Oh gosh, my master, he’s such an old man! Well, he’s plenty cute, and wise, and not all that old! But it’s such fun teasing him! And anyway, we’re in such high spirits! We’ve been all over Veray to sketch and draw and paint (in tempera, to make quick color studies). Of course, there was nice food, and of course there was me telling everyone about the tour of Valdyas we were gonna make, and how smart people would reserve paintings, but it was just fun!
A bit like in Turenay, I was making charcoal portrait sketches, both in my common-place book, and on separate sheets, to hand out to the people who allowed me to portrait them. Master Jeran is much more of a landscape, still-life, scene-of-action painter, while I’m still young enough to be completely fascinated by looks, glances, movement, eyes, gestures. Maybe also because until we came to Turenay, me and Lesla really never met all that many people.
We’ve been in Veray many times before, but now we had a whole week of going around town and not just about town, but also really around town. We went outside of the walls a couple of times to find good spots to paint Veray’s pretty vineyards, hills, the castle, the river — especially the river!
In the end, it took Mialle about ten days to ready our cart (or wagon, not sure what the different words mean), and it was perfect! There also was an apprentice who had a cloven foot, a badly healed axe accident, and he allowed me to draw his foot, and then I made a silverpoint portrait of him, for him, and his girlfriend is going to be sooooo happy. It made me wonder whether I’m weird for not looking for a boyfriend, or a girlfriend, but for now, I’ve got master Jeran to tease, so I’m fine.
Though we had this bit of discussion, I think it happened when we had dinner with Mialle, about finding another apprentice. Master Jeran was insisting that I was the apprentice he was talking about, and I was insisting we’d pick up someone else. Look! I’m a journeyman, and if we have another apprentice, I get to be master-journeyman!!! And it would be fun, having another one join us in our travels — and have them grinding the bluestone.
The dinner though! I was super-ginormously-awesome. We took Mialle out, because normally it be the other way around, between customer and artisan, but she’d given us a bunch of stuff for free or less, and she’s such a cutie! Even though everyone insists she’s grumpy and mean, I really do like her.
We had fish-in-salt, which is a whole big fish baked in a crust of salt, so decadent! But it was delish, and I amazed Mialle by eating most of the head, which is the tastiest bit, especially the cheeks, and the waitress, she was, like, “Okay! This girl knows her fish.”
During dinner, we discussed all kinds of things, and I tried to sell Mialle a painting of Ironlode, on spec, but that didn’t work, but we suddenly did realize that there was a whole new school in Veray, founded since the last time we were here, and that we should visit.
Me, because I love painting people who are immersed, focused, concentrated, and Master Jeran because he likes interiors and light and dark and stuff.
So we went there, asked for permission, and it was a glorious day, when we did so much work, and I met such interesting people, like Leva, who had just invented a tool so spray fixative evenly on any surface! I think I might want to go this school when after our journey — I might be able to invent new ways of working with paint, maybe even new pigments and binders and varnishes and things!
The next day, we loaded the cart, and left!
We stopped frequently, something our mule didn’t mind at all, to sketch and paint. There were workers in the vineyards, and a bit further on, people working on the river bank, and after that, workers having their noon meal in the hop fields.
We ended up staying in a small village, even though we could’ve made Gralen easily, but the people were friendly, there was a dance, and…