Tuesday, 19 November 2019

Selling my stuff,Ebay or Amazon?

My Cambridge Attic is still full of books

After a week of trying to set up an Amazon Selling account I have got absolutely nowhere.They keep telling me I have to send different documents to prove that I am me,
perhaps I should stick with my ebay account.

At least it has given me more time to select a few books to sell.

When the account is finally set up I shall start with these two.


 This book published in 1985 is full of charming illustrations to well known poems
 about elves and fairies.

A more recent book is 


I bought this book very recently,it is a very full account of modern still life .It was not quite what I wanted and I shall be selling it for a lot less than the £22 I paid for it.


Monday, 11 November 2019

Too Much Stuff

            The time has come, I have to get rid of some of my stuff, it is taking over especially the books so I have spent hours opening an Amazon (UK) selling account and will be selling some of my lovely books under the name 

                                                         Cambridge Attic

    My attic is not quite as bad as this but it will be if I do not start downsizing soon.

Photo by De Mies found on Pinterest

Sunday, 27 October 2019

Witches ,Goblins ,Mischief, Famous Scary Illustrations for Dark Nights

The clocks have changed, the nights are getting darker .Time for witches and other spooky characters to step out .
                                             Something Wicked This Way Comes

The Autumn People by Frank Frazetta (1965)

On a Bat's Back I Do Fly by Helen Jacobs (1880-1970)

Two Witches Inscribed Teheran

The Wind's Tale  (Hans Anderson) by Dulac (1882-1975)


The Witch from Walt Disney's film of Snow White

Rip Van Winkle by Arthur Rackham


Halloween Illustration for War Time 1942

Hansel and Gretel, Arthur Rackham


Saturday, 12 October 2019

Summer Days Turned Into Paintings

Summer is over and I have used the things that I saw around me to make 3 paintings for an exhibition.

One of my academic neighbours let a rose bush grow wild and it has reverted to natural flowering for a brief period in June showing the pretty traditional Tudor rose blossoms. Still to be seen in our hedgerows in England.


I have inherited a lot of pottery and china from my grandmothers and mother .I shall have to cut down on it sometime but have fond memories of drinking tea with my family brewed in this old teapot.


Sunflowers did well in my garden , their big golden heads alive with bumble bees and butterflies.The shops were full of big cheap bunches of them too.I saw the Van Gogoh exhibition in London in July, who could resist having a go at a sunflower painting after seeing his?


The Final Result


              Three paintings entered for the Cambridge Open Art Exhibition

Grandma's Teapot sold already.



Thursday, 15 August 2019

A Good Book,10 Best Paintings of People Reading

I love reading and I love art.

People reading have been the subjects of many  famous paintings.Reading when travelling,with children,in the bathroom, or my favourite place which is in bed.
 We read to learn,for the pleasure of a good book,letters from loved ones, to catch up on the news or to find comfort  from old favourites like The Bible.

These are some of the reading paintings that I like best. 
I wonder where you  dear reader are reading this.

Reading The Bible by Albert Anker

Painting by Ho Shoha

The Law Student by Norman Rockwell
The Readers by Joseph Lorusso
A Good Picture Book by Walter Firle
Lamplight by Georg Pauli
ABC by Jessica Wilcox Smith
Letter from The Front by Agnes Goodsir
Painting by Sally Storch
Painting by Grace Cha


Monday, 15 July 2019

Best Paintings of The Sea by Famous Artists

                     SEA FEVER  by John  Masefield

                     I must go down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky,
                    And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by;
                    And the wheel's kick and the wind's song and the white sail's shaking,
                    And a grey mist on the sea's face, and a grey dawn breaking.

Artists have painted the sea to show the enjoyment of it all, the dangers ,ancient story telling, movement from one place to another and nostalgia. I have not mentioned merchant vessels or battles in this blog. I will look at these another time.

  • The joy of sailing is embodied in this painting by Winslow Homer.The boys are having an adventure taking their little boat out to sea alone.I wonder how many parents would let their children test themselves like this today.

Breezing Up a Fair Wind,Winslow Homer

  •   Stories and legends about the sea are a source of inspiration to artists.The beautiful girls known as sirens whose irrestible voices lured sailors to their deaths on the rocks have been painted here by the Victorian artist Waterhouse. The rocks  the sirens are said to inhabit are off the coast of Sorrento in Italy. I have been there many times but never seen a siren.

The Sirens, Waterhouse

  •  Fishing has inspired many artists .One of my favourites is the fisherman artist Alfred Wallis who had no art training,  little money for materials and painted in a charming, naive style the boats around his village in Cornwall.

