Ladybird beetle {One frame}

I’ve been going through my recent Ladybird beetle snaps, and can’t quite believe I have taken so many photos of them!

This one is a two spot ladybird up close and personal on a leaf. I love how the colours are so vibrant and I can’t believe how shiny the little bug is! Even the veins and patterns on the leaf look good. I really love how the left hand side of the leaf is slightly less defined with all focus on the ladybird and the leaf in front of it.

There are about 5,000 different species of ladybirds in the world. These much little beauties are also known as lady beetles or ladybugs because as suggested they’re beetles not bugs.

The natural light was so good that this image taken with my Nikon in macro mode, needed no post production.

Embroidered ladybird beetles {Art}

Last year I fell so in love with bumble bees that I embroidered one (in fact I posted a new bumble bee embroidery only a few weeks ago!) and thought that as I’ve been captivated by the ladybird beetles why not sew one and add it to my ever expanding collection of insect needlework (in the end I created two!)

Up close the beetles are tiny – the seven spot one is about 1 1/2 inches tall and the two spot is even smaller!

I usually start by roughly drawing onto the calico and then its all sewn free hand using a single strand of coloured floss at a time onto a hoop and then sewn in teeny tiny little stitches. I’ve tried to sew them to look as round as possible – they’re quite small and only took a couple of hours to create. Needlework is so soothing and I find its a really good stress/anxiety reliever.

I wanted these ladybirds to be slightly smaller than my butterflies so the two spot one is in a 3 inch hoop and the seven spot is in a 4 inch.

Do you like them? I’d love some feedback on these pieces.

Thank you for visiting have a great week.

Ladybird beetle {Photography collection}

Ladybird beetles, one of those little creatures that just gets on with life and never makes any fuss. I noticed a lot more them this year, which is always nice. Obviously they are a great aphid eater which helps the garden no end but they’re also incredibly beautiful.

Enjoy some warm and happy summer colours and plenty of ladybirds…

I let the garden re-wild a little bit for #nomowmay – it didn’t take long for nettles to overtake and the ladybirds were so abundant I ended up buying a feeder to make sure the little guys had enough to eat.

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Another Embroidered bumble bee {Art}

Hello friends, I hope the week treated you well!

A short but delicate art post this week…I’ve embroidered a new bumblebee! Very much like the one I created last year but the wings are in a different position.

The hoop it’s in is six inches in diameter and sewn with the tiniest of stitches using eco friendly cotton floss, I love the fact that the wings can be made to look  a little more realistic just by sewing the threads in different directions.

The bumblebees this year have been extra fluffy and this photograph has been my inspiration for the piece.

I’m really pleased with it and its been lovely studying the bees again! What do you think? I’d love some feedback.

Thank you for visiting have a great week.

Bumble bees 2022 {Photography collection}

Hello wonderful friends, for this weeks post I’ve put together a little collection of bumble bee related photographs that I’ve taken this summer.

Bees have always been super special to me  – I try my hardest to take care of them and grow as many flowers as possible. They are so very clever and do so much good for our planet, that we really should be doing more to create spaces for them.

In a bid to do more for nature I decided to try and grow my own wildflower ‘meadow’ along the garden fence. I mixed all different seeds together and liberally sprinkled them into the trench – there were a lot of cornflowers (which are my favourite) that were multicoloured as well as nasturtiums, marigolds, californian poppies and various herbs like lavender, sage and rosemary.

As a lot of these plants are annuals I think I might try to strategically plant them next year as the corn flowers are so abundant that they’re cutting off the light to some of the smaller plants at the bottom.

Continue reading “Bumble bees 2022 {Photography collection}”

Home is Behind {Art}

I very much consider Middle Earth to be my happy place and the works of Tolkien have long been one of my favourite things! So as I’ve not posted any calligraphy art for a while I thought I’d share this one.

So the actual song Tolkien wrote isn’t actually sung in The Lord of the Rings, part of its last verse is sung in The Return of the King, by Pippin. On the soundtrack of the film, this track is named Edge of Night and Billy Boyd sings it beautifully.

Home is behind
The world ahead
And there are many paths to tread
Through shadow
To the edge of night
Until the stars are all alight

Mist and shadow
Cloud and shade
All shall fade
All shall
Fade

I love working with water colours to try and bring as much nature into my art as possible and combining it with my love of all things green with my love of calligraphy and quotes, they don’t take long to do, but look really effective against a white wall – my funny little brain likes to pretend its alchemy!

Embroidered Large white butterfly {Art}

Hello friends! A new butterfly embroidery this week. I’m really happy with the Large White butterfly one frame (that I posted last week!) and I particularly love this type of butterfly – they’re so beautiful but because the caterpillars eat cabbages humans consider them a pest.

So I decided to embroider one similar to my Holly Blue.

