Wednesday, 22 June 2011

solstice celebrations

Once again I am lucky enough to be here in Portugal for the solstice. I am staying at OBRAS a centre for artists and scientists. Last night we all gathered at a small hill with a stone that directly aligns to the setting solstice sun.

It was a magical shared moment.

and here are some rainbow pictures from a few days ago...remembered after reading Lindsey's beautiful poem.

you may just be able to make out that it was three rainbows...I've never seen that before.

Hope you had a happy solstice

Sally x

Solstice: Helen Cowans

I'm very excited to introduce a guest blog from Helen, a wonderful textile artist from Northumbria. I love her work and this piece makes my heart sing, having this view at the bottom of her garden must be so inspirational!

This piece of work “Solstice” was created around a photograph I took 2 years ago just at the back of my garden. I used the picture for Solstice greeting cards that year.
I love being able to incorporate my photographs into my textiles (using treated fabrics and archival inks) and I love using silks and velvets as I’ve used in this piece. I love the textures and the rich, deep colours.

I’ve always loved nature (I studied Biology at University) and I love to follow the seasons. I’ve long had an interest in monuments such as Stonehenge and Avebury and have spent many hours hunting for stone circles in obscure places and walking to hillforts.

More recently I’ve been incorporating Mother Goddess and Rock Art images ( into my work – and there are more of these to come; Goddesses as the seasons, both in 3D and as wall pieces and more abstract art based on ancient monuments. So far I have the sketches and need to get them created. They’ll be exhibited at the Loch Lomond Quilt Show in 2012 (

For me the solstice times are very special. Though I feel more empathy with the Winter Solstice – as this is the time when the light and sun returns. The Summer solstice is not such a happy time for me as it means we are heading back into darker days and the wheel of the year is turning, ultimately, toward Winter.

I’ve been working in textiles for 10 years now; I went to college one day a week to learn C&G embroidery when my son was a year old and its taken over! I now teach and lecture and have my first solo exhibition this month at Paxton House near Berwick upon Tweed.
If, like me, you can't wait to see more of Helen's work her web site is and her blog is

Thanks Helen

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Summer Solstice or The Dance between the Earth and Sun

                     in their dance 
                        Earth and Sun breed
                          innocent play in light
                              wild magics by night

                                     spiral light waves
                                           through Honey Moon
                                               whispering be your dreams
                                                   now in Light of the Shore
                                                       sky painted rainbows appear

love and light

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Summer Solstice Suddenly Suprises - 9 days to go!

Tree of Life

Hot from the kiln! I made this as the leaves came into full bloom and thinking of the long summer days yet to come. Then there were Bank Holidays, celebrations and exhibitions to prepare for so just collected this from the Pottery Group kiln last Thursday night. My heart leaped as I saw it, just as I had pictured it would be. Fresh and full with the bark glowing and the light dancing. The frame is an unused wooden cheeseboard, I love re-using such things, please don't throw yours away, save them for me!
As I stood thinking about this piece, late last night, I realised the Solstice is only 10 days away, the season of lengthening days is passing, harvest time soon approaching.
I wonder how you all will celebrate the Solstice, The Wheel of Life and Nature's bountiful beauty?

This is my meditation before I paint or play with clay, puts my head and heart into the right place.

Follow me!

Share your Solstice creativity in words, pictures, music... by e-mail here.

love and light