[Snow in Russell Square (c1935-40) Stanislawa De Karlowska (Birmingham)]
...the lovelier it looks, the less likely I am to get to London to see it, and more I'd like to. I'd be very happy wandering again around the squares of Bloomsbury to see them blanketed in snow, but trains aren't running, schools are closing, and BBC Radio Berkshire have phoned to ask if I'll give Tony Blackburn an update on what's happening in my area.
[ Snow in London (c1935) Richard W Marriott (Worthing Art Gallery)]
Which is funny, because I can only update on what's happening outside my window, and I'm not too sure he wants a running commentary on how well my violet hyacinths are doing and how beautiful they look with a backdrop of thick snow, and big, fat, swirling flakes.
[Rooks, Hyacinths and Snow (c1935) Winifred Nicholson]
I could put on my coat and wellies, hat and gloves, though, and do a little Pooh-style pondering and measuring of snow to show that I'm a well informed reporter.
[Illustration by EH Shepard]
Then I could share my thoughts with him and his listeners, because I'm considering who has painted snow best. EH Shepard's illustrations have lodged in my brain since childhood and he captures snow brilliantly just by making little marks on lots of white space. The Impressionists, particularly Monet and Sisley, evoke the softness and light-play of snow, while Russian artists paint snow scenes with vigour and energy and drama. Dutch painters show just how many things you can do in the snow - I love their action-packed snowy crowd scenes - and Scandinavian scenes are often quite everyday as befits countries which deal with snow sensibly and efficiently. Unlike here, where the best you can hope for from local radio is a cutting-edge report from a housebound flapjack-maker.