Welcome to the blog of Melanie McDonald ! I'm a professional artist, my life is divided between my home in Newquay, Cornwall and my renovation project - an 18th Century farm - in North Brittany, France. My inspiration comes from the beautiful beaches, skies and seas of Cornwall, Brittany and Scotland. This is where I share my paintings and photographs, I hope it inspires you.

August 06, 2013

Joseph Conrad in Brittany

Evening photographs.

Sunshine gleams between the lines of those short paragraphs - sunshine and the glitter of the sea.  A strange name wakes up memories; the printed words scent the smoky atmosphere of today faintly, with the subtle and penetrating perfume as of land breezes breathing through the starlight of bygone nights; a signal fire gleams like a jewel on the high brow of a sombre cliff; great trees, the advanced sentries of immense forests, stand watchful and still over sleeping stretches of open water; a line of white surf thunders on an empty beach, the shallow water foams on the reefs; and green islets scattered through the calm of noonday lie upon the level of a polished sea, like a handful of emeralds on a buckler of steel.

Excerpt from Joseph Conrad's short story Karain: A Memory

Wordsworth Classics - Selected Short Stories Joseph Conrad

Dawn photographs.

I've been a fan of Joseph Conrad for many years .... but I didn't know that he'd been here, in Brittany.  Rumour has it that he was looking for a house to rent in Perros-Guirec, which is where I have my summer gallery.  He came to Brittany with his young wife Jessie, and they rented a small granite house in 1896 on Ile Grande, a few miles further along the coast.  The Bretons say that he wanted to revive his memories of the sea .... and to write in solitude.  Ile Grande is an island just 7 km in circumference and attached to the mainland by a small bridge, (today it has about 800 permanent residents).  He started work on his third novel, which he intended titling The Rescuer: A tale of narrow waters.  This novel was not published as a book until over 20 years later - Conrad's third novel would be The Nigger of the Narcissus (1897), which he also began writing on the island, and is regarded as the first of his major works.

PERROS-GUIREC (centre ville - en face de la banque B.N.P. Paribas).
Open 7 days.

Prints of my paintings in my New! Online Shop

Paintings at Melanie McDonald Gallery 

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