Saturday, 20 September 2014


Today I hosted an Artea party in support of Butterfly Conservation, it was part of the butterfly bake off that has been happening in Gloucestershire this past week.
and yes of course the theme for the cakes was, butterflies.
It is an opportunity for me to get out my vintage china and challenge my friends to make a butterfly related confection.
Holly subverted the theme by making Flying Butters suspended over the tea table, orange and almond...yum
I went for a simple sponge, but made lace winged butterflies with icing.
Trish and Brian who helped by bringing promotional material, information boards
and live moths caught in a moth trap the night before made these lovely creatures.
These 2 examples of gorgeous baking came from  
3 generations of bakers, thankyou, Shelly and Carol.
Dinny made this beautiful narrative edible sculpture, the less lettuce the bigger the caterpillar. 
Thankyou Anne for these delicious blueberry butterfly cakes, they took me straight back to parties from my childhood.
On the wall outside the kitchen was a representative from the natural world and if anyone can identify this moth for me I would be grateful.
Our little tea party raised over £40, thankyou to all those who came with offerings and a bigger thankyou to all those who came and ate cake. Lovely to see you.

Thursday, 11 September 2014


I have always thought the more you do, the more you do! I made a commitment to making a print a month. Of course this means coming up with ideas and making drawings, then making collagraph plates and printing editions. This discipline seems to be having a positive effect on me.
This month I have created this suite of prints about
little birds on washing lines.
I have been playing with very simple plate making, just using glue and cut grey board.
The washing is made from 'skim and repair' with
wall paper pressed into it.
I am still teetering on the brink...should I leave the washing as an embossed texture allowing the light to pick up the pattern or shall I ink and print these plates? What do you prefer? Let me know, it's always good to hear from you.

Thursday, 4 September 2014


Something very exciting has happened in Gloucestershire this week...the opening of Crucible 2.
In 2010 I posted about Crucible, the sculpture exhibition in Gloucester Cathedral and I am pleased to report that Crucible 2 is every bit as inspiring. 
There are pieces in the Cathedral grounds, Monumental Steel Bull, Terence Coventry. 
Through the portals of this beautiful building, carefully and effectively placed are
sculptures of quality and meaning. Always challenging, The Thief  by David Mach
Damien Hirst, whatever you may think of his work, produces statement pieces.
Fallen Angel is a bronze covered in gold,
with obvious hints as to why he has fallen.
Anatomy of an Angel is perhaps a more typical Hirst.
There are works placed all over the building, smaller pieces tucked away, Untitled Sphere by Alastair Mackie.
Steven Gregory's work commands a second look,
entitled Tick, Tock. 
Just off the Cloisters made famous by Harry Potter is this unexpected Antony Gormley.
The Cloister gardens also show off some remarkable work.
Untouched is a tranquil work by Angus Fairhurst.
In contrast to Vesqua by W. Pye which you can touch. Don't be fooled by it's surface.
This is one of my favourite pieces, Bread Hand by Marc Quinn. Tucked away and easy to miss. 
Go into the Crypt, the works there have an atmosphere of their own,
Split Shadow is another of my favourites by Ann Christopher.
Thames by Jordi Raga.
The Cathedral lends it's own drama to the exhibition,
It is not like walking around an art gallery. Constellation 2014 by Daniel Chadwick.
I was lucky enough to be invited to the private view organised by one of the exhibitions sponsor's, Willans. Thankyou Chris Ryder for taking me along.
I did not have time to see all the work, so I need to go back to find the Henry Moore, David Nash and the Randall- Page work just for starters. on until the 31st October. Not to be missed.

Friday, 29 August 2014


This is not a pessimistic post as I really like this time of year, I am still glowing after a summer break and everything seems possible in a new academic year.
My garden takes on a shabby chic look.
I have a few things left to pick.
Roses are re-flowering and I love
Autumn flowers like Rudbeckia and
Kaffir lilies.
My fingers are crossed that these figs will ripen.
These cheery nasturtiums greet me at the threshold of the shed where it has been all go. 
Back from my holiday I am throwing myself into work, these are my August prints. Can you believe I am still on target for a print a month...I know there are 2 prints here! You can see finished work on my Collagraph page.
I have also re-editioned some popular work
and drunk lots of tea.
I has been great to include some Gum Arabic printing with my new pieces,
I have enjoyed working with this technique.
I am running a 2 day workshop which includes Gum Arabic transfer on 27-28th September in Cheltenham, if you want to find out what this is all about, contact me.
So after 2 days solid work I made a cake and went off to visit a Hothouse friend, Julia Jowett at Unit 12,
Unit 12 is a gallery and studios not far from Stafford, the brain child of the paper artist Jennifer Collier. Full of delicious creativity generated by the resident artists,
Julia Jowett,
Louise Dawn Wilson and
Emily Notman.
I was lucky enough to catch the end of Jennifer's exhibition, 
and the 4th of September promises an equally inspiring show called Spectrum,
all the details are on Unit 12's web sight as is the information about courses and workshops.
I am very jealous of this cluster of supportive creatives, their welcome was warm, we shared lots of gossip, craft information and above all cake. It is only a 2 hour drive for me so beware Unit 12 I will be back.