Thursday, December 1, 2016

A Woodland Advent - Day 2, Two Turtle Doves

Two Turtle Doves, Woodland Christmas
"Two turtle doves" for the second day of Christmas - symbols of love, honesty and loyalty.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

A Woodland Advent - December 1

Santa Bear, Woodland Christmas
Skating merrily into Advent this year is Santa Bear, the "True Love" of my Woodland Christmas, Twelve Days of Christmas in the North Woods (Scholastic, 1995).
I was born in Northern Ontario and raised in Montreal, Quebec, and while I never became a hardy Canadian (cold hands, cold feet) the beauty of our northern winters never fails to inspire me. This year's Advent theme is Woodland, with a few visitors from afar.

Monday, November 28, 2016


Ohm, Fairy Advisor and Printer of the Fairy Gazettes
A recent communication from The Illustrated Fairy Gazette:

"We miss Ohm. Our printer, technical advisor, Dearly Beloved and everlasting friend, has left on the Great Journey that even fairies must take and for now we are parted. 

Ohm, in the mortal world, is the unit by which electrical resistance is measured. One "ohm" (Ohm is very good at explaining this) is equal to the current of one ampere which will flow when a voltage of one volt is applied. "Turn up the voltage and get more ohms".  But for us there is only one Ohm, shining bright and constant. Every flicker of light reminds us that we will meet again."

Eritha and Ohm, The Illustrated Fairy Gazette

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Little Robins and the Guardian Patrol

"The Guardian Patrol" The Illustrated Fairy Gazette, ©FrancesTyrrell
The robins are back and busy with nestlings.  It's the time of year for finding broken shells of beautiful robin's egg blue in the garden.  For "daring fledglings who test their wings too soon" Guardian Patrol fairies will come to the rescue with "stretchers of twigs and last year's spiders' webs", according to (who else) Dr. Flora Fauna of (what else?)  The Illustrated Fairy Gazettes, Spring edition.

There is a beautiful Saskatoon Berry tree in my parents' back yard and a nest with robins nearby.  They have taken to nesting over the back door and come back every year. Here is one of them, part of a demo piece from my watercolour classes.
Robin, watercolour, Frances Tyrrell ©2016
"A blessed and enchanted Spring to fairies everywhere"

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Fairies' May Day

from "The Illustrated Fairy Gazette" Spring edition
Here are some fairy garlands for the month of May. The May Pole Dance is from the Spring edition of the Fairy Gazettes, where it is accompanied by an article on the etiquette of folded wings. Should it be "Wings Up" or "Wings Down"? Just ask Fairy Faux Pas!
Spring Garland, © Frances Tyrrell 2016
Above, a fairy garland woven from the spring flowers that have naturalized in my garden - forget-me-nots, lily of the valley, and primroses.  The flowers of the poem won't show up here until June.
Snowdrops, © Frances Tyrrell 2016
The snowdrops are gone by now. The scillas still abound in wide blue drifts.  And here come the trillums, crimson and white.

 "A blessed and enchanted Spring to fairies everywhere"

Sunday, April 24, 2016

A Fairy in Lakeshore Woods

Scilla Fairy
 The woods nearby are carpeted with Scilla, masses of them  in sweeps of heavenly blue.  Of European origin, the little blue flowers have naturalized here and become as integral to the landscape as the native Trout Lilies and Trillium. Where there are flowers there must be fairies, hence this Scilla Fairy in Lakeshore Woods, just a short walk from home.
The first blossoms were snowed over early in April
 and the preliminary sketch showed the wintry scene, every blossom capped with snow. But that is another painting.
We've had enough snow for a while.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Twenty-fourth Day of Advent - Come to the Manger

The Adoration, The Huron Carol
"Come kneel before the radiant Boy
Who brings you beauty, peace and joy.
Jesus your King is born,
Jesus is born.
In excelsis gloria!"