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I have decided to work with a new medium for producing paintings ,sculptures and craft work.
Wool is a wonderful, natural medium, best known for lovely clothing but also used for painting sculpture and craftwork.
Here in England we have factories that are still producing beautiful wool both for spinning into fabric and unspun for artists and crafters.
I have been using dry felting techniques ,
This is some of my work, I am improving with practice.
|A Marmalade Cat|
|Felted Easter Eggs|
It seems amazing to my grandchildren that I grew up without TV, Wifi ,the internet and mobile phones. How did we face the summer break from school , what did we do in the 1940s and 50s?A simple holiday on the east coast of England was something we really looked forward to. My Dad would also add to my book collection with a story like this parent free adventure by Enid Blyton .
No burgers or pizzas were on the menu. A big treat was a bar of chocolate like Cadburys Dairy Milk. There were almost no sweets or candy at all until about 1947.My Dad was in the army , the soldiers had generous sweet rations and Dad would save his share until he came home on leave to give it to us . A Mars bar would be sliced into slivers and made to last a couple of days .
Loose leaf tea like this was the drink of choice for most people. It would be made with boiling water in a well warmed teapot and served in cups with saucers after being left to brew for a few minutes to draw out the flavour . I hated the tea leaves at the bottom of the cup. All sorts of signs were read into the formation of the tea leaves. A large floating leaf meant a significant letter was coming. My grandmother would spend hours ruminating over the possibilities. Mugs were unheard of in our house except enamel ones sometimes taken or picnics.
Bisto was another great food improver added to gravy. Once the war was over we always had a large beef joint for Sunday lunch. These days a joint of sirloin that size would cost about £30 .The smell of it cooking was delicious .Cooked until very well done the Bisto gravy added moisture. Left overs were served cold on Monday as my Mum would be busy with washing day.Every thing was cooked on a stove that looked like this
A new invention in 1964 was the introduction of Pyrosil cookware. Said to have been invented to use in connection with rocket ships this oven to table ware was popular. I still have some. I was shocked to see some on display in a museum.
Summer in England is going to be controlled by the pandemic.
Boris has messed up again by failing to close the borders allowing a dangerous Indian covid mutation to enter the UK and spread.
This year we have arranged to go on vacation in England. A couple of hours in the car to a nice hotel in Aldeburgh in Suffolk
No manic airport, no testing , no worries about that group coughing in the swimming pool or putting their unwashed hands into the dinner buffet.
A room with a sea view, six delicious dinners and breakfasts, nice little shops and cafes and a trip to one of the other nearby villages.
The Way We Were
Here are some of my favourite paintings of summertime in England with reminders of how holidays used to be.
|Two Women in a Garden by Eric Ravilious|
This reminds of the days before frozen peas when sitting in the garden shelling home grown peas was a job usually given to me. I hated finding maggoty ones.
|Sea Shore by Mary Fedden|
Family holidays spent on the east coast included my Dad buying us shrimping nets like these along with buckets and spades. Catching little crabs in the rocks was a great excitement.
|Dandelions by William Nicholson|
Picnics in the Cotswolds were popular with my family ,cheaper than cafes which were few and far between. Sandwiches, boiled eggs, home made cake and flasks of tea would be eaten sitting on a rug in a field like this. Blowing dandelion clocks were part of the fun.
|Cambridge, St John's Bridge by Gwen Raverat, an LNER poster design|
|I do not know who this painting is by but it reminds me of my grandmother preparing to cook fish.|
Roses by Diana Armfield.
This artist is 100 years old this year. Her paintings of flowers and the country side are exquisite examples of a loose style of of art work. Reminders of the jugs of flowers from the garden my mother would have around the house in the summer.
|Swimming by Janet Cockerill|
Warmer days would offer opportunities to swim either in the sea or at a local lido.
|Green Fields by Joan Eardley|
A Scottish painters work. Cliff top walks were a bracing afternoon activity by the sea.
|Heat Wave, Janet Cockerill|
Where ever you are going let us hope for a heat wave so we can all get our feet into the sea.
Most of us will not travelling anywhere this Christmas while the Covid 19 pandemic is still with us. Some sentimental illustrations for you dear readers to remind you of the way we were.
|Home for the Holidays, Norman Rockwell|
|Murder on The Orient Express,Book Cover|
|Cambridge Market, Janet Cockerill|
|The Toy Shop by Timoleon Marie Lobrichon|
|A Good Cause, Janet Cockerill|
|After a Hard Day, Janet Cockerill|
|Frozen, Janet Cockerill|
|Blizzard in New York, Janet Cockerill|