Saturday, December 6, 2008

Internet Inspiration and Nicholas Hely Hutchinson

I really enjoyed drawing this very simple tree and bird picture. It was also inspired by a ceramic design but I cannot remember where I saw it. If it turns up again I will post it.
This image is called "A Bouquet of Tulips" - pretty self explanatory really. It is pen and ink and digital colour.
I have been meaning to post this image for ages. Do you remember a couple of months ago I said I was doing a linocut? This is my first proper linocut and I must say I am quite pleased with the result. The cutting is easy - the printing is very difficult. I take my metaphorical hat off to those people who can produce perfectly printed linocuts.
Can't have Christmas without an angel drawing. I decided to make this one very non-traditional.
She is pen and ink and coloured fibre tip pens.
This is one side of a design for gift wrap by Penny Kennedy. Lovely modern leaf motifs. Irresistible.
This is the other side of the gift wrap. Two designs for the price of one. Very nice indeed.
This Flickr upload by allerleirau really caught my eye. Presumably it started life as a pen and ink drawing. It can be found on the Flickr group Mid-century modern ceramics and table ware. I would love to own a set of these Danish designs.
I love this graphic ceramic design. It is another mid-century design but wouldn't look out of place on contemporary crocs. It was uploaded by allerleirau on Flickr.
This is an example of mid century ceramics. A lovely fun design uploaded by Flickr user littlelollylittlelegs (great name).
The paintings below are all the work of Nicholas Hely Hutchinson whose website can be found here. I recommend clicking on the pictures to enlarge them to get the best view.

I was thinking the other day how the Internet has transformed our lives as artists and craftspeople. It has opened up so many new avenues of inspiration. We have so many sources of great art and craft images on places like artists blogs, Flickr, Etsy and just typing in, say, printmakers in a search engine brings thousands of websites to our notice. What a visual feast. There are so many individual sites that we never need look at the same site twice, probably for the rest of our lives. Prior to the Internet, my personal inspiration favourites were art books and I must admit I still love them. Nowadays most of them tend to come from charity shops rather than be bought new though. It is amazing what wonderful books people give away: some of them big, glossy coffee table books originally costing £30 to £40 with fantastic photography. Most can be picked up for less than £3.

Flickr has so many art sites including drawing, painting, illustration, printmaking, doll making, cross stitch. The list is endless, with thousands of pictures on each site and most being updated daily. Before we bought our family computer, my brother wet my appetite with a fantastic tapestry site and I was hooked for life.

Nearly every artist these days seems to have a presence on the Internet from the humblest amateur to highly regarded professionals. I found a Flickr group on mid-century ceramics the other day and it opened up a whole new world of designs on cups, plates etc. Nobody can make the excuse these days that they are short of inspiration. The Internet can be a very harmful and damaging place if used unwisely but like most things in life it has a positive and negative aspect and we have to employ balance to make the best use of it.

My featured artist this week is one of my all time favourites. He is Nicholas Hely Hutchinson, an English painter living in Dorset. When you look at his work you enter a magical, surreal world of beautiful colours, delicate landscapes and supremely elegant people and animals. He uses the English countryside as his inspiration but adds magic from his own imagination. You can easily imagine elves and fairies peopling his landscapes. His work covers a broad spectrum of subject matter but my favourites are the glowing hillsides and trees which he does so well. Have a look at his extensive website here. You will be glad you did. I have a couple of old exhibition catalogues of his paintings which I treasure. Now if I could afford an original.....!


Gillian said...

Just to let you know your beautiful cards arrived through my door today! Thank you so much. I love the Nicholas Hely Hutchinson paintings - especially the one with the bluebell filled field.

Cathy said...

Thanks Gillian. Glad they got there safely.

~ Phyllis ~ said...

Your tree is really nice. The colorful birds add the perfect touch. I really enjoyed Nicholas Hutchinson's paintings.
I love looking at coffe table books. Our local library sells library discards for 25 cents up to $3.00. At those prices one can go home with a bag full of treasures.
Stay warm my friend.

Cathy said...

Our libraries do that too Phyllis and they also sell monthly magazines off at 50p ($1) each. I like that because there are some fantastic pictures in magazines but new ones cost the earth.

feedthedog said...

i love love love your lino cut chook!
he's gorgeous.
and all those littlle bits and the texture.
that's what lino printing is all about.
works for me.

Cathy said...

Thanks very much feed the dog. It is my first one and I really enjoyed it so I hope to do some more soon.

Jane said...

I'm loving your blog, your illos are simply beautiful.
Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.

Cathy said...

Thanks Jane. Absolutely love your work and blog.

StuckInABook said...

I found a Nicholas Hely Hutchinson card in a local shop and went off on a hunt - I love his work so much. I then discovered that my cousin was housemates with his son! (Do you think that entitles me to a discount?!)

Cathy said...

I would definitely think that entitles you to a discount stuckinabook. How lovely to be connected in a such a way to a great artist. He produces the most wonderful work. said...

Hi this is Este Macleod
You mentioned me on your blog site sometime ago in November. Thanks for the compliment. I've now got a blog instead of the usual website. still the same address: I'm doing all kinds of new things, experimenting with the house form as inspiration, and painting more landscapes.

Cathy said...

Hi Este. Had a peek at your blog. I love your new ceramic house. Beautifully whimsical. Look forward to seeing more of your new work.