Saturday, 30 September 2017

Les Fontaines de Trelex

My first attempt at a movie... sounds from the village of Trelex, and video/images from the fountains in the village.

Obviously it is far from perfect, but I enjoy the sounds of village life, especially the church clock and the cow bells.

Saturday, 16 September 2017

10 good things about being an artist in residence

I am two thirds of the way through my residency at Trelex.

I feel a pressure to create something worthwhile, but Rome wasn't built in a day....

My last book took 2 years to make. Three weeks is a barely long enough to decide what do work on.

So rather than worry, I have decided to tell you about the good things about my situation here.

Firstly; time.

It is all mine. Which is a luxury I am appreciating more each day.

I have a watch like the swiss railway clocks. Both keep good time.

But here I don't have any appointments or even an alarm. I don't really need my watch.

My day goes like this....

wake up when I wake up
cup of tea
do whatever I like
maybe go for a walk
maybe cycle to get some food
do some more of anything I like
cup of tea
wonder what I am meant to be doing
play on my computer
get up in the dark in the middle of the night and try to find the toilet without tripping over the bins
wake up when I wake up

etc etc


Here are some of the good things;

  • The local fruit is delicious. It may cost £1 for a tomato, but it is worth every penny, and the compost bin is a reason to go outside from time to time

  • I don't have much house work to do. The floor is covered in paint so there is no point cleaning.

  • I have no car, so am getting a lot of exercise
  • There is no TV.
  • there are no mirrors below head height, and none with any bright light, so I have no idea what I look like or whether my facial hair has regrown while I wasn't looking.

  • the studio is very tidy and well equipped. 

  • my desk is not very tidy and nobody cares. It is a well known fact that mess is good for creativity.

  • there is a complex bin system involving four different types of rubbish. Woe betide you if you put anything in the wrong bin. A walk to the recycling station in the village is another excuse to go outside.

  • there is a yoga mat, so if it is raining and the bins can't be emptied, then downward dog or a quick plank can be performed.

  • there is a crazed dog living here whose sole desire is to be out of the house or garden when he is supposed to be in. Getting out of the door and garden gate is a real challenge. He does, however have impressive jumping skills and makes people laugh.

And in case you think I have been hard at work, I will leave you with some images from a long walk along the shores of Lac leman ( Lake Geneva) in the sunshine yesterday from Morges to Lausanne
because the sun was shining and it was much too nice to be indoors.



dahlias, Morges

Lac Leman

up market facilities en route

Sentier aux Oiseaux

Lac Leman
down market facilities en route

one cone, Swiss style

beach volleyball

Lac Leman

International horse show Lausanne

texting while riding.....



I love my watch

well healthy....

Monday, 4 September 2017

pretending to be an artist - in Trelex, Switzerland

I am in Trelex, near Geneva, for artist residency. I feel very lucky to be here.

I have never felt less like an artist in my life.

I am surrounded by paint, crayons, paper, white boards, numerous tools, lamps and tables, all waiting for me to do something.

I don't know what to do.

So far I have been for a walk, and been shopping for some food.

The village is very small, and has no shop on Sunday, Monday or Tuesday. It is also very floral and very tidy.

It has its own bears and some bins that encourage dog owners to be tidy too.

My desk has the most beautiful view that I could wish for.

I sit overlooking the Jura, listening to the church bell and the sound of lawn mowers and swifts.

So far removed from suburban life.

Nearby is the small town of Nyon, accessible by train.

 The train is two carriages, and if you wish to climb aboard, or get off, you need to treat it like a bus, and press the button.

I found a supermarket, one cone ( King Cone) and Miss Fromage.

I also got asked by several Americans ( in French) where the Roman columns were, and whether they could walk to them. I assured them that they were nearby, and of course they could walk. I have no idea where they are, but as they were standing at the entrance to the Roman Museum, they can't have been far away.

Caesar in Nyon

King Cone

Miss Emmental is the winner of Miss Fromage.

I am not sure what the criteria are, but can only wonder why she is not Mademoiselle Fromage, given that we are in French speaking Switzerland.

Miss Fromage

The studio comes with a dog. He is very friendly.

Add caption

I went shopping for scourers amongst other things. I had forgotten how much dirt some other people can tolerate.

Food is expensive beyond belief. I will be living on bread and water. I have seen no sign of any alcohol since arrived.

So, having given up being a student, I am now living like a student, and will soon have to justify my presence here.

I will go walking and see what I can find.

I have a new toy.

Rode microphone

It is a microphone that looks like a dead beaver. It will hopefully deal with wind, and let me record birdsong and other local sounds. I plan to make a movie.

Not a disaster movie or a rom com. Just a few pictures and sounds to sum up this place once I have got the measure of it.

I'll keep you posted.

Got to go and eat my bread now.

If you are interested to know more about the residency click here