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1st November 23
Postage - my task today is adding international postage to the website. I will have to see how it goes, but for the time being I have made the decision not to post to France, Germany, Poland or Greece. These countries have packaging laws which mean that I have to pay an annual fee to be able to post there, even if I don't receive any orders.
No artwork for ages, but I have returned today to my resolution to draw every day, even if only a brief scribble. Time will tell if I keep that up.
26th October 23
I have listed my new for 2023 Christmas cards on this website today. It hasn't been a good few days for photography and I may change the photographs when a better day comes along.
So these cards, they are not for the lover of bright colours, snow scenes, robins, reindeer or any of the usual stuff of Christmas. They are more for the person who likes to mooch around in cold dark old disused churches and other such places (there must be more than just me who likes to do that).
I have some new-to-me type to play with this year. Not a lot, but it has allowed me to push my designs on a bit. One piece particularly I felt was an oft seen motif and it sent me on a hunt through my hard drive for photographs of a particularly lovely church.
Some years ago I spent time studying the surprisingly large church on the outskirts of the little village of Wintringham, on the edge of the Yorkshire Wolds. It is such a beautiful place and I have often returned there, though it's best in warm weather, it's a cold barn of a place. It dates from Norman times to the 15th century, with various later restorations and additions. It has beautiful 14th century windows, clear leaded lights with stained glass images of saints at the top. They give a beautiful glow from the setting sun. I read somewhere that they were Flemish, but looking it up now, I can find no reference to that. The carvings have to be seen, both in stone and wood, from Jacobean to Victorian, some maybe older. I have taken inspiration from these features for artwork in the past but this time it was the tiles I was interested in, in one of the side chapels. They are actually late Victorian and have a heavy glaze, but the motifs used have hardly changed from medieval times. As an aside, I was recently choosing kitchen wall tiles and was so pleasantly surprised to find the same motifs of the past coming through.
One more thing about the church. The overgrown graveyard has many yew trees, also holly, but it also holds an ancient spring, considered by some to be quite special.
So Wintringham is where the idea of my tile Christmas cards came from, tiles, yew branches (you will have to look close to find those) and holly leaves. I hope you like them.
19th October 23
What happened to the summer? Certainly not a lot of artwork from me. I did add a poppy to my flower card collection, which was previously called spring flower collection, but why be so restrictive! I love the vibrant red of the poppy, but before long we will be seeing the snowdrops poking through, which is where the collection started.
Looking at my last entry it tells me that I planted quaking grass seed in April, which I harvested it a couple of weeks ago. I haven't had the opportunity to use it yet, but I'm looking forward to returning to monoprinting very soon. I would like to have some prints available for Christmas.
And speaking of Christmas, I have been working on this years designs for letterpress Christmas cards. I have really enjoyed the design process, I find type setting to be addictive. I like puzzles, and that is very much what type setting is to me, especially as I mainly work with decoration rather than text. I start with an idea then arrange and rearrange, adding, removing, moving and each step sparks off an idea for a different design. I only have a small collection of ornament blocks and working within the confines of that can be challenging, but somehow very satisfying.
My theme for the new cards is 'Medievil Church Tiles' and I will be printing them over the next few days. They take a week or so to dry, so they should be available at the end of the month.
30th June 23
My intention was to make a diary entry every month, but it is 10pm as I type, so I only just made it for June.
My tiny wild meadow, part of the lawn I leave uncut, has grown well and given me some lovely printing material. I haven't had as much time to print as I would have liked, but I did make some single stem prints. I used really bright colours, quite unusual for me. The grasses I prefer to print with are over now, but I'm keeping an eye on some that are just opening up. Also, I planted some quaking grass seed last month, so very much looking forward to printing with that next year.
1st April 23
Coming soon ~ spring flowers.
I have been adding to my range of spring flower linocut prints. New this year is one of my favourite flowers, Wood Anemone.
I have finished printing them, but they are still to be hand coloured. As soon as they are finished I'll put them on here.
27th March 23
My latest letterpress goodies are correspondence cards. So far there is a pack of eight different designs and a pack of two each of four designs.
Correspondence cards are traditionally small, not too much space for a short note. Mine are a little larger but I have printed the lower edge too, so still not too much space to fill. They are my new favourite thing to print.
9th February 23
Very pleased to have put my first letterpress design of 2023 on here, a heart design using vintage type.
All my available art cards are now live too.
27th January 23
I'm not getting on very quickly with putting cards on the website, but I will be adding more soon.
However, at last, I have made some more silver heart jewellery. I had to really, with Valentines's day just around the corner.
Sterling silver heart pendants, studs and drop earrings are available from Hares and Hedgerows in Pickering, also on their website www.haresandhedgerows.com
18th January 23
I have started putting cards back on the website, I'll try to add more in the next few days.