Monday, 17 January 2022

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Golden Sunset (oil on canvas. c. janetdriver) Yesterday (Sunday evening), at WIvenhoe St Mary's Holy Ground meditative service, we were asked to share our experiences of a memorable sunset...this painting is of the one I tried to describe... I felt words alone were not enough for the beauty of this sunset...or at least, not my words...and so I have found this painting to share with you, hoping I have been able to convey something of the joy this amazing sunset gave me...the wall of this house glowed golden with reflected light, and the leaves on all the trees were bathed in golden light as well... IF, like me, you enjoy sunsets and love to see how their colours are portrayed inj paintings, then do search the internet for MOnet's houses of parliament sunsets... or the dramatic sunsets by Turner, whose vast glowing canvases are in the Tate gallery. I am wary of putting my own dramatic red sunsets on this blog, as some people might find them disturbing... I was once warned by the father of a friend of mine, when I was only just beginning to try painting in oils and he saw one I was secretly quite pleased with: a dramatic sunset seen across the sea while on holiday in cornwall... "Oh Janet, do be careful about painting sunsets like this... they will remind too many people of explosions during the war, you know..." I realise I am very fortunate that sunsets for me are signs of joy, and not at all fearful images... and I tend now to make sure I paint the more joyful golden glow that sometimes fulls the whole sky just before the red ball of the sun sinks low... I have seen this golden light shining miraculously through mist and fog turning them from dull grey into glowing light... someone asked me "Why paint fog this colour instead of grey... I mean, fog is always dull, grey and depressing, isnt it ?" Well, one obvious answer is another question: "does anyone want a dull grey, depressing painting to look at "? but, seriously, have you never noticed how the sun can shine right into fog & mist, especially when the light is at a lower angle during autumn or springtime, making it glow with golden light just after dawn or near sunset ? D o watch out for it, as it really makes such a transformation ! This nextpainting is of the early morning sun shining through the sea-mist as we watched from the ferry to the Isle of Wight crossing the Solent with the Needles on the horizon...

Wednesday, 29 December 2021

HeQui Epiphany
detail from jesusmafa epiphany
the magi: Ravenna mosaic This 6th Century mosaic reminds me of the carol : "three kings from Persian lands afar..." except that of course these are not kings, but three magi... wearing just the kind of clothes one could imagine being worn by Persians of that time ( I understand Persians introduced the wearing of trousers rather than long flowing robes ).Many years ago I found a lovely childrens book retelling a Chinese legend which gave the delightful story of a group of astronomers who, on discovering the new star, set out on a long adventurous journey all the way from China, via the silk route, and eventually down into Jerusalem and on to Bethlehem to find the young Christ child... Now theres an idea... it could be interesting to write a childrens story of astronomers from a country [ like India, where archaeological evidence has been found of buildings used for astronomy...] making a similar journey & bringing in the cultural background from Asia where astrology is so much part of everyday decisions...it could be fascinating...
c. janet driver

Saturday, 18 December 2021

c.janet driver "Darfur Madonna" was painted well over 10 years go, before we retired from our parish in Tooting...an area of mainly people of African or Afro-Caribbean origins... it was painted as a prayer-painting for the people of the Sudan, particularly the women and young children who, like this lady, had had to flee from their homes as villages were burnt down and all vegetable crops destroyed by rebel fighters... sound familiar ? yes, sadly South Sudan has suffered intermittently during this whole decade and is once more inthe news as their government seeks to restore law and order... fighting... drought...devastating floods... famine... and now covid... this "Darfur Madonna" sadly still stands as a prayer-painting for those who have survived through aid agencies support...hoping to help rebuild lives into the new year and beyond...

Wednesday, 17 November 2021

oops... I nearly forgot the poppy this year... and somehow a photo from our garden earlier in the spring has snuck in there by mistake... but then I rather like that pink and white bud... so I will leave it there as it does look really peaceful and I recon anything that reminds us of peace at this time of year is really vital ! in fact I still dream of a waterfall of white peace poppies to join our amazing display of red poppies...just in case we forget that after the horrors of WW 11 there was a real desire to work for peace... at least, that's what I remember from my childhood after the war...

Sunday, 14 November 2021

these beautiful bright pink flowers allways cheer up the dull dampness of November! DOes anyone know what they are called ? I found the bulbs abandoned and almost rotted away down our garden, planted them, and now they are beginning to come up in surprising places, so I guess the birds must like their seeds and drop them after they've been through their digestive systems...all part of the "rewilding' process I assume :)

Friday, 15 October 2021

You may have seen in this week's Church Times the news of Chester Cathedral's new exhibition, looking at paintings and sculptures of Christ from various world cultures...go to churchtimes.co.uk & click on "God of all people" at the top... as I cannot download these onto my blog...instead I will show you my own painting done some years ago while we were in TOoting with a congregation of mainly people of AFrican or CAribbean origins...
c.janet driver "darfur madonna"

Thursday, 26 August 2021

c. Janet Driver All the recent news about the IPCC report has prompted me to show you more photos of my stained glass window on Climate Change. Thinking back now to when it was commissioned a few years ago, it seems amazing how much of what this window predicted has already come true [from the Boxing- Day Tsunami to all the recent wild fires & flooding] and yet we are so slow in responding to this crisis ! A fter all the protests, why is our government so slow ? Why are we still subsidising fossil fuel companies instead of switching to green options? The really good news is that scientists have been beavering away & working on the technologies necessary for us to move forward...we can do this... if only we get going quickly... so what is holding us back??
if you wouldlike to see more on this, please access the web-page format, then scroll down the headings on the right hand side & click on "climate change"...