The Spring Dance – Watercolour with Ink highlights in a Watercolour Moleskine

I always reckon that spring has arrived when the birch trees come into leaf and start to produce the first sign of catkins. This is a painting, based on a local scene about five miles from our house. I say “based” as the small cottage is right next to a busy road and to try to stop would be suicidal. This is, therefore, from memory. This birch always catches the eye and I’ve been meaning to “do it” for some time now. This “lady of the forest” is starting to show off her spring outfit, stealing a march on the other trees especially the old oak behind which still displays his winter garb. The slightest breeze gives her the opportunity to move gracefully like a young girl showing off a new outfit. When the oak has his summer foliage, this birch will have mellowed to lovely greens, yellows and browns as, like most ladies she demands a new and regular outfit. I can hardly wait. The cottage is typical of small buildings in Scotland. It would originally have been a “farm” or “tied cottage” just large enough to allow the farmer’s workers a roof over their heads. Over the years these buildings, which are scattered around the country, would have fallen into disrepair but now they are widely sought after and the new tenants tend to build onto the existing structure as can be seen here. Its a well quoted ambition for newly-weds to announce that they want to buy and renovate an old property when they set out on life’s journey. We tried this, early on, which might explain why we now stay in a modern built house.