Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Scraperboards and Bluebells and Blossom

I really enjoyed the two giveaways I have just completed even though they were quite a bit of work. All but three packages have been posted now and two of those will go on Tuesday (Bank Holiday on Monday). The third one is just waiting for an address. I know some bloggers have already received their prizes but please let me know if anyone doesn't receive theirs.

This quirky little piece is Bird Guardian


I was browsing in a local art shop on Saturday when I came across some scraperboards and tools and I decided to buy them and have a go. I have been meaning to try this technique for ages but haven't actually got around to it till now. I must have been one of the very few school kids who never got to try this out. I think perhaps our art master Mr Woods didn't like scraperboard. It took a little while to get the hang of the scraping tools but I am very pleased with the result considering I am a complete novice. I think perhaps I should have made the bird and the girl's face whiter but the scan has made the whole thing greyer than it actually is in reality. Perhaps a photo would be better. The tools were very cheap as I didn't want to spend much until I had decided whether I liked the technique. I have decided that I do and I will invest in something of better quality. It is a very similar process to linocut in that you are carving white lines and therefore you need to plan your work much more carefully than you would a drawing. I think it will be quite a little while before I can produce anything remotely like the Cathie Bleck artwork below mine...haha.

White Bird

Here are some seriously professional scraperboard images by American artist and illustrator Cathie Bleck, although Cathie uses a slightly more complex technique by using layers of ink in her work. She is truly a master of this medium with so much detail, energy and graceful lines in her work. Cathie has her own website here with lots more black and white and coloured images. You can also see lots of her work on the Enid Lawson Gallery website here.

Cheetah


With The Wind


Polar Bear's Dilemma


I found this delightful childrens' poetry book in a charity shop the other day. It is a collection of poems compiled by Nicola Baxter and illustrated by Cathie Shuttleworth.

Cathie is an English artist and illustrator who hails from Suffolk. She has illustrated many books over the years and her style is wonderfully delicate and detailed watercolours. These are just the sort of illustrations that I loved as a child. Cathie has also branched out into very clever paper sculptures and you read all about that on her website here.



I couldn't resist uploading a couple more cherry blossom pictures. All the blossoms are fading away now, especially with the very wet weather we are having this weekend.




I like Jill Stewart's quirky and decorative metalwork a lot. She lives in the north of England and creates lovely clocks, mirrors and jewellery among other things, using differently coloured metals. Her work is very decorative with etching and texts and she obviously loves birds and forms of nature. You can find Jill's website here.

Clocks



Earrings


We found a wonderful bluebell wood whilst out geochaching last Sunday. The bluebells weren't out properly that day but I made a return visit later in the week and captured them in all their glory. There were two shots of the wood but Blogger, in its infinite wisdom, decided to delete the other one and as you all know you cannot fit anything into the post once it is uploaded. Still, not to worry as I have lots more bluebells to come yet...lol.


and these are the individual flowers that make up those gorgeous swathes of blue


I love Karen Birchwood's beautifully delicate and fresh approach to painting. Her work is filled with colour and light. Karen originally graduated in textiles but has now moved to painting in the Kent area of England. She takes her inspiration from the landscapes of "the garden of England" and is also inspired by the likes of Mary Fedden - another favourite of mine. She has lots more lovely artwork on her website here.

Red Mug


Garden View II


Wild Flowers, Romney Marsh


The lithographic images below are the work of Czech graphic artist/printmaker Marina Richterova. She was born in Russia and you can see that influence in her work. I love the intense detail and the melancholy of her art. You can see masses more images of her work on Celebrities on the Web here. If you click on the images on the right sidebar and then click on the image again you will get an enlarged version of the picture.

Haiku


Donna 2006


Butterfly Dreams


The Pilgrims


Portrait In Red Chemise - In Honour To My Father

29 comments:

Chatters said...

Karen Birchwood's paintings are very beautiful.

I think I like your scraper board artwork more than the the other artist, although her work is lovely too

Anonymous said...

A wonderful post again Cathy! Thank you for sharing. The bluebells are glorious. And your scraperboard effort is fantastic. I've never heard of scraperboards, only lino cutting. I've been wanting to have a go myself.
Deb

Chrissie said...

I was so lucky to receive one of your generous runner-up giveaway prints - thank you!
I hope you are encouraged to continue with the scraperboard technique - brilliant start!

acornmoon said...

I think that you are on to something with your scraperboard, the result is very pleasing. I look forward to seeing more.

Cathy said...

