A Visit to the Cloud Factory

Newlands Valley from Dale Head

Goodness, I nearly sent this post off to you with no words. I pressed the publish button instead of preview because I’ve been on so many adventures since I last wrote that I was struggling to put them in order. Perhaps the pictures don’t need words… maybe you can imagine how it feels to be on top of a mountain watching a snow shower sneak around the corner like a curtain being drawn across a sunlit window? It was my birthday last week and the weather was so hot we began to think about shorts and ice creams and passed people heading back from Buttermere wearing swimming costumes, but by Sunday it was back to winter again. Twenty minutes after the first photograph was taken I was standing on top of the world (Dale Head) at this cloud factory having walked through a shower of the most perfect star shaped snow flakes ( like the bits in Lucky Charms breakfast cereal).


So I sit here writing with a head full of images and ideas and wishing I could be settle to something meaningful instead of making smiley sheep from the wool I find on fence posts!. Yesterday I visited the Castlegate Gallery in Cockermouth and found out more about an artist called Percy Kelly whose paintings of little white houses and Cumbrian scenes really inspired me. Kelly used to write letters full of illustrations and a book about him called ” The Man Who Couldn’t Stop Drawing” is next on my wish list. In another strange twist of fate I opened the book right on a page showing a painting of Newlands Valley looking up towards this house… there was a quote which was something about the colours in the landscape and how exhausting it is for an artist to be constantly looking and looking; I wish I could remember exactly what he said.


I will never be a painter but I do look and notice and want so badly to be able to express it all somehow. I’ve spent plenty of time wondering exactly what colour those purple-grey- brown mountain tops are, so it was rather wonderful when my dad ( a real painter ) wondered the same thing as we walked up the valley in blazing sunshine, last week. Apparently Pip Seymour the paint maker would know.


And so, with many adventures untold and being a whole year older ( nearly eligible for a whole new category of vitamin supplements ) I will leave you with this small white cottage … a digitally manipulated drawing that I made last week. I’m going to try and do some more drawing and get some stuff together for this years Art in the Shed in Osmotherley on the second Bank Holiday in May. As usual Jane Thorniley-Walker is hosting this charity exhibition (and excuse to eat a lot of cake) in aid of Street Child Africa.

house in the woods

Which do you prefer?


4 responses to “A Visit to the Cloud Factory

  1. Lovely photos (as usual) but these arrived in my inbox with no words and still I just gazed at them and imagined your life up there……..it was good to get the words too though. I love that reflection in the window……….and I like the top white house. xoxo

    • Agh, how annoying! I had that feeling when you accidentally send a text to the wrong person or put kisses on a formal email- I had a feeling subscribers would get the unwordy version. Glad you got the words too eventually? Also glad your cards arrived safely Kat, thank you so much for ordering x

  2. What great photos. You live in a beautiful part of the country. I like the first altered image best. Have a good week.
    Jacqui x

  3. We have a Percy Kelly framed letter in our hallway along with several books and the one you mentioned. The letter we have is featured in there.
    Wasn’t Kelly an interesting chap.
    Lynn x

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