This afternoon, while walking along the path among the sand dunes, I noticed another sign of late winter. The first flowers for this season of the native, clematis microphylla. The plant seeds prolifically and it has become more abundant in this area compared to when I was a child.

Here it is growing in sand over some dead branches.

We have planted it on our back and side fences as an effective natural screen that allows glimpses of the view beyond.

This close-up is of one of the flowers in the previous photo.

At the class I give in Melbourne my student Kyoko has commenced Book Three of the Sogetsu curriculum. This is her second exercise, 'A horizontal arrangement'. She has used seasonal flowers, pink Japanese Flowering Quince and Hyacinth, which go so well with the grey of the vase. The single green leaf on the right hand side gives a little 'zing' of contrasting colour. Note the asymmetry, so important in ikebana, achieved by the two sides being of different lengths.

I attended a class with my teacher while in Melbourne. Our exercise was to create an ikebana arrangement incorporating any form of narcissus.

I bought a bunch of Narcissus papyraceus and teamed it with some Kiwifruit vine, Actinidia deliciosa, that my sister-in-law had given me. It was interesting to contrast the tall column of the flowers with the curving lines of the vine in this Japanese compote-shaped vase. 

When I came home I re-worked the arrangement in a ceramic bowl by the Bendigo ceramicist Phil Elson.

Greetings from Christopher
5th August 2017

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