The beech tree in Spring

April 2012 Acrylic on canvas 73 x 100cm

In the Basque Country there are so many beautiful places to experience but that doesn’t stop me from revisiting many of them that I’ve been to previously. I fact I love to be able to do that. Each time is always unique & you see things in different ways. Several weeks back I was able again  to experience the sight of beautiful wild daffodils for another  year. I hadn’t really been intending to do another painting of them (I made a different smaller version in 2010),  but what motivated me was that on the same walk, where for the last few years there were lots of yellow Welsh poppies alongside a stream, there was now a newly “cleaned” road edge with nothing whatsoever growing! Part of the reason for going on this particular walk was to see the fragile, silk- like poppies that were so specific to that place.

So later on the same walk, when the daffodils WERE still there, along with the tree, I started thinking about how you shouldn’t ever take things for granted. Life has both  strength & fragility. So I painted this subject for a 2nd time.

Ever since then it has hardly stopped raining, so I was able to spend nearly my entire holiday painting & not be enticed out of doors!

La haya en primavera

En el Pais Vasco hay tantos lugares maravillosos para descubrir, pero este no es decir que ya no hay que volver a los que ya se ha visitado. De hecho, me encanta hacerlo. Cada vez es distincto y se ve las  cosas de forma distincta. Hace unas semanas tuve la ocasion de ver otra vez, un año mas, unos preciosos narcisos silvestres en el monte. No habia tenido el idea de hacer otro cuadro con ellos ( hize otra version aunque mas pequeño en 2010), pero el hecho de haber visto que ya no estaban las demas flores (un tipo de amapola amarilla) que estaban floreciendo cerca de un riachuelo en el año pasado,  porque se habia “limpiado ” y rehecho el camino de hormigon, me hizo reflejar en como nunca deberiamos  tomar dado por hecho la vida. Estas flores eran muy especifos a este lugar.

La vida tiene fuerza y tiene fragilidad. La haya y los narcissos de los años pasados todavia estaban. Entonces me puse a pintar otra version.

Desde entonces me parece que casi no ha parado de llover, entonces he pasado casi la mayoria de mis vacaciones  pintando sin la distraccion de salir a la calle!

Le hêtre au printemps

Le Pays Basque est riche en paysages magnifiques mais cela ne m’empêche pas  de vouloir retourner aux mêmes endroits pour une autre fois. Chaque fois l’experience est différente et on vois les choses d’un autre regard. Il y a quelques semaines j’ai eu l’occasion de revoir des belles narcisses. Je n’avais pas l’idée de les peintre de nouveau (j’ai fais une autre version, plus petite en 2010) mais le fait d’avoir pas vu des autres fleurs à côté d’un ruisseau pendant la même randonnée parce que le chemin avait été “nettoyé” m’a fait réfléchir autre fois sur la précarité de la vie.

La vie est forte et elle est fragile. L’hêtre et les narcises etaient encore là mais on ne sait jamais. Alors je me suis lancée dans une autre version.

Comme il a plu beaucoup pendant mes vacances j’ai passé presque tout le temps à peintre sans la distraction de vouloir sortir!


8 thoughts on “The beech tree in Spring

  1. Wonderful painting…I like how I can feel the energy of growth in both the forms of the tree and the flowers.

    • Thank-you very much. I was really pleased to have found your blog – in fact the other day I showed your work to some children at school & they were really interested in it. They’d not long ago been on an organized beach cleaning excursion & so combined with the fact that I teach them art it was quite relevant. Their opinion was that your work is “beautiful & horrible”! You have to read that in the context of 8 year olds for whom English isn’t their first language. (The “horrible” of course referred to all that plastic washed up & the “beautiful” to your work.)

  2. Another beautiful painting, Sonya. Again, I love the sense of movement – there is a feel of celebration in the painting – in the harmony between the tree and daffodils and all the elements of the landscape. You’ve captured that sense of fragility too – how such places are precious, and could be so easily lost.


    • Thank-you Melanie- actually a few weeks back it did feel like we should be celebrating spring. One thing for sure now though is that they won’t be flowering after all this rain we’ve had! But the main thing is that they should next year.

  3. Lovely. Your painting reminded me of a walk in a nearby wooded valley the other day. The trilliums were out on the forest floor. Are you familiar with them? They’re the provincial flower of Ontario.

    • Thank-you Barry . No I don’t know trilliums but I did look them up. Actually they remind me a little of the cyclamen flower. I’m sure they must be very special for people of Ontario. Probably if I went to live there I’d end up adding them to my collection of special plants that evoke the place & that I start thinking I couldn’t imagine not experiencing. A bit like birdsong too – what I mean is that as long as I can remember I’ve loved the song of blackbirds for example & yet now I also love the sound of bee eaters & golden orioles which are fairly recent experiences in comparison but now I have heard them I’d hate to think I couldn’t hear them again!

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