Monthly Archives: September 2015

Missing in action?


Not me!

I am doing fine. I have been so fortunate, I never expected such a speedy result.

The bubble has cleared from my eye and I can see! I am still fiddling with eye drops four times a day which cause the pupil to remain dilated, thus my self imposed lack of online activity.

Crocheting proved to be easier on my eyes in the past few weeks and I am almost finished a cardigan/jacket… only about twenty more rows to go. Typical me, I see the cardigan in my head – no paper pattern, but it seems to be working out.

I am driving again and getting out when I can.

I hope to resume more regular blogging after I see the Consultant on Tuesday next, 22nd September.

Life is good… even if the evenings are drawing in and the mornings are cooler…. But that had other benefits:-

Drawing the curtains and cosying up to the fire!

Quilt Comfort


Quilting in my book requires time, space and a bucket load of patience. An eye for colour, pattern and placement all contribute to a completed work of art. A finished piece can bring comfort and love for many years. The quilt below brings a different kind of comfort

Comfort quilt_1

Comfort quilt_1

Comfort Quilt’ 2006
Ceramic artist: Diane McCormick

It is a ceramic wall-based work, by Diane McCormick  the ceramic artist from County Tyrone for Marie Curie Cancer Care Hospice, Belfast. The link above to her website gives the background to the Quilt. It was commissioned by Marie Curie Cancer Care supported by the Arts Council of Northern Ireland


Comfort quilt_2

A closer look

Hand made ceramic tiles, mono printed with ceramic colours and glazes. Multiple fired to build up layers of colours and textures. It measures 2m x 1.8m on the theme of Marie Curie history

Alternative theraphy

Alternative therapies

depicting some of the alternative therapies available to the patients.

Comforting words

Comforting words


Daffodils often used as a Fundraising symbol


These sections cover some of the fundraising efforts. Sponsored walks and cycling. The engagement ring was a rather special donation: At one of the early meetings when funds were needed to build this hospice a lady present removed her engagement ring and placed it on the table, offering it as a gift to be auctioned for the fund.



The border strips include symbols to represent the research work of Marie Curie.

The Log Cabin Quilt, which this design is based on, is associated with the home, with light and dark strips of cloth around a central square which represents the heart of the home (Marie Curie nurses come into the home to help care for patients).

This design is made in clay tiles of various sizes, printed and patterned to resemble material and quilting. Each square panel incorporates a central motif to show aspects of the history of Marie Curie, the work done in the Marie Curie units and research into the causes and cures for cancer. Strips around each motif have patterns, textures, words and sayings to illustrate the central panel. Uplifting proverbs and written words (from patients and staff) are printed in this area to give comfort to patients, staff and family. The panel is surrounded by a border of daffodils.

Diane McCormick graduated in 1988 from the University of Ulster with a first class Degree in Fine Craft Design. Since then she has had pieces commissioned for numerous hospitals, a restaurant, a bus station, shops, an arts centre, a church, a major charity, arts awards and a museum as well as many private clients.

Since 1991 she has exhibited at trade fairs in Ireland and the UK supplying numerous shops and galleries with her quirky and colourful ceramics. Her work is in the collections of the Ulster Museum and has been presented to musicians, politicians and heads of Church. She and her husband Martin, are now concentrating their art skills in public and private commissions and selling their unusual ceramic and wood pieces from their studio in Co. Tyrone as well as making pieces for exhibition.

Each public art commission is designed specifically for the enjoyment of the users of the building often with references to the history of the site or with input from the staff or patients as a major influence.

The Listening Lady

The Listening Lady _1

The Listening Lady _1

Sculpture: The Listening Lady ~ Bronze
Sculptor: David Annand

The Listening Lady is in the memory of Geraldine Roberts who died of cancer.

The work of art formed part Marie Curie’s Living Rooms Appeal project and received a significant donation from Bangor woman Muriel Roberts, whose daughter Geraldine, was cared for at the hospice before her death from cancer in January 2006. the Listening Lady is a peaceful resting place for patients and visitors at the Marie Curie Cancer Care Hospice, Knock Road, Belfast.

The Listening Lady _3

The Listening Lady _3

Geraldine was such a great listener and a very warm person so the name of the sculpture is a tribute to her very nature – The Listening Lady even wears a pendant with Geraldine’s initials, GR.

The Listening Lady _4

The Listening Lady _4

The seat is also inscribed with a short poem penned by the late Nobel laureate Seamus Heaney.


Still yourself, take time, be at rest.
Enter the circle, unalone, a guest.
Seamus Heaney

David Annand describes his work as:

My work has grown out of a tradition of figurative representation exploiting the plasticity of clay. It deals with vitality, balance, gravity and irony. It is very important that my work should remain accessible to everyone i.e. realistic human or animal subjects, observed and modelled with discipline, set in a slightly incongruous composition, using the site as a plinth and often involving an abstract element in the composition. Think of a Richard Thompson song. It can be sentimental or traditional but then it is spiked with a guitar solo that is so abstract it is at the very edge of the genre. I wish I could achieve this in my sculpture. Everything is abstract. Looking back at my sculpture you`d think I am obsessed with giving gravity a hard time and taking my materials to the limit. It`s easy enough to make life-like sculptures, but, by nudging them off balance, in an awkward place – it makes them vulnerable, precarious; they get an urgency to be alive.

Life is good

Maybe I should up that statement: Life right now is a wonderful high!

Yesterday, my friend Emily brought me out for the day and treated me to lunch at Il Pirata. No. We did not fly to Italy for lunch, we travelled to Ballyhackamore, in East Belfast. We eat slowly and talked plenty.

Back in the car, our mystery tour continued.

Some months ago, Emily mentioned a sculpture that whetted my appetite and I was anxious to see it for myself. Yesterday was the perfect occasion and I was introduced to the work of two wonderful creative souls.

Tomorrow, Sunday, I will introduce you to a wonderful sculpture, if I manage to sort my photos.  The second piece should be ready for Wednesday. The latter was right up my street and I fell deeply in love with the work.

I suddenly realised about mid morning today that the air bubble in my eye had disappeared. I was like Charlie in the Chocolate Factory. Yes. I can see clearly, but I am limiting my time at the laptop for a few more day.

Slowly, very slowly I will get back to my routine of blog reading. Again I plead for your patience.

“She’s Gone”

No. I am not talking about the song,

I mean ‘Yer wan who thinks she should be obeyed’. Elly! 😉

Sunday was the end of official posturing, so Monday and Tuesday were observation days to see how I managed when putting drops in my own eyes, making lunch and dinner. Elly was well satisfied so there was no need to keep her away from George, Buffy and her office colleagues.

She was here at the important time… when I needed her, so I was willing and happy for her to return home.

Today was quiet, but I had food, music, audio books and my crochet to keep me happy.

My eye is improving every day, so I am one happy bunny!