The above headline is a difficult one with the disasters happening almost continuously in different parts of the World. Good news has become rarer and rarer. Ones heart goes out to the poor people -especially the children - in many of these countries torn by strife on an almost daily basis. Although there have been some isolated terrible things happening in some European countries by and large we can be thankful for our relative stability. Still we must remain optimistic and hope beyond hope that things will improve in 2017. Although this blog does not normally get involved in politics with Brexit in the UK and President Trump in America it is difficult to remain optimistic.
On the painting front the death of Ron Ranson was reported last week in Portland, Oregon, where he moved with his American wife Darlis a few years ago. I was trying to discover how old Ron was - certainly well into his eighties. Ron will be remembered for his significant impact on watercolour painting. Certainly his teachings and books - nearly thirty - have had a great affect and many are painting who would not be doing so without him. He was a great showman and I remember being on two short workshops at his lovely house and grounds in the Forest of Dean. This was at the later stages of his career and to some extent he was going through the motions by then, but many artists who later became well-known passed through his workshops.
As is well-known I am a follower and admirer of Charles Reid. I discovered last week that he is coming to England again in late 2017 on a Travelrite/ International Artist painting holiday. Although I had decided, whatever happened in the future, the workshop at Stow on the Wold would be my last I sent for details out of curiosity. It appears to be a ten day all in holiday with painting, starting in the Cotswolds and finishing in Cornwall. The price with single supplement is over £3500! According to the company there are 20 places and 16 were already booked. See his website for details.
I have more or less decided that 2017, my eightieth year, will be the last year when I will be active on the blog. As regulars will have recognised I have been winding down this year and finding it difficult to come up with original and interesting posts. There is a lot of good stuff in the back catalogue, most of which is still relevant, so explore the Index in July 2014 if you are interested.
Finally may I once again wish all those who are followers or just interested visitors, the very best for Xmas and the New Year. Whatever you do keep painting!