Thursday, December 30, 2010

Au Natural

"Au Natural" is my submission for the December Art Bead Scene challenge.

We were offered two paintings for inspiration this month, "The Storm":

and "The Captive Robin":

Both are by John Anster Fitzgerald - (1819? – 1906) a "Victorian fairy painter" More than any of the other artists working in this genre, he was able to suggest the existence of a coherent alternative world which was ethereal and bizarre. As an artist, Fitzgerald appears to have been largely self-taught. His work was first shown at the Royal Academy of Arts, London, in 1845; he also exhibited at the British Institution, the Society of British Artists, and the Watercolour Society. In the late 1850s he created a series of Christmas fairies for The Illustrated London News.

My biggest challenge when participating in challenges is that I'm limited to using only items in my "stash", as my nearest bead shop is a ferry ride and a couple hours of driving away. This is especially true for the Art Bead Scene challenges - if I don't have a art bead that "fits", I either have to order something very quickly or not participate. I was lucky this time, I has a teal and gold bumpy art bead that resembled the small blue fairy in "The Captive Robin".
Each of the painting includes many natural elements: leaves, pods, berries, etc. I decided to include the botanical forms that can be found in winter - skeletonized leaves, pods, lichen and knobbly branches.

I used a variety of beading techniques, tubular and freeform peyote, Russian leaves and fringing. I decided to further challenge myself with an asymmetrical placement.

I'm pleased with it - it's a bit more minimal than my typical work, yet still has plenty of detail.


  1. Your work never ceases to amaze me! Just beautiful and your workmanship is perfection!

  2. So very intricate and intriguing! I love the color palette you pulled from the pieces. A very fairy-like piece indeed! Enjoy the day! Erin