Thursday, 16 July 2015

Castle Howard and the delphiniums.

14th July 2015.
plein air oil on board 12x10 inches.

Plein air oil on board 12 x 10 inches.

Castle Howard and the delphiniums
After missing being able to paint, today we visited Castle Howard and painted two pictures! We headed for the walled garden and specifically, to see the delphiniums. After visiting previously and being disappointed to see that they were still not in flower, today was a revelation. Two borders of tall delphiniums greeted us as we opened the gate and passed into the magical inner sanctum of the walled garden. A mixture of blues, pale to dark mauve with white and pink also here and there. The sight of this mass of different delphiniums is awe inspiring. Actually difficult to paint as a line, viewed from one end,  as the vista lacked a focal point. So, looking around we spotted these two views. Looking down pathways through clipped arches with delphiniums at either side we had a chance to make a pair of more interesting pictures. After painting the first picture we decamped for some lunch before returning to complete the second one. On the way through the garden the second time, we looked up to see a massive buzzard soaring speculatively in lazy circles. Swifts and swallows were everywhere highlighting the fact we are all enjoying summertime here, in the  UK. We enjoyed talking to many fellow visitors some from the Far East and a couple from New Zealand, ( who had not seen pink delphiniums, as they do not grow in New Zealand ). The weather was cloudy and threatened precipitation, however we were all lucky and it turned out to be a lovely sunny day. We bought a large potted plant, an anthemis ( E.C. Buxton ), for the garden before leaving. A wonderful day.
( If you could visit over the next two weeks I think the delphiniums will still be at their best ).

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