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
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.
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.
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!
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?
Sometimes when I doodle, I start with an idea and sometimes things just evolve without seeming to have any starting point… this doodle is one of the latter type. I have no idea where this guy came from! ..but I thought he was fun enough to post.
New haiku from Tom… with his own take on the image!
M’lady’s hat sits
awkwardly on my head as
she climbs winter trees.
Another quick doodle today since choir practice was cancelled due to a snow storm. I have been thinking about trees a lot lately… planning to plant some this spring – some evergreens and hardwoods – all native species. It should be an interesting project to try to increase wildlife habitat – a long term project!
A very quick doodle today… it has been much too long since I posted! … and I want to celebrate my five year blogiversary!!! Also, I am just getting used to a new computer – it will be fun to figure out what I can do with all it can do!
UPDATE: New poem from Tom for this doodle capturing exactly the feeling of the image!
Imaginary tulips rising high
above the snows whose depth is all too real.
Still they stand, a flag that proudly flies
expressing all that everyone must feel:
BEGONE ye winter snows! Your time is done!
Enough already! Damnit! GO AWAY!
Will will not yield to ice and cold that stuns,
however loudly you must have your say.
In this slog toward springtime we will win,
time and chance are fully on our side.
So though we greet new storms with some chagrin
the only thing that’s wounded is our pride.
Steadfast we stand, the True North strong and free!
O Winter never will we yield to thee.