Last week I had a fascinating time visiting the Portico Library in Manchester.

Such a wonderful atmosphere, surrounded by walls of leather-bound volumes in varying states of wellbeing. Warm lighting from reading lamps, comfy armchairs, mugs of tea on the side tables with folk immersed in reading and research.
What a special place!

I’m very excited to tell you that I will be collaborating with this fabulous library on a project highlighting their beautiful and well-used collection, and promoting their Adopt a Book scheme to help resurrect their more crumbling editions….

I’ll be painting two Shelf Portrait oil paintings.
The first will picture a selection of the more delicate ‘spineless’ books, in need of some TLC, but so fascinating with their variety of under papers: scraps from old newspapers; sheets of hand-written accounts; pages from other books, some upside-down or sideways…
This painting is going to be quite a challenge, but fabulously fun!

The second painting will be representative of the breadth of the Portico’s collection (warts and all, history-wise), and will include some of the skilfully re-bound books, retaining the front and back covers and magically blending them into a new spine with beautifully rendered gold titles.

During September 2023, the Portico Library will be putting the paintings on display, and hosting an event for members and visitors where the conservation team will be giving a presentation about their Adopt a Book scheme, and I will be talking about the paintings. So put Thursday 14th September in your diaries!

The paintings will be for sale, with a percentage of the sale price going to the Portico’s Endangered Book List Fund.
I will also be producing greeting cards from the paintings, which will be for sale in the Portico Library Shop 🙂

So, it’s all very exciting! It was such fun to select the books for the painting and arrange them on the dark wooden shelves – a big thank you to Pat and the rest of the library collections team 🙂

In the meantime, I am immersing myself in a bundle of Pan Paperbacks by the prolific and popular author Agatha Christie. So many classic typefaces to render, and so many delightful scuffs and torn edges 🙂
You can view a little video of me at work here. (I invested in a new phone holder to make it easier to film myself painting, but it attaches to my drawing board and moves whenever I lean on the board, so apologies for the wobbles!!)
Best Wishes,
Roo

New Year Catalogue 2023

Happy New Year. Welcome to 2023!!

… and welcome to the latest Bookshelf Art Card Catalogue from Roo Waterhouse Art.

If you are an existing customer, you can download the PDF Catalogue and Order Sheet via the link below:

RooWaterhouseArt-NewYear-2023 WHOLESALE CATALOGUE

RWA Order Sheet – New Year 2023

If you are an independent bookshop or gift shop, and would like to enquire about placing an order, please contact me at roowaterhouseart@gmail.com 🙂

Festive Greetings !

Thank you all for your lovely messages and orders!
I’ll be packing up the last orders today to post out first class tomorrow, then I’ll be having a little break until the New Year to catch up with myself and my wonderful family 🙂
My very favourite thing to do this time of year is to light my lovely Angel Chimes and sit, watch and listen to the delicate ting-ting-ting of the bells…

Wishing you a very

Merry and Bright
Christmas-time

and a

Peaceful and Cosy
New Year

Roo

P.S.
Last chance today to use your

10% OFF across my online shop 🙂
Simply add the code:
FAIR10
in your basket.

Northlight Winter Fair !!

It’s our annual Winter Fair event at Northlight Art Studios!
Our fabulous studio holders will be hosting stalls to showcase their artistic goodies and gifts 🙂
You all get to come and visit, eat mince pies, buy locally made Christmas presents direct from the makers, win a raffle prize perhaps, drink some mulled wine, make a crafty something and enjoy a little festive feeling!
#hebdenmakeschristmas
Yay!!

 

So Hebden Bridge!

I have always loved the way my home town of Hebden Bridge shines out on an autumn night, looking cosy and snuggled in the valley, especially in the fog.
Though I’m not sure the new LED street lighting has quite the same warm glow…

My ‘So Hebden Bridge’ Limited Edition print is looking particularly cosy in the window at Spirals Fairtrade, surrounded by other lovely wintery gifts 🙂
CHRISTMAS GIFT IDEA No.3
This week it’s all about mugs! Snuggle up with a good book and a cuppa in one of these bookish mugs. You’ll find new stock in my shop of these three designs: Rainbow PenguinsJane Austen and Bronte Sisters.
Shop Book Art Mugs

Not long now until the Northlight Winter Fair!!

Join me, along with Rach Red DesignsToby Cotterill JewelleryKatch Skinner CeramicsKate Boyce ArtDon MyersPete Leonard and Jane Revitt.

