Saturday, March 29, 2014

The Shelbourne Villa–Nelson, NZ

"The Shelbourne Villa–Nelson, NZ", 6x9, watercolor

This is a cute little bed and breakfast where we stayed in Nelson, which is on the north tip of the southern island of New Zealand.  It was a beautiful, tidy town, filled with agapanthus.  The natives said they grew like weeds, but we loved their vivid periwinkle color. We had a suite the second floor with the balcony you see here, and views of the surrounding hills.

I loved the villa; it was beautifully decorated and maintained, and our hosts Val and Wayne were very welcoming.  My favorite part was the footed tub; perfect for a relaxing soak.


Tuesday, March 4, 2014

"Wellington Botanic Gardens–NZ"

"Wellington Botanical Gardens–NZ", 6x9, watercolor

As I said, Wellington is a city of hills.  And the design of the 62 acres of the Wellington Botanic Garden takes full advantage, featuring beautiful plants, shrubbery and flowers spilling down the hillside towards views of downtown and the bay. 

We took the cute funicular railroad from the city up to the garden.  Unfortunately, the day had started out gray and was now really beginning to look like rain.  So I headed immediately to search for a spot to paint, and Chris set off to explore the garden.   He took these photos of the winding trails lined with flowers while I started sketching.  It soon started to sprinkle, and by the time Chris found his way back to me it had begun to rain in earnest.  I quickly gathered up my things and–holding my pad of watercolor paper upside down to try to keep my painting from getting wet–we made a run for the cafe.  We got drenched on the way, but I managed to keep my painting pretty dry.  You can see a few water drops in the dark green on the left and the brown tree on the right.  I finished the painting in the warm dry cafe while enjoying a delicious cappuccino.


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