20.11.08

Toy collection




It's funny how a picture can look really wrong, until the final cropping is done. Bearing in mind that I will be making these artworks up into cards, I added a big extra wodge for the scans - which got cut off when the time came to frame up. When the magic circle mount was added and it made compositional sense.



'Sea Horse with Button Moon'


As I was getting near deadline, I revisited a favourite theme - 'We Three Kings' - rooster style. This is the first version from 2004 -







The second version from 2006 -





And the third version for the Green Gallery, 2008 -



Rounding off the batch of toy sculptures - Sherbettina -





- and the 'blob' who turned into Bonbon the rabbit -




Last Friday was D-Day; most of it spent scanning all artworks for my records and future usage, as well as taking a thousand photos of the animals. Before I packed the paintings up, I couldn't resist seeing how they all looked together...




Then I emptied my toy shelf -


(all except poor Minxie, who is on her own again)


- to see how it all worked as a package. And was rather pleased. After years of hard work, I finally feel as if I have created my own identity. I am a toy artist. Which is where I always wanted to be.




Yes, there are only five toys here - I was a little late with the final one, and poor Tommy was hastily needled over the weekend.




Hey! What about me???




With some relief I sent the toys off, on Monday last. And celebrated my new status of No Deadlines by getting the cottage straight - girl's got to relax somehow! And while I would love to put my feet up and do a bit of reading, I find myself back to full steam, planning new lines of needle felt bits and bobs and finally indulging in a little dream I had a loooooong time ago...




35 comments:

Meliors Simms said...

Congratulations on completing a significant milestone. The toys look gorgeous together (and I think I'm in love with Tommy). And your paintings, as always, are evocative, poignant and subtly funny.

hen said...

I am sooooo happy for you!!!!!!!!

Sherbettina is my favourite so far! She is just wonderful!

It's interesting to hear you say that you are a toy artist. I've been visiting your blog for over a year now and, well, you were always a toy artist to me.

In fact my favourite, toy artist to boot.

hen
x

Kay said...

Both toys and paintings are beautiful. And it's interesting to see the genesis of an idea with the '3 Kings'.

Kim said...

Wow, what a wonderful collection. A veritable party of toys :) Well done on getting them all done in time, you can have a rest now!

Kim x

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

You ARE a toy artist! And a wonderful one at that!! Perfect!

Rosehaven Cottage said...

You have accomplished a major feat! Congratulations to you!!!!! I am such a huge fan of your wonderful toys, that it's fun to see so many convened together at once.

Cindy

Frances said...

Oh, just look at what you've done, even in the face of fire from the chimney!

The paintings are sublime, showing a unique hand and eye at their source. And those feltings ... each has a real personality. I quite like that you describe an id for us, but truly feel that each animal really carries its own story.

I envy you that studio with its big window, and really praise all that is created with that light, and your vast imagination.

Rest awhile, and then, just see what might spring forth.

xo

tlc illustration said...

Congrats on their completion! That must feel good - and I can't wait to hear about their adventures away from home.

I love that crown on Sherbettina's head. :-)

And I am vicariously tickled at your prospect of free and personal time! (please share what you end up doing with it, so that I can feel hopeful for my own future? :-)

Libbys Blog said...

That must be soooooo satisfying. To finish, photograph, package and meet your deadline. I admire your talent immensely.

Gail said...

Well done Gretel, and don't they look just fabulous together. Can't wait to see what you do next.
Best wishes
-Gail X

Jess said...

Love, love LOVE it all! You've acheived so much and I'm so happy for you that you've finally arrived at your well-deserved destination. Your work continues to amaze each time you produce something new, you're such an inspiration, thankyou for showing us :)x

d. moll, l.ac. said...

Great collection of works for the show. I really like seeing the evolution of the 3 kings. Enjoy your free time, you certainly deserve it.

Rima said...

Well done indeed! How lovely it must feel to have a "name" for yourself! If you know what I mean, and it's what you always were and wanted to be :) You do these so well Gretel.. Sherbettina.. what a name! And Tommy is a dear thing.
Well done on all your hard work! I can't wait to hear how the exhib goes :)
Lots of love x R

Dana and Daisy said...

