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

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Pumpkins and Pirates...!

Halloween can be an exciting time for little folk, I thought I might show you some of the fun my two had over the weekend...

We spent the day carving Jack O Lanterns, decorating spooky cakes, with pumpkin soup for lunch and dressing up ready for a little party later on at our good friend's old cottage...
(You can see our lovely hand pulled woodcut of 'Rebel of Ravens' by Julia Manning on the wall behind that we only recently bought from her wonderful studio nearby... it fits the scene quite well doesn't it! I love her work!)

They can Raaah really, really loud too!! That one shook the windows!

Arrival at the spooky cottage by the river that flows darkly in eerie echoes under the old stone bridge... there were little pumpkin lanterns all up the path...

Lots of spooky food... my clever friend made these brilliant orange jellies...

After lots of fun and a scary walk in the dark down the lane and over the footbridge where the water trolls creep, we made our way home to find our own lanterns guarding our back steps...

(My older daughter Elora told me that at school they had said that they do not celebrate Halloween because they only celebrate 'good' things.... Hmmmm, I could say a rather lot about that concerning certain types of schools' blinkered approach to teaching theology and shallow views of other traditions... I better not get started!!)

On a slightly different subject, just for fun here are a couple of quick projects I've just finished... a poster for my husbands new band's first gig...

My beloved Tony is the guitarist on the left... he really does have a beard exactly like that, just right for a band called the 'Mutineers' really! They ended up with a pirate theme because the drummer's great, great, great (I think) Grandfather was actually hanged for piracy - for smuggling... wait for it... sheep, yes sheep, across the Atlantic! The dog is called Scooby Doo and is the drummers pride and joy, he's a really beautiful dog!

And finally I'll leave you with a little (badly photographed) painting for an old friend of mine... he writes short stories and every so often he will ask me for an illustration, usually with quite a lot of specific and bizarre things in them! I am more than happy for him to have these as gifts but he insists on paying me in whisky and chocolate... don't knock a good thing!


  1. Sounds like a wonderful Halloween! I know exactly what you mean about schools' approaches to celebrations like this. At my daughters' school they celebrate Easter and Christmas with an Easter Hat parade, chocolate eggs and bunnies, and Christmas decorations and 'Santa', but because it's a state school (and therefore supposed to be completely unreligious) there's no mention of any theological background to these events. No bible stories of Jesus or anything, let alone any mention of any other religious traditions. While that isn't my personal belief system, I did grow up with the christian stories (and it paved the way for my own sense of spirituality) and at least it gives you some sense that these celebrations are about more than chocolate and presents. My daughter's teacher told me that last year she tried to do Halloween as a bit of fun for the kids, but got complaints from some parents that it was 'anti-christian'...seems you can't win either way!

  2. oh Carrie, what great fun you had. Your girls look the part and the Halloween party all adds up to a lots of childhood fun! The pumpkins look terrific, when we were young it used to be turnip lanterns which really ponged when the candles were lit. The jellies are a wonderful idea too. I think your children had a terrific time, pitch black outside with the pumpkins glowing, and the whole experience is great fun they will always remember.

  3. I'd have loved to have gone to the party in the old cottage by the river... love the orange jellies. Sigh, not even one carved pumpkin did I see this year as we were all buried in feet of snow! This weekend my students are coming for a visit, so, maybe I;ll carve one then.

    What a shame that your daughter's school said that. Did it confuse her?
    Halloween is so much a part of the secular culture here that it has lost ANY religious or spiritual affiliations, so its just commercial. Guess that gives us the freedom to celebrate it, but I get irked because it has become so divergence from the beautiful origins.

    I love the poster and the band name and name origins - smuggling sheep, eh, yikes, didn't know they did that!

  4. Thanks folks, yes we did have fun! The children didn't seem at all scared by our walk in the dark which surprised me... I remember being Elswyth's age and being quite genuinely scared going from the car to the house on inky dark windy nights...! I can still vividly recall the eerie sound and the fear crawling up my spine...

    As for the school thing, most of the small first and primary rural schools in our area are CofE, and the problem I feel with the way they teach religion is that it is narrowly focussed on one faith whether you're christian or not... brainwashing is perhaps a little too strong a term...! (I have overheard the odd verging on hellfire assembly from the local vicar though!)

    I think at such a young impressionable age theology should be taught in as broad a way as possible, and also tied in with history and mythology, it is after all a fascinating human subject... Why do they never teach the Norse Pantheon or the ancient Greek Gods with so many intriging and engaging myths and stories for instance?

    And oh yes, Valerianna... I think it was smuggling sheep or mutton during the American War of Independance, which I guess could have been seen as quite a serious thing! Yikes indeed!

  5. OH, well, I guess we over here owe the smugglers our thanks? If, of course, they were smuggling for the folks who wanted independence. Now that I think of it, though, what side would I have been on? I'm somewhat of an Anglophile - especially these days with all my blogging friends from the UK!

  6. Lovely reverie, I am so glad I discovered your blog Carrie :).


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