The local elections in SW France

‘Titulaire & Suppléant’ 2008
A5 sketchbook
© The Artist.

Remembering that this is a painting blog with writing & not a writing blog…. let’s keep the politics brief. There are many better places to read about politics than in a painting blog.

Local elections in rural sw france.

The ‘communal’ (parish) & the ‘cantonial’ (next step up of government, between the departmental (county) & communal – centred on the local service town).

Local politics is politics done by local people who give up their time to help their locality.

Given that one doesn’t always want to rise from the dinner table after a day’s work to go to a meeting, the new law is that there is representation by a duo (should one be absent, the other takes over). Also that ‘suppléant’ (support) be of the opposite sex than, the ‘titulaire’ (the title). Anyway, this duo caught my artists-eye, as the ‘monsiuer’ is farmer-horticulturist-maire of the neighbouring commune & the ‘madame’ (no, they are not married to each other…) is mother & dynamic is protecting my son’s school against the closure of classes.


drawing of  a kid

‘Gold Star’ 2008
A5 sketchbook
© adam cope

One of my winter jobs is to wash my painting hat. That’s the hat that’s become something of a ‘signature’. You can see me wearing it in my blogger profile photograph. But I don’t always get first turn to wear it however. Here it’s the ‘gold star’ kid whose wearing it…

Markets in Dordogne – Inflation in France

‘Cantal 43,95 €uros le Kilo’
© The Artist.

Markets in Dordogne

Cold morning in Issigeac marché, everyone dressed up against the chilly wind. Hats ‘de rigor’. This market stall owner dresssed up with a ‘chimney-stack’ type hat & ‘handle bar’ moustache. Smiling. These winter off-season markets are friendly events 🙂

Inflation in France

No doubt his cheese is delicious but it is also very expensive. I’ve seen more expensive however. Up to 70 €uros le kilo in Sarlat in summertime markets. Maybe it wasn’t the humble Cantal, maybe it was gold or something? It is of course a scam foor cheating careless tourist, but it only goes to solidify a bad reputation…

Of course, not all cantal retails at this price. In a supermarket, you’d expect to pay somewhere around 12 euros le kilo, for something good though it doubtless won’t be as good as a hand-made cheese.

In France, now during these difficult economic times (though most of us live better than one hundred years ago), it isn’t just ‘les artistes’ who worry about money.

drawing of a head


© Adam Cope

ML – 16/1/08

‘ML – 16/1/08’
© adam cope



i preferred silence, but google preferred metas….

Thoughts without a Thinker

‘Self 5 (why me?)’
Wet on wet Watercolour.
26 x 33cm
© The Artist.

I was pretty upset here… the puddles of granulating pigment floating & eddying on the page like tears…i’m not being very flattering to myself am i? But that’s how i felt when I painted it. Indeed painting it was a way of dealing with the upset I was feeling.
This wet on wet watercolour seemed to emerge out of the wet swirling puddles . As I spent time painting & being alone in the studio.. alone also in the sense that I no longer cared about you or another other person might think…alone with my upset state of mind.

Thoughts without a Thinker

I appreciate the wisdom here ab out not identifying with a passing state of mind :
Because of our craving, the Buddha is saying, we want things to be understandable. We reduce, concretize, or substantialize experiences or feelings, which are, in their very nature, fleeting or evanescent. In so doing, we define ourselves by our moods and by our thoughts. We do not just let ourselves be happy or sad, for instance; we must become a happy person or a sad one. This is the chronic tendency of the ignorant or deluded mind, to make ‘things’ out of that which is no thing. Seeing craving shatters this predisposition; it becomes preposterous to try to see substance where there is none. The materials out of which we construct our identities become useless and broken when the ridgepole of ignorance is shattered…    – Thoughts without a Thinker – MARK EPSTEIN, M.D.


Val – Christmas Eve

‘Val – Christmas Eve’
graphite pencil, A3 sheet
© The Artist.
Television helps to turn the necessary blind eye, so that Santa can come down the chimney…

The ‘likeness’ part of a portrait.

I feel there’s something not quite right about this drawing. The likeness isn’t right. Also, he looks , well, abit deformed as the features seem tom eto be drawn skew – whiff.
Val’s nose isn’t what a call a ‘cherub’s snub’ like how I drew it in the last posting but is in fact a ‘seymour’s beak’, Seymour being my maternal grandfather. It’s an ‘eagle’ type nose which my uncle & my younger brother share. Family traits… I’d noticed it before in my three year old son but of course children’s facess change so much as they grow. Nearly every month. I looked back over the photos of him for evidence of this nose type, & yes it was there all along but ys, it has much changed.
What we are talking about here is the ability to identify facial features, that we scan unconsciously for the most part, that go to make up the ‘identity kit’ by which we recognise one person from another. The ‘likeness’ part of a portrait.


Val 19/12/07

Graphite Pencil
A3 sheet
© The Artist.
Another drawing with not a good enough likeness.
The profile is such a crucial line. The morning after having drawn V. during his evening session of telly watching, I revised this line as I was unhappy with the form of the nose & the bridge through to his supra-orbitals (spelling?), which were bulging too much as well. But rather than having rubbed the area out & rebuilt from scratch (drawing a likeness from memory is a good challenge for one’s powers of recall), I drew it backwards, which was a mistake as this diminished the spacing of his eye sockets relatie to the bridge of the nose. They are now too close & give a somewhat squinting, bulging impression.

self 3

A5 watercolour

My wife says the resemblance is getting better in this watercolour (but the neck should be thinner. A somewhat worrying comment… ).

Val -6/10/07

watercolour- quarter sheet approx.
© The Artist.