"I begin with an idea ... and then it becomes something else"
~ Picasso

Tuesday 20 September 2011

little works of art

I've been away on a little holiday to Dartmouth

I do love it there and it's my second visit this year
as there were just too many things to fit in last time

there are so many things I love about Dartmouth ♥

the shops and art galleries
the marina full of fishing boats and yachts
being able to cross the river by small boat or ferry
and travel by steam train to old fashioned seasides
with Brixham, Paignton and Torquay so close

we went horse racing at Newton Abbot
where I backed a horse called "vintage fabric"
(it lost the race ... but did win "best turned out")

and we went to Greenway
the holiday home of Agatha Christie and Max Mallowan
a fascinating National Trust treasure

(more another time)

I suppose the appeal for me is that I find it peaceful there compared to how busy St. Ives gets in the summer months and you know what they say "a change is as good as a rest" so we swapped our cottage for an apartment with views of the river Dart and out to sea

our apartment has been renovated to resemble a ship's cabin
and was full to the rafters with nautical paraphernalia
but I'm going to post more about that on Love Stitching Red

I love the quaint pastel painted cottages
that nestle into the hills on both sides of the river Dart

I find I am fascinated with cottages at the moment
and took loads and loads of photos of rooftops
chimney pots, slates, lichen, windows and house shapes
for a future art project

bunting at Kingswear
on the Dartmouth side
a hillside of cottages in Kingswear
all in all ... it was a nice break away
even though the weather couldn't make up it's mind what to do
and my dear hubby was not well during our visit
we celebrated our wedding anniversary while we were away

stunning views of the river
since I got home ...
I've made a few more beads which are now in my shop

inspired by rusty fishing boats
the colours of the ocean
aqua, turquoise and sea blues
late summer sea and skies
aqua turquoise blue and gold

and this week ...
I had a day in St. Ives with my friend Rosie

we visited The Salthouse Gallery and I had the unique opportunity
of meeting and chatting to artist Hugh Webster
who is exhibiting there during the St. Ives September Festival
(ends 24 September)

Hugh Webster has his artist studio in a converted boat shed
on the beach at Felixstowe Ferry Boatyard, Suffolk
working in oils his paintings derive from this tidal landscape

you won't find much of Hugh's work on the internet
he resists having a website
and much prefers people to discover his work by chance
only putting his posters up a few days in advance of a show
so it's rather like stumbling upon a secret

if you are in St. Ives over the next week
you can see Hugh's work at

The Salthouse Gallery
Norway Square, St. Ives

with permission of Hugh Webster
on Wednesday the weather was fabulous and I grabbed the chance
to photograph some more boats at low tide in the harbour

these rusty lines caught my eye

and I ♥ peeling paint textures on fishing boats
this paint belonged to Dolly

hello Dolly
on Wednesday ...
I was one of many who enjoyed a collage workshop
with Sue Dove at St Ives Society of Artists Old Mariners Church

known as "The Mariners Gallery"
The Mariners’ Church has a fascinating history
and has been the home of the St. Ives Society of Artists
for over fifty years. The building is over a hundred years old
and in need of some essential refurbishment.
Like all old buildings it constantly needs money, but the Society has survived the ebb and flow of its fortunes due to the dedication and vision of some of its notable members
and with this in mind Sue was happy to volunteer her time to run the workshop to help raise funds for needy repairs to the beautiful old building

Sue Dove
Developing Ideas and Images with Collage
we all had so much fun on Sue's workshop which essentially
involved tearing magazines pieces, getting sticky with the gluepot
and getting messy with oil pastels ... such a playful morning!

Sue talked about how she came to develop her collage technique
and showed us many inspiring pages in her sketchbooks where
she had played around with the technique to take her work further
and use the small collages as inspiration for her pieces of textile work

Sue's work for sale in The Crypt Gallery
(ends 23 September)

these pieces of artwork were donated by Sue
to St. Ives Society of Artists
for them to sell

Alone With a Tree
after a couple of hours it was so exciting
to see how everyone's little works of art turned out

here are just a few of the colourful collaged pieces
(not my work)

and one lady made this fab vase of flowers

perhaps it's the time of year but the three pieces I managed
all came out in autumn vegetable colours ...
olive green, pumpkin, squash and courgette!

the first set is torn magazines and oil pastels
the second set is torn magazine pieces with
oil pastels and watercolour over the oil resist

and my third set is torn magazine pieces, water colour with salt
and looks a bit like a pizza :o)

when cut up it produces some lovely little abstracts

I will have to try and find some time to make a stitched collage
based on one of the squares
I also added some texture with a copper markel paint stick
applied with a palette knife
these ones turned out quite grassy

lots of abstract inspiration from a couple of hours play

if you would like to have a go at this technique
you can find it in Sue's book "Painting with Stitches"
which I would recommend for lots of inspiration
I guess I'm into these colours at the moment ...
I found some interesting bits of seaweed on the beach
and noticed my fibretex has a similar texture

playing with the pieces and aged textures
on a vintage botanical atlas

real seaweed on the left and fibretex on the right

I also made some beads in these colours
which were featured in this wondrous treasury on Etsy
someone else has the same colours in their head
and that makes me smile :o)


lastly I just wanted to tell you about
a lovely day I had with Margaret
whose blog is called Libertybelle

we met at the fairly new tea room called
"The Tea Room" on the Wharf, St. Ives
and after morning tea and walnut cake
we went beachcombing for treasures
and treated ourselves to beads in the bead shop
(not that I really need any more!)