Five Fishing Boats, Arther Wallis

The light and colours  of the sea were favourite subjects of Impressionist artists.Here the romance of fishing boats with sails are set against the changing times with a steam powered ship.

Fishing Boats Coming In Before The Wind,Manet

  • Oceans that have to be crossed as a means of reaching a new life have been painted as emotional emigrants leave their homeland and set out for another world.Hardship onboard and surviving the terror of storms on the high seas are illustrated in these prints.


  • The relief of seeing land after many weeks at sea after a slow journey on a sailing ship is felt in this much loved painting by Montague Dawson.
Land Ho ,Montague Dawson
  • Rescue at sea is often carried out by  Life Boatmen who volunteer to rescue ships in trouble at sea.Some seaside towns in the U.K. give demonstrations on the beaches that are open to the public.Aldeburgh in Suffolk is one village that does this.
The Lifeboat,W.L.Wylie,1873

  •  The sea has become the playground of the super -rich especially around the resorts of Monte Carlo,Nice and the Greek islands and Florida where magnificent yachts worth billions of dollars can be seen in the harbours.The less affluent can travel the world on the enormous luxury  cruise liners that can be seen in tourist harbours around the world.

Ground-Swell,Edward Hopper

Tuesday, 25 June 2019

Best Beach Scene Paintings by Artists

Beach Culture,A British Export

This summer millions of people will  enjoy the cultural ritual of flocking  to the beach to enjoy warm weather, swimming in the sea, sandcastles and picnics. Squeezing large bodies into tiny swimsuits and slathering themselves with expensive suncreams and oils citizens from around the globe will doze off on the sand believing in the benefits from sea and sun.

It hasn't always been like this. It is hard to find any paintings of the seaside before 1750.Before then the sea shore was regarded  as a dangerous place to be. A place of sea monsters and shipwrecks , pirates,smugglers and a boundary between nations.

By the 1840s a change in attitude followed the recommendations  of fashionable  European doctors that the sea air ,exercise and cold water sea bathing had restorative  effects on numerous ailments.One of the first seaside resorts was established at Scarborough on the chilly coast of Yorkshire,bathing machines were invented to enable chaste ladies to change into their swimming costumes beside the water.Even Queen Victoria had one at her seaside home on the Isle of Wight. More resorts followed  at Brighton and Margate.This British export made its way to Coney Island in the U.S.A. , Normandy in France and parts of Germany ,Italy and Scandinavia.As railways expanded access to the coast became cheaper and it became within the grasp of working class families to visit this landscape of pleasure.Tourism was born.
During World War 2 the beaches of northwest Europe returned to no go areas as the Nazi regime turned them into borders to be defended or invavded. I was six years old before I saw the sea.My Dad borrowed my Grandpa's car and drove us to Cromer. With my dress tucked into my knickers I braved the cold North Sea for a paddle.I loved it.
Air travel has meant an ever increasing ability to find new and more unspoiled pristine sands and blue oceans far away.Our desire for exotic locations is endless.
 In our pursuit of health and leisure we should heed the words of Rachel Carson who saw the history of the earth in "every grain of sand"A warning that the beach has a history that is fragile and could easily disappear.

     1.One of the first artists to paint beach scenes was Eugene-Louis Boudin.Trouville in Normandy became a summer venue for fashionable Parisian aristocracy .

On The Beach At Trouville, Boudin

2.Boulogne became another favourite seaside  destination in France.
On The Beach at Boulogne, Degas

3.Monet painted his wife, Camille , on several occasions.She has kept her parasol up to protect herself from the sun. Sun tans were not fashionable until the 1930s.

Camille on The Beach at Trouville.Monet

4.The American artist Winslow Homer was an early painter of beach scenes  both at home and in Europe and the Carribean. His water colour paintings are exquisite.
On The Beach, Winslow Homer

5.Mary Cassatt was another American artist, defying convention she remained unmarried and moved to Paris to live and work among the Impressionist painters.
Children Playing on The Beach,Mary Cassatt

 6.A painting from the 1940s.

Scenes of American Life, Beach,Gertrude Goodwin

 7.Dangerous Work at Low Tide.A painting of officers removing a magnet mine planted  in  the oyster beds at Whitby by World War 2 artist Eric Ravilious.

Dangerous Work at Low Tide,E. Ravilious

Click on these links these links to find out where to see beach paintings :







7. Naval Officers Sent to Diffuse a Magnetic Mine 
This painting is owned by the Ministry of Defence , unless you have a reason to go there you will have to wait until it is loaned to an exhibition to see the original.