Then off to the Amalfitana coast east of Naples and a boat trip to the Isle of Capri. Not my usual choice of destination - but there was still snow to be seen on the mountains as we drove south.
Everywhere was sunshine, intense light, the blue of the sky reflected in the glittering Mediterranean, marble and tiled surfaces radiating heat, giant lemons ripe for the picking in the lemon groves and wisteria, perfuming the air from morning to night with glow worms dancing in the dark.
From our wisteria-hung terrace, a view of the tower which inspired Dutch artist M C Escher to pick up his pen in 1931 and make a lithograph from his drawing.
Inspiration also came from the wonderful ancient frescoes in the churches and villas of Amalfi and Ravello...
....not to mention those at Herculaneum which, along with the buildings containing them, survived the eruption of Vesuvius in AD79. Miraculous!
Fascinating fragments, subtle colours, exciting textures reminiscent of mountain landscapes - maybe these visual feasts will find their way into my work back in the studio.