.

And little lichens.

And baby pine cones.  To contemplate.

And other things to reflect upon.  It was a LOVELY walk.  I would do it again.

Could I interest you?