I wish I could live in your make believe world. everything is bright and lovely and perfectly adorned!

LittleBrownDog said...

Blimey, Gretel - do you make those felt toys, too? Are there no end to your skills?

I love all your three kings illustrations - especially this years which are lovely and colourful. Hmmmm - methinks it may be time for some cards again...

Glad to see all is back to normal after the fire.

xx

Julia Guthrie said...

Oh my gosh...I am in love with Sherbettina & Bonbon!!! You make the most adorable stuffed toys!:)

Sarah Laurence said...

How interesting! The first painting is so much better in a circle composition. I had a similar thing happen with a painting that worked much better as square than in the original rectangle. I’d considered tossing it, and then cropped and framed, it was the first painting to sell at the show. I found it fascinating seeing the evolution of your 3 Kings. The 4 paintings look even better all together. Congratulations! You’ve had such a productive time this autumn. “Toy artist” has a nice ring to it.

Bee said...

Your creations really do have a unique look -- one that is pleasingly quirky. Congrats on meeting your deadline, and with such aplomb, too!

natural attrill said...

Isnt it a nice feeling to finish a job and pack it all up to post.
Your paintings and toys look fabulous photographed all together like that.
I especially like the name Sherberttina, and Tommy's scarf looks fab!
Penny.

Kala said...

That's a good feeling, to feel like years of toil and frustration have finally come together. I'm not quite there yet but feeling a little closer every day - Congratulations!!!

Rurality said...

I love all your things! I am especially fond of the birds, and the 3 Kings series is spectacular! Wonderful work. :)

green phoenix said...

Congratulations for meeting deadline!
I love all your work, the roosters are inspired.
x

theartofpuro said...

Congrats,love your works and hapy for you

Deb said...

Sherbettina is so beautiful. congratulations on completing all of the work! relax and have a little well deserved rest! dx.

Rachel said...

Your work is quite exquisite. Well done; I look forward to seeing what comes next.

Mlle Miracle said...

As you see, everybody wants to know what's your next step. Me too! Have a nice "break", if you are capable to stop your fairy fingers...

Merisi said...

Congratulations on this great accomplishment! The paintings and the toys are exquisite, and I fell in love with Tommy. So very sweet and expressive!

Thank you for taking the time to share your magnificent art with us, it is always a pleasure visiting you!

Cotswoldgent said...

Well done! Ok so when is the book coming out? we know you are really good at writing, so why not do the story, paint the pictures and do a bit of needlework.........I'm waiting to see your stuff advertised on telly!!.........Where the hell is "Richard and Judy" when you want them?

liZZie said...

Wishing you all and more success for your exhibition - were I able to get to Stirling I would certainly visit it. I wonder if without deadlines artists would be so productive or is it because of deadlines the doses of adrenalin (and fear?)aid the creative forces release. Hope you get to have some play time of your own now. liZZie x (ps. by the way, a definite no you are not an oddity for not shopping at Ikea!)

Rachael Rabbit said...

Hi Gretel - I'm in love with Bonbon - is that any surprise? I can never quite believe how productive you are! I can't imagine that you have any spare time - I hope you are planning a little rest for yourself over the holidays x

Puddock said...

Gorgeous work Gretel - I love Sherbettina - her colours, the little patch on her foot, everything!

You've earned a good long sit by the fire now - put your feet up and get that kettle on!

joanasoares said...

Wonderful! I Love your sweet animal paintings and toys. So sweet!
Hug and congratulations!

Amanda said...

Every time I see another piece of your work I am amazed at just how talented you are - so it is great that you finally feel you are where you wanted to be as a toy artist - well deserved I say!!

Tiddly Inks said...

I always love to see what you are up to and these are just delightful. :) I am glad you can now have a little rest.
Best of luck as you keep working.
Christy

dowhatyoulove said...

I LOVE your chicken paintings! Especially the first two. I have a deep love for chickens. Very cute!