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Well, what can I say? After probably the most challenging 12 months since I wrote about Spring this time last year, the longer days and shorter nights are more welcome now than at any other time I can remember. We are so ready for Spring!

The meteorological start of Spring is 1st March, although the astrological beginning of Spring is not until 20th, but let’s just say we’re in the midst of a new season starting. Always a time of new beginnings and hope, of new life bursting forth, Spring is now heralding in milder weather, sunnier days and buds starting to swell on the branches, ready to blossom. Snowdrops and crocuses have pushed up through the frozen earth and bring a smile to our faces at their colour and cheerfulness. Animals like our resident hedgehogs are appearing in the garden, coming out of their winter hibernation, and lambs are being born in the fields nearby, here in Northumberland.

As an artist I find the Spring can be inspiring with its bright sap greens and blossom pinks, so abundant in nature. Yet for me personally, and my particular style of art, I prefer the more dramatic high Spring tides, moody skies and March winds that whip up the waves and create ‘white horses’ on the turbulent North Sea. And inland the scudding clouds that streak across the tops of the hills, throwing their fast moving shadows on the landscape below with ever-changing shades of dark and light.

As we’re still being told not to travel unless it’s essential, I haven’t been able to drive into the countryside to gather inspiration for future paintings yet, so I’m having to rely upon imagination and photographs taken before restrictions came into force. In the meantime I’ve painted a cluster of snowdrops from a corner of the garden, and am halfway through a small study of crocuses, also from the bottom of the garden. But my fingers are longing for the feel of my pastels being brushed across the paper in a wild and dramatic landscape.....that’s next on my list of paintings to do!

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