some thumbnails of my illustrations

some thumbnails of my illustrations
Please click on the links below to view my portfolio ........ Images copyright of Carrie Osborne

Friday, 31 December 2010

A New Year's toast... Slainte!

A New Year's toast! To health, hope and happiness!

There's nothing better than a dram of the finest Single Malt out of a beautiful bottle, firelight wickering through whisky, warmest amber gleaming in glass, rich copper honey, sap resin pure... Reminds me of bronze-age embers, copper smelting, gold and bronze, Ore-Masters, Myth-makers and Sun-shapers...

... Slainte! And a Happy New Year to you all...

Thursday, 30 December 2010

Belated Seasonal Greetings and painting with salt...

Hello folks and a belated Seasons Greetings to you all!
I hope you've all had a happy, restful and creative time with your families...
My lack of posts of late is mainly due to the fact we've been working so hard and running on empty for so long, that once we were able to stop and close shop for the Christmas break, the exhaustion just came crashing down, crushing any hope of finding any motivation whatsoever! There was just nothing left...
But hopefully now I can start to climb back up, shake off the dragging depression and re-ignite my creativity, though it may take a bit of coaxing!
So today I started by reclaiming my work space, and Ta Da! - here is my little cubby hole, three large bags of children's paintings and drawings later, several random scatterings of toys removed and a great deal of tidying!

I wanted to do some experimenting with salt over wet on wet washes of watercolour and had tremendous fun! I love the way it changes moment by moment, though sometimes I wish I could stop it at just that right point, but the paint inexorably keeps moving... I became quite fascinated by it...

I'm not sure any of these experiments will be quite right for the images in pen and ink over the top I had in mind, but I do think I will do a lot more of them and something interesting may very well come... This was the best of this batch I think...

I haven't had permission yet to show you the Unicorn commission, but it did turn out very well so hopefully I'll get to show it. The other portrait commission however had a bit of an 'uncertain' reaction so I was too intimidated to ask permission to show that one... but I may show some close up 'details' later on...
Hopefully much more art to come, time and head space allowing! I feel I've been away from my brushes far too long!
Take care all...

Thursday, 9 December 2010

I Shiver - Robert Cray

I can't get enough of Robert Cray right now! He's got to be among the best of the best blues singers with guitar playing to match... His voice is just wonderful!
It's been in my head all day so I thought I'd share it, also its quite fitting for me today because I've got a rotten cold!
Take it away Robert Cray...

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Ghosts of trees, ghosts of birds...

It was an unearthly world we awoke to this morning, petrified trees ghosting from a pale freezing fog, crystal rimed and ice-stricken. A spectral land of mists, silent with no birds flying but one, a lone crow-shadow like a shrouded spirit across my path.
There were so many beautiful ghostly pictures I wanted to take as I drove to work through the wooded lanes, but there always seemed to be someone behind me so I couldn't stop, and we live more or less in the middle of nowhere!
Here's a few shots of the incredibly thick hoar frost...

And it didn't thaw all day, this is the first one again this evening! It has an unearthly beauty but it does nake for treacherous driving, especially out in the lanes... so if you're out driving about, do take care! And keep warm!

Monday, 6 December 2010

Aladdin's cave - a tale of ritual humilation! And one commission down, three to go!

This belongs on the business blog really but while I'm waiting for the press photo for that post I thought I'd show you here as well what we got roped into last friday night by the Chambers of Commerce folk!
Twas a bit of fun, though I still can't quite believe how, painfully self concious as I am, we ended up taking part in a very public parade down the High Street lined with hundreds of people for the Christmas Lantern Fayre!
Basically a fair few of the traders, ourselves included were taking part in a competition where the public had to visit all our shops and guess which pantomime we were representing buy our costumes and window displays. Considering how bitterly cold it was that week I think we got the short straw by being given Aladdin! I think my husband turned blue just from the parade down the high Street!
I thought I'd show you a few shots of our Aladdin's cave window which I was quite proud of actually!

Other news is that I've finally finished the first of my christmas commissions and I'm actually quite pleased with it... I'm meeting the clients on wednesday to show them and I always find that really nerve wracking! I do hope they like it! Fingers crossed!
Hopefully I'll be able to show you soon if they agree to me posting it, though because its a christmas prezzie it might have to wait till after the day...!
Commission number two begins tomorrow!

Saturday, 27 November 2010

The Weaver of Snow...

The Weaver of Snow
by Fiona Macleod (c. 1901)

In Polar noons when moonshine glimmers,
And the frost-fans whirl,
And whiter than moonlight the ice-flowers grow,
And the lunar rainbow quivers and shimmers,
And the Silent Laughers dance to and fro,
A stooping girl
As pale as pearl
Gathers the frost-flowers where they blow:
And the fleet-foot fairies smile, for they know
The Weaver of Snow.

And she climbs at last to a berg set free,
That drifteth slow:
And she sails to the edge of the world we see:
And waits till the wings of the north wind lean
Like an eagle's wings o'er a lochan of green,
And the pale stars glow
On berg and floe...
Then down on our world with a wild laugh of glee
She empties her lap full of shimmer and sheen.
And that is the way in a dream I have seen
The Weaver of Snow.

