Beautiful morning here so Jan and I walked to Vernon for the Saturday market. Between Giverny and Vernon is great scenery so it makes the walk very pleasant. Walking along and crossing over the Seine is also always quite a sight as well.
The market was everything that I hoped it would be and there was such a wonderful sense of community. It's really a shame that we don't have more of these things where I live back home. The fruits, vegetables, meat, fish and other items are mostly local and there are signs that say where they're harvested from. We got some really amazing strawberries that taste like candy, fresh cherries, tomatoes, melon, etc. I plan to go back as often as I can on either Wednesday or Saturday.
Before and after the market, we had a rest at a local cafe with great coffee and some croissant and pain au chocolat (which I incorrectly called a "chocolate croissant"--the crescent shape is what makes something a crescent). I sketched at the cafe and then we headed back along the Seine.
I'll be going out painting in a bit to make the most of my Saturday. I can't believe I've only been here for one week!
Beautiful sites between Giverny and Vernon
Fresh produce from the market
What a day and what an experience thus far. I took my first trip into Paris with my program director; We traveled from Vernon to Gare Saint Lazare, which was another favorite spot of Monet. Our journey was to purchase supplies from the original Magasin Sennelier from 1887. I was mainly seeking a roll of oil ground canvas and was being shown a sample book with various surfaces; the gentleman helping me spoke English and was very kind; unbeknownst to me.. I was speaking with a legend because it was Monsieur Sennelier himself (the grandson of the original founder).
The entire store was beyond amazing and I could write an entire post about it. Everything was done with care and personal attention. I had quite a shopping list so we were busy while we were there. All the products are the highest quality and it makes me so happy that a place like this exists. I was also being helped by M. Sennelier's daughter who will follow him as 4th generation owner. The journey to bring back the materials involved carrying my roll (over 2 meters long) through Paris back to the station - the last picture below shows my canvas roll stored by the bike rack on the train back to Vernon. I felt like a true artist, bringing my canvas roll and supplies back to Monet's estate
Lastly, I'm sharing some photos of the delicious food that I've been enjoying. I know I've only been his since Saturday, but it's been absolutely wonderful. I can't wait to start painting tomorrow!
My First Morning in Giverny
As a Studio Ghibli fan, I really enjoy all the art books and extra materials that the studio has available. A series of books that I'm very fond of are the storyboard collections. This storyboard collection is from The Wind Rises, which is one of my favorite Ghibli films.
For anyone unfamiliar with the animation process: the director (in this case, Hayao Miyazaki) drew these storyboards in preparation for the film. The storyboards are the basis for the movie and it shows the major scenes and shots. It also includes camera instructions and additional notes to show the movement and backgrounds. Although the storyboards are a functional part of the film making process, they inspire me as a painter for purely artistic reasons.
Something to keep in mind for anyone looking to purchase these books is that the storyboards are all in Japanese; Although I don't know Japanese, I'm interested in the beautiful artwork. This storyboard collection is especially nice because it's mostly painted with watercolor. The book comes in a textured paper slipcase which is sturdy and keeps the book and pamphlet together. Every part of this book makes me really happy.
Hayao Miyazaki is one of my favorite artists and his artwork and films inspire me a lot. It's amazing to me that he draws all these beautiful scenes from his imagination with such clarity. I'm sure that he uses references for certain things like the planes and some scenery, but the design and composition of each shot is magical. The other thing I love about his drawings is his line work. Miyazaki sums up a whole scene with a few lines. Sargent is another artist who had the ability to simplify a whole scene with simple lines. I also see many parallels between these storyboards and the croquis (thumbnail sketches) of many 19th century artists. Bouguereau himself would do these sort of sketches in preparation for his large oil paintings.
Flipping through these storyboards really feels like watching the movie again but in a manga format. Miyazaki's artistry, imagination and storytelling ability all combine to create these great images. He's truly a master and I look forward to his next film which he's working on now. Check out the pictures and video below.
I love the action and animation of these three shots below
Anyone looking for more info about these storyboard books should check out this video: