Monday, October 05, 2009


I'm contemplating a major change in lifestyle for 2010. Everything seems to be pointing towards this, confirming the thought at least as a sensible one. On some level, there's a note of urgency about this, while on another, it feels like a straightforward and inevitable thing, a simple matter of seeing and accepting certain realities as they are. Change comes when and because it must. Meantime, I'm doing what I can to hold life and its infinite possibilities in light hands. One thing is certain - the signposts for simpler, quieter living have been there for quite some time. I can no longer ignore them or walk on past. 

My three offspring are sources of inspiration to me at the moment - each one for quite different reasons. There are definitely times when our children are our best teachers.  

My middle son is traveling solo through India at the moment and last week crossed the Rohtang Pass on the back of an old motorbike - an Enfield classic. He sent me this stunning photograph last night along with a description of the distinctive textures and characteristics of rain and thunder in India. 'It's just started raining as it can only do in India! Very dramatic. Huge, hot drops. I'll have to wait for it to stop before catching a rickshaw into town to use the ATM. We get some pretty epic thunder here; because of the mountains, it reverberates up to eight times, back and forth... I love it. Immensely.' 

Nubra Valley -  Daniel van Ammers 2009

I, too, love thunder. It reminds me of my childhood in Africa, conjures images of jacarandas and jackals, scorched veld and indigo skies, tok-tokkie beetles and flying ants. The slightest rumble always leaves me hungry for more. 

Daniel said the forms and tonalities of the Nubra Valley remind him of some of my earlier land-based paintings. I was touched that he should make the association and even more so by the fact he apparently carries an archive of my images in his head. His photograph sent me rummaging through my NZ and Antarctica folders to find a pair of pics I thought would resonate with his (it occurs to me as I write this that it's just short of a year since my last trip to the ice - it was the 2008 season that prompted me to take up blog-writing and here I am, 111 blog posts later. What a multi-stranded year this has been). 

Explorers Cove, Antarctica 2008

These landscapes could hardly be further apart, neither could they be more different in terms of temperature, temperament and timbre. And yet, how kindred they are, too - each one carrying a familiar handprint.

The Maniototo Range - Central Otago, NZ 2008

Ice(cream) sandwich, New Harbor, Antarctica 2008

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