April 29, 2009

Winter Wren and Other Fairies

I saw a Winter Wren in my back yard today. I’m always taken by surprise when I see one because Winter Wrens are so small I momentarily think that I’m seeing fairies. This wren is the smallest bird I’ve seen next to the Hummingbird and they like to creep around on the trunks of trees and fences usually with their wings spread for camouflage. They are adept at hiding and once I’ve spotted one it’s almost impossible to find it again.

So no, I’m not crazy. But wouldn’t it be nice to see fairies?

Here are a couple of artists that might just be able to see fairies.

Charles van Sandwyk is the author and illustrator of several books including “How to See Fairies”. I found his books, prints and cards in Attic Books in London Ontario. Whenever there, I pick up more of his incredible art. Whether a watercolour of a fable-like creature, a fairy, a monkey or even Toad, Badger or Mole, his works are whimsical and exquisitely detailed. His books and prints are produced on a private antique press and have a real one-of-a-kind feel. Van Sandwyk oversees every step of their publication for his own company, The Fairy Press.

Born in Johannesburg in 1966, van Sandwyk emigrated as a boy to Vancouver Canada. When he finished art college he traveled to the South Pacific where he fell in love with the remote Island of Fiji.

The award-winning van Sandwyk has had extraordinary success and his paintings hang in the National Library of Canada. He eschews technology and he has a simple web-site. Van Sandwyk has a pleasurable routine of winters in Fiji, painting and writing and Canadian summers.

The Hermitage is the online home of the nomadic Rima Staines. Her website is a phantasmagoria of fantasy and a museum of myth”. Rima is an illustrator, painter and "maker of things". A real gypsy, she and her husband live in a “rolling home” and drive from location to location in England

She paints slightly grotesque creatures from folklore and fairy tales. Her bent and monk-like characters appear not just on paper but on tree trunks and hand-made clocks.

Rima also has one of the most original websites I have ever seen. Wander through Rima’s “rooms” and lose yourself for a while. Her medieval quasimodos can be found on Etsy as well.

Images from:
Charles Van Sandwyk www.geocities.com/cvsarts/

Rima Staineswww.intothehermitage.blogspot.com/

Wren photo: Odephoto, Flickr


Brian Miller said...

some really cool pics here. thanks for the intro to the artists. who knows you may see your faerie before you know it.

ds said...

Fascinating stuff! Thank you!

Candie Bracci said...

I love all of those,the bird,fairies,everything.

Ima Wizer said...

ohhhhhh, van Sandwyk is soooooo handsoe, too!

California Girl said...

fantastic art and new to me. THANK you.

willow said...

Oh, I love Rima! I bought one of her fabulous prints last year. She is a genius.

Poetikat said...

Rima's work is fantastic! (in every sense). I shall have a wander over.
Next time I'm in Attic Books (and there shall be a next time, for sure) I'm going to pick up a few Van Sandwyck cards.


Dot-Com said...

Bet we could all use a fairy or two from time to time.

Rima said...

Oh, thanks so much for your kind writings :) I like the phrase medieval quasimodos :) :)
Thank you and thank you and best wishes from the house on wheels!