Thursday, 26 May 2011

A postcard from London - the meeting place

The Mall Galleries, London, Katherine Tyrrell, coloured pencil

I've been lucky enough to scan through Katherine's sketchbooks on many occasions when we've met up - but never owned any of her work  - until now :>)

This gorgeous large card was waiting for me when I got back from Cornwall.   It's of the entrance to the Mall Galleries, huge trees along the pavement, luminous spring leaves with a wonderful subtle dappled light filtering through and making the grey pavements alive with colour.

It's where we often meet up on the rare occasions when I manage to get down to London so a familiar and very apt subject.

I love the attitude of the man in the centre of the group of   :>).

The warm colour of the poster is just perfect as a small accent amongst all that spring green.

The bulk, weight and age of that front tree is well done.

Altogether - I'm delighted!   I'm building such a lovely collection from you all :>)

Thank you everyone

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

A pause in a wild spring garden: a postcard from Pat to Ronell.

Sometimes words aren't necessary to describe beauty. It should be left to be silently admired by each beholder.

...a pause in a wild spring garden...
acrylics and ink on watercolor paper, 12.8x17.6cm
For me, who loves "story painting", this beautiful card by Pat says it all: A pause in her wild spring garden.

Pat, who is a professional gardener among other things, captured so much of the exuberant energy and optimism of this moment with her brush and acrylics... and the poppies, of which the seeds simply came from her spice rack, call us by name out to our own gardens!

A detail of the thick luscious strokes of the acrylics on her poppies and the watery colors melting into one another to form the background. Great skill and comprehension of perspective and depth of field.

Thank you for such a special card Pat!

Sunday, 22 May 2011

A french cafe and croissant

You can imagine how big my grin was when I received this wonderful envelope in the had 'to Liz' written all over it and inside a beautiful card from Ronelle!

She describes her visits for cafe and croissant at her favourite brasserie 'les voyageurs'
"We catch up and share with slow tempo in the days activities that await us, we talk about the weather, always very important of course; we wonder what Sarkozy will be up to next and we stand together in showing our dismay about the rising gas prices! We might then drop in at the fresh market for our veggies and we'll say our goodbyes loudly and cheerfully, invigorated by caffeine and good relationships."
I love that last line! Thanks Ronelle - I love my card and package SOOO much!!!

Saturday, 21 May 2011

A postcard from the Island of Sky

Today I received a beautiful postcard from an area which is still on my list of places I would like to visit in my lifetime. Great, many thanks Bridget! I guess you have painted the postcard with acrylic. A few strokes of a pen are visible. Bridget wrote: "I've spent the last week on the Island of Skye. Though it frequently rained nothing could spoil the dramatic landscape, the Black Cuillin Mountains plunging into the sea. Its history is also full of drama too - the remains of abandoned crafts (small stonehouses) when the crofters were forced to leave their land to make way for sheep, many having to emigrate and the stories of Bonnie Prince Charlie who took refuge here. This view is off the shore at ARDVASAR, on the southern part of the island.«
I of course immediately asked at Wikipedia about the unfortunate Charles Edward Stuart. When I come to Rome next time I will visit his tomb in St. Peter's.
One more time: Thank you so much Bridget for this gem in my collection of postcards!

Friday, 20 May 2011

Richmond Hill - a view protected by an Act of Parliament

The View from Richmond Hill by Alison Staite

I was absolutely delighted to receive a watercolour painting of the view from the top of Richmond Hill from Alison.

This is an absolutely classic landscape view.  So much so that it's actually the only view of a landscape in the UK that is protected by an Act of Parliament - the Richmond, Ham and Petersham Open Spaces Act passed in 1902 - to protect the land on and below Richmond Hill and thus preserve the fine foreground views to the west and south. This might possibly have had something to do with the fact that Sir Joshua Reynolds who was President of the Royal Academy of Arts used to have his home in a large house at the top of Richmond Hill and this was the view from his house!  Plus Turner painted this view.  It's certainly been painted by a lot of other artists since - and now that list includes Alison.
I know you loved views and vistas so it seemed appropriate for you!
Then I remembered that I'd had in mind to do the same view for her when her turn came round - so I guess I'm going to have think of something else now! :)

Alison has gone for an extended landscape format and she describes it as a rather oversized postcard.  She has painted the view on khadi which is a handmade cotton rag paper with an interesting deckle edge.
It was the first time I'd tried it for sketching, so what with all the greens to mix and an unfamiliar paper I was way out of my comfort zone.  The paper is really good fun though and I'll definitely be having another go.  I need Robyn's help so I can make a proper bound sketchbook out of it.
Looks to me like Alison has had a great time and I certainly recognised the view straight out of the envelope!

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

The reason everyone dreams of a villa in Tuscany

I was so pleased to receive this enchanting Tuscan miniature by Robyn Sinclair in the mail! Doesn’t it look about as idyllic as your wildest imaginings of fantastic places to live and paint… and garden or, better yet, admire other people’s impressive efforts?  Robyn says the town, Castiglion Fiorentino, is “right in the heart of the breadbasket of Italy.”  Looks like they can provide the makings of a pretty respectable antipasto and something nice to drink with that bread as well!

