Friday, 29 June 2012

My 7 Favourite "Standard" Sized Prints

I have 26 different landscape limited edition prints available here at Crown Studio Gallery- but this is my selection of my favourite 7 "Standard" size prints. All of my prints are  professionally printed using pigment based inks onto an acid free, heavy weight, matt paper to produce a high quality print that can be enjoyed for decades to come.

 “Standard” prints are 28.5 x 35.5 (unmounted size) and are sold window mounted into ivory coloured board. These cost £49 (window mounted) are also available ready framed here at Crown Studio Gallery. 

1 Bluebell Woods
When the bluebells are flowering, the trees are just developing their new Spring leaves, which are a vibrant, and still translucent, green. This canopy of fresh leaves allows a soft emerald light to filter through to the ground below, creating a lush, almost magical environment, unlike any other time of the year. Add to this the sight of swathes of azure bluebells with their heady perfume and you have the most  wonderful sensory experience.
2 Foxgloves
I’ve always loved the sculptural, almost architectural form of foxgloves. The rigid, upright stems are surrounded by delicate bells of pink or white, with pale speckled throats and deep inside, as velvety and soft as bubble bees. These particular foxgloves were a five minute walk from my studio, in a small stand of trees that one might walk past without giving a second glance. But in the summer sunlight it looks like the perfect setting for Shakespeare’s “Midsummer Night’s Dream”.

3 Birches
Birch trees are a great reminder to question your expectations. Far from having monotone trunks in predictable shades of black to white, they can be surprisingly colourful.  Individuals can have young growth as red and shiny as a fairground toffee apple, alongside mature boughs of papery pink, bruised orange and mossy green. Their fine, whiplash branches are a tracery of purple-black. They are beautiful in every season.

4 Elsdon Pele in Autumn Light
I love the contrast in colours created by golden autumnal light washing across the Northumbrian landscape under a bruised and stormy sky. The warm light makes the sandstone buildings seem to glow, transforming the most mundane grey stone into a shimmering new structure.  This is Elsdon Pele Tower, a remnant of Northumberland’s turbulent reiver history.

5 Walking the Dog, Simonside Snow
This is a November view of Rothbury’s River Coquet, with the golf course sitting on the valley’s floodplain and the sloping pattern of fields that crosshatch the valley side, with The Simonside Hills as a backdrop. Dark skeletal trees, hedgerows and fencing are stark against the snow, producing the linear quality and limited palette of a winter landscape.  Only the dog walkers and their dogs have ventured out to enjoy their regular riverside walk.

6 Poppies and Butterflies
Scarlet is an unusual colour for our native flowers, so perhaps that’s why seeing a great splash of them across the landscape is always such a wonderful sight.  Close up they appear to be such a fragile flower, with their tissue paper thin petals and slender wiry stems, but collectively they dominate and subvert the orderly fields of corn where they appear.      

 7 A Summer Stroll on the Banks of the River Coquet
(High quality image temporarily unavailable)
In summertime Rothbury’s riverside walk is a symphony of greens- from the pale jade of the cut hay fields, to the bottle green conifers on the golf course and emerald plant stems. The rough meadow grass is studded with an ever changing procession of wild flowers from cranesbill to red campion, borage to horse mint, comfrey to devil’s bit scabious and the occasional poppy.

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

"Made March Hares" and "Happy & Glorious"

Made March Hares window display
It's nearly time to completely change my gallery window display for the summer. My last two window displays, "Made March Hares" and "Happy and  Glorious" were both very well received by my lovely customers, so I've got a lot to live up to. Everyone particularly liked the black and white "Rabbits and Hares" wallpaper I used to paper the base and walls of the window space and to cover the display boxes.  I even had one woman who vowed to come back with a steamer to remove it all for me if only she could keep the paper she removed!  If  only I'd kept her details.......
Happy and Glorious Jubilee weekend window display 
I specially designed and sourced some new hare themed pieces for the "Made March Hares" exhibition....

The four completed  Paisley Hare designs

Leaping Paisley Hare in black frame. 
"Moonlit Run"- framed assemblage by Linda Lovatt
A selection of "Happy Hares" 

Due to their popularity, these hare designs will continue to be generally available here at Crown Studio Gallery..

Jubilee window display with Age of Reason Scarf.
For my Jubilee or "Happy and Glorious" window display, I decided on a respectfully tongue in cheek display dominated by this fabulous, British made, "God Save The Queen" pug silk scarf by Age of Reason. "Happy and Glorious" is of course the fifth line of our national anthem, but it could equally describe my own childhood- which began a while after Her Majesty's accession to the throne. So I showed prints from my pen and ink drawings which were inspired by family anecdotes, my own memories and informed by family photographs. They record life in a North East mining town, but also the many changes we have seen as a family and as a nation since the 1950s.
My favourite four drawings.
The final hang of  drawings in chronological order so that they can be "read" as a narrative.
I made several small runs of ceramic commemorative items to mark the Diamond Jubilee.....

My hand painted wall hanging plaques- with lettering by my husband, who has lovely calligraphic writing.  
Vintage style crowns, based on a family heirloom chair back.
The chair back with its naively carved crown, flanked by a pair of lions.
These crowns were created by making a mould directly from this lovely old chair that I inherited from my Granny. It was made in County Durham, probably by a local tradesman, or possibly by my Grandfather for some past Coronation or Jubilee. I won't be creating any more of these special Jubilee items, though I do still have a small number of them in stock here at Crown Studio Gallery.

So now that July is almost here, it's time to say goodbye to the " Rabbit and Hare" wallpaper and hello to the new "Birdcage" paper.... and a new range of bird themed artwork.