Pictures, thoughts,words and opinions

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  • Photo of Jane with Shipping Forecast products

    Shipping Forecast products – great gifts for Christmas, or treat yourself!

    The words “And now the Shipping Forecast, issued by the Met Office on behalf of the Maritime and Coastguard Agency…” mean something magical to so many of us. And sometimes having art on your walls just isn’t enough… so Jane just had to make it the centrepiece of her new venture into offering beautiful and useful items for the home.

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  • How to make paper mache birds

    The paper mache birds I’ve been making this year are more ‘folk art’ than ‘fine art’. People have asked me how I make them. There’s no precise recipe, I’m afraid, but this is roughly how I do it.

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  • The suicide of Vincent van Gogh – 29 July 1890

    On 27 July 1890, Vincent van Gogh, an unkempt, unknown 37-year-old Dutchman, walked out of his lodgings in the village of Auvers-sur-Oise, just north of Paris, where he had been living and working since May. That day instead of his usual easel and paints, he carried a handgun he had perhaps borrowed from a farmer ‘to scare away the crows’.

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  • Easter Island statues by William Hodges, 1775

    Europeans discover Easter Island – 5 April 1722

    The rise and fall of Easter Island is a parable for our times; a warning from history of what happens when humans doesn’t pay close attention to every detail of Planet Three’s precious natural resources. On Easter Sunday 1722 Dutch sailor Jacob Roggeveen landed on a speck of volcanic land 12 miles long and 6 miles wide in the vast expanse

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  • Swedish botanist Carl Linnaeus

    The death of Carl Linnaeus – 10 January 1778

    The Bible, Genesis 2:20, states: “And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field”. But actually it wasn’t Adam. It was a Swedish botanist: Carl Linnaeus. My dad was also a botanist, so since I was knee high to an orthoptera, I was aware that everything had a

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  • Green iguana Ecuador

    In praise of iguanas!

    Green iguanas, Galapagos land iguanas and marine iguanas all have their own exquisite beauty, evolved over millions of years if you stop to take a closer look.

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  • Galapagos: all the fun of the fish market

    There is so much fun to be had watching wildlife at the fish market in Puerto Ayora, Santa Cruz, Galapagos: pelicans, sea lions, frigatebirds.

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  • A painting of British Rock Music

    Painting British Rock Music

    My British Rock Music painting is pure Pop Art! My life has always been accompanied by music, much of it British, much of it rock. So what could be more natural to a British music-loving artist who has been having fun painting maps than a British Rock Music painting? This year, 2017, marks the 50th anniversary of the release of

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  • Robert FitzRoy: Captain Fantastic

    Everyone knows what a weather forecast is, most people have heard of Charles Darwin’s Voyage of HMS Beagle, and most British people have heard of the shipping forecast. So it’s very sad to think that more people don’t know about Robert FitzRoy who made all these things possible.

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  • Cushions, tea towels and aprons of my paintings!

    My new range of stuff is both useful and beautiful Many people tell me how much they love my paintings (thank you!) but some have no wall space left for new paintings or prints – a problem I know only too well. Others have said “Ooh! that would look great as a tea towel” and I’ve often thought they’re right.

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  • How I made my painting of the shipping forecast

    Discover how I made my painting of the UK shipping forecast, ‘Attention All Shipping’ in this blog which includes lots of photos of the work in progress.

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  • Photo of Jane collecting her award

    Shipping forecast wins award!

    To my utter surprise and delight, my shipping forecast painting, ‘Attention All Shipping’ has won a British Cartographic Society award!

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  • Eynsham tea towel

    The Eynsham tea towel

    A 100% cotton souvenir tea towel of Eynsham, a beautiful village in west Oxfordshire, designed in Eynsham and made in Britain.

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  • The death of Jane Digby – 11 August 1881

    Here’s a bodice-ripping love story of sex and adventure: the story of Jane Elizabeth Digby, Lady Ellenborough. She died on this day 1881. I celebrate her as a woman who did her own thing, when doing one’s own thing was very much not what women did. During the course of her lifetime, today’s average British woman will have sexual contact

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  • Frida Kahlo

    The death of Frida Kahlo – 13 July 1954

    “They thought I was a Surrealist, but I wasn’t. I never painted dreams. I painted my own reality.”

    Artist Frida Kahlo was born in 1907, the daughter of Hungarian Jewish father and indigenous Mexican mother….

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  • Scilly Automatic

    Where is Scilly Automatic? In June we had a lovely holiday in the Isles of Scilly. You can read about the trip in ‘The Isles of Scilly‘ blog, but while we were there enjoying the peace and the nature, Jane had a special project on the go. Having painted her map of the Shipping Forecast ‘Attention all shipping’ last year,

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