Thanks Amanda. My scraperboard has a long way to go yet but hopefully I will improve.

Cathy said...

Hi Deb, I have some more wonderful bluebells for my next post too. Glad you like the scraperboard. It is very similar to lincut except you don't get the print at the end or the cut fingers...lol.

Cathy said...

Thanks Chrissie. It is certainly very enjoyable and quite relaxing. A bit like pen and ink cross hatching which I love.

Cathy said...

Thanks Val. I will have to get some better tools but I am already planning some more.

Nicola said...

I agree, I love the fresh, beautifully naive quality of your scratchboard the most. It has a deeply authentic quality. Hope to see more to come!!

Caroline said...

Cathy your style is so suited to scraperboard and you've made a wonderful job of this 'first effort'! It's beautiful and I hope you will make more for us to see! I adore your bluebells and blossom - Oh, to be in England to see them, sigh!!

tammykingdon said...

I think you should be proud of your scraperboard - it's lovely. I'm also a fan of Karen Birchwood's paintings, thanks for showing them.

Debrina said...

Cathy, your posts are just so inspiring! Thanks for sharing with us these wonderful, talented artists!!!

Cathy said...

Thanks very much Nicola. That is very nice to know. I will definitely do some more.

Cathy said...

I wish you could see them too Caroline. There is nowhere on earth like England at bluebell time. I am pleased the scraperboard is well received. I have been meaning to try it for sometime but like everything else it got put off until I had more time. I have come to the conclusion that there never is more time. You just have to fit in what you want to do...lol.

Cathy said...

They are lovely aren't they Tammy? She has a great talent. Her work is beautifully fresh and bright.

Cathy said...

You are very welcome Debrina. I love searching out these wonderfully talented people.

Crafty Green Poet said...

I love Jill Stewarts metalwork, so distinctive!

Beautiful blossoms and bluebells, our blossoms are just at their best now and we're off to a bluebell wood at the weekend....

feedthedog said...

is there something wrong with me that I've never heard of scraperboard? (please don't answer that..)
whatever it is, the effect is amazing and I think your girl is a glorious first attempt.

okay, going now to google scraperboard and find out what I've been missing out on .. from childhood, apparently.

feedthedog said...

okay, not feeling quite so dumb now ... we call this scratchboard in Oz. However, I only heard of scratchboard last year for the first time ever! Fairly certain we never did this at school.

Love the effect.

Cathy said...

I hope you have a lovely time there Juliet. I am still knee deep in bluebell photos at the moment. They are gone so quickly that I have to make the most of the time I have.

Cathy said...

Thanks feed the dog. Apparently it is scratchboard in the US too. Why we have to call it by a different name I don't know. I have been checking out some of the wonderful images of it on Google. Some of the animal images produced are fabulous. Off to try another one now...lol.

andamento said...

I've never heard of scraperboard either but I though your first effort was fantastic, indeed I had at first thought you must have missed out your picture and had only left in those of the other artist you admired.
This week I also liked Jill Stewart's metal work and the lovely photo of the bluebell wood.

~ Phyllis ~ said...

Cathy, The Bluebells and Cherry Blossoms are gorgeous. Such beautiful colors.

A bird in the hand said...

I tried scrapper board years ago, but wasn't very inspired. Yours is much, much better!

I love the bluebells.

Colette xo

sea-blue-sky & abstracts said...

Cathy,your scraper board artwork is lovely, really unusual with pleasing textures and effective use of light and shade. Another option is to use white scraper board and then to choose where to apply the ink to scrape into.

Marvellous art on this post from the metalwork pieces to the intricate lithographs. Lesley

Cathy said...

Hi Anne. Scraperboard seems to be a bit of a hidden art. I think English school kids of the 60s and 70s are probably aware of it but it seems to have passed most people by. I recently joined the online art site WetCanvas where they have lots of forums about art and they have one on scraperboard or scratchboard as some call it. Some are really beautiful and almost impossible to tell from wood engraving.

Cathy said...

Thanks Phyllis. All our flowers are in hyperdrive at the moment and I am making the most of it with the camera. Bluebells epitomise spring for lots of British people, including myself.

Cathy said...

That is interesting Colette. Funny how some of us take to an art medium and others don't. You have many, many strings to your bow already though with your beautiful mixed media and stitchery pieces.

Cathy said...

Thanks Lesley. Yes, I have read about the white scraperboards which use a chalky substance. I suppose you can then choose which colours of ink you want to use. I will probably stick to black and white for the present though.