After roughly drawing four wing shapes onto calico I coloured them in with the closest matching threads I had and once finished I attached the wings to the body and created a backing canvas with the butterflies name in a hoop with plain calico. The stitches are so tiny!

This one is a little bigger than the Holly blue butterfly that I posted a couple of weeks ago and is about 4 1/2 inches across.

The body of the butterfly has a crocodile clip sewn on so that I can attach the butterflies to plants around the house! I’ve got a few more of these on the way and am thinking of putting them on my etsy…maybe.

What do you think? I’d love some feedback on this piece.

Also, if you want to check out the Holly Blue butterfly embroidery its HERE

Large White Butterfly {One frame}

Well, its been four or five weeks since my last one frame post, and I thought I’d share this image – I was sitting in a grassy field recently when this little beauty landed near me! I’m pretty sure its a Large White (Pieris brassicae), it landed on a fox tail for maybe a minute before flying away!

When it comes to photography, I don’t use any special lenses or have a particularly high tech camera – I use a Nikon Coolpix L340 its a good little point and click camera (which I’ve had for ages) and although I’ve been threatening to upgrade to a DSLR for sometime, I like my L340 and know how to work it!

I was really glad to capture this image with quite a soft background and how the colours compliment the butterfly.

Embroidered Holly Blue butterfly {Art}

This week I thought I’d post a new embroidery, when I saw the Holly Blue butterfly and was able to take some photographs of it (that I posted last week!) I knew that I wanted to create a piece of art about this insect.

So I decided to embroider one similar to the bee I did last year, but instead of being a flat piece I want to try and make it a little more three dimensional. 

I started by roughly drawing four wing shapes onto calico and then filled them in with as similar coloured threads as I could find. Once I’d sewn all four wings I carefully cut them out and edged them. I then drew a body and after I’d coloured it in, attached the wings to it before putting the butterfly onto an embroidery hoop with plain calico and sewed the name of the butterfly underneath it.

I’m really pleased with this piece and love how the wings stand out from the fabric, its kind of like a pinned butterfly, only made of cotton and ya know not…real!

What do you think? I’d love some feedback on this piece.

p.s if you want to the what the butterfly looks like my photography post is HERE

Holly Blue Butterfly {Photography collection}

I was recently got the chance to photograph a new butterfly, I’ve never seen one of these before and its been flying around for a couple of weeks but has never landed long enough for me to photograph. Its a Celastrina argiolus butterfly or Holly Blue, and it was so tiny!

Isn’t he gorgeous – it is male the females have more black on the upper wings.

The undersides of the wings are just as beautiful, originally when I saw it I thought the little guy was probably a Common Blue but the small black spots on the wing undersides distinguish the two types of butterfly.

Continue reading “Holly Blue Butterfly {Photography collection}”

A World Turtle {Art}

Hello friends! Just a little art post this week, for world turtle day (23rd May) I posted a pen illustration of a world turtle, slightly inspired by the Great A’tiun. Well, I’ve actually finished it and I am so happy with this painting!!

Floating through the endless cosmos, the occupants of the castle gaze happily at the universe and other distant stars.

I love turtles they are truly magical creatures! I hope you enjoyed this weeks post, it was a lot of fun to come up with. Do you have any suggestions for other world turtles or think things can be improved?

I’d truly love some feedback and as ever wish you a happy week ahead.

p.s if you want to see the original drawing the post is HERE also I’ve just worked out the whole ‘featured image’ thing – its so cool!

Summer Beach {One frame}

A new beach landscape shot this week, it’s amazing how the light and weather can affect photographs. This was taken standing atop the dunes on a superbly bright day.

With the wave breaking and the super fluffy clouds against the incredibly blue sky that fades out into the horizon. I feel particularly happy with the way I captured the beach.

Being at an angle there’s just a little bit of dune sneaking into the frame gives the image depth somehow, there’s no post processing on this image – everything is more or less in focus and the horizon is straight. I kinda feel its one of the best landscape photographs I’ve ever taken.

Glom Of Nit {Art}

Going postal by the comic and literary genius that was Sir Terry Pratchett, is one of the wittiest books out there (actually all the Discworld book are fantastic) and there are so many great quotes in them that Pratchett’s books are an endless supply of fun and clever phrases, which I love turning into calligraphy art.

The mantra of the postmen in the book is “Neither rain nor snow, nor gloom of night can stay these messengers about their duty.” which adorns the post office in large metal letters – its a fun play on the US postal service motto.

In Going Postal the post office is run down and a business man steals some of the letters to use above his own shop.

I used my arteza water brush pens and a really fine paint brush to create this piece and think the uses of different fonts work together really well. I also chose to use shades of blue as the postmen of AnkhMorpork wore spiffy blue uniforms.

