loving elizabeth price’s whimsical ceramic sculptures

 

Why, hello!

Look who’s relaxing up there on that shelf. She seems to be enjoying a moment of peace and quiet. As long as no one reaches for the sugar, she’s all set. 🙂

 

 

 

 

I was instantly smitten when I first saw Elizabeth Price’s charming ceramic figures. People standing, bending, stretching, sitting, posing — alone or with others — a state of mind, a moment in a narrative, a three dimensional snapshot that arouses curiosity and makes the viewer smile, ponder, or reflect.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Her pieces are brilliantly emotive; much is conveyed by stance and gestures — some as small as the tilt of the head or a certain set of the shoulders. I also love the soft colors and patterns of the garments! Wouldn’t you enjoy the lovely surprise of finding a small person lounging in your garden, posed on your bathroom sink, perched on your bookshelf?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Elizabeth is (you guessed it) British. She initially trained as an art teacher but early on ran her own restaurant in Manchester. It wasn’t until she was in her forties that she pursued formal art training and set up a home studio.

She’d always enjoyed working with clay, and after making many cakes with marzipan, she was reminded of just how much. 🙂

 

 

 

Continue reading

new art crush: jane newland

 

I recently “discovered” UK illustrator Jane Newland while browsing images online. Safe to say that 80% of the time, when something different/exceptional/beautiful stops me in my tracks, the artist turns out to be British. 🙂

 

 

 

 

Jane lives and works in Norwich (the most complete Medieval city in the UK), which is located in Norfolk county.

 

 

 

 

A graduate of Maidstone College of Art, Jane has illustrated children’s books for a number of publishers, in addition to doing editorial/licensing work for such clients as Anthropologie, Times Square Hong Kong, Leonidas Belgian Chocolates, The Art Group, and Vogue. Her designs can be found on greeting cards, baby bed linen, magazine covers, packaging, and a line of handbags for Sakroots.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Clearly inspired by the natural world, her work is characterized by gorgeous color combinations and an exquisite attention to detail. She also includes some surprises in her landscapes every now and then — foxes, birds, dogs, people.

 

 

 

 

 

Continue reading

rachel grant’s world of serene beauty

 

It’s really pure and simple. Rachel Grant’s art gets me where I live. She seems to know I’d love nothing better than to curl up in one of her paintings, sip a warm cuppa and nibble on a piece of cake while gazing out the window.

 

 

Rachel lives and works in an old Victorian terraced house in “The Potteries” — a creative county in North Staffordshire, England. This area became the center of ceramic production in the 17th century, with hundreds of companies producing everything from tableware to decorative pieces to industrial items. If you’re familiar with Wedgwood, Spode, Royal Doulton, Beswick, Emma Bridgewater — just to name a few, or if ‘Stoke-on-Trent’ rings a bell, then you know about the rich ceramics history of the region.

What a perfect setting for an artist!

 

 

 

It is this love of history, time-worn surfaces, and the consistency of the natural world around them that inspires and informs my work . . . I am always busy collecting and studying vintage ephemera, patterns, objects and images in order to interweave historical references with current and upcoming trends in a wide range of markets.

 

 

 

 

The preponderance of ceramic objects in Rachel’s paintings sets my little china-loving heart aflutter. 🙂 Jugs, teapots, mugs, vases — all appear in her cozy interiors, while her many window views feature quaint street scenes or seaside landscapes.

 

 

 

 

 

What I also noticed in her pictures is how perfectly she captures daylight in England. If you’ve ever visited, you know what I mean — whether sunny or overcast, there’s a certain quality to the light when you’re outdoors — different from being in the U.S.

 

Rachel works with mixed media (gouache, acrylic, collage), assembling various elements digitally to create “detailed, textural compositions that convey a sense of warm nostalgia, whilst retaining a fresh, contemporary feel.”

 

 

Whatever the subject, her overall aim is to create “an atmosphere of peace and harmony . . . quiet and still moments in an otherwise chaotic world.”

Precisely what we all need. 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

Rachel’s clients include Abrams Noterie, Amber Lotus Publishing, The Boston Globe, Canns Down Press, Pier 1 Imports, Design House Greetings, Martha Stewart Living, Peter Pauper Press, Simple Things Magazine, Taproot Magazine and many, many more.

 

For Amber Lotus Publishing, Rachel designed this beautiful “Birds in a Book,”

 

and this fabulous 2020 wall calendar:

 

 

Rachel is a self described “home bird,” and when she’s not working on her art, likes to garden, bake bread, knit, sew, and watch dystopian films while snuggled under crochet blankets. There is always music in the background while she’s working.

 

 

 

She would like nothing more than to someday live in an old cottage by the sea, embracing a quiet, slow-paced, peaceful life. Her illustrations offer a glimpse of this dream.

 

 

 

Enjoy this video “Blurb Book” to see even more (love her botanicals and fun surface designs!). Just fabulous.

 

 

*

 

Do visit Rachel’s Official Website, her Instagram, and FB Page.

You can purchase original pieces, prints, and blank journals at Rachel’s Etsy Shop, and her images are also available for license and commission for publication, editorial, surface pattern, and more. The Blank Card Company sells her art cards.

 

 

 


Copyright © 2019 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.

claire fletcher: stepping back in time

 

This is probably the first Claire Fletcher painting I ran into several years ago and I’ve been in love with her work ever since.

As usual, I was probably searching for bears and this piece caught my eye because it contains a real bear as well as a teddy. There was much “ooohing and ahhhhhing” in the Alphabet Soup kitchen, so naturally I had to find out more.

Here’s a picture of Claire. Don’t you love her braids?

 

 

She lives in Hastings, a seaside town/fishing port on the southern coast of England. It looks like she collects vintage toys and ephemera. My kind of person!

This is the bio from her website:

 

Whether it’s her acrylic or watercolor paintings, illustration work, or pen-and-ink drawings, I like them all.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Continue reading

dee nickerson’s lovely world

 

I like imagining the little stories depicted in Dee Nickerson’s paintings. These ladies seem so content sitting outdoors with their warm beverages, newspaper, knitting, and kitties. And look at those wonderful blue booties and floral print skirts!

Don’t you feel calmer and more relaxed just looking at them?

 

 

 

Dee is yet another of my favorite UK artists whose work is steeped in the English countryside. She was born into a Norfolk farming family and grew up in a rural environment, so it’s no surprise her pictures often show humans interacting with nature and animals in various seasonal settings.

 

 

 

 

She began making and studying art and art history from an early age, and won national school painting competitions. She later attended Great Yarmouth College of Art and Design, and then worked for Liberty retail, where she indulged her love of fashion, textile history, and design.

 

 

 

 

She’s been a full-time painter since the early 90’s and has exhibited widely in her native Suffolk and across the UK. Her hugely popular line of Green Pebble greeting cards has made her work visible to an even wider audience.

 

 

Continue reading