It’s great to have you here!

It has been a long time in the making, but River Thistle Art finally has a home, so that you can have my art in YOUR home! I believe everyone needs a little beauty for the eye to rest upon.

This is a place to find my artwork, enjoy and purchase prints, cards and other products, or commission something special for yourself or a loved one.

  • Wanting to share my art is not just about the image at the end. Sometimes the process, from inspiration to creation, also has value. I would like to include you in this, in a way that might lead you to feel more confident about your relationship with art, maybe even joining in.
  • I will be writing about my inspiration, my process, my techniques, my own favorite art and artists, my plans and later, my therapeutic art and creative interactive workshops.
A Work in progress (WIP) in my sketchbook

Pear Light

I’d like to talk about Pear-light.

Pear-light is the sad, poignant watercolour yellowing of this seasonal shift into autumn. Sun spreading between citrine pears & leaves smoky brown at the edges. Richer yellow of wasps, drunken sailors swaying from pear deck to pear deck. I especially love it. The sun is lower in the sky, earth is looking over her shoulder at summer as it passes. It feels like the sadness I have felt, knowing I’ll never grasp youth again.

The color palette is the lime humbug.. deep chocolate stripes of twigs in fading citrus shades. It is the butterscotch of mellow sunshine pouring over kitchen surfaces and still warm stone beneath our feet. It is the surprisingly fresh dew in-between toes when I go out to feed the birds, the grass determined to defy each mowing, standing upright, sentry-like, permitting only worms and insects to move through. It is the snarling bramble whose thorns are tougher, the brittle nettles, unaccommodating on brown and freckled ankles, spitefully spearing with poison, leaving fizzing welts. It is the softening roses, golden and bronze as petals fade, reminding me of beautiful women past menopause; still scented, still radiant, but fuller, and somehow more tender and fragile than their youthful memories. Perhaps we judge the older rose less beautiful than the tight bud, but remember how an old rose can flower into November, where a bud needs the nurturing heat of June.

We are experiencing some beautiful extension of summer, this September, and I can’t help but feel some gratitude for this mercy, in what has been a challenging year so far.

My family is shifting again, children making footprints in new directions, their small universes expanding, while I find myself at my desk once more, aching for time to draw and paint. I have some projects for the winter months, including a collaborative adventure on greetings cards, and a few commissions to work on, but otherwise, my work is academic, completing forms and courses, on my way to becoming a qualified teacher for post 16s, and counsellor, as well as a psychologist. Being an artist is a state of mind, as much as an occupation, for me, and it is just one of the gowns I slip into.

I have a run of prints of October Walk and Autumn Orchard available at the moment, as well as various art cards. I hope that if you feel inspired by my words and paintings, you will feel inspired to see things as I see them, on your walls, perhaps, or gift them to another.

Autumn Orchard
October Walk

I wish you all many long walks in the woods, and apple crumbles for now.


This year’s love..

It has been such an exercise in resilience, finding ways to fill the time during a global pandemic, but art has given me something special…

I took inspiration this summer from other artists on Instagram. I love to watch the videos of other artists, usually illustrators, creating little pieces, and I belatedly wished I had taken part in the 100 days of solitude ‘a drawing every day’ type collaborations, or that I felt confident enough to submit to the Maternal Art magazine.. however, what really stood out, was the beloved usage of sketchbooks.

A sketchbook to me, historically, has been a sort of tote bag for images: see something, sketch it and chuck it in the bag. It means that ideas are rapidly stored, but unfortunately I rarely return to them to develop these ideas into something more wondrous. However, the instagram artists I saw were filling their tiny books with such glorious collections, I began to see the sketchbook itself as a piece of art. The pieces within might not be anything more than a compilation of visual journal entries, in terms of quality (though some are exquisitely rendered), but as a whole, the book is priceless.

I bought a better sized cheap sketchbook, and during my snatched hour walk, on a good day, I seized an hour or two more, in remote places (we are a shielding family, after all) and really just worked on observational drawings, using only a pen, and then when home, coloring if I felt it was incomplete otherwise.

The results speak for themselves, and I am in love with my sketchbook.