Thursday, 25 May 2017

Eskdale Art ...and sketching Great Gable.

Well tonight, as you do, after work, I drove down to St Bega's School to deliver various paintings, prints and cards for their Art Show. It was a perfect evening and although time was tight I managed to take a few photos and do two field sketches. I can't believe it was too hot to sit in the direct sun- a stone wall provided the shade and it was lovely to sit on dry ground!

...and a lovely buttercup field  - again looking towards Great Gable.

Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Eskdale Arts show 2017

It's surprising how long it takes to prep things to take to an exhibition - especially when you realise you have to do some last minute printing!

Ribwort plantain

The roadside verge at our road end is providing a spectacular display of ribwort plantain (Plantago lanceolata). I love its structural nature and can feel a linocut coming on....possibly a reduction lino ....


My helper!

Monday, 22 May 2017

Allonby a ...lino cut using the Xpress Xcut.

Here's my hand-coloured lino cut of Allonby. Taken from a stitched photograph and then printed using the Xcut Xpress...which makes it so much easier.

Sunday, 21 May 2017

I couldn't resist a dandelion....

I just love the sculptural form of dandelions.

...and  some other species in the 'set-aside area' in the field.

Dog days of May

Just a walk out from the house - everything is very pretty..and the world has a kind of 'frothy' appearance.

Water Avens 


Daisies - two pictures. 

Friday, 19 May 2017

Beach pottery products.

Finally, I've got round to making some cards from photographs of my hearts - normally I make the heart and then frame it and think 'Oh bother - I should have photographed it before it went under glass!' This time I remembered!

Two very different beaches - both good for pottery - Portnahaven on Islay (above) and Parton, West Cumbria (below).

Beach finds from Parton. 

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

A demanding oil painting of Islay.

The month of May is always so busy but with an exhibition up at Mae's tearooms in Uldale, Cumbria, I need to keep doing paintings - especially as oils take up to 6 weeks to dry! This was a big one - looking over the saltmarsh towards Killinallan on Isaly.

Garden birds and dandelions.

Although the grass has been mown - it's remarkable how quickly dandelions pop up and seed; ready to be enjoyed by the the bullfinch and goldfinch. The nest is that of a robin - cute! (Taken from afar.)

Monday, 15 May 2017

Mountain pansies ...once again in Teesdale.

Just love them! Noticeably less in the first field as you enter the NNR, but more than usual in the second. Mainly clustered on the ant hills/molehills which obviously provide some sort of beneficial conditions.

Spring gentians in Upper Teesdale.

The gentians are splendid this year - I don't know, but there seem to be more than usual as you can actually see a haze of blue in the grass!

......with Cow Green in the background.

Sunday, 14 May 2017

Hanging Shaw ....Falcon Clints ....Cauldron Snout and Cow Green round walk.

It's always hard picking the day to travel over to Teesdale to do this splendid walk - about 13 miles in total, Well today was the day and despite a keen breeze it was superb. The views splendid - the river Tees that beautiful bright blue and the flowers were all out: spring gentians; bird's-eye primrose and alpine bartsia. Peewits were displaying and protecting young as were the grouse. We had a lovely encounter with a female red grouse defending her chicks and spotted black grouse on the way home. A pint at the Langdon Beck Hotel once again completed a perfect day. I was so privileged, although it might not have felt it at the time, to have lived in Upper Teesdale for the couple of years that I did.

Cow Green - bottom left - in need of some rain! 

Black grouse bottom left - red grouse on the right. 

Marsh Marigolds - Upper Teesdale

There are far too many photographs to do as one blog from today - so here we go! Driving over into Teesdale from Alston we were hit by the splendid deep yellow haze of the marsh marigold fields. We pulled over for a quick pic - rather fresh one could say! Walking back to the car later on I took the opportunity to do a field sketch of them. The ground was so dry - not often you can sit down next to them without getting damp! However they weren't half as fleshy and luxurious as usual, presumably due to the lack of rain that we've had this month.

Saturday, 13 May 2017

The Sea Post project

I love the textures of old worn sea posts so I'm trying to create a textile version mainly using needle felting. First find the posts ...some from the beach and others from an old ruin (these needed treating with wood worm killer). Then some practice pieces. A long way to go watch this space!

Sea posts at Mawbray ...

The sea posts drying after wood-worming - just incase: needle felted pebbles and needle felted experiments - limpets; mussels and barnacles. 

Thursday, 11 May 2017

Rannerdale 2017

Well I know it's popular and an over-photographed natural wonder ...but to be fair, it is impressive! Why wouldn't you enjoy the spectacle...and the herwicks!

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Spring woodland relaxation ..

After a rubbish day and feeling stressed, it took an effort to go down to Low Loughing woods near Wigton in Cumbria. Time to sit and sketch and even to jot a few lines down - not the best of quality but a start!

The field sketch.

The un-polished words's a start!

Monday, 8 May 2017

Chasing tigers on Wedholme Flow....

A quick trip out ...lots of tiger beetles flying off just as you kneel down to photograph them ....and then they land in the sunshine so the pic is too bright! Managed one decent one! Lovely to hear burbling curlew and a stonechat really chatting away!

Stone chat and 'spiderlings'. 

It's dry!