Friday, May 22, 2009

Summer Has Arrived

This is a detail of a pen and ink drawing with digital colouring called Little Thief. This is a larger version of the above but a lot of the detail gets lost when the image is a large portrait style one.

White Lady
Pen and Ink drawing entitled Kathryn
I love the patination and colours of this copper weathervane. It was made in the mid-1800's and is in the collection of the Beamish Museum, which is an open air museum of social, agricultural and industrial history of Great Britain.
These two images are the work of celebrated Irish artist Barry Castle. She was born in Dublin in 1935. There is very little about her on the Internet but she has been painting since 1968 so she must have produced a lot of work. Her images are very contemporary and mysterious and very sought after.

Girl With Yellow Flowers
Two Girls In A Rainforest
For those of you who love folk music, here is a song on youtube by the now defunct Irish band Emmett Spiceland. It has wonderful harmonies and beautiful voices. Such a shame they broke up.

Soak up some outrageous colours with the paintings of Vladimir Olenberg who is a Russian artist. There are some quite incredible Russian artists around. You can see more of his amazing work here at

This gorgeous cockerel needlepoint tapestry cushion designed by Elian McCready represents my longest lasting UFO. I first saw the design years ago when a friend, Hannah, gave me an Ehrmann tapestry catalogue that had belonged to her mother. I thought, yet, that is one needlepoint I must do as I had fallen in love with the beautiful design and colours. Unfortunately, to date, I have only completed the head, comb and wattles. Not because I do not want to finish it but because I am loath to complete another needlepoint that needs stretching on completion. Nearly all the needlepoint work I do now is done with Victorian cross stitch which means twice the wool, twice the stitches but no stretching required. I think I may have to follow the colour chart of the design with a piece of my own canvas and use two ply Appletons wool. I will probably wrap up the existing canvas and wool and donate it to a local charity shop for someone else to finish. It really is too nice a design to leave as a permanent UFO.
Spring brings us a wealth of amazingly zingy greens. This is a path atop an ancient and historic moat belonging to a ruined castle where the great and good of Saxon England offered the Norman William their allegiance and the crown in 1066. Not a sight of anything now other than peace and quiet now.
This lovely angel is pointing the way to heaven for her erstwhile human companion. I have photographed this one many times with the leaves in all seasons. It is placed on a high bank and if you are not careful you can end up falling quite a distance. Not pleasant among the brambles.

Another sweet little monumental angel which decorates a child's grave in a local cemetery. This one is beautifully artistic.

The English bluebells are just coming to an end now. Such a shame that they don't last longer. They really make the woods and fields magical.
Have you noticed an abundance of aquilegia around at the moment? My mother says they used to call it "Granny's Nightcap" when they were children and I suppose it does look a bit like a night cap (with a large helping of imagination of course). It is also called Columbine and Granny's Bonnet.
These three pieces below are the work of Angie Hughes who is a UK textile artist and tutor. She is particularly inspired by poetry, text and the natural world. She produces beautifully embroidered work, textile and altered books and mixed media artwork and a display of her art can be found on here website here.

Hung With Stars
Trinity (detail)
Three Spikey Flowers
The paintings and ceramic pieces below are the work of artist and printmaker Hilke MacIntyre. She is married to painter/printmaker Ian MacIntyre and they share a great website here. She produces paintings, ceramics, linocuts and illustrations and there is lots to see on their site. Hilke is German born but now lives in Scotland with her family. She describes her work as simplified and figurative in style and is inspired by, among other things, primitive and folk art. Her work is delightful with great attention paid to pattern and shape. Her work can be found in many galleries in the UK.

Blue Bird
Picking Rocket
Market - Fish Stall
Garden With Bird
Market - A Bunch Of Carrots
This lovely ceramic is a called A Bunch Of Flowers.
This is a ceramic piece called Digging, Raking, Cutting, Picking.
These are Art Angels greetings cards by Hilke MacIntyre. The are called Along The Beach (L) and Along The Burn (R) The detail on them is really lovely and they are much too nice to send to anyone. They will stay in my card collection...ha ha. (I have found a local shop which sells lots of the Art Angels printmaker cards so I am very happy about that.)

Summer appears to have arrived early in the UK. We had our first temperature of 24C today. Another two degrees and that is the limit of my comfort zone...ha ha. I strongly suspect that it may get very much higher than that in the next three months. The weather forecasters have threatened us with temperatures of over 30C and that is way too hot for me. Perhaps they will be wrong...(hopes).


~ Phyllis ~ said...

