Diane Young Artist

Printmaker ~ Painter ~ Every Picture tells a story ~ Artwork ©Diane Young


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Santa’s Songbird The Red Cardinal

Two ACEOs inspired by a Poem

Red Cardinal Bird painting inspired by a poem by Diane Young Red Cardinal singing a painting inspired by a poem by Diane Young

The Red Cardinal

I was approached by a poet writing a children’s book using a poem she created about a bright red bird.  She sent me some stanza’s of the said poem and wondered if I might be inspired to create ACEOs with her poem in mind.

The poem “Santa’s Songbird” is about a blessed Red Cardinal, a North American bird rather like the Green Finches of the UK but with feathers of a vibrant red colour.

And so here he is, in all his glory.


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Elephants and Mice

 

The Elephant and the Mouse

Evidence seems to suggest that elephants do not like small animals running frantically around their feet particularly as they cannot see them properly. Naturally in the wild quick moving small animals like snakes are a danger and so elephants would try to get away from them as quickly as they could.   This may be  the reason that elephants appear to be afraid of mice.

Fable featuring a mouse and an elephant

An ancient fable tells the story of a duel between an elephant and a mouse for the position of king among the animals.  The elephant sat and laughed at the mouse until the mouse climbed into his ear (or in another story his trunk) and nipped him hard and drove him mad until the elephant ultimately admitted defeat.

I like my elephant and mouse to be friends, so here they are.

 


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Horse Paintings

Drawing Horses

Black Beauty

Remember these guys…..?  Black Beauty himself and the cast from the TV Series from the 1970’s.

As a child I would draBlack Beauty and Main Cast from Seriesw horses all the time.

I was completely mad about them.

I knew all sorts of facts about horses, their kit, how to keep them, their breeds and colours.  But there was no chance of owning one myself or of even being taught to ride.  Instead I read a lot of horse books from the library and drew them prolifically.

Champion The Wonder Horse

Champion the Wonder Horse, White Horses, Follyfoot and Black Beauty were among my favourite TV programmes.  I bought the Black Beauty LP and used to play it on our old single deck before I went to school.  I even made up words to the theme tune,  I was too embarrassed to sing them in front of my friend so I did so from behind the toilet cubicle door at school.  Strange days.

Horse Paintings

Today I started a new set of ACEOs with a Horse theme, here are the first two.

Dapples & Tassels, and Feathers & Forelocks.

.Dapples and Tassels Horse ACEO painting by Diane YoungHorse Feathers and Forelocks Painting by Diane Young


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Digger ACEO and Howling at the Moon

So Digger fancies himself as being a bit like his ancestors, although I am not sure what a Fox Terrier might sound like whilst trying to  howl like a wolf….ACEO Digger & The Full Moon by Diane Young

Whilst designing and painting this image I wondered why there is a plethora of images featuring wolves and a full moon……but it seems is just a human association. “Wolf howls serve as GPS systems, sing-alongs and fire alarms — all rolled into one. In fact, the purpose of wolf howls isn’t terribly different from the reasons humans raise their voices to the wind.”


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Colour Reversal and Blue Cats

After agonising over the fact that perhaps my website should not have a sombre black background I thought I would change it. As always you cannot really tell what works and what doesn’t.  Some peeps say one thing and others another.  Actually in my heart of hearts I am not a purple person and so I feel my website page will revert to its black background very soon. ACEO Moody Blue Cat by Diane YoungToday was a blue cat day.  This image was done a short while ago….Moody Blue Cat, with New  Moon…

Following on from this and completed today…….is Blue Kitten with Ping Pong ball.  This image is a characterisation of my own black cat Simba when he was a kitten.ACEO Blue Kitten Simba by Diane Young Now listed on ebay for 7 days.

 


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World of Colour

Not so much blogging this week as I have neglected words for colour issues and other technicalities on my website.  I struggle with choosing colour  for my website background as I think the artwork images should do the work really,  just like an artists portfolio should actually  speak for itself.  I get the feeling that my preference for black is not terribly popular, although really it is difficult to tell.  Feeback from anyone prepared to look is welcome, the more the merrier.  Let’s hope I am going into a purple patch so to speak to reflect my chosen colour !

Commission Me This

as a site has taken form this week too.  The designs on this page are offered to be commissioned either as they are or with slight changes and at a variety of sizes. ACEO ebay this week The Getaway Todays ACEO continues with the mouse and cherry theme….The Getaway.


