August 30, 2016

A garden of flowers, travels and midnight strolls

I can hardly believe Summer is almost over and September just around the corner! I've been so busy with exhibitions and art trails it passed  in the blink of an eye, but I did find time to enjoy some of the beautiful weather pottering in the garden. It's coming along beautifully now, it was so sad and neglected when we moved in last Spring.
I have loved bringing the garden back to life and it is so rewarding to hear the buzzing of the bees now there are lots of flowers for them to visit. Did you know that in Deeside,  the old name for bees was 'Foggie-toddlers - 'fog' being old Scots for moss or grass and 'toddling' meaning meandering with a gentle sound. Lovely!
Flowers have filled my studio with their perfume this Summer too, some from my garden and some gifted by a fellow artist, the very same lady who provided me with so many delicious cutting of plants last year so that I could stock our new garden. How  rewarding now  to see them growing and filling the beds. The wee posies of flowers below were another gift, left on our doorstep by the sweetest faerie girls who lived next door. They have now spread their wings and flow off with their family for adventures far afield and I will miss seeing their cheeky faces appearing over the fence.
Thinking of wee smiles, I got lots of those  from my wee Granddaughter a few weeks ago when myself and my two lovely daughters spent a week under the stars down South. Very posh camping as you can see! We spent every waking hour in the fresh air and when we weren't cuddling dwarf goats, blowing bubbles or exploring we were sitting up late into the night snuggled in our woollies and under blankets, playing scrabble, and watching the stars. Precious times.
I got a second weeks holiday after that too, when Mr O took me off exploring in Yorkshire. We stayed in an old inn built in 1613 and slept in what must be the comfiest bed I ever knew! We spent our days exploring places that caught our eye, like Hardcastle Crags, Gibson mill, and the lovely town of Hebden Bridge, stopping for cake and tea and mooching through second hand shops!
On our last day we visited the lovely  old village of Heptonstall, once a centre for hand looming. It's cobbled streets were discovered in 1980 when the paving was lifted.  Of course I had to have a peep at the ruins of it's original church, founded in 1260 and once dedicated to Thomas a Becket. All together we had a lovely few days away.
Whilst away Mr O and I remembered how much we love walking. When did our days get too busy to go walking regularly! So we are trying to do a walk every day again and are already feeling the benefit, feeling fitter and healthier for being outside more.
 I haven't shared with you before my 'In the gloaming' painting have I, I finished it earlier in the year and the original has already sold. The word 'gloaming' comes from the old English word for twilight 'glom' meaning to glow, what a perfect description for that magical time of day when the setting sun leaves gives it's last whisper of light to the evening. The painting is available as  limited edition prints in my Etsy shop here

 So I shall leave you with a taste of 'the gloaming' and some images that I caught on my full moon walk down the lane last week,  I love walking in the evening it is a magical time! Such lovely silhouettes to inspire new paintings I hope!

May 09, 2016

A new studio and a faerie Queen in the making . . .

Hello my lovelies, it's been a while! In fact it's been almost a year since I last blogged!
How did that happen, and where did the days disappear to? Being a creature of habit, it has taken me a good while to settle after our move last April. A new wee house to grow accustomed to, new lanes, fields and shore to discover, a new place to create in. Lots of busy days have passed and it has taken all my energy to settle into the new pattern of our life. Now at last I feel like I'm waking after a very long Winters nap, waking into the warm  May sunshine full of stories, happenings and creations to share!
I have so much to share, so where do I  begin?  Slowly I think, as it feels strange to be writing here again, like meeting with a long lost friend and not knowing where to begin in the catching up!  I have missed this blogging, and the connections with all you precious readers,  it feels so good to be back!

One of my most exciting happenings this year began with  a chance discussion with a fellow artist, that revealed the possibility of some local studio space becoming available. Having recently discussed the need for such a space with the very patient  Mr O (who never grumbled as he shared our home with an ever increasing array of paint, paper, brushes, pens etc) it was decided  I should go ahead and apply for a space. The WASPS Artists Studios is 'a charity that provided affordable studio space to artists and arts organisations across Scotland'. They are currently helping 800 artists, 12 art organisations and have 17 buildings. What a wonderful idea!   
Well I am very excited to say I am now the proud owner of a space at the WASPS studios in Kirkcudbright, a lovely light and bright space where I can have all my arty paraphernalia to hand. It has made a huge difference and feels lovely to go 'out' to work each day. It has made a much clearedr definition between home and work as well and means when I'm at work I am not distracted by weeding or dusting that is calling to be done! And when I'm not distracted I get to finish pieces that have long been in the making! 

Back in 2014 I had the idea that I wanted to do a companion piece for Autumn Bounty, inspired by references to magical things in  Shakespeare's  'A midsummer nights dream'. 

As I started to doodle and sketch, a 'Faerie Queen' began to appear, as did other fae folk, a magical hare, a drowsy bee and Summer time flowers.
She is the Queen of the faeries and leads the merriment on Midsummer's eve. 
If you are awake late on Midsummer's eve, you may happen across the faeries dancing by moonlight in ancient circles of stone, a wondrous sight indeed.
 But remember, do take care, you don't want to be caught or these fae may just cause you mischief. It is said that if you carry a sprig of rue in your pocket it will confuse those wee folk and you can be on your way!

Faerie Queen - Midsummer Magic' is available as limited edition prints in my Mythweaver shop.
I am so pleased to have finished her at long last and can't wait to see what my pencils will sketch for the next painting in the set 'Spring'

It feels so good to be blogging again and I look forward to next time, but for now I shall leave you as the garden is a calling, it's a glorious afternoon and I have seedlings to plant.