Tales from the Island of Serendip
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Merry Christmas everyone!

 

This was a year that began with many losses, and more than one tragic death, but ends with hope for the next by taking inspiration from the lives of those remembered.

 

I had hoped to begin a new topic today on the history of magic, but it's been such a roller coaster year that I've barely begun the necessary research. It will be fun if I ever manage to get round to it.

 

Meanwhile, in celebration of the Christmas season, I thought I'd share the wonderful winter paintings of a rather obscure Scottish painter by the name of Joseph Farquharson.

 

He made his reputation as a painter of sheep in wintry landscapes. The remarkable realism of hiswork can be attributed to his desire to work en plein air. This had to be carried out in a unique way which was adapted to the harsh Scottish climate. Farquharson had constructed a painting hut on wheels, complete with a stove and large glass window for observing the landscape. Likewise to achieve as realistic a result as possible when painting the sheep which frequently appear in his snowscapes, he used a flock of "imitation" sheep which could be placed as required in the landscape of his choice. Farquharson painted so many scenes of cattle and sheep in snow he was nicknamed ‘Frozen Mutton Farquharson’.

 

Below is his most famous painting, often used in Christmas cards, so it may be familiar. Beneath The Snow Encumbered Branches (1901). It had been 'lost' for half a century, before it turned up at auction in 2008, where it sold for approximately 50 times what the owner had paid for it.

 

Joseph_Farquharson_4_zps8g6h8yjs.jpg

 

 

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Joseph_Farquharson_4_zps8g6h8yjs.jpg

 

 

What an interesting painting. It looks like a miniature set was created and then painted.

 

Maybe that ties in with the reported "stuffed" sheep.

 

Good to see you back (thumbs u

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Over the past few years, I have enjoyed your thread immensely. It may not always have a lot to do with comics, Michael, but it has a lot to do with life. Best wishes for a wonderful 2016!

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Joseph_Farquharson_4_zps8g6h8yjs.jpg

 

 

What an interesting painting. It looks like a miniature set was created and then painted.

 

Maybe that ties in with the reported "stuffed" sheep.

 

Good to see you back (thumbs u

 

Thanks Peter. His style is very 'chocolate box' but happily free of sentimentality. He does manage to convey a sense that he is in the scene, and captures evanescent qualities of light and atmosphere. His pictures capture time, then set it free.

 

Joseph%20Farquharson%20-%20Cauld%20Blaws%20the%20Wind%20frae%20East%20to%20West_zps9qr7dh2l.jpg

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I very much like that last painting.

 

Merry Christmas my friend! May your 2016 be filled with beautiful moments, love and compassion.

 

Warmest Regards,

 

Jason

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Over the past few years, I have enjoyed your thread immensely. It may not always have a lot to do with comics, Michael, but it has a lot to do with life. Best wishes for a wonderful 2016!

 

Many thanks Richard. Many happy returns of the season to you and yours!

 

You make an interesting point - and yet, so much of this thread originates in a contemplation of comic book tropes and themes and I deliberately left that out! That would have been too confining.

 

The reason I decided to do it at all is because the layout of a board page sort of equates to the panels of a comic book.

 

And wherever possible I have used pictures more than words to carry the story.

 

I suppose the thing I have tried to do is the one thing comics very rarely do - and that is deal with real and complex emotions. With some honorable exceptions, comics rarely move us.

 

I think they could. I wish they did.

 

What the thread has little to do with though is collecting!

 

Sneaky, huh?

 

If collecting is the point of the boards, Serendip is intended as counterpoint. Not really sure how well I succeeded - for all I know, not at all!

 

Michael

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I very much like that last painting.

 

Merry Christmas my friend! May your 2016 be filled with beautiful moments, love and compassion.

 

Warmest Regards,

 

Jason

 

Good will hunting in the New Year Jason! You are closing in on the Planet run with purpose and I for one will be thrilled when you join Karl (Artboy99) in the pantheon!

 

best wishes

 

Michael

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Michael,

 

These are wonderful paintings that I had not seen before.

 

Thanks for posting them and a Merry Christmas to you and yours.

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Many thanks Tony. I hope you have a wonderful 2016!

 

7113e9b0450603222ae4e1264e926447_zpshw5rn3u1.jpg

 

 

Edited by Flex Mentallo

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