Wednesday, 7 March 2018

Snowy Retreat at Rydal Hall

Last week I was in the Lake District at Rydal Hall on  my annual retreat  with North West CQ group  ( the 5th time  there).   As I left Faversham on the Monday there were already icy flurries of snow  which caught up with us on Tuesday. On  Wednesday there was more snow and on Thursday a bitter wind which  blew the snow around ( we didn't go out that day ).  I travelled back with Judy to Crewe on Friday for the preview of Cwilt Cymru's 'Traces' exhibition  and  stayed another night to travel back on Sunday as I wouldn't have got home given the train cancellations and disruptions.  We have had snow before at Rydal but not on this scale!

These photos were mainly  taken on Tuesday - waking up to see the view  from my bedroom (top) , while it was sunny I went out  ( wrapped very warmly!)  straight after breakfast to explore my usual haunts

No   drawings from the 'Grot' this time , too cold to take my gloves off! 

Back in the cosy ' Old Kitchen' studio I made thumbnail sketches  from the photos and had a frustrating day on Wednesday trying to convert  these into fabric sketches .  My excuse, despite knowing it would be snowy, I brought coloured rather than black and white scraps with me! 

On Tuesday afternoon I was persuaded by Pauline and Millie to  go on  a sketching expedition to  Rydal Water ( we had  such a lovely hilarious time last year) . We set off in the sun but as we walked up the track it started to snow heavily ( and we were questioning our sanity!) . But it eased off as we arrived and the sun came out

Not the best paintings I've ever done ( the paint took forever to dry ) but they captured the experience

I found a bench to perch on, legs dangling, Millie found a rock and Pauline  sat on a tussock of turf.
We were definately ready for our coffee and traybakes on  our return

On Wednesday after my frustrating morning, I was ready for a trip to Heaton Cooper in Grasmere( photos above)  in the afternoon .They now have  as super cafe as well as tempting art supplies.  
 In the 'after tea' slot  in a session led by Leah we put together books with reverse accordian piano hinges from sheets of paper we'd had a messy mark making session on the day before.

 On Thursday it was bitter and very slippy underfoot so I only ventured out for soup at lunchtime at the cafe and to  take back some of the  bits of wood etc that I'd collected to draw. Even then  my boots sank as  couldn't tell the difference between the path and the leaf litter. Others were more intrepid as the went up to  see the frozen waterfall.

 I  spent  most of the day collaging' impossible walks' , combining photos from a  copy of Pouchers 'Lakeland Fells' I'd bought from Fleur Bookshop in Faversham ( more in another post) and  excavating layers in a section of old quilt ( a very English 'Boro' )  
There were 13 of us this year and as ever the time went very quickly. I seem to do less and less while I'm there but just enjoy the surroundings and the company. 

1 comment:

The Idaho Beauty said...

Ooooh, that photo of the gate, all those shadows, just begs to be used! Other great shots too. Looks like you had a productive time.