It is just one of the events and open studios happening in and around Hebden Bridge as a part of the Hebden Bridge Open Studios Big Christmas Weekend.

Follow the hashtag #hebdenmakeschristmas on social media to see more for the artists involved 🙂

Best Wishes,
Roo

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Rainbows on the Horizon….

‘Every Grain of Rice’ 2022 Roo Waterhouse, oil on canvas 30x60cm
Are you a fan of arranging books by colour?
I wouldn’t usually approve (apart from when it comes to Penguin Paperbacks, of course!), but I think it works fabulously on this shelf of cookbooks in my friend Cath’s kitchen!
This new Shelf Portrait painting ‘Every Grain Of Rice’ is now on show and on sale at Wychwood Gallery in Oxfordshire 🙂
CHRISTMAS GIFT IDEA No.2
My most popular design, ‘Rainbow Penguins’, is now available as a Tote Bag 🙂
A lovely 100% cotton bag with plenty of room and long handles for carrying on your shoulder…
Shop Rainbow Tote

When The Going Was Good

When The Going Was Good’ Roo Waterhouse 2022

No sooner had I finished painting this new shelf portrait of vintage orange Penguin paperbacks than it was sold by the powers of social media!! My collection of classic Penguin books is gradually increasing; are you a fan? How many do you have on your shelves?
CHRISTMAS GIFT IDEA No.1
For the art historians and Tuscan travellers in your life, this A4 mounted print from shelf portrait oil painting ‘About Florence’ is the perfect gift.
An evocative bookshelf full of Tuscan and Florentine inspiration from my father’s bookshelves.
I spent many childhood summers wandering the hills of Tuscany and the galleries of Florence, and these books take me right back there, bringing back memories of sun-soaked Italian expeditions….
Shop About Florence Print
I have also been transported back to Florence by the wonderful book
‘Still Life’ by Sarah Winman.
The beautifully descriptive narrative had me wandering the streets alongside the characters. I thoroughly recommend giving it a read. I love this old map too, which I think belonged to my grandmother.

Best Wishes,
Roo

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Indulge Your Imagination In Every Possible Flight!

”Indulge your imagination in every possible flight.”
– Jane Austen,
 Pride and Prejudice

Most excellent advice!
Have you had a chance to relax and let your imagination take flight this summer?
My Jane Austen painting image is now available as a mounted print, ready to pop into an A4 frame and up on your wall to help your thoughts wander into the realms of fiction and fantasy as autumn approaches….
Shop Jane Austen
I nipped over to North Wales for a few days last week, where I relaxed and let my thoughts wander: resting up a tree above Dorothea Quarry; floating about in the beautiful
Llyn Nantlle (not for long- it wasn’t warm!!)

”To sit in the shade on a fine day and look upon verdure is the most perfect refreshment.” – Jane Austen, Mansfield Park

This time in 2 weeks I will be setting up my stall at the fabulous Wigtown Book Festival. It will be so lovely to be back there again after two years of postponement 🙂
The festival runs from Friday 23rd September to Sunday 2nd October. There will be some fabulous author events including Anna ReidLauren ChildJohn Boyne and many, many others..
Also a performance from The Bookshop Band, a folk duo singing songs inspired by books 🙂

I will be on my stall in the Kist Marquee from Wednesday 28th to Sunday 2nd and look forward to seeing some of you there 🙂

 

Best Wishes,
Roo

Visit Roo’s Website

Architectural Heritage

I cleared the last of these architecture books, featured in my recent Shelf Portrait painting ‘Architectural Heritage’, off my father’s bookshelves while I was in London last week…

I spent the day thinking about my architectural heritage: the abundance of grand Victorian gothic revival buildings around the country, designed by my great-great-grandfather, Alfred Waterhouse.
My favourite must, of course, be the ‘cathedral to nature’ that is 
The Natural History Museum in South Kensington: I especially love all the little (and not so little) animal relief carvings all around the inside and outside of the building. 

From London I went to Oxford, where I spent a lovely sunny day wandering around with my nephew, who is studying Architecture, seeking out AW buildings. This is a view of the Brackenbury Buildings at Balliol College.
When he wasn’t busy being an eminent Victorian architect, Alfred liked to travel and paint with watercolours.
Here’s one he did in Bressago, Switzerland in 1882.
I’m feeling rather humbled as I return to my studio, but also inspired to stretch myself with creativity!

The Limited Edition print of  ‘Architectural Heritage’ can be found in my shop,

should you fancy one to adorn your walls 🙂