Thursday, April 14, 2011

Back Again

It is good to be back to blogging again. Many thanks to the ladies who drew my attention to Live Writer when Blogger let me down. Once I had ironed out a few problems with photo size it wasn’t too difficult to get my head around. The good thing about Live Writer is that you can insert pictures instead of them always appearing at the top of the blog. Very useful if you have missed out a vital picture or worse, deleted one by mistake. I have a bit of an issue with borders round the pictures so if anyone knows how to get rid of the borders on the right and bottom of the photos please let me know. It wouldn't look too bad if it went all the way round.

I have had this painting below as a drawing in my sketchbook for ages but thought it would look sufficiently spring like to produce now. It is actually traced from my hand but elongated in photoshop for more elegance..haha. I do like to find interesting places for birds to nest.



Days Of Sunshine And Of Rain. A quirky little digital piece.
The artwork was inspired by the title I heard on the radio.


We had a wonderful day geocaching at Redbourne this afternoon. The signs of spring were everywhere and very abundant. The church below is quite beautiful, inside and out, with rows of pollarded limes. I have some more photos of the church to share next time. The flowers of spring are really lovely like the forgetmenots below and the gorgeous cherry blossoms. So many flowers and so little time to appreciate them as they don’t really last very long.



Cherry Blossom


The beautiful collagraphs below are the work of printmaker Sarah Ross-Thompson who takes the wonderful Dorset countryside as her inspiration. She has lots more like this on her website gallery here and she also explains how to make collagraphs.


Sarah Ross-Thompson - Hillside


Sarah Ross-Thompson - Wintershill

I used to see a lot of Hannah Swain’s wonderful fairytale etchings at one time but she is not seen as much today. She is the first printmaker I knew who painted their etchings by hand. You can find some more of her work here on the Two Blind Mice site but they are very tiny and not easy to see.

Hannah Swain - Soft In The Middle

We visited the beautiful ancient market town of Thame a few weeks ago for geocaching purposes. I have photographed a lot of the very old buildings before but I don’t think I have taken photos of this one, probably due to vehicles parked outside. (Owners of beautiful old buildings should never park their vehicles in the vicinity because it ruins visitors photographs..haha).



I spotted these lovely cushions through a shop window…closed alas. I love the graphic plant design.


I first mentioned getting the gorgeous book below in 2010. It was recommended to me by blogging friend Shirley who knew of my interest in Kantha embroidery. It is an absolute wonder of lovely images of Kantha work and is quite huge. I have only dipped in and out so far but will get down to some serious reading soon. I love Kantha because it is in the style of very detailed illustrations but in embroidery. I like the restricted colour palettes too. I have tried a few pieces myself but I am not up to displaying standard yet. More practice needed. In the meantime I can immerse myself in all this wonderous beauty.



I discovered Liz Somerville’s lovely work a while back. Liz is an English artist who graduated with a textile design and now concentrates on printmaking and painting from her Dorset home. She is inspired by Ravilious, Nash and Bawden – also favourites of mine – particularly Bawden. If you visit her website here you can see examples of her landscapes, architecture and seascapes. I love the quite retro colour palette she uses and the flowing lines of her landscapes.

Eggardon Dip


Still Tree – Quiet Hollow

Liz Somerville - Still Tree - Quiet Hollow

Five Trees 5


White Tree



Sandy Mastroni said...

Cathy ... your banner is just ..... fantastic
you do amazing and beautiful work
I have to look into Live Writer ? I don't know what that is ..... but I want to know !
have a lovely week Cathy

Linnea said...

Lovely posting!

Happy Easter&blogging!

Cathy said...

Hi Sandy, thanks very much for your lovely comments. Live Writer is good if you are having trouble with Blogger. It rescued me from my problems..haha.

Cathy said...

Thanks very much Linnea. Happy Easter to you too.

Pomona said...

Lovely to catch up with your beautiful artwork again!

Pomona x

Crafty Green Poet said...

What a lovely painting of the birds nesting in your hand! Also lovely photos of the spring flowers, your'e right they disappear too quickly...

rossichka said...

