Wednesday, 24 February 2016


I've been wanting to design something featuring snowdrops for while, so when the manageress of Anglesey Abbey shop said she thought some coasters would sell well, I set to work.

The gardens at Anglesey Abbey have one of the finest collections of snowdrops in the country with over 300 different varieties, 60 of which can be purchased in the shop.  Mine are just the generic kind!

I've also designed a 'snowy' version with falling snowflakes, as a Christmas card, but I'll post that later in the year.

The three new coasters; Bullfinch, Lode Mill and Snowdrops can all be purchased from my online shop.

Lode print and coaster success

The 18th century Lode Mill is situated in the grounds of the National Trust property, Anglesey Abbey. It is a working watermill and grinds flour on a weekly basis.  In its history it has also been used to grind cement, although thankfully it has been renovated since those days!

I'm really pleased with how my new drypoint print of Lode Mill has turned out.  I wanted to highlight the silver birch trees on the right and contrast them against the vibrant orange hand-made tiles of the roof.  The reflections in the lode were also a focal point of the design.

I've also had the print reproduced onto coasters, some of which I delivered to the shop at Anglesey Abbey last Thursday - they had sold out by Sunday!  More are on order.

Sunday, 7 February 2016

Bullfinch design

I've finished the secret project, which I can reveal in March.  It's not hugely exciting but it was very time consuming.  Hopefully it will also be used on some other products, so that will involve a bit more manipulating of the images, which is always fun to do.  I'm also waiting to hear about a Christmas roll wrap design and about to start on Christmas cards.

But before the festive season really kicks off I've been working on some new drypoint prints, one of which I will pick to be my image that represents my work in this years Cambridge Open Studio guide.  It's always an agonising choice to find something eye catching that sums up what I'm about.  I sketched this bullfinch design in photoshop, using some printed texture for the background and bird. I'm having a few made into coasters, but next week I'll print the drypoint version and see if I prefer it for my guide image.

After long tailed tits I think the male bullfinch is my favourite bird.  Much more elusive and therefore more thrilling when spotted.  I often see one in Milton Country Park, perched up high in the whitethorn bushes at this time of year.  I've seen two pairs there recently, silently plucking the emerging buds, at least I think that's what they are eating.

I will post the new prints as soon as they are finished.