TWO NEW PAINTINGS

Restrictions are to be eased from today Tuesday 5th, in a phased way. This means most of us can get a bit more exercise and perhaps meet a few friends with appropriate social distancing. I, like most other people, have been spending time at home and close by.  I’m so looking forward to seeing a bit more of my local world. It will be a long time before our normal lifestyles can be restored.

Meantime I have been enjoying the nice weather in the garden, finding photo subjects in and around the garden and getting on with some paintings.

The paintings are coming along slowly. Oil paintings always take some time for me to complete because they usually take me several stages and involves drying time in between. It also requires me to not procrastinate too much.

These two oil paintings recently completed were inspired by the stormy views seen from Cosán na nEighe, a path over the cliffs from Clogher Beach, Dingle Peninsula, County Kerry, in the South West of Ireland.

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In the picture below are Inis Tiaracht on the left of the horizon, and Inis Tuaisceart (The Sleeping Giant) on the right. These are both Islands of the Blasket Islands group.

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Hopefully, more will be completed soon.

Thanks for taking a look. Stay well!

https://www.helene-brennan.com/c863-new-paintings-2018—2020

STILL PASSING TIME…

corona times

I’m losing track of time, but since my last post on this topic the restrictions have tightened and I’m limited to staying around my house.  So, I am trying to find subjects in my garden and very close by. No more cliff or beach walks, and another three weeks minimum of this has recently been announced. 

A local covid-19 case was diagnosed recently, a mile or two from here, with a holiday home visitor contact, I believe. This was the first I know of on the peninsula. It illustrates the importance of staying put and not travelling to holiday homes, running the risk of bringing the virus with you. Most people are observing this advice, but some do not.

The good news is that our government has announced a reduction in transmission rate of the virus and it’s now down to one or less than one per infected case, which mean the restrictions are working. The total number of cases in Ireland is 13,271, with 486 deaths.

I’m trying to get on with some painting; I procrastinate a lot, but it’s hard when the weather is so nice – I prefer to be in the garden topping up my vitamin D and doing a few jobs outside, in this wild unruly space, where the birds are happy and unfortunately so too are the brambles, rushes, rampant yellow iris, montbretia and fast growing indestructive willow. I’m so glad the japanese knotweed hasn’t found its way down here yet, although it’s not too far away! Any ambitions I might have about growing pretty wildflowers are fairly swamped by the over aggressive growth of these highly invasive species, which refuse to be controlled, so far.

I have however managed to complete some paintings; here is one of them. It shows the Tiaracht Island, one of the Blasket Island group, viewed from Clogher on the Dingle Peninsula. It’s an oil painting on canvas, 70 x 50 cms.

Tiaracht

Sunsets still happen, of course, although they have different levels of beauty.  I’ve previously captured and posted several from outside my home. Here are some recents.

DSC_2553 emlagh sunset

 

DSC_2633 Emlagh Sunset

 

DSC_2624 Emlagh Sunset

Above is Sybil Head, and I like to remind people that this was a location of the Star Wars movie The Last Jedi. The set, a replica of the ancient stone beehives on Skellig Michael, was placed on top of this headland for the entire summer during that filming.

DSC_2635 Three Sisters from Emlagh

 

Above and below you can see the Three Sisters, iconic images of the Dingle Peninsula. Here they are at sunset and in bright daylight.

DSC_2511 The Three Sisters from Emlagh-

 

Below is a photo of the recent pink moon – not looking so pink here – just a tinge, perhaps. It was covered with clouds within seconds after this. I barely had time to grab this.  Atlantic clouds! It was clear over the rest of the country

DSC_2567 emlagh moon

 

 

Like thousands of others at this time the birds are attracting my attention. There was a newcomer to the garden feeder recently; I’m still trying to discover whether he is a redpoll or a linnet.

I decided to have a  bit of fun recording myself playing some tunes with my flute along with the birdsong in the garden. The birds don’t always perform to order, and you have to take whatever type is active at the time, but there is usually some kind of peeping and chirruping. At first I tried sound files only, not wishing to video myself playing, but WordPress didn’t accept those files, so I had to start all over again using  video, which was difficult in terms of where to place the phone to get some kind of half pleasing image on it. The result shows an upside down image and the cold breeze did nothing for the tone or the tuning of my concert flute, but it was only for fun. I’d never have thought of doing it were it not for Covid-19. 

I tried a couple of bird related slow airs, here is The Lark in the Clear Air .

