N, S, E, W. – ARCTIC + CHINA # CAIRNGORMS NOW

2020: A world map, changing…

Inaccessible pieces of land, floating adrift from each other as lockdown continues and global travel is ripped down the middle-

Skies currently less polluted than ever (in recent history)-

The hole in our Ozone layer: Shrinking

Rainbow Stratospheric Clouds: Beautiful symbols of Harmful Aerosols in space: Lessening.

Mass benefits occurring in the universe due to humans staying still… Humans feeling anxious and confined, mourning the tragedy of mass death due to COVID-19…

Working in my temporary Highland studio- still connected to and feeling the sea ice, crystal clear air and magical Arctic light: Watercolour paper, Pebeo Black Ink and Zip opaque White Ink. Adventdalen and wing silhouette.

& Daily Tombow Pen drawing and Watercolour painting my surroundings: The Cairngorm Mountains, Forrests and River Spey.

Lucky to have space to explore and reflect-

A certain pace is born, by remaining more static that I have been for years- it is allowing deep observations and cathartic processing of global travel, to filter through my whole: intertwining conscious and subconscious recognitions: Circadian dream-scape and landscape levels- settling into compartments of greater understanding.

Above: Pocket Moleskin, River Spey, drawn on Bridge-

Below: Watercolour Paper, painted in studio-

South-West, up to the source… North, down to the Sea-

The fast River Spey flow- pockets of dark, deep peaty pools and white water rushing over rocks, disconcertingly strong current when in Spate and still secretly strong, when more shallow…

Five days, five local wild swims- essential cool water exercise for an Artist- Sea Creature/ Fresh-Water-Fish…

From Loch Spey- through Grantown-On-Spey- and down to the Moray Firth:107 miles of Salmony Whisky Water.

Glen Feshie with steep banks tumbling into River Feshie:

Raining stones and clear rhythmical splashes: Weight plopping deep and water rising high into the air

(Thoughts of Helen Frankenthallers ‘Piss Flowers’- Snow moulded sculptures, inverted.)

Snow shapes gleaming against the deep blue mountain rocks and purple heather,

Illuminated by the shining spring sky, contrasting the verdant, rainbow tundra.

Ascending Sgor Gaoithe- looking North West through Binoculars- a multitude of distant snow capped peaks, and an exciting gift through the clear air- views of the ultimate Scottish Peak: Ben Nevis.

Perched on a rocky edge, at the summit of Sgor Gaoithe- incredible views down to Loch Einich with Vertigo swimming around the bodily senses and waterfalls tumbling through the vision-

Thoughts of Arctic Stratospheric clouds… Observing Scottish cloud shapes looming above the highlands, white and blue pools and pockets of air in various densities…

Daily acsents up local hills with views of dazzling white streaks of remaining winter weather,

highlighed against the dark Scottish landscape shadows…

And finally the highland sun and air have stimulated the Tupil bulbs to shoot up, form buds and burst into vibrant-pear-scented flowers:

And a flopping winter flowering Pansy- ready to let go, or hold on…

A central Being- held on either side by warm, light Sun beams and cool, glowing Moon shine:

Oneness, whole, complete…

Inside # Ouside, Flowing Qi-

Dreams of painting Arctic Sunrise, and conscious visions

whilst running- climbing onto a big dark gray rock and feeling the line of white Quartz slicing through me-

Darkness Cracked= Light

Then strongly pining for the edge- I made the journey north to Findhorn bay-

01.05.20

To be levelled by the waves, fully submerged and released,

Washed by the cold, salty, sandy, turquoise, infinite- feeling, beautiful waves.

Aware of a pool of white- a cup of clarity- ultimately separate and connected-

Alive and Dead,

Awake and Asleep- Sun and Moon

Reminded of the sense of clarity which was born from one month of existing in the pristine Arctic winderness:

The new beings of Grantown-On-Spey: 10, then 12 more, then 14 more, then 9- Daily ducklings hatching and learning to live on the pond-

With noisey Black-Headed Gulls, a peaceful MoorHen and a Heron to be careful of-

Loch Mallachie, peaty bogs and echoing voices across Loch Garten and into the woods beyond-

High in the Pine canopy- Singing Tits and verticle Squirrels

Finally a Full-Moon- turning around the Earth, level with the sun on the opposite side-

An evening walk to visit the mysterious Lapwings-

Then dreams of making a litho plate, in the Arctic wind and snow-

And one week later a return to Findhorn Bay,

A liberating hour in the waves,

Then Walking and watching, Feeling and Drawing:

One Artist,

GRM-

N, S, E, W &

In the Highlands-

Now:

09.05.20