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Bulldogs or Retrievers; Red Squirrels or Grey?

Dogs – Cuteness for Attention?

Bulldog lovers may love their breed but put a bulldog alongside a long eared spaniel or a doe-eyed retriever and the cute looks of the latter two will generally speaking attract more attention than Mr Saggy face. Assuming all things are equal this reaction to looks is just not fair, poor old Mr Bulldog he really is just as nice on the inside, after all beauty (or one’s saggy face) is just skin deep.  But if you like attention cuteness is a useful attribute.

Bulldog cute?

Bulldog good looking?

Saggy face.

Squirrels – Cuteness for Survival?

Last night I saw a nature programme about Britain and a topic they covered was about our native Red Squirrel.  The Red Squirrel is under threat as a species since a few Grey Squirrels were imported here in the 19th century from North America and were released by gentry of the time to the wild.  The Grey has now eradicated most of the Red’s population down to small areas of Great Britain mainly because of a disease carried by the Greys that the Red cannot survive. The narrator of this nature program was vehemently against the Greys describing them as many do here as tree rats,  because they are the cause of what could be the total eradication of the Red Squirrel from Great Britain.  The Red Squirrel has all the attributes of cuteness.  His ears are fluffy, his tail is especially bushy, he is very colourful and characterful; straight out of children’s picture books from the 1960’s.  My concern was raised about how we determine the criteria of  favouring one species over another.  Since the Grey would have to be completely eradicated in order for the Red to survive ultimately without human intervention, the only other action that could be taken would be a constant monitoring of areas where there are surviving Reds, culling of Greys as and when necessary. If no action is taken then the Red’s will just disappear from our country altogether.

Will Mouse Share?

Should the grey be penalised because it is successful at surviving here? Should evolution be allowed to run its own path even though humans have accidentally swayed the natural route of development for a species.  Perhaps we should strive to put things back to how they naturally had been as implied by the programme, on the other hand it is concerning that the criteria by which one species is allowed to survive may actually be subjective with the mention of romantic notions of childhood, the species’ good looks and above all a good dose of cuteness.


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Badgers Cull

Badgers and TB

Badgers have had a lot of bad press recently and if you read the literature online you will find no scientific evidence to support a cull action against Badgers.  It is not known if Badgers are responsible for the rise in TB in cattle, and it is not known whether a cull would have the desired effect of ultimately reducing TB in cattle.

Gloucestershire

A pilot cull starting around now by Natural England. This week our local newspaper announced that farmers were pulling out of the cull and so it was no longer viable.

Let us hope that all the hypothetical talk about Badgers being responsible for TB in cattle has not made the public fall out of favour with them at all.

Badgers are elusive, nocturnal and related to the weasel family. They have been a protected species since 1992 not because they are rare but because they have been vulnerable to human persecution for hundreds of years.
I saw several in a friend’s garden one time, tempted in by peanut butter, it was a lovely sight.  Here is my ACEO for today: Happy Badger!
ACEO happy Badger


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A Painting for a Wedding – The Owl and the Pussy Cat

I had an enquiry a few days ago from a lady in California who had been searching for a wedding present for a friend and had come across the painting of mine of the Owl and The Pussy Cat Dancing.

Owl and Pussy Cat by Diane YoungThis is the second time for me that this image had been associated with weddings, strangely I had never gave it a thought when I designed the scene last year.  It all seems obvious now, after all there is love, a ring and a wedding described in Edward Lear’s narrative.

I came across articles about some couples’ desire to have the poem read out at their weddings but in some instances were concerned about the word “pussy” and the number of times this word would be read out and whether nudges, winks, snorts and sniggers might be set off amongst the wedding party.

Those that went ahead with the Owl and Pussycat “theme” at their wedding would have small pots of honey and quince and gold wrapped chocolate coins and so on amongst the decorations of the day.  Perhaps they would drive off in a pea green boat.  If you had a real sense of humour I fancy a cat tail from out of the wedding dress and maybe a few feathers for the groom would not go amiss!

And sadly as does happen with some enquiries even though they appear to be a dead cert, the lady interested in my painting backed out even though I kept her informed daily of the making of a mount, sorting out packing and postage costs and so on.  Apparently the recipient of the gift had changed her mind, and she signed off the email by  thanking me for understanding 😦

Oh, and then suddenly I found out a print had sold off Etsy!  So there you go that teaches me a lesson about the way I market my work in terms of originals and prints!