Nature in Dordogne – St Brigids Day

‘Lac de la Nette – After St Brigids Day’
oil on panel
6 F ( 31 x 44 cm)
© The Artist.
300 € – paypal

Nature in Dordogne

OK, carrying on with a short amble about nature in the Dordogne. This painting was made ‘en plein air’ besides ‘ le lac de la Nette’ which is behind Issigeac. It’s a very beautiful lake of 27 hectacres. Man-made, it serves to feed the Dropt river & provide vital irrigation for agriculture. The ducks & artists like it too. The SW of France is a green & fertile part of the world, not so dry & rocky like the South East of France (Provence). But like most of southern Europe, we suffer from seasonal drought. And so most of the heads of the little streams are dammed up to make feeder reservoirs, so what was once a swampy marshy landscape now tends to be beautiful lakes with large trees going down to the winter water table.

St Brigids Day or Candlemas or Imbolc

The spot in above painting really caught my eye… ‘ghosty’ trees as my son called them, wierdly lit in the evening sun-light. Something strange. The sun is now strong again, now we have passed St Brigids Day (or Candlemas or Imbolc). THE RETURN OF THE LIGHT. To see bare winter trees in springtime in the strong southern light is something still surprising to nothern born eyes, breed on the milky soft light of Hampshire, England. Still, even in England, having passed St.Brigids Day is something important to a plein-air painter, who works in the light of day.
“The serpent will come from the hole
On the brown Day of Bride,
Though there should be three feet of snow
On the flat surface of the ground.” – Scottish Gaelic Proverb
Luckily no three foot of snow in the Dordogne, just snow drops & celandines but hard frosts each morning, somewhat worryingly.