Friday, 6 November 2009


I decided to stay away from the computer and the drawing board this afternoon until I hear back from clients regarding portraits currently 'on the drawing board' I really want to complete those before moving on to the next commissions.

The front garden was in need in some TLC so I spent a few hours weeding, planting yet more daffodil bulbs, and generally tidying up. We are waiting for a local landscape gardener to tidy up some of our trees, removing some branches from a Horse Chestnut and 'topping' the Bay Trees which grow at an amazing rate in this garden. The largest is about 18 feet high (must have grown 3 feet in the last 18 months)!!

That led me to think about some wonderfully decorative Father Christmas figures we saw whilst on holiday in Bernkastel (Germany) for New Year 2007/8. The Germans really do the festive thing so beautifully - no mass produced Taiwanese baubles for them!!!! These figures were so simple - just tree branches, sliced at an angle, hand painted and decorated with seasonal leaves - holly and ivy etc. I'm not sure whether the branches we will have removed from our trees will be thick enough to make our own Father Christmas decorations. May have to beg, borrow or steal some better sized ones.

The photo isn't brilliant but I hope you can see how simple, and how effective, these little figures are:

Whilst walking off the New Year excesses we came across a very nasty duck. He was trying to drown another duck by holding his head under shallow water. When we chased him off he simply continued the attempted murder in deeper water. It was all very frantic so the photos aren't that clear, but I think you can see what a very nasty piece of work he was!!!! I've never encountered a murderous duck before and it was quite frightening to watch him in action.

How much attitude does this duck have???:


Anonymous said...

Love the Xmas figures,very effective but simple. I have seen this sort of behaviour in Swans around mating time when an alpha male will try to drive to off a rival...horrible to see especially if it is a youngster.

Jennifer Rose said...

hard to watch but its survival of the fittest. ducks can be pretty aggressive, glad he didn't decide to go after you instead!

sue said...

It was a real eye-opener. We'd been enjoying our walk admiring the swans serenely gliding around on the river .... and then we met 'Duck the Ripper' !! I've obviously led a sheltered life till now :o)