Again a post that continues in time, while looking at the links you've given! I like your new header, I like "Days of sunshine and rain" and the place of the nest... The cherry blossom here looks rather different - I'll take a photo, if it's not too late! The Kantha embroidery seems so difficult to stitch, but rich in objects, forms, details and colours. It's something new to me, so thank you, Cathy!:)

deb said...

Lovely to see you back! Love the new header. Thank you for a glimpse inside the Kantha book. I still haven't bought a copy. Your spring photos are delightful and I love your painting. A very elegant nesting place!

Cathy said...

Thanks very much Pomona. I am glad to be back again.

Cathy said...

They certainly do Juliet. Everything blooms together and all are gone within a few weeks.

Cathy said...

Thanks very much Rossichka. Kantha looks difficult but a lot of it involves straight line stitching. Even I can do it..haha. Glad you like the artwork.

Cathy said...

Hi Deb. I think if you get a copy of Kantha you will not be able to put it down for quite a long time. It is so gorgeous and there is so much to see.

Nikki Ella whitlock said...

hi Cathy, thanks for you kind words on my work, I'm loving you work also... especially your Wintershill, pleased to meet you :-)

bunnits said...

So glad you are back!

I love your new banner art.

tammykingdon said...

I love Liz Somerville's work, thanks for drawing her to our attention. Good luck with blogging- technology can be a real pain can't it.

Toffeeapple said...

So pleased to see you back, I've become a follower so that I don't miss anything. The header is superb and I appreciate the glimpses you give of other artists.

Cathy said...

Hi Nikki. Thanks very much for visiting and commenting. Your work is gorgeous. I wish I could take the credit for the lovely Wintershill but it is the work of the very talented printmaker Sarah Ross-Thompson. I always put my work at the beginning of the blog so as not to get too confused with the artists I feature. Perhaps one day I will be able to take the credit for work of that standard but I think I need to practice with my own printmaking a bit more before then..haha.

Cathy said...

Thanks Melissa. That is part of a much larger drawing I did some years ago but never put on my blog as it is framed. I thought it might look ok as a blog banner though. I am pleased you like it.

Cathy said...

You are so right Tammy. I have now found that my first image doesn't show up on peoples blog lists anymore as it no longer comes through Picassa. I will have to find a way round that too..sigh!

Cathy said...

Thanks so much for becoming a follower Toffeeapple (love your name). I hope you continue to enjoy the artists and craftspeople I find to feature, providing my blog behaves of course.

~ Phyllis ~ said...

Once again you have delighted us with your lovely photography and drawings. I thoroughly enjoyed the pictures of the older buildings. I love your new foxy header.
Keep us posted on your experiences with Livewriter. I too have had an occasional problem with Blogger. Livewriter might be worth a try.

Caroline said...

Hi Cathy, I don't know what happened to the comment I wrote here last week!! Had found a link for you to help resolve the drop shadow problem (and now don't know where that is :() Also said that I love your new header - has the fox eaten the pink goose?!!

Cathy said...

Hello Phyllis. Livewriter is ok for everything except not putting an image on other peoples' blog lists so that it looks like I haven't updated. Pity because otherwise it is excellent. Our weather has been great for photos these past few weeks so I have been making the most of it.

Cathy said...

Hi Caroline. I think he may well have. He looks a bit pleased with himself...haha. Thanks for thinking of the drop shadow removal. My brother must have found the same link as I have now dropped the shadows on the latest post. Don't know where your other comment went but I have read that happens on other peoples' blogs. Have a sunny and creative week.

Liz Somerville said...

Just seen some of my prints in your blog. Thanks very much. More so, because I was looking for specific Paul Nash images on Google and was surprised to see one of my own!

Cathy said...

Hi Liz

Thanks for leaving a comment. I hope you didn't mind me hijacking your beautiful pictures. I used to blog but found that I no longer had the time available but I used to enjoy featuring lots of wonderful artists for my readers. I have left the blog insitu as I still get lots of hits for those artists and craftspeople and hopefully it will bring more traffic to their websites etc. I hope you found out what you were looking for regarding Paul Nash - another amazing artist.