Enchanted April

“Enchanted April” – spring in Parc des Buttes-Chaumont.
330 x 355 mm. November 2017.

In April 2012 I visited Parc des Buttes-Chaumont in Belleville.  On that particular spring morning, Paris was hidden under a veil of mist.

I love the poetry of mist – where some objects reveal themselves while others are  mysteriously obscured.

Later in 2012 I made a drawing from that visit to the park.  It was from the same source photo as the new drawing.  I called the 2012 drawing “Après l’hiver”.

“Après l’hiver”

Why have I just made another version of the drawing?   I wanted to do a larger work, using a less cropped version of the photo.  I was curious to see what would happen if I used  Sennelier oil pastels as well as coloured pencils. Drawn five and a half years apart, two very different drawings have resulted.

The title of my new drawing is taken from the 1922 novel “Enchanted April”  by Elizabeth von Arnim.

8 thoughts on “Enchanted April

  1. chuckles4th

    I love both of your Enchanted Aprils, Julie! But I think the recent one has a strength and confidence that is very appealing. Have you seen the film ‘Enchanted April’ made of the book? It’s one of my favourite movies and I think you’d enjoy it too. Hope all is well with you. My best, Jules

    1. juliepodstolski Post author

      Hello Jules! Indeed. I own the DVD of the film. And as to the book, I first read it years ago – when I was pregnant with Lucy – so that makes it 24 years ago. I was so taken with the book. I adore the film too and have showed it to some of my other artist friends. I find it very wise and moving.
      The first version of this drawing sold in 2012 and lives in the same city you do.
      Always lovely to hear from you, Jules, and yes thanks, I am very well. I hope you are also.

  2. anna warren portfolio

    My first thought in seeing this was ‘Oh, so different!’, and that was the same response to your last drawing. The colours and tones are so different from the morning and evening city streets that formed your recent drawings. This certainly has a feel of April, lightness and delicacy, spring bursting forth, but still with those misty mornings. It is interesting to compare the two drawings, both have the same qualities, but the oil pastels in the the new one do add a resonance below the delicate top layer.

    1. juliepodstolski Post author

      Different is good as I don’t want an exhibition next year where everything looks the same. (I have seen such exhibitions.) Straight after being in that beautiful setting, Matt and I walked back down the hill to Jaures which is dodgy as anything. The drawing I’m about to start is of a raven in down-at-heel Jaures. It is a perfect ‘act to follow’ “Enchanted April” but a totally different scene. One can easily walk, in no time, from the sublime to the ridiculous in Paris.

  3. occasionalartist

    So interesting to see these two drawings and how they differ from each other. The composition in both is lovely with the mist veiling the background. I can’t decide which I like best (not that I need to, but….). The early one is so romantic and delicate while the later one is more confident. Interesting technique in the second too. As always Julie a lovely thought provoking post. Karen

    1. juliepodstolski Post author

      Ah Karen, and because the subject is very much flowers, I found a high degree of difficulty doing both drawings. I’m not a natural with plants like you are. I struggle with the colour green!!

      1. occasionalartist

        Green is tough, but I am having lots of trouble with pink, all the ones I have are very much purple pinks. With over 300 coloured pencils I really thought I would have all the colours, but clearly I need more.😉 Your flowers were beautiful Julie, any struggle was not evident.

  4. juliepodstolski Post author

    Karen, pink is a tough one because so many (most) of the pinks are faders. I only use four pink pencils; 3 Luminance and 1 Pablo which are lightfast. I intensify them by tricking the viewer’s eyes – that is, surrounding them with their complementary colours so that they pop.


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