“An Artist In My Greenhouse”


This week we have enjoyed three fine days. Tomorrow with also be fine. Today it drizzled most of the time. This, however, did not phase John Jones, an artist friend who had planned to depict the garden and was duly delivered by Paul Clarke this morning.

John Jones 1John Jones 3John Jones 4

John happily became ensconced in the greenhouse where he drew until lunchtime. He didn’t seem to mind the cockerel following progress.

Jackie laid on a splendid lunch of cauliflower and stilton soup, crusty bread, cold meats salad, and cheese and biscuits.

John Jones 5John Jones 6John Jones 7John Jones 8John's painting

Afterwards John applied watercolour.

John Jones 9

Remembering what I was always prone to do when painting, I instructed the painter not to dip his brush in his tea.

“How exciting!” observed Jackie. “An artist in my greenhouse”.

John's drawing

Despite his difficult vantage point, John managed to produce excellent compositions in pencil,

John's watercolour

and in watercolour.

As, early this evening, we drove John to New Milton to catch the train to his home in Southampton, the rain had stopped and,

Sunburst over Christchurch Bay

Sunburst over woman on bench

especially across Christchurch Bay, the sun blazed in the sky.

Walkers on cliff path

Walkers strode along the cliff path at Milford on Sea.

Isle of Wight and beach huts

The Isle of Wight was in clear view.

Crumbling cliff

It seemed as if the crumbling edge is further approaching the pedestrian thoroughfare.

This evening we dined on Mr Pink’s fish and chips, pickled onions and gherkins. I finished the Cairanne.

P.S. Note Jackie’s reply to paolsoren in comments for the soup recipe


  1. Interesting views of the artist so focused on his renderings; you have the touch with people. I sure like what you saw/I see thus far! Is that a palm…? or another sort of tree mimicking a palm, which I don’t recall having seen before?

    1. It is a Cordyline Australis, Cynthia, wonderful scented flower spike if you are lucky, despite it’s looks it is frost hardy. It thrives by the coast too. Makes a statement don’ you think?

  2. It was so much fun to watch the artist. I liked the pictures of him sitting in the greenhouse and the rain leaving a sheet over it. Really wonderful photos. The day sure turned around and was lovely once agian.

  3. Beautiful post, Derrick, and splendid photos of artist, art, and the landscapes.
    Jackie might have a new business venture with artists coming to sketch and paint in her greenhouse. πŸ™‚

    1. Good idea, Merril. When we exhibited the before and after photos of the garden a number of the other artists expressed an interest. John is the only one who has actually come. Many thanks

  4. Hi Derrick and Jackie πŸ˜€ I loved how your garden was painted! I’m partial to water colour art too. Does your greenhouse stay open all winter? I thought the photo of John through the rainy window was very nice! I’ve always imagined a beautiful annex to my country house, full of plants with nice iron work running across the gable and maybe even exoctic butterflys floating around, LOL! Sadly, I neither have a country house nor bundles of money. Will you frame your water colour for hanging? The colours are so pretty. Cheers!

    1. Many thanks, Boomdee. John has taken the picture to show our mutual friend, the nonagenarian artist Hilda Margery Clarke. He will return it and it will be hung. The greenhouse will be closed in the winter.

  5. Nice pictures, nice painting, nice garden but where the ….. is the recipe for cauliflower and stilton soup??? And if I can’t get stilton what else? Now all I’ll look forward to is Heinz tomato with grated cheddar.

    1. Hi Paul, The recipe(if you can call it that!) is as follows-
      Make a roux with flour and butter and I use semi skimmed milk, add crumbled Stilton to taste, (I like a lot!) or any strong flavoured blue cheese would do at a pinch I suppose.
      Meanwhile cook the chopped cauliflower and broccoli in stock (I use knorr chicken stock cubes if I have no other stock)
      Next blend the two together when they have cooled and then bring to the boil and then turn down the heat to simmer the soup until cooked through. Sorry it is not precise but I do a lot of guessing and tasting as I go along. Hope you can get something from this.

  6. How exciting that must have been! I smiled at your advice to the painter. I didn’t know you could wield a brush too. The weather out there is beautiful, the light on the cliff path is magical.

  7. Two artists at work; first working with brush and colours and the other one producing masterpieces with his camera! Really outstanding in every way. :))

  8. The artist is doing an excellent portrayal of your gardens. I think the sunshine coming from behind the clouds is luminescent and full of Grace. Thanks for taking the time to photograph the artist while you may have been in rain.

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