Tag Archives: janet weight reed artist

Black Cats – Revered or Feared

It seems that black cats are either revered or feared…..

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The fear element probably stems from folklore held over from the Middle Ages when black cats were thought to be witches’ familiars.

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In some countries, black cats suggest bad luck, although in the UK and parts of Asia they are considered to be good luck.

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When I was growing up in the UK, I was taught to  believe that black cats were good luck.   I was told when one walked in front of me….very good luck:)

People who know or own black cats, love them.

For that matter, I love all cats.

Photograph of my friend Hilda’s black cat, along side a cat portrait I painted many years ago.

Hilda'a cat in snow

Where there are black cats, there have to be magical hummingbirds. 

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Wishing everyone a lovely weekend.

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Hummingbird Gift

It is always lovely to receive an unexpected gift from a dear friend, and this was the case on Friday when a large parcel arrived from the United States.      As I say, it was large but very light, and so imagine my delight and surprise to find a beautiful hummingbird cushion inside.

Here is the cushion in my flat.

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A dear friend had seen it and immediately thought of me   It will be treasured.

So hummingbirds for me and a hummingbird for you as we begin a new week.

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Moving in ever increasing circles….

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As we move in ever increasing circles….I am reminded of the words of William Henry Davies.

‘What is this life if full of care – We have no time to stand and stare’ 

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Or take out some watercolours and play a little…….

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Wishing everyone a Tuesday filled with Magical Hummingbirds.

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The Old and New London

Last week was full of interest and activity, more of which I will share during the coming week.

The highlight was when family members from Seattle, Washington took me out on the town on Wednesday evening, and then came to visit my Mother on the Thursday.

Emily and Richard took some lovely photographs from the top of St.Paul’s Cathedral, which prompted me to  pull up some older photographs of St. Paul’s, taken in the forties and fifties.   It’s fascinating to compare then and now…..

The iconic image of St. Paul’s Cathedral taken during the blitz in 1940.

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An aerial view of St. Paul’s in the 1950s when London was covered in black soot.   I remember very clearly when the burning of coal was banned and all the major buildings were cleaned, revealing the lovely colour stone we see today.

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One of Emily and Richard’s photographs taken from the Whispering Gallery at St. Paul’s Cathedral.

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Looking at St. Paul’s Cathedral from South Bank in the 1950s.  Note that St. Paul’s at that time was the highest building in the City.

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Not so today….. Just some of the new buildings visible from St. Paul’s.

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What you don’t see in these photographs are the hundreds of cranes dotting the skyline indicating the many more changes ahead.

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Wonderful Richard and Emily who are now safely back in Seattle.

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And of course a Magical Hummingbird for the day….

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HummingbirdHQ.com is now carrying my cats prints………

I am very pleased that HummingbirdHQ.com is now carrying my cat images along with Magical Hummingbirds. 

‘Content Afternoon’

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Please take a look at the HummigbirdHQ.com site – more products will be added soon.

‘Christeve the cat with Hummingbird’  

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Facing the Sun’

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May the Magical Hummingbirds be with you this weekend.  Janet:)

‘Three on a mission’

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This month is Biba’s 50th anniversary…..

My friend Maureen is arriving from Dorset today.   She and I went to art college together in the early sixties and shared a flat in Kensington, London in 1964.    Maureen was my bridesmaid at my first wedding in London. 

This photograph was taken of us in front of the Commonwealth Institute in Kensington, in 1964.   Oh what a different and exciting time it was. 

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1964 was the year that the Biba boutique first opened its doors on Abingdon Road, Kensington….which means that this year is Biba’s 50th anniversary.   It all seems like yesterday to me…

To commemorate this, here are some images from that time.    

It was a time of radical change.  

Biba Salesgirl 

The fifties had been all about women looking a certain way.    I can remember my Mother wearing different length dresses for different occasions – even white gloves….hats, etc.    Hair styles were much more set.  

It was Vidal Sassoon who brought a looser more contemporary look to women’s hair.

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What’s fascinating to me is that those styles from the early sixties are still very much in evidence today. 

It’s interesting to remember that in 1964, there were no mobile phones, computers, iPods, seat belts in cars, etc. etc.….as I say, it was a very different world. 

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Maureen and I will have much to talk about and I am sure will re visit some old haunts.    

I hope everyone has a lovely weekend….

and of course, here is Magical Hummingbird. 

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Trenton Falls Arts Festival 2014

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The Trenton Falls Arts Festival, in beautiful upstate New York has an international flavour to it.    Here’s the story. 

Nine years ago I was introduced to the founder of the festival, Anne Kerleo, who is originally from Brittany in France.    When we met she was living in Le Pecq a suburb south west of Paris.     It took very little conversation to realise that we had much in common and as our friendship developed, more and more similarities in our lives came to the surface. 

Trenton Falls. 

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Like me,  after many years of living, working and raising a family in the States, Anne had returned home to France.   

When we met, I had been back in the UK for 12 years and Anne in France for a similar amount of time.    

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Then in 2006, Anne returned to the States to be with an elderly friend who was coming to the end of her life….and at a dinner party was introduced to Nathan.     It was one of those – none of us is ever creative enough to know how things will actually work out moments………

After a period of commuting back and forth across the Atlantic, Anne and Nathan were married and purchased the property close to Trenton Falls.    One of the key attractions is a huge barn which was used as a theatre in years gone by.    The barn immediately triggered the idea for an arts festival. 

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Knowing both Anne and Nathan, it was no surprise to me that the Festival was an immediate success…and is now looking forward to it’s third year. – See the attached poster and do visit the website which gives much information.   http://www.trentonfalls-festival.com

The Trenfon Falls area is beautiful, and for anyone who loves Autumn colours a great place to visit in October.   Even though I have been back in the UK/Europe for twenty-one years, I still miss the intense colours and atmosphere of autumn found in New England. 

Along with the excellent fine arts and photographic exhibits, there are many other attractions for adults and children.    It also offers a good opportunity to meet with some of the exhibiting artists.    

Make sure to check out the website http://www.trentonfalls-festival.com    I only wish that I could be there…..

Of course I must include Magical Hummingbirds to bring good fortune.

Magical Hummingbird enjoying autumn colours. 

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The magic of Bonfire nights…

It’s getting to be that time of year again for the annual bonfire celebrations.     Here are photographs I took two years ago at the event in Rye, Sussex.   

The county of Sussex is steeped in bonfire history, dating back to the burning of protestant martyrs during Tudor times.     To commemorate these ancient traditions and political events, the Bonfire Societies were formed in the 19th century.      

To experience the eerie torchlit processions with marching bands, drummers, Morris Men, pirates, pipers and floats featuring bonfire effigies, – all in a wonderful carnival atmosphere….there are several events scheduled throughout Sussex during the months of September, October and November. 

I am glad to report that health and Safely has not ruined the fun thus far!

I go with my two childhood friends Mick and Gail….This is Mick banging the drum. 

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The participants wear fantastic costume and many have painted faces. 

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It’s so far removed from modern entertainment….like stepping back to another time.  

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There are hundreds of people involved in the procession which works its way around the ancient town of Rye.

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Finishing at the huge bonfire site. 

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Just to add to the excitement…fireworks are then set off….

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I am hoping to attend again this October.    

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Of course there has to be a Magical Hummiingbird. 

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