Once I’d photographed the quote I added in the missing letters. Its a fun little piece and when I’m stressed I often say no glom of nit to myself for motivation.

Have a great week and mind how you go!

The Little Mermaid {Art}

Thought I’d post an illustration this week, I’ve recently been reading fairy tales and The Little Mermaid by Hans Christian Andersen has always been a great favourite of mine.

“The little sea-princesses, were six beautiful children; but the youngest was the prettiest of them all; her skin was as clear and delicate as a rose-leaf, and her eyes as blue as the deepest sea; but, like all the others, she had no feet, and her body ended in a fish’s tail.”

Excerpt From: Hans Christian Andersen. “Fairy Tales of Hans Christian Andersen”.

I wasn’t actually planning to colour her hair red, but when thinking mermaid I instantly Ariel comes to mind. It was clever of Disney because in the original story Andersen gives no clue as to the colour of the mermaid’s hair, but she does grow red flowers in her patch of garden. I’m thinking that I might draw several mermaids…or maybe other characters form old fairy tales.

Summer Ocean {Photography collection}

There is something timeless and soothing about the sea isn’t there? This week I wanted to share some ocean snaps. 

You may or may not have know but Wednesday 8th June was World Ocean Day so with that in mind I hope you enjoy this seaside themed post.

It’s hard to believe that this picturesque photo of the sea lapping against the sand was taken in the UK, but it was (in fact it’s a beach in Cornwall). The Cornish light is something I truly love when it comes to creating art or taking photographs!

Continue reading “Summer Ocean {Photography collection}”

Queen Elizabeth II sketch {Art}

In the UK and commonwealth this weekend we are celebrating the Platinum Jubilee of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and her 70 years on the throne! The bunting is up, the flags are out and we the British are going to have picnics and street parties outdoors…even if its pouring with rain!

So I thought that on this the Platinum Jubilee weekend I would actually post the sketch I’ve completed of Queen Elizabeth II, its been lovely being drawing in the garden the breeze has been lovely. I had a few stamps and thought it would be fun to draw the side portrait that adorns British coins and stamps.

Although I love sitting with a set of pencils and trying to capture a persons image on paper, I’ve never actually posted any of them online because I’m A.) not very good at realistically drawing humans and B.) I have a phobia that people who view my sketches won’t be able to immediately guess who the portrait is of (which is mortifying!).

Continue reading “Queen Elizabeth II sketch {Art}”

A World Turtle {Art}

This coming Monday (May 23rd) is World Turtle Day.

I love turtles they are magical creatures and won’t be around much longer if we don’t look after them.

World Turtle Day was created so that people could celebrate turtles (and tortoises) and their sadly disappearing habitats. I melded it with my love for Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series and this is what my brain came up with.

“Through the fathomless deeps of space swims the star turtle Great A’Tuin…”

Floating ever onwards through space, the occupants of its castle gaze happily at the universe and other distant stars.

Drawn with a 0.1 and 0.3 fine line black ink pen, I’m really quite pleased with it and may even colour it in!

I hope you enjoyed this weeks post, it was a lot of fun to come up with. Do you have any suggestions on colours for the turtle or think things can be improved?

Spring Beach {Photography collection}

This weeks post is all about the beach and seeing as the weather has been so good I thought I’d share some recent snaps.

So enjoy some seaside photography…I hope these photos bring as much sunshine to your day as much as they did mine. Did you know that beaches are made from their surround and can be identified by the materials they are made of – like a finger print, how cool is that!

I love how the rock formations are really dark in the foreground, with a little light cutting through between the rocks and shining on the sand and water. Even my dog wanted to be in this one…

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Advice from a Caterpillar {Art}

This weeks post is about about one of my all time favourite book characters – the Caterpillar from Alice in Wonderland!

And while the original Sir John Tenniel illustrations are in black and white in the book the Caterpillar is described as being blue (and precisely 3 inches tall) so I thought that this weeks posts should all have blue tones. Theres a couple of cute drawings, some hand lettering art of “How Doth the Little Crocodile” and a brilliant Terry Pratchett quote!

So, enjoy some blue toned caterpillar/mushroom related art…

This caterpillar is based more from the 2010 film directed by Tim Burton, I think the movie Absalom (although in the books he doesn’t have a name and is just referred to as the Caterpillar) is much more chilled out than the 1951 Disney version – who in my opinion was far too much of a diva and he yells at Alice far too often ! It’s drawn with crayons which are far harder to control than I remember them being a kid!

“How Doth the Little Crocodile” is a poem by Lewis Carroll which appears in his 1865 novel Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Alice recites it while attempting to recall “Against Idleness and Mischief” by Isaac Watts. It’s such a brilliant little poem and has always been one that stuck in my head.

Continue reading “Advice from a Caterpillar {Art}”