It's taken MUCH longer than I thought it would- it always does, but here is the first of 4 BRAND NEW paintings from my Everyday Magic Collection.
These large, bright, powerful spells encompass many items with meaning. From the playful coloured ground, an explosion of paint and pigment, largely created by serendipity, come controlled observational studies, painted from life.
Here is a magic spell to bring you the strength of endurance. A centrepiece for your own personal altar. A place where the bringing together of these 8 elements, is an invitation to come fully into the present moment, revel in the wonder of nature and draw the strength of endurance into your own life.
The ingredients in this spell show extraordinary adaptation and ability to survive and thrive: from the ginkgo leaf fossil painted on location at the Sedgwick Museum of Earth Sciences (read more here), referred to as a “living fossil,” the oldest living tree species; to the bindweed, which can regenerate from the tiniest piece of plant. Don't be fooled by its graceful arc, this plant can choke any competitors.
The cherry twig in bud captures the fleeting moment of the sap rising and the hope brought by the return of spring. The beautiful blush of the cherry bark, early blossom and sour fruits provide a vital link in the food chain. Next to the cherry, is a micro-moth that feeds on it. The Orchard Ermine Moth. Its caterpillars are considered a pest where, under their meters of grey webbing they decimate the plants.
The Drinker Moth was painted from the collection of the Cambridge Zoology Museum (read more here), its bulbous shape (when not pinned down), is very distinctive. Its name comes from the caterpillar's wonderfully poetic habit of drinking drops of dew from grass stems.
Also painted from Cambridge Zoology Museum Collection, (read more here) is the water vole skull. Endangered due to habitat loss and the American Mink but still persisting. Even though they have evolved to live alongside water to aid their escape from predators, they can survive entirely away from water.
A jay feather, impossibly light and exquisitely, subtly patterned, comes from my own collection found on walks. These shy, exotic looking woodland birds pair for life and are essential for the endurance of oak trees, which sprout and spread from their winter caches.
Finally the lace. This is a “stitch in air” Italian needlepoint lace made without any foundation of net or linen. A human spiderweb, a complex mathematical puzzle and so important to our predecessors. Largely women's work, I included lace, which has no essential, practical function and is now largely irrelevant; as an example of a form of expression and local identity that has not endured.
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