Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The cottages that inspire me

I am trying to remember when it was, even what year I was inspired by Helen Allingham paintings. I believe it was from a book I found at a bookstore in new hope, pa called, "Flower Gardens of Victorian England," by Clayton-Paine. I had always loved cottages and cottage paintings, pretty houses with thatched roofs, with roses and foxgloves growing up the sides. Could of even been before I discovered the book, that I knew that was what I wanted to paint...This is one I did of Great Dixter:

But way after "The Borrowers" which I loved as a child,  I was doing children book illustrations, but now in my later years, I look back and see, even then, at around age 14 I was drawing thatched houses from stories I loved as a child. I was so inspired by Micheal Hague. Even though my family was from Portugal, people use to say all the time I was more British then Portuguese because I loved those houses so much!They are just so story bookish.
My subject matter was from houses around me in New England and somehow I would convert them to stone, and change their roofs to thatch. I was also thrilled when this very wealthy man from New York came down to our shore and wanted to build himself a thatched roofed manor. It was the only thatch roof house in the area, maybe even in most of New Jersey and he claimed it was real made thatch. I had been away living in the south at the time, to come home to see they had completely remodeled the house, putting a tin roof on it instead. I had screamed at the flowers, "what kind of nut would do such a thing?" I resolved I would just have to find a new favorite house to admire while I walked by springer spaniel down the sidewalks.

It is always such a thrill when I discover a new Helen Allingham painting I have never seen before, as the wisteria strewn cottage above. She had done alot of work in her life span and we are lucky to have so many examples of her fine pen.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Pisces in Solitude

I heard a writer once say, and this of course was from another Pisces, that all pisces women need a certain amount of solitude a day. Now this thought crept into my mind as I was sitting here in my studio and I can hear Harley pacing the floors. I dont think he realizes what its like to be artist and need some peace and quiet. The other distraction is the sound of his big boots on my floors. But that isnt all his fault. Because of this character that moved in 5 years ago:
who goes by the name, Mr. Kingsley. Mr. Kingsley really is a very good cat. I can leave on overnight trips and he stays in the box window of Buttercup Manor without making a peep. The only trouble with Mr. Kingsley is he has the habit of eating too fast and throwing up on the carpets thats why I had to throw so many of them out of my cottage windows. Long before he called the Manor his address, another character lived here which went by the name of Buster Watson. He was a lovable Springer spaniel that was more sufficating then most of the possessive boyfriends I had after my divorce, I could not go anywhere without him. No drinks at the pub with my friends which I usually loved to do, because whenever I got home, there was some nice gifts laying around the house for me.

so now there is another dog living here, a big blue eyed blonde one that drives a Harley-Davidson and cant stay still more then ten minutes or else I have to offer him a beer.

Not that he is the only one staying at Buttercup Manor. There is also these fellows:

So now as I am writing this, he is calling me from the garden, "you got to see this!!" I was working on this painting:
but of course my curiousity gets the best of me and I need to go into the garden to see what it is. And of course, thats what its like living at the Manor, there is pretty things everywhere

"why the hell would you bring me away from my studio for THIS??" I frown at him, "KILL IT." He looks at me with his blue eyes widening, "I'm going to save his life."
I mean seriously this guy needs a shrink. He wants to save the life of this thing thats eating all my tomato plants. "They are those things that ate up everything last year!!!" So grinning he takes a an empty jar I have stacked in the pantry for my homemade jellies (thats another post) and takes this thing with two small tomatos which he exclaims, "so that he wont starve.." and begins to keep this thing as a pet. Then asks me if he can go on my computer and search them, claiming then showing me these sick pictures on a bunch of white bugs eating off one big tomato eater. I look at him and ask him why he has to show me this stuff. He plainly just says, "your an artist you should be use to stuff like this.."

As goes the day on Buttercup Manor..