In childhood, Ellie Ling read Frances Hodgson Burnett’s The Secret Garden and her love of walled gardens was born. Now she creates her own narratives set behind garden walls. This gives her a beautiful excuse to visit other people’s gardens and spend time in her own. Using drawings, photographs and memory as reference material, her paintings depict, through everyday incidents, the ancient idea of the garden as an earthly paradise providing joy, peace, pleasure and intimate moments of communication with nature. When she needs a break, she goes out and gets her hands dirty. She has, she says, the best of both worlds!
Artist Sally Bruce Richards, living on the Isle of Mull in Scotland, has taken the use of silver and gold leaf to a new level, producing eye-catching paintings by layering the gilding with Japanese rice paper onto wood. As she explains, 'Mine is a continuing story of enchanting artworks. Hares wait under windswept trees; bees and humming birds feed on heavy blossom; a silhouette of a fox on the horizon, big eyed owls watching.'
With so many customers asking us if we publish gift tags, we have decided this year to introduce a lovely little range featuring our bestselling winter images. Can you picture these on a gold or silver wrapped gift, the colourful art peaking out from under the Christmas tree? What a treat!
Our pretty little gift tags are printed on uncoated board and come in a set of 5 tags (of the same design) with rustic twisted string. We have 17 designs to choose from, so why not mix n match?
It's not often Green Pebble steps outside the realms of the possible, but we couldn't resist EB Watts' sense of humour and playful compositions. Her canvases are beautifully painted - taking many weeks of deliberation - and brighten up the dreariest of days. If you want to cheer someone up (and possibly get them to eat their greens), why not stick a sheep, a goose and a radish in a cabbage, after all?
Here, EB Watts tells the story behind this particular painting:
'I have a passion for cabbages. I love their shape, the big leaves on the outside getting smaller towards the middle.
Having decided on painting the Cabbage, I like to think where I see it: a cottage garden or a farmer's backyard close to barns and fields. The leaves are like wonderful nesting places, comfortable and safe.
Next the animals spring to mind. The rooster is centre stage as you always hear the rooster. He makes you think of chickens eggs and early morning. Each animal is typical of any farm and here the Cabbage becomes the farmyard, but obviously in a different way.
The vegtables are from every garden too. They are fresh and ripe and delicious. I love the shape of the peas and radishes and could paint them over and over again.
Each time I think of an idea, I try to push my imagination further and further, so in the end, some of the combinations or situations are surreal or extraordinary. I like to surprise and pursue originality, but not for the sake of it. I enjoy taking the most common image, such as the Cabbage , and making it look beautiful, because if treated carefully it will get the attention it deserves!
I am very influenced by the seasons, how I feel, hot or cold, and what I see around me,green fields or snow covered ground. This Farmyard Cabbage with the animals and vegetables is a burst of summer.'
'Whilst sitting in the car one day, waiting for my son to return from work experience as a tree surgeon , I found myself staring dreamily across the open fields on this particularly warm summer's evening. I was lost in my own thoughts of cow parsley and wild grasses and how beautiful they were, bathed in the low evening sunshine .
Suddenly, right in front of me, this enormous hare stood up on his hind legs and surveyed the scene around him. I remained motionless in the car, transfixed by his stature. Even from a distance I could see that he was a good 3' tall and his face wasn't soft and fluffy like a rabbit, but angular and alert. Having decided that he was alone and safe, he sat down and began to nibble the grasses surrounding him. I was transfixed, this was a rare sight for me indeed.
I collected my son and my thoughts, then found myself rushing into my studio. Hours later and surrounded by images of hares and an imagination full of wild flowers - far more than had actually been in the field - Sunshine Hare emerged onto my canvas, basking in the evening sun and surrounded by a cacophony of tasty flora. ( It's the artist's prerogative to wildly embellish 😊). I'd like to say that I painted him, but he actually painted himself and I just contributed the floral feast !😊'