Let’s imagine we live on some far-flung planet which “has no weather. ” Too far for its parent star’s light to reach it. Absolutely no day/night demarcation. Nothing. Just…well, nothing.

Bit like here, really! 

Oh, alright! Maybe I have exaggerated a little. Just a little. All the same, meeting Vivien’s challenge has not been easy!

Those brief moments we did have blue sky…I was nowhere near a window. And now it’s raining. Again.                                                                                                                                                           And the scanner clearly does not think we have dull, grey skies! If the rain lets up tomorrow I’ll use the camera…

And now it’s yesterday’s tomorrow…Still grey, blustery and rainy. But often, those grey skies are more changeable than the bland days of blue. You know why, don’t you? These clouds, being at lower levels, are torn apart, blown around visibly by the winds. Usually, when we see “clear blue skies” there are no clouds to give us an idea of scale. But it’s windy up there. Just ask an eagle!

Anyway…here are a few camera snaps of some very quick sky sketches. Mr. Fujica has a better eye than Mr. Canon. 😉

May 7, midday, looking north.

May 7 midday

And the same view about 15 minutes later!same view 15 mins laterWhen the rain started I rushed first to close windows, then grabbed the nearest paper – copy paper so of course it’s all cockled! (I think it is an almost-blank page that came with my Bank statement. Pretty accurate, actually!)  

                                                                                                                                              May 7, around 5.30pm.                                                                                                                        

May 7 5.30pm Driving home;by the time we’d gone 500m beyond this streak of colour, the sun had gone . The tropics, remember?                                                                                                                                                                                                              May 9, early afternoon (before 2 0’clock, as I went out then!)

May 9 early afternoon

May 12, 4pm  

May 12  4pm

   …and 30 minutes later- another shower coming across.                                                                                                                                         May 12  4.30pm

The evening one was a colour pencil “quickie” in the car, washed with a damp brush later; the others are water colours with a brush and, apart from the bank paper, all on off-cuts of Fabriano printing paper and all through my living room window. 

Gee! It’s a long time since I did little studies like this. I should probably do it more often. Thanks, Vivien!


There’s been some pretty wild and wacky weather across the Tasman. A terrific hail storm dumped a thick blanket of the icy stuff on the beach town of Papamoa. Then, for good measure, followed that with snow! Not a big deal in areas famous for skiing, but Papamoa? This is bikini country Surfboards and sharks. I can remember wearing thick woolly sweaters in winter when I lived there, but snow? Never! (And if that link is no longer current I daresay googling for hail in Papamoa will get you there.)


I’ve been sifting through some old photos   from our raptor rehab. days. Why? Well, looking for birds to depict in lino. I’ve already pulled one print of a Ninox owl* and I’m trying to get a workable sketch of a barn owl. I love them all, but think the “barnies” may be top of my list. 

5 barn owls at jim'sThese guys were hand-reared (by an experienced handler so there was no danger of imprinting after a spring storm felled many nest trees. I think three were released and two became part of a breeding programme at a sacntuary.   And now I’m trying to draw one of them!

But first – lunch!

* That print’s been submitted for possible selection in a show. I forgot to take a decent photo before I sent it off so, if it doesn’t make the cut, I’ll post it when it comes back!     

18 thoughts on “UNDER ONE SKY.

  1. ziggi…yes, you do seem to get more than your share in Wilts. I remember going down to Devon in the ’76 drought and thinking maybe I should have gone to Wilts. as their water mains were not turned off!


  2. celia…thankyou. I did some sky sketches one day in that famous Constable “cornfield.” My clouds were nothing like his!


  3. I like your sky sketches. I saw on Vivien’s blog that she had that challenge going, but I didn’t join.
    I was surprised to hear you say the s-word, then I remembered that you are at the end of your summer, while we are just starting. So strange.


  4. katiejane…yes, that snow in Papamoa (NZ) certainly surprised a lot of people. My brother was across town on his motor bike, but there was no snow/hail over that side.


  5. Nice idea, doing sky sketches. I’m looking forward to seeing your barn owl art. Barn owls are my favourites, too, although there’s a great horned owl that sits on a post outside, and he’s pretty grand, too!


  6. Love the sky sketches. What a good idea! (I would be hard pressed many days to have much variety either – we are still grey and drizzly more days than we are not.) I will have to try that at some point.

    What great owls.

    Hope you are well!


  7. tara…thank you. Yes, I’m fine, just busy 😉
    As I was using up all that grey paint I kept thinking “…the bluest skies you’ve ever seen are in Seattle…” Maybe you and Angela and Andrea and Ellen should each do your view at the same time. I wonder if they’d look the same?


  8. andrea…well, the worst of it is a day or 2 south of here.Where I used to live must be pretty muddy. Today (Sunday 2pm) we have 24degC and a “fresh” breeze. Around 3am it’ll be teeth-chattering!


  9. I’m having awful trouble posting a comment – it keeps telling me my email address isn’t valid ??????

    just wanted to say this is a nice series

    it is a good exercise and really feeds into other work where you may be working from photos as you have a deeper understanding

    Anyone who would like to join in has until the end of the month as I’m posting a summary with links o 31st May – all are welcome :>)


  10. vivien…I sometimes wonder about the rejections these things generate. Invalid email – pfft!
    Yes, doing quick studies like this are valuable. That said, I haven’t had time over the past few days.I notice the sky, but…
    Will see what tomorrow brings!


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