I thought that since most of the UK has seen at least a few flakes today, this lovely old poem by Fiona Macleod, (also known as William Sharp) might be fitting!
Sorry not to have posted much lately... life has been overwhelmingly busy!
I do still have commissions to finish which hopefully I will be able to show you soon... but even finding time to paint these is proving tricky at the moment with our fledgling business demanding all!
I think the New Year will be my time to reclaim some time for art and resume both my portfolio coursework and my dummy books! ( I really hope so!)
But for now here's some art painted by Jack Frost on my car windscreen...

Keep warm!

Thursday, 11 November 2010

Wild winds and whirling words...

'Joy of a falling leaf' by Arthur Rackham

I woke this morning to a wild blowing gale rattling the sash and an early dawn mirk of stormlight chasing wind-tattered cloud across a ragged sky.
And on a breath the words of a Ted Hughes poem tumbled through my not quite awake mind...
It is one I have known and loved for years and the mood of the elements this morning woke them from my subconcious before I was really awake myself. So I suppose my bemused husband was woken by his crazy wifey randomly (and sleepily) quoting half lines of a random poem to the darkness!
But anyway, its been in my head all day so here it is as set out in one of my books...

Wind (by Ted Hughes 1957 - 1994)

This house has been far out at sea all night,

The woods crashing through darkness, the booming hills,

Winds stampeding the fields under the window

Floundering black astride and blinding wet

Til day rose; then under an orange sky

The hills had new places, and wind wielded

Blade-light, luminous black and emerald,

Flexing like the lens of a mad eye.

At noon I scaled along the house-side as far as

The coal-house door. Once I looked up -

Through the brunt wind that dented the balls of my eyes

The tent of the hills drummed and strained its guyrope,

The fields quivering, the skyline a grimace,

At any second to bang and vanish with a flap:
The wind flung a magpie away and a black-

Back gull bent like an iron bar slowly. The house

Rang like some fine green goblet in the note

That any second would shatter it. Now deep

In chairs, in front of the great fire, we grip

Our hearts and cannot entertain book, thought

Or each other. We watch the fire blazing,

And feel the roots of the house move, but sit on,

Seeing the window tremble to come in,
Hearing the stones cry out under the horizons.

Sunday, 31 October 2010

Cheerful pumpkins!

Well, being 11.55 pm and still just about Halloween, I thought I might as well post a few pics of my kids' pumpkins... the ones they made for the school disco last week had rotted and turned to mush so we decided to make some more!

Not that they'll scare many goblins off - they're the happiest, friendliest pumpkins I've seen for a while!
On the art front, my baby portrait commision has now been joined by another two, potentially three! So I better get on with it!! I think I need someone to invent a device that either slows time or creates more hours in the day!
Hopefully I'll get the chance to post some artwork soon...

Thursday, 21 October 2010

An early Halloween, Acorns, Oaks and the writings of a great wordsmith....

Being the last day of school before half term, the children had their Halloween school 'disco' tonight, a week early... I've only just recovered enough to restore brain functions! Very manic and very noisy! I can handle heavy metal concerts far better than a barn full of two to ten year olds running riot!
My eldest Elora has gone every year as a cat, so this year she broke tradition and went as a skeleton... then at the last minute buckled and added the cat ears!
Here they are very excited and proud of their pumpkins...

Then, looking on my camera I discoverd pictures from an autumn walk a couple of weeks back that I'd totally forgotten about, so I thought, it's still autumn so not too late to show some of them...
(This spidery ones suitably Halloween-ish!)

Here's some of the treasure me and Elswyth found on our way...

There's a very grand old Oak tree where we like to stop and rest, very Squirral Nutkin-like with lots of little hollow doorways in the roots. I love the expressiveness of the limbs, all gesturing crazed and contorted, and the fragile little girl gathering acorns, dwarfed by its presence...

And these limbs bring to mind one or two of Ted Hughes' poems...
I love the raw, sometimes brutal power of his wordcraft, he was so good at drawing out the elemental roots of the world, savage and wild as it has always been... both of nature and human nature...
Here is a short excerpt of a very long poem from 'Gaudete'...

Your tree - your oak
A glare

Of black upward lightning, a wriggling grab
Under the crumbling of stars.

A guard, a dancer
At the pure well of leaf.

Agony in the garden. Annunciation
Of clay, water and the sunlight.
They thunder under its roof.
Its agony is its temple.

Waist-deep, the black oak is dancing
And my eyes pause
On the centuries of its instant
As gnats
Try to winter in its wrinkles.

The seas are thirsting
Towards the oak.

The oak is flying
Astride the earth.

How I love Ted Hughes. He has had a huge influence on my own writing and its time I started reading again I think... I have a shelf-ful of his books waiting, brooding bound within their pages, wanting to get out!
( I think there is a bit of Pratchett creeping in there, with images of restless muttering books flexing their covers ready to take flight from the shelves!)

And Elswyth's acorns have just reminded me of a bronze romano-british acorn in a little antiquities shop I saw years ago. Probebly the best part of two thousand years old found by some metal detectorist no doubt...
It was verdigreed and fashioned as a pendant and from the moment I walked empty handed out of that shop I have always regretted not buying it...
I always wondered who would once have worn it and what it meant to them... I really should have bought it!
Anyway, time to stop rambling on me thinks...!
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