Britta's Letters from (and sometimes about) Berlin

Tuesday, 7 July 2020

Stormy Weather



Dear You,

Look what happened, twice!
The wind smashed the great pot of oleander - the oleander survived (well, he has a long practice from clinging to the centre strip of the autostradas in Italy...) but the pots--- not...

For weeks now we have a very strange wind, hot, it reminds me of the short story of Raymond Chandler, "Red Wind".

"There was a desert wind blowing that night. It was one of those hot dry Santa Anas that come down through the mountain passes and curl your hair and make your nerves jump and your skin itch. On nights like that every booze party ends in a fight. Meek little wives feel the edge of the carving knife and study their husbands' necks. Anything can happen. You can even get a full glass of beer at a cocktail lounge."




To strengthen my jumpy nerves I started drawing again - since I call it "illustrating" I love it more, because that takes away the stress of higher aspirations. I am not an artist as Rachel or Tom or Cro - just an amateur who knows quite well that I paint way to precise, use far too small brushes (but have a good eyes for colour), and as the storm blew me a twig from a plane tree in front of my feet, I used it for "my little daubs", as Miss  Mapp always put it, looking in the hope for getting approval. 
She - not me!   :-) 


I always forgot to ask: Do you draw as a hobby? Or how do you use your creative talent?

Yours truly, 
Britta


17 comments:

  1. I have no talent at all for drawing. I guess my talent is writing and speaking.

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    1. Dear Emma, talent for writing you have! As for drawing: I am often astonished how good people who think they can't (as their teachers told them) draw - can draw!

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  2. At the moment I am knitting a scarf. This is a true interim statement for lockdown Britta.x

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    1. Well, knitting is good for the nerves (I did one year long cross-stitch - beautiful things - and then that was over :-)
      A self-knitted scarf can be beautiful. x

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  3. Britta, I have no creative talent whatsoever. Honestly true.
    Your painting is very good, I like it. Have you heard of Janneke Brinkman and Marjolijn Bastin. Well known in the Netherlands.

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    1. I can't believe that, Guusje, you will have a talent! (Sometimes we forget, or take it as granted).
      Of course I know Marjolijn Bastin - I am an ardent admirer of her, and bought the very first books (garden journals etc) that were published in Germany. Now she is famous and rich, has also a house in the USA - and I admire her craft and her diligence and talent.
      Janneke Brinkman I have to look up - so fine that Google gives us the possibility!

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  4. Sport used to be my talent, running, hurdles, high- and farjumping. Pity you don't keep that talent when you grow old, ha,ha.
    Went to Osnabrück with the Dutch team once. I used to win from the grandchildren, not any longer now.
    Sorry it is Marjolein Bastin , I spelled it wrong. Yes she has a house in Kansas City in the US. Our daughter in law comes from there, her parents still live there and
    her mothet is a great admirer of Marjolein. Janneke Brinkman lives in Leiden, not far from Noordwijk.

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    1. Wow, Guusje - I admire people who are so athletic as you! And to have been a member of the Dutchteam: so great! I am convinced one stays fitter when one did sports intensively.
      Marjolein: I rummaged through the books I took to Berlin - the earliest is from 1996, but there are earlier ones in Hildesheim on the attic.
      So your DiL comes from Kansas City - and, when Corona is over, you might go there again?
      Leiden we can reach with a bike (though, to be honest: the Flying Dutchman can - I have not tried yet :-)

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  5. How sad, how sad. The pot, not the drawing or the plant.

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    1. Joanne, you know me for a while: not for a second I would have thought you spoke of my drawing! (As I draw from nature, my paint brush only quivered for a second in my hand :-)

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  6. Very windy here as well Britta and now raining !!! Typical U.K. weather abd probably the same for you.
    I was very artistic at school .... got O level art and took A level a year early. But, I went to a very academic school who took no notice of anyone who enjoyed art so wasn’t helped much in pursuing it. I use my love of art in our home and garden rather than actual painting. So lovely that you are enjoying painting. XXXX

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    1. Here the weather changed to stormy and cold... Typical UK weather we always had in Hamburg - Berlin is so different: lots and lots of sunshine - but sometimes very cold winters (the "Russian Whip")
      I guessed from your lovely photos that you have the artistic talent, Jackie (and from the way you dress). I was encouraged at school to study art - but then my parents thought different studies more safe -- and I was not so obsessed to fight to do it nevertheless.
      In my work as a study advisor I saw this "conflict" often: parents against the wish of their children - but then I thought: well, if they do not fight... And I saw something else: those "obsessed" were drawing all the time, always, very diligent you have to be - and the other ones often came with the wish to study but had not succeeded in getting a portfolio together, which is the first step you need to be invited to the entrance exam of the art college.

      And yes: gardening is "painting" in another way - best example is Gertrude Jekyll who started gardening in grand style when she lost the power of her eyes.
      We have that power, thank God, Jackie - and use it for fashion, home decorating and gardening, so: lovely! XXXX

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    2. And make-up - I forgot to mention that art.

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    3. I still have all of my Biba make up Britta !!!! I loved Biba and was in there all the time !!
      Also, loved Mapp & Lucia . XXXX

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  7. I love your little daub! I'm as talentless as a dishcloth. Botanical illustration would be the one artistic talent I'd wish for ... Coincidentally, I'm just about to start my EF Benson's again. I find them endlessly amusing!

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    1. Thank you, Pipistrello! I love to paint flowers and plants - at the moment I try a sort of Daily Diary in drawings - haha: less complaining than in my many many written diaries! :-)
      I am a big fan of E.F.Benson, and can reread Mapp&Lucia again and again (but also novels as "Paying Guests" or "Mrs. Ames"). I love his humour - and the wonderful English he writes.
      So: Oh reservoir, Pipistrello!

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    2. Haha! Oh reservoir, Britta mio!

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