A perfect setting to breathe and find inspiration

Updated: Jun 4, 2021

And if you happen to travel and be near Gouvieux, come and sketch with me!



In this post, I am showing you Gouvieux where I live: spring has sprung, nature is about to wake up and it is still possible to admire the complex and fascinating “architecture” of the trees and the building of the town before they are hidden by new yellow-green leaves.


I also invite you to join me when lockdown is over to join me for a Walk and draw once a month (or when you happen to be around if you live far from Gouvieux!)


Walking and drawing is good for the body and the mind

I enjoy walking and I also plein air sketching… Before the first lockdown, I was afraid to draw outside because I thought I was not skilled enough and I also feared the opinions of people… I thus went for walks and once a year, I took painting lessons en plein air. It is a perfect opportunity to start in a secure environment and to develop observation and painting skills. And I will continue to take lessons as soon as they resume.


The first lockdown helped me change my point of view… Life lost a lot of its interest as soon as we were obliged to stay at home, to work from home, once social interactions with our families and friends were forbidden, when we lost our freedom of movement !


Going for a stroll became a highlight of the day, a daily happy moment. Outdoor sketching became an important activity to record the happiness of being in nature. On this occasion, I also realised that sketching helped me to enjoy my environment more: shapes, colours and even the sounds and the smells in nature. Being immersed in the natural elements be it sunny, cold, windy or slightly drizzly did help me feel alive and appreciate once back home the quasi immuable climate with the central heating!



The focus that is necessary to draw, "magically" made the strollers disappear… I can now say that the few people who dare start a conversation are lovely. They are not in any case the critical monsters of my imagination!


An artistic practice nurtured by this micro aventure

This highly beneficial practice continued after lockdown. It was slightly altered during the second lockdown while we were only allowed daily exercise for an hour, one kilometer away from home. Il continues today while we are in the middle of our third lockdown.


When I get outside to do some food shopping, I look at the town with new eyes: what color is the sky? How do the shapes of the buildings blend or detach themselves from the surroundings? What’s today's palette? Do I have to by some bread... ?




Each walk is an occasion to inspire (from the latin latin word inspirare, in + spirare - breathe, as the dictionary teaches us) and get inspired! It is no coincidence that the word “inspire” means both to breathe in and by extension, to transmit poetic enthusiasm, enthusiasm for the arts!


This practice nurtures my creativity and helps me in my artistic journey. Ideas for new projects emerge from it, and some sketches become linocut prints...


Walk and sketch with me if you want!

When lockdown is over, I am planning a Walk and sketch session every month for people around Gouvieux (see the French version of this post for details). It is of course free and is an unguided practice; however if you wish to take lessons I can put you in contact with my nice teachers.


And if you happen to be around Gouvieux, please contact me so we can arrange a special session!