The Sweetheart Tree – Greg “Craola” Simkins

Having a completely overactive brain can be really confusing and a bit trying sometimes.  It can be absolutely brilliant when you have a number of things to do as it can really assist with thinking about a lot of different things at once, making you a master of multitasking, but it can also make you... Continue Reading →

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Whims of Desire – Alan Macdonald

October, was frankly a horrible month.  Everyone gets them, you know those months where just everything gets a bit too much.  You have commitments that you can't let go of, but equally you just want to bury your head in the sand, everything comes to a head and it just leaves you feeling... drained and... Continue Reading →

The Fall of the Damned – Peter Paul Rubens

Some times, I will see a snippet of a painting, which will intrigue me.  This was one of those paintings.  If you have seen the series called "Dark", you may have caught a glimpse in the first season, which led me to a three day hunt to find out which painting it was.  As it... Continue Reading →

Lynrose – Brandi Milne

As a child I was obsessed with the darker fairy tales.  I didn't really want to know about the princesses, I just wanted to know about the monsters and villains.  I didn't necessarily want them to be victorious in the stories either, I just wanted to know more about them, as I felt they got... Continue Reading →

Witches’ Sabbath (The Great He-Goat) – Francisco Goya

I write an awful lot about religion, simply because I am fascinated by it, but by far one of my most popular articles is about the fall of Lucifer.  It isn't even a particularly in depth article, but I think that the reason it does so well, is actually like me, many people are intrigued... Continue Reading →

The Creation of Adam – Michelangelo

Did you know that the fear of belly buttons is called omphalophobia?  I can't really imagine being afraid of, what is essentially a scar which reminds you of your own creation, but I don't like people on stilts, so each to their own. Michelangelo, was a bit of a rock star of art, having the... Continue Reading →

Mitra – Luke Hillestad

Peacocks are beautiful aren't they.  I have recently had one tattooed on my leg as there is so much symbolism that surrounds them, they are vain and showy, but also deemed as royalty and a protector because of the association with with Hera from Greek mythology.  When I saw this picture I was obviously drawn... Continue Reading →

The Meditation – Francesco Hayez

I write about a lot of art, but I always prefer writing about something I have seen in person, rather than looking at a photo that has been taken of it, and on the most part I have been lucky enough to see a good percentage of them.  It allows me to see the true... Continue Reading →

Dreaming Monster III – Atsuko Goto

You know, I saw a tweet the other day which was encouraging people to stop following influencers on social media and to start following artists, as influencers tend to drive poor self image in people (because they are always picture perfect, tanned, primed for looking their best) and make the younger generation aspire to a... Continue Reading →

Anatomia – Mark Ryden

Artists throughout the ages have been drawn to the anatomy of the living.  Many artists through the centuries would have, what we would probably deem as morbid fascinations as they would strive to peak their artistic techniques to hone a true rendition of the living.  They would attend autopsies, even steal limbs of the dead... Continue Reading →

Chirisei Kyubiki – Kazuo Shiraga

There is something intrinsically beautiful about raw emotion.  Ok, it can be hard to deal with if it is directed at you, but when it is used in an expression of artistic intent, it gives the viewer or reader an honest and open idea of what the artist was feeling at the time of creation. ... Continue Reading →

Multiple Realities (Multiple Horizons) – Duncan Wylie

When I was a kid, I really struggled to get my head around things happening at the same time if I couldn't see it happening.  For example, I would get dropped off at my grandmothers while my parents worked.  I would spend the day playing in her garden, or making cakes with her, and generally... Continue Reading →

Napoleon Crossing the Alps – Jacques-Louis David

I know I have been incredibly quiet over the last month, but hopefully you will appreciate why.  I have been off on my travels and one of the stops was to see the new Louvre in Abu Dhabi.  This was one of the most amazing experiences which has inspired me greatly and given me a... Continue Reading →

Incarnation – Martin Wittfooth

Elephants are truly majestic and amazing creatures aren't they? Intelligent and soulful and one of the greats which wonder the Earth, yet there are some that still feel that their tusks are better used by humans than by the elephant themselves.   Without getting on my high horse about it, no one needs an elephants tusk...... Continue Reading →

