Monday, 21 September 2009

La Belle France

Make yourself a drink and put your feet up because this is going to be a long post!

We've just got back from another beautiful week spent in St Cirq Lapopie in the Lot valley in France. This village is the perfect place to just get away from it all and relax; eat and drink the some of the best food in the world.

This is the fifth year we've been back to stay at La Maison du Bourg in the heart of the village.
This ancient stone house is on four floors with a delightful little garden where we spent most of our time sitting soaking up the sun (it was warm and sunny every day - 28-29 degrees even in September). Here are a few pictures of the house and the garden to give you a feel for the place.

This is the house looking up from the garden.

The back door taken from the garden - and yes, that IS a bunch of grapes right outside the door.

This is the study - the enormous fireplace or 'cantou' is almost big enough to stand up in (but isn't functional unfortunately - not that we needed to light a fire)

The bedroom is tucked up under the eaves and this is the view from one of the two little windows:-

The village is built high up the sides and on top of a cliff that looks down over the River Lot.

The cliff on the right drops right down to the river.

Walking around the village, the cobbled lanes wind up and down the hill. There are new vistas to enjoy at every turn.

From the garden. you can watch the morning sun rising. It soon burns off the mist hanging over the valley.

And, in case you were wondering if there was ever going to be any artistic endeavour in this blog post, here it comes.

My watercolour interpretation of this view from the garden:-

A photograph of the view of the church from the garden . . .

and my attempt in pencil . . .

And a more abstract version in acrylics.

Quiet - woman at work ...

The little pond in the garden attracts birds, great big dragonflies and two local cats who came for a drink every morning.

The bench, pond, garden chairs and the tall cypress tree in an abstract representation in acrylics

Before we went away, I bought myself a little present to bring along - 'The New Creative Artist' by Nita Leland. Here are a few ideas from the book that I played around with.

'Enclosed' doodles

Magazine collages:-

Paper weaving

But what about all those silk ties that you patiently cut into strips before you left I hear you ask? Well, just a few got hand sewn together before I decided that I'd wait until back at home and use my machine!

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