Four weeks ago I began a course in Mindfulness. One thing we've been encouraged to do is study everything more intensely - expanding what is often a very ordinary experience into something extraordinary. This sense, the visual, is easy for me, not only is this something I do without effort all the time, but something I've spent much of my life striving to be good at. This is described perfectly by John Hopper when coincidently last week he wrote about Mindfulness, Creativity and Observation on 'The Textile Blog' (here).
I was reminded how beneficial it is to draw and how not drawing these past few months has been negatively affecting me, as though some part of me were missing - like losing touch with an old friend.
The (vicious) dewy hairs of these Stinging Nettles (Urtica dioica) in the early morning were the palest misty purple, once picked they dramatically wilted and I thought that was the end of them. They revived however, now more an angry shade of red and my hands are still smarting...
"Tender handed stroke a nettle,
And it stings you for your pains:
Grasp it like a man of mettle,
And it soft as silk remains"
Aaron Hill, 1753 (British dramatist and poet)
(Try this if you like but don't say I didn't warn you!)
...from my seasonal colour sample notebook.