Isle of the Dead (Third Version) – Arnold Böcklin

I don't very often go for landscapy pictures, generally because either, while they are beautiful they don't hold a lot of meaning and they act more as a document to record what the landscape looked like to the artist at the time of painting, or they are generally lacking in activity.  This isn't to say... Continue Reading →

Nude Descending Staircase No. 2 – Marcel Duchamp

It's been a really crazy couple of weeks, which has felt like a rollercoaster of highs and lows, set on an ever moving landscape.  We all have those times, where it just feels like we are walking on quicksand - everything is moving but not always in the direction that you want.  Which is what... Continue Reading →

Turn the Mirrors in to Windows – Kasia Darwinska

Life is full of ups and downs, and at times it can really feel like a roller coaster.  Sometimes that means you do and say stupid things to those closest to you, sometimes it means you do the smallest things which can mean the world to someone else.  What is also evident is no matter... Continue Reading →

Swans Reflecting Elephants – Salvador Dali

You know, the world is full of things which makes your brain believe that it can see something which isn’t actually there.  You know what I am talking about… things like seeing a hot dog in clouds or a face in the pattern of fabric.  It’s called Pareidolia, and it is a psychological phenomenon where... Continue Reading →

Shelley’s Art Musings… spot light on Rembrandt

As you may well know, I write articles for Parkstone International as well. Here is my latest one. https://parkstone.international/2018/08/17/shelleys-art-musings-spotlight-on-rembrandt/

Skull of a Skeleton with Burning Cigarette – Vincent Van Gogh

You know, I wrote a whole opening gambit about the oddities of death for this piece, but I decided to remove it as actually it is something which so many people (including myself) struggle with immensely.  The written word can, at times, seem wholly impersonal, and I don't think any of my readers want to... Continue Reading →

Winter Sunrise on Path – Stephen Remick

If you are in the UK, you will know that we have diverted our moaning about the weather from it being too cold or wet, as it has been too hot and muggy.  Thankfully the weather has now broken and we are back to grey skies and rain, but for a couple of weeks there,... Continue Reading →

Scissors – Vladimir Kush

I have been pretty quiet, I know, and I apologise, but I have started a new job, and I am sure you all remember what a new job entails... endless bombardment of new information and frantically trying to look like you know what you are doing. This does impact my creative flow a little. This... Continue Reading →

The Fighting Temeraire – J.M.W. Turner

I have been pretty quiet over the weekend, as I had a tooth pulled out, and this momentarily gave me a dip in my inspiration.  Not that my tooth being pulled has anything to do with Turner and his paintings, but I guess that there is a vague link to my tooth and the Temeraire... Continue Reading →

Night owl – Hua Tunan

I am, quite often referred to as a 'night owl'. I don't sleep well as I have mentioned a few times before, and I can often be found wandering through the internet late at night. Usually I am looking at some sort of art or watching crazy YouTube videos about spiders, or trying to find... Continue Reading →

The 12 Labours of Putin – Part 4

I have really had fun writing these posts, as it has given me a lot to look over in areas that interest me - art (albeit some of it awful), Greek mythology and the actions of people.  I have received some great feedback from readers, so if there are other things like this, that you... Continue Reading →

The 12 Labours of Putin – Part 3

I apologies now for starting on an ugly picture, but I left off just before the Cretan bull, and frankly the pictures of Putin in heroic Greek stance get uglier from here on out... but as Magnus Magnusson used to say..."I've started, so I'll finish" (for anyone who isn't British and have no clue that... Continue Reading →

The 12 Labours of Putin – Part 2

I don't really know if you have been on tenterhooks or not for the next round of Putin as Hercules, but I am hoping that you are finding the perception of him fascinating!  So where were we?  Hercules had Killed the lion and the hydra and got the deer.  Putin has fought with terrorism, staved... Continue Reading →

The 12 Labours of Putin – Part 1

Anyone who has been reading this blog a while, or who knows me, will probably know that I have a very dry sense of humour.  I find people watching one of the best activities for my humour to take full force, so when I read about foreign leaders and their antics, it fills me with... Continue Reading →

Unbreakable – Nosego

Fate and destiny are funny things aren't they. On one hand I don't believe that anyone has a predefined route to life, you make your own way and what happens happens. On the other hand, I do believe that you meet certain people for a reason and that no matter how long someone stays in... Continue Reading →

