There are some days which stand out in memory as ‘perfect’. Last Tuesday was one.
I rose at 6.30 and watched the sun rise over Flatford Mill on the Suffolk/Essex border.
Painting by 7.30 I tried to capture the early morning light, the reflections on the water, the cascade of blossom on the opposite bank of the river, and the trail through the dew left by three eager ducks.
Later, I wandered across the fields to Dedham – under a perfect blue sky, the air still and the reflections on the water of the river Stour dazzling in their clarity.
Through the afternoon, the day progressed in perfect harmony with season and nature, ending, placidly, with a sense of completion and quiet joy.
Early the next day, the morning sunlight drew me out again with my paintbox – but now the light was made obscure by the strange Saharan dust. Fragile beauty, soon to be lost as high pressure leached polution from the Continent and spewed it over southern England.
Such transient beauty is a perfect gift – a jewel, to be observed and delighted in. Its very transience adds to its value. It is a memory treasured, not lost – caught in my mind and, to some extent, captured in my painting. I must go back!