Entries in illustration (14)
Digital painting, acrylic, watercolour, photomontage, charcoal.
Inspired by Russian folk tales.
We are knee deep in snow here. Pretty, and cold!
Digital painting/textures/collaged book
For the Anomalies series.
The actual picture is a part of another work (in progress), the head added for fun.
This is my own Miranda.
New additions to the Dreamchord Luxe series.
Photomontage incorporating elements from older, illustrative and photographic works.
The Dreamchord Luxe series has always represented a sort of ongoing fiction, to me. The images often spring from the memory of old poems, some of them written over a decade ago, poems that shall never see the light of day - not because I am ashamed of them, but more so because they are too raw, precious or personal to share with the world at large. There are also little stories which are still quite alive in my mind, that were created in childhood: very strange tales, always ongoing, like a book that can never quite close.
This series is very relaxing for me, I can't really explain why. Each image tends to stand alone, separate from those surrounding it, which is why it is such a joy to return to it every few months or so, reconnecting with a sort of open-ended, continuously unfolding dream. The images always encourage words, except I tend not to indulge in them, preferring to allow each picture to speak for itself. Privately, there are untold stories swirling around each and every one of them..... invisible texts, like inaudible whispers.....like ghosts.
Or Cat Heaven.
This took forever. And it only began as a lighthearted experiment for the Singing Tree. I was inspired by medieval tapestries, those which usually feature white hounds, unicorns, hunters and chaste ladies. So I wound up carried away. Once you begin something like this, it is pretty difficult to know where to stop..........
Suffering from a bad cold at present, so taking a little rest. Will hopefully be back very soon!
Miette, entirely remade.
A remake of a much older work, which you can view here.
I wanted to make her slightly older, fitting into the style of my more recent works. Will possibly write a little more when I have the time.
For Specters and Dreams.
"My name is Tabitha and today I turned seven years old. My older sisters and I live with our grandmother in a little town called Rye, which is in Sussex, England. Our garden goes all the way down to the water, and we have lived here all of our lives.
Today, my grandmother gave me a golden key which I am to wear around my neck like a pendant. It is very old and quite heavy, but I like it. My sister Cally told me that very old things, especially keys, are sometimes haunted, but my grandmother told her to shut up. Cally believes that everything in the world is haunted, it's all she ever talks about. Grandmother said that my key is lucky, and not haunted at all, and that it has been in our family for over a hundred years! Cally doesn't own anything this old, which is probably why she got mean about it. I'm going to sleep with it hidden beneath my pillow tonight and every single night from now onwards.
My oldest sister Lucy knows about magic. She wears a bracelet of magic skulls that nobody else can touch but her. She can talk to animals and always knows when it is going to rain. Lucy likes the rain, but her favourite weather is thunder. It makes things happen, she says. Cally said that thunder was made by angry ghosts and the sound was the sound of them roaring. I think she read it somewhere, so she doesn't really know it for herself. Reading things is different to knowing them yourself. Today it didn't thunder, but there was a lot of mist before lunch time. My sisters and I performed a ritual, which Lucy says is the way to give things special meaning. Lucy knows how to get secrets out of things. Things that don't usually talk, like trees, stones and animals. Lucy says there is power in numbers and birthdays, and that seven is a 'significant' number. I don't know what she means, but I like it. For my birthday, Lucy made a ritual and gave me an important book. I am not supposed to talk about the ritual or the book because it is a secret."
For the Specters and Dreams series.
Some of my works remain elusive, even to myself. Sometimes I like to dress up nightmares in pretty frocks with ribbons attached. Keepers remains faithful to my ongoing fascination with memory, the unconscious and dreams. My boyfriend responded instantly with 'David Lynch!', but I replied, indignantly, "No! It's Dorothea Tanning!". I always mail new pieces to my parents (usually at some ungodly hour of the night) so that they can meet my latest anomalies over their morning coffee. This time my mother asked me what on earth had terrified her so, for her hair to stand on end.
Well, not terror at all. Just some surreal, transformative skullduggery. I was so pleased with the landscape, which took me quite a few sessions to paint, and the scene, the situation, with its accompanying characters, seemed to grow out of the landscape itself somehow, as if they were born of it. I sometimes perceive my characters to have grown a little bit older - this time a girl on the cusp of adolescence - and their surroundings appear to have leapt into tune with them, often suggesting adventures into the unknown. And all of this, of course, is usually about me, in the autobiographical sense, which tends to describe most of the works in the Specters and Dreams series. Livid, living symbols! The skulls may represent a burden, or ever-present presences, the ghosts of her past. These are my favourite visual themes; creating a sort of serenity which has so much potential for terror. I suspect that something unconsciously quite terrible has always informed/driven my art, although the process itself brings such pleasure (to me!), transforming the darkness, those elusive flickers of memory into something tangible, ordered and (hopefully) quite positive/powerful.
I so wish that I could explain things just a tiny bit more eloquently. Perhaps this is why I make images instead of writing fiction (which was always my first love), because the images come so naturally, and their ongoing little fictions are already woven into them. And yet because of this, their private little fictions will have to remain eternally subject to the personal interpretation of each individual who 'reads' them.
There is a thunderous silence to Keepers, something which thrills and disturbs me to the core. The skull with the crown has such strong relevance for me, which any efforts at verbal translation could not justify. So, ultimately, so much remains hidden, both in translation and in the picture itself. A sort of revelation in half light.
Gosh, that was confusingly candid.
And speaking of fiction, I am currently reading two superdooper wonderful books: The Oxford Book of Short Stories, edited by Joyce Carol Oates, and a compilation of essays about the works of Angela Carter, entitled Flesh and the Mirror. So many new discoveries in the American Short Stories compilation, especially works by writers such as James Baldwin, Herman Melville and Henry James.
In shop related news, I am still awaiting the arrival of three, new Limited Edition books, which I am quite excited about because they are my first foray into hardback territory! A little bit expensive to produce, so there will only be the three available this time around - but I shall be looking to create more accessible options for after the new year. Do check my News page for more details.
Earlier this evening, whilst sorting through some older files, little Otto here became subject to a spot of accidental rotation. I don't think that he has noticed yet. Not quite. When he does, say nothing!