Thursday, 2 January 2014

A Flying Start

Well, 2014 is here and it's time to get off to a flying start, (quite literally in some cases). Work on the shed has had to take a bit of a back seat while the weather did it's worst over the festive season. It was a good thing that work started in the summer, as I really don't think that the roof would have held up to another winter and I rather fancy that the old roof would have ended somewhere off the West Sussex coast! (joining three of our fence panels along the way). Just now a new door and windows are being made by my dad in Essex and hopefully with a bit of jiggery-pokery of the bits of glass we have lying about these can be fitted quite soon, and painting should get underway soon too.

The hard work on the shed has recently had a bit of a boost, with a mention on the Making a Mark blog by Katherine Tyrrell. The annual awards include the MGM award for Most Gorgeous Mouthwatering Studio of the Year award, and although Squirrel HQ isn't quite finished it has caught her eye for the 2014 gongs. Thank you to everyone who has been so supportive of the revival, the door and windows are being crafted as we speak and should be here soon.

This week, I have also been enjoying the new books I was bought for Christmas. 'The Golden Age of Botanical Art' by Martyn Rix is a cornucopia of delights that I have had my eye on for ages. With gorgeous books like this, I can't really justify the cost to myself but get all excited when someone else thinks I would like it. From the very early beginnings to present day representations, all the history of botanical art is here, a lovely volume I will really enjoy.  

With images like this, how can you resist

However, practicalities are another thing and I did treat myself to an early Birthday present in the form of the 'RHS Botany for Gardeners'. There are plenty of practical guides on the anatomy of plants, all beautifully accompanied by exquisite botanical illustrations.

Just one of the gorgeous pages of this practical guide by the RHS.

Painting-wise, I have been playing around with a new sketchbook by Stillman and Birn. I have a number of sketchbooks, but I really like the weighty feel to the paper of this one and the lovely firm binding could probably stand a bit of wear and tear. Usually, I work on scraps of hot press watercolour paper and stick them into my sketchbooks but here I think the pages will take the washes. So, here goes with that and I will let you know how I get on.    

Thank you for all of your support and lovely comments.

 Wishing you all a really great 2014


Claire said...

Happy 2014 Jarnie, I lost two of my greenhouse panels (plastic ones)too, blown away somewhere! xx

Debbie Nolan said...

Happy New Year - your books look like wonderful reading. You got me drooling - may have to see if the library has some copies that can be borrowed. Can't wait to see your shed/studio finished. Have a great day.

Hedera said...

Congratulations (despite the inclement weather)on your shed progress and the Making A Mark mention Jarnie :) Your new books are lovely (the first pic, gorgeous) - I must look them up. A very Happy 2014 to you in return!!