When you click on it the image it seem to right itself.  Don’t know why it won’t stay upright then! But the purpose of the exercise was really just to record the sound.

 

I consider myself lucky to have a peaceful environment and a good outdoor space in which to take some exercise and fresh air. It must be so hard for some people who have less comfortable surroundings in which to be confined, especially if they are trying to keep children entertained, or deal with stress and conflict –  even domestic violence.  I really feel for them, and especially those who are confined to apartments.  I’m not religious so I don’t pray, but I sincerely wish the best for everyone in these very unusual and (for some people) very difficult times. KEEP SAFE, all of you!

 

 

 

 

 

ATLANTIC SURF – NEW PAINTING

A new one, oil on canvas 31 x 23.5 inches

http://www.helene-brennan.com/atlantic-surf

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The place of inspiration, (though not much of the place may be obvious from this painting), is near Clogher Beach, viewed across the beach inlet from the walk known as Cosán na nEighe, towards Cuas na nEighe. Several of my recent paintings have been inspired by this often turbulent scene, with the very wild and stormy Atlantic Ocean and the rocky coastline at this spot.

More of my recent paintings can be seen on my website:

http://www.helene-brennan.com/c863-new-paintings-2018

 

STAR WARS IN KERRY

This post was updated in November 2017.

sceilig watercolour copy

Above is a watercolour painting of Skellig Michael, where much of the Star Wars film, The Force Awakens was filmed in 2015.

I have previously written about the film Ryan’s Daughter, which was largely shot on the Dingle Peninsula, and how it brought the beauty of the place to the attention of the world and stimulated the tourism industry in the area.

Not only tourism was stimulated, several other movies followed, which were also partly shot in County Kerry. Here is a list of some movies shot in Kerry since Ryan’s Daughter:

Star Wars: The Last Jedi 2016

Star Wars: The Force Awakens 2015

The Field (1990)

Far and Away (1992)

Harry Potter and the Half-blood Prince (2009)

Excalibur (1981)

The most recent Star Wars movie – The Last Jedi was partly shot on Sybil Head (Ceann Sibéal) on the stunning Dingle Peninsula.

 

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Sybil Head, is a majestically beautiful place, having a commanding, yet magical presence, adjacent to a collection of other stunning iconic landmarks to be seen from the roadside of the famous Slea Head Drive from Dingle.

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Sybil Head in a Storm oil pastels, above.

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Sybil Head from Cruach Mharhain above.

The Force Awakens was partly shot at Skellig Michael, a World Heritage site, off the coast of the Iveragh Peninsula, South Kerry, amid much controversy regarding the damage they may do to the ecology and the antiquities on the island.

The Skellig Rocks are two rather spectacular looking tall craggy rocks rising up from the Wild Atlantic Ocean; there is also a third but smaller rock known as The Lemon. Skellig Michael, or Great Skellig, 714 feet tall, is an ancient monastic site where in the sixth to eighth centuries AD, a community of monks built their monastery – a number of beehive shaped stone dwellings and oratories, and lived their lives there, in considerable hardship and isolation 12 miles from the mainland of Ireland.

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Skellig Rocks, oil on canvas, above.

I have a number of paintings and photos of these famous and spectacular landmarks. Please click the images to see more information about any of them

http://www.worldheritageireland.ie/skellig-michael/

To help you locate these peninsulas: The south west of Ireland has three magnificently beautiful peninsulas. Two of them are in County Kerry – the Dingle Peninsula, and the Iveragh Peninsula (Ring of Kerry), going south, and the most southerly one is in County Cork – the Beara Peninsula (West Cork).

More information can be found on:

http://entertainment.ie/cinema/news/Pic-Disney-Lucasfilm-are-heading-back-to-Kerry-to-film-part-of-Star-Wars-Episode-VIII/377968.htm

Thank you for visiting my blog.

Please also visit my website for more images of the Skelligs and Sybil Head

BLASKET EVENING

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The warm colors of evening sun on the ruins of Great Blasket Island. The island’s beautiful beach lies behind.

More paintings of the Blasket Islands on my website:

http://helene-brennan.com/c62-blasket-islands-paintings

Blasket Sunset

Blasket Evening - oil on canvas  041

What a great privilege it was to sit and observe the beautiful colors of the late evening as the sun sets over the Islands of Great Blasket and Beginish.

More paintings of the Blasket Islands on my website:

www.helene-brennan.com/c62-blasket-islands-paintings

Photos of the islands can be seen at: www.helene-brennan.com/c53-blasket islands-photogtaphs