Monday, 16 May 2011

Nesting Cormorant

This beautiful nesting cormorant flew into my postbox recently. Desiree Habicht managed to capture the bird at an wild animal park sketching from life. This beautiful watercolor study arrived in perfect condition. Thank you Desiree for this wonderful addition to my small, but growing collection of artist postcards..

Friday, 13 May 2011

Helicopters from Felicity

I was surprised again as another mini masterpiece arrived in my mailbox. Safely wrapped to protect the amazing sketches that awaited me. I am so excited to finally be able to look closely to the detailed work that Felicity does in her botanical studies. It is truly amazing all the subtle details that went together to create these wonderful helicopter seeds and one of her favorite leaves. My husband recognized them right away as something he played with as a boy. She goes on to say that these were collected on one of her walks and that she enjoys expressing what is currently happening in nature on her postcards. The other side had the most delicate viola.

Thank you so much Felicity, I love my card. I am guessing that you use colored pencil and some watercolor, am I right???

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Apple blossoms from Germany

What a lovely thing, on a drizzly, mizzy autumn day (very unseasonal - we are supposed to be having cool but clear, crisp autumn weather) to find this great, solid chunk of spring in my postbox. I thought it was made of wood at first, so thick and heavy is this postcard! Martin's characteristic strong composition was easy to recognise, with the season's apple blossom and fresh new greens - and of course, trees! On the reverse side, a sample of his busy studio with marks of inks and prints, as well as the postmarks of it's journey here. I'm absolutely delighted to own this beautiful card - and am keeping it propped up on my mantelpiece to give me a reminder of spring through our cold months coming up.

Monday, 9 May 2011

Rhubarb and Bean Poles

Here's yet another wonderful postcard!  This time from Bridget in Scotland. This is done in acrylics and although the photograph hasn't done it justice, it makes it lovely loose and alive looking.  There are no figures in the sketch, yet there is a sense of quite busyness, of readiness, and of hard work having been done. Anyone who loves gardening and growing will have an immediate empathy, and I love it!

This is Bridget's comment-
 "April means lots of planting and bare earth but i love the pattern of the tall poles and the blue of the bins.  The rhubarb had been allowed to go to seed and in flower - I liked the colour!"

I like the colour too, especially of the blue bins. It's a really unusual subject, and really cleverly done. It really stuck chords.  Thanks Bridget!

Saturday, 7 May 2011

A cool card from Charlene!

A beautiful postcard arrived in my post box this week and I knew instantly that it was from Charlene! It's a wonderful panorama in lovely cool blues but you have to see Charlene's art in the flesh to see how incredibly delicate her work is. The details in the ships are so tiny and it's amazing how her watercolours have conveyed a vast expanse of sky on a card measuring only 6x4"!  The delicate spring flowers make a stark contrast to the majestic mountains in the distance.

On the back she has written
' The first of the Alaska-bound cruise ships have arrived in Victoria. It's still pretty cold up there - hope those folks know what they are getting in to! View is looking south to (American) Olympic Mountains'
Thank you so much Charlene!

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Oolong Berry Tea and BB's Stamp!

How wonderful it is to receive a "real card" from an artist whose work you've admired but only seen online. Photos can't make up for actually being able to hold her card and of seeing up close how Liz uses pen and watercolour in her own personal style to record her much loved tea and scones. I am full of admiration for her drawing skills, her vibrant colours and the way she composes her sketches and makes the whole tea drinking experience one I wish I was participating in. One day please Liz - if I ever go to Sydney !!

Liz has seemingly tried 57 T2 teas and has only 89 to go!! This one is a new tea Oolong Berry described as "Raspberries combined with green oolong and intense yet delicately flavoured". Who could resist that - especially served in these beautiful teacups - shared with her friend after a rainy day's sketching in a Tearoom called Cockatoo Island.

And I'm now the proud owner of one of BB's stamps.

Monday, 2 May 2011

From a Mail Art Master

I have received my postcard from a mail art master - Albrecht Rissler in Heidelberg, Germany. The scans don't do this wonderful gift justice. 24 x 15 cms right out of Albrecht's sketchbook and packed with beauty on both sides. Can you sense that I am delighted?

Albrecht says 'Willows won't win a beauty competition, but for me they are a pleasure to draw.' Well they are a pleasure to study, over and over again, Albrecht. He went on to say 'These sketches were made near the Rhine River where I love going for a walk.'

The card still has a hint of the hairspray Albrecht apologises for using in order to fix the graphite. :) There is so much for a fan to discover on this card - the fact that the artist used a Tombow Roller Ball pen and Karisma Graphite Aquarelle pencil and a drawing of both, plus a tiny value chart. The stamps are an added bonus - just beautiful.

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