Hi Cathy,
I love the Little Thief. It's adorable. The White Lady is pretty with all the blue colors. Blue is my fav color.
We have Columbines over here. My Memaw grew them in her garden years ago. I haven't seen many lately. I have never seen the blue variety. Really pretty.
Your angel pictures are always some of my favorites. I envy you living in a country with so much history and so many beautiful sights.
Have a good week.

Dolores said...

I'm the same way with the heat. Here in Toronto we get heat and humidity in the summer months and I just hibernate in air conditioned places. Can't breathe in the humidity but my husband doesn't mind it at all.

Cathy said...

Thanks Phyllis. I enjoyed drawing that one. I love blues too. You would see loads of Columbines in England. Practically every garden has them. As for the angels; I love angel images in any form or media. They are just so beautiful.

Cathy said...

I have a friend near Toronto Dolores and it always amazes me when she is telling us about either the dreadful heat or the bitter cold and snow. Such extremes of temperature. Your husband is lucky. I would be a wet rag in high humidity.

Flora said...

I love your new header! (I haven't visited for a while so sorry if it is not so new!)

Agree that the Aquilegia are divine at the moment...and the work by Hilke MacIntyre is really stunning - thanks for sharing.

Robyn said...

Another Little Thief supporter here. I love Hilke MacIntyre's work too.

We are having temps of between 25 and 32 at the end of Autumn. Winter's done a runner I think.

Caroline said...

Hi Cathy!

Ah, heat and humidity - we have it all year round here, but at least there's airconditioning for night time! That blog header is new isn't it - or is it just larger? Looks great anyway! Loved your post and favourites this week are your Little Thief (illustration and title!), Girl with Yellow Flowers, that wonderful weathervane and your beautiful angels!
I am going off to Europe on Friday for a few weeks and won't have easy access to internet so I may be a bit quiet for a while! Hope the temperatures stay within your tolerance levels!

Gillian said...

Love your angel photographs - its be great to photograph something over time and in different weather! Love your Little Thief drawing too! Have been looking out for bluebells but seem to have missed them - these are fabulous!

Cathy said...

I am glad you like the post Flora. The header is relatively new. Not too sure if I like it yet though.

Cathy said...

Goodness your temps are high for autumn Robyn. They would be our hottest summer temps - 32 would anyway. Far too much for me Hilke MacIntyre's work is lovely.

Cathy said...

Thanks Caroline. Yes, the header is new but I am in two minds about it. I don't like it as much as the previous one but I did think I needed a change.

Have a wonderful time in Europe and take lots of lovely photos to show us.

Cathy said...

Glad you like the photos Gillian. I think the bluebells have probably all finished now. They only last for about a month. Such a pity. I would like them all year round but I suppose they wouldn't be so special then.

Old World Primitives said...

Hi Cathy,
I absolutely love your new blog header drawing! I really like Little Thief too - the detail in the tree is amazing. Loving all of the other eye candy in this post, especially the angel statues and "Digging, Raking, Cutting, Picking."

Wishing you some cooler weather,

Sandy Mastroni said...

Oh Cathy
I love your Little Thief and Kathryn and I went back and looked at your other drawings ....
love Into Each Life
Your drawings are wonderful
I got busy because I joined Flickr , now I'm having trouble keeping up on everything !
Thank you for visiting me
Thank you for your comments !
I appreciate it Cathy !!!!!!!!!

Holly Zemak said...

Hi Cathy - I like your new header, and the "Little Thief" well done. I enjoy a work that tells a story, an Illustration. My Columbine is blooming, I have a rose or dark pink color. But would love that blue. A reason to go to the plant shopping. Thanks for mentioning Vladimir Olenberg, what great use of color and style.

Cathy said...

Thanks Stephanie. Funnily enough, since I wrote that, it has been a lot cooler but I think it may be hotting up for the weekend.

Cathy said...

You are very welcome Sandy. I really enjoy visiting your blog and your lovely paintings. I am thinking of putting my drawings onto a Flickr site soon. I have amassed a huge collection since I started blogging.

Cathy said...

Hello Holly. Vladimir Olenberg is quite unique. I admire a lot of Russian artists. They have a style all of their own.

A bird in the hand said...

Hello Cathy,

Coming here is such a treat; so much really good art to look at (thank you for doing all the work!).

Cheers, Colette

A bird in the hand said...

P.S. I absolutely love your new header!!

Cathy said...

Thanks Colette. It takes a while to find new people but it is fun. Glad you like the is growing on