it was a good day for seaweed
and photographing rock pools

magical little pools full of seaside colour

we sat and had our picnic lunch looking over Porthmeor beach
it was such a warm relaxing day

and then we visited The Gallery on the Square
and I took Margaret to meet Sheila Stayne
at her wonderful textile workshop
at Porthmeor Studios in downalong

Sheila's textiles particularly reflect her interest in
flowers, plants, trees, bark, leaves, seaweed and seascapes
inspired by gardens, hedgerows and local cliff tops

she works in lovely earthy colours which manage to be
both colourful and subtle at the same time
with hand painted silks, chiffon and merino wool fibres
to create wall hangings, delicate silk scarves and throws
as well as framed textile pieces and cards

(her sketchbooks are pretty wonderful too)

if you are interested in textiles in St. Ives
Sheila would love to see you :o)

I have more friends visiting and family staying
for the rest of the week so will post again when I can
it's kind of a back to work feeling next week

I've got a couple more things from my day with Margaret
to share connected to seawashed pottery
but they're not finished yet so ...
they will keep for another post

and just to say there are more beads in my shop
and hope they inspire you to create somethingLink
earthy brown and autumn gold beads
with a hint of orange and copper
sea green, jade, emerald and a hint of lime
with shimmery browns, orange and gold

back as soon as I can ...
creative wishes
Carolyn ♥


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Julie Shackson said...

Wow! Much to see and absorb here. I love the way your posts tumble out all at once! I love the work you came out with on the workshop, and wish I could get to St. Ives to see the Hugh Webster exhibition.

Lynn Cohen said...

ohmygoodness what a lot of wonders to see here; do love love your photos of your visit to the sea area so lovely...and the collage work is fun; and your beads are to die for...and on and on it goes. One must come back here to visit often as I am sure I will see MORE each time.

noelle said...

Hi Carolyn, glad you had a nice trip away. Wish St. Ives was less hectic in the summer! A wonderful post as usual full of wonderful things. I do like Clarice, I saw her over on FB. I haven't seen very much of the September Festival this year, been a bit busy. Maybe we shall get together hahaha perhaps before Christmas!!!!! xxxx

vilterietje said...

well, i must come to the south of england! yesterday i bought a little book about it and it's ab fab, like your post today is too:)

Gina said...

How wonderful to do a workshop with Sue Dove. You all made such beautiful collages.

Julie in Grantham said...

A full post as usual and very enjoyable, Carolyn. I have had a go at Sue Dove's collage technique and it's great fun, I shall have another go while we're away. If I get the chance I shall look out for Hugh Webster in Suffolk. I hope you get some time to yourself over the coming week. xx♥x

Indianna said...

I've just read Sue's book "Painting with Stitches" as I have given up cross-stich and so I was going to use some of the threads to make a heart broach....and then a Cornish landscape.

Sue said...

Just happened to find your blog and ... it really is very inspiring. You've got a good eye for photographic details, and your artwork is brilliant. It looks as if you had a good holiday... Will be back!

Deborah Younglao, Silk Painter said...

LOVE those beads, Carolyn!

ArtPropelled said...

Lovely juicy post Carolyn!

Lynette (NZ) said...

Fabulous colour inspiration :-)

Living to work - working to live said...

I cannot tell you what a joy it is to find yet another inspiring blog on the web. Your energy is fantastic and your pictures beautiful.

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Iz said...

I love that collage technique - looks like great fun!

Evelyn ~ Indigo Beach Art said...

I love the Hugh Webster painting !! You have some lovely photos and textures here!

Caroline said...

Interesting post - the workshop looks fun. I love the seaweed photos!

AliceAndFlorence said...

I always enjoy reading your blog, makes me want to have a go at the collage. Will search out a copy of sues' book. Your photos and bead colours are beautiful. Oh for a picnic on porthmeor beach! Looking forward to your next piece! Love Wendy x

Anonymous said...

Mmm, what a wonderful wander through so many ispirational happenings and places. Thank you!

Catharina Maria said...

Thank you for the look into your life Carolyn !
love ♥RINI♥

Emsoe said...

Hello, I've never said « thank you » for all the posts you share here, I'm a silent reader (I need to apologize because I don't always read the texts with attention because it's in english and sometimes I'm lazy ;) but I really try ! I "read" the pictures...). So... Thank you, that's beautiful ! And now, I really liked to go to Dartmouth ;)

Julia said...

My oh my! Where to begin, because it was all so lovely, rather like being gently bathed in beautiful colours and words...I love your beads, I love your pictures of Dartmouth (I once lived just over the hill from there), I loved the art you shared...wonderful. Now I must go back to drink up some more of your inspiring post!

Much love
Julia x x x

Lynda Howells said...

wow Carolyn what an amazing read. So much to read and take in. Everything is beautiful and interesting. thanks for sharingx lynda

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I Dig This Life said...

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Monica said...

Hi dear Carolyn!
What beautiful and rich post! I love all the colors!
Sending hugs,
Monica xoxo

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Wow what stunning and creative work! I really must try and get to this next year ... I'd love to see it in person!
Thanks a lot!

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