Wednesday, August 01, 2007

From an old sketchbook


Leafing through some of my old sketchbooks I came upon this one. As the title suggests, I was on the moors between Brough in Westmoreland and Middleton-in Teesdale in County Durham when it was drawn. The drawing, helped by the date reminds me of what was going on at the time. For all it is a bleak scene and the aftermath of a rainstorm, it is a happy picture.
March 19, 2004 was three days after my 64# birthday. I had been ill with an overactive thyroid gland from the new year and had been staying at a cottage in Whitby by way of convalescence. It had been something of an idyllic week.
My wife and I drove back to Lancaster via Barnard castle and over Stainmore to Brough before joining the M6 at Tebay. We had taken a scenic route. The car climbed the hill out of the Tees valley in torrential rain but when we crested the summit, the rain had stopped and a watery golden sun cast its pale light on the scene. We stopped. I drew this, quickly, into a 15 x 15 cm sketchbook. I haven't used this image to develop the idea further. The sketch itself per se says it all.
As we say in the Zen tradition, "Nothing added, nothing taken away." It is enough.

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