Fierce Beast (AKA Yogurt)

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Fierce Beast (AKA Yogurt) (8″ x 10″ oil on raised panel

I painted this kitty portrait a few weeks ago now but somehow missed posting it. Although the painting isn’t too large, I think I have conveyed the largeness and personality of the cat quite well. He’s quite large – about 20 lbs! and is both cuddlesome and fearsome – at least in his own estimation lol. There were some colours in the background which I wanted to keep, but by making the shapes quite abstract they didn’t distract attention from the cat.

Tom’s poem is another kind of portrait of Yogurt.

Deep within each peaceful cat there dwells
a Beast of Olde, untamed and passing wild:
a creature dark and dangerous and fell,
not even slightly cuddle-some nor mild.
It rarely shows itself, but still, when roused
to the surface slowly it will rise
flooding up from where all anger’s dowsed,
witchery alive within its eyes.
Only thoughtful hesitation keeps
us safe from this fierce beast when it is woke
and waiting, thinking, contemplating leaps
which will leave lamps and crockery a’broke.
Beware the Beast that we have seen before:
Cry havoc and let loose the cats of war

image (c) 2019 Hilary Farmer
poem (c) 2019 TJ Radcliffe

Sir Gawain and the Green Knight and Ham

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Sir Gawain and the Green Knight and Ham (book cover)
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Sir Gawain and the Green Knight and Ham (front and back covers)

This is a project that has been in the works for some time! Tom who writes all the wonderful poetry for my art on this blog, has written an amazing, amusing, whimsical, touching, medieval, narrative poem! I contributed the cover art – note how Sir Gawain is above it all but his horse is looking askance at the pig! There will be an illustrated version one day too. You can get an idea of the flavour of the poetry by reading the back cover above.

Here are some links where to purchase:
Amazon kindle
Amazon paperback
Amazon Canada kindle
Amazon Canada paperback

Sir Gawain and the Green Knight and Ham by TJ Radcliffe (c) 2019
cover art (c) 2019 Hilary Farmer

Lemon tree

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Lemon tree (12″x 12″ oil on gesso board)

I wanted to explore patterns in a way inspired by William Morris. Lemons with their shapely yellow fruit, graceful leaves and pretty blossoms were a perfect subject to play with. It was a pleasure to spend an afternoon creating this piece.

Tom’s poem puts the piece into a larger context.

Deep falls the sky behind the lemon trees
that grow beneath a blue which England knows
only through the hint of summer breeze
and ships that carry treasure in their holds:
fine fruits from distant lands where tropic suns
beat upon the backs of all who toil
in field and orchard, where the Empire runs
amok amidst the beauty and the spoil.
In fecund seasons endless bounty waits
for those who do not scruple at the cost
of houses overseeing fine estates
where none wander and yet all are lost.
Yet too this England grows a different kind
who will tend her gardens in our time.

image (c) 2018 Hilary Farmer
poem (c) 2018 TJ Radcliffe

Darwin’s Theorem – a book cover…

Darwin's Theorem book cover
Darwin’s Theorem book cover

I was thrilled to work on a book cover for my good friend, Tom Radcliffe, for his (long-awaited) first published novel. It was fun having proof-read the novel to imagine an appropriate and imaginative cover both in content and style for his book.

Tom’s presentation of his book is humourously put on his blog. I think maybe the most apt is Dan Brown meets The Origin of the Species! This novel has many sides to it – science, religion, true love… and is good fun to read as well!

Tom has been a very frequent contributor to this blog with his varied poetry – hopefully there’s a book in all those illustrated poems (or poeted drawings 😉 ) somewhere, sometime… He has been working towards a prose work for some time and it’s great to see the results take form. It is available in both physical book or e-book, also on Amazon! Awesome accomplishment, Tom, truly a pleasure to read!

today’s doodle… more trees

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trees

Today’s quick doodle… trees! I must be thinking about the trees I am planning to plant this spring… as soon as the weather permits!

UPDATE: New poem from Tom – lovely! thanks!!

Within a summer evening, dark
beneath a crowded sky,
spreading branches shelter Earth
while silent stars go by.

I take a pause beside the road
to have a moment’s rest
and see a forest in the field,
a copse upon the crest

of a little hill above
still waters of a pond
where a brace of ducklings sleep:
they dream of skies beyond

the ken of mortal men like me,
a lonely passerby
who contemplates the living trees
while silent stars go by.

poem (c) 2014 TJ Radcliffe
image (cc) 2014 Hilary Farmer

today’s doodle… girl’s profile

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profile

A quick doodle today that I started a few days ago… playing with texture and colour.

Busy times – not sure when I will get back to a regular schedule.

UPDATE: new poem (possibly silly) from Tom.

Upon a time a boy of wood
became true flesh and bone,
so mayn’t then a girl of glass
turn from hard-as-stone
to supple, fluid, graceful life
with just a hint of truth
of her glassy origins
touching skin so smooth?

poem (c) 2014 TJ Radcliffe

image (cc) 2014 Hilary Farmer