I and the village – Marc Chagall

I usually avoid cubism as it isn't my favourite form of art... to me it takes surrealism to a degree I am not overly comfortable with on a viewing level, which I know might sound odd from a self professed surrealism lover, but I just don't see the need for cubism, but we all have... Continue Reading →

La Polonaise – Tamara de Lempicka

Have you seen Google today? It is celebrating Tamara de Lempicka's 120th birthday.  Lempicka was an accomplished Art Deco artist who lived between 1898 and 1980.  She was very well known for her stylised portraits of the aristocracy as well as painting nudes.   She was the mistress to Baron Raoul Kuffner, and after his wife... Continue Reading →

Oedipus – Jean-Léon Gerome

Life has been crazy busy recently, with studying for my Greek mythology course and writing the first assignment (which I have to say was a trial in itself for me as I am used to writing more than 500 words in a blog post, so why someone thinks that I could explain who has the... Continue Reading →

Satsuma – Eric Wert

I am not the biggest fan of still life.  It is usually some chintzy flowers in a Royal Doulton vase, or some lack lustre fish in a bowl.  The pallet is usually dim and the backgrounds feel musty, just making the whole picture look as though it belongs in your great aunt Mildred's house which... Continue Reading →

Ivan the terrible killing his son – Ilya Repin

History is fascinating.  I have only found this since getting a bit older, as in school I only seem to remember studying the first world war.  If you had spoken to me at the age of 18 I could have told you a lot about trench foot, trench warfare and no mans land.  We never... Continue Reading →

Jacinta – Louis Ginnett

You know when people tell you to "cheer up, it could always be worse"?  My usual response is "Yes, I could be on a sinking ship", I was fairly happy with this response until recently, when a friend of mine came out with "You could be a conjoined twin".  My initial reaction was to laugh,... Continue Reading →

Myra – Marcus Harvey

There are many evils in the world.  On a small scale... Anchovies.  On a larger scale war, murder, rape, abuse, bullying... we each have our own version of what evil looks like, yet we unite in the iconic images which represent an wrong done or atrocity created.  I think we can all pretty much agree... Continue Reading →

Silkworm – Heidi Taillefer

I have been crazy busy the last few days.  I have started my Greek mythology course and been surrounding myself in the Homeric world of "The Iliad", thankfully I downloaded the audio book, so that I could be wallpapering while immersing myself in the Trojan war.  I have also been out and about meeting lots... Continue Reading →

The Judgment of Paris – François-Xavier Fabre

Do you ever have one of those days where you think...maybe I made the wrong choice?  Perhaps you put on a pair of shoes that are really uncomfortable, or you told someone some advice that you later felt was probably inappropriate, or maybe you helped pick out the fairest woman alive, not knowing that your... Continue Reading →

The torture of Prometheus – Salvator Rosa

It's been a while since I have written about the Greeks, and with a course on Greek mythology looming for me, I thought perhaps I should start reading some of the study text. I really find mythology so fascinating, especially the Greek, simply because it really does still play a massive role in our culture... Continue Reading →

Charles Collyer as a boy, with a cricket bat – Francis Cotes

If you weren't aware, sport season generally has exploded.  I am not the biggest fan of any sport really, but I do appear to be surrounded with sports fanatics where I work and this means, if I want any conversation at all, I at least have to feign an interest in whatever implement or appendage... Continue Reading →

Las Meninas – Pablo Picasso

A few days ago I found myself involved in a conversation about hidden potential.  The upshot of this was that, I could potentially, play football for England this year if I put my mind to it.  Sure, I am not fit in anyway, nor do I understand the offside rule, and the thought of chasing... Continue Reading →

The Enigma – Paul Gustave Doré

I guess I can't really ignore that it is Easter. Hopefully you are all enjoying a bountiful stash of chocolate eggs and celebrating in a befitting manner. Personally I am enjoying the fact that I get a couple of extra days off, but for those of you that have a deeper meaning to this weekend,... Continue Reading →

Arrival of the flower ship – Vladimir Kush

I have a real bugbear when people spell my real name incorrectly. Generally they miss out an e, which I find amazing as it is usually in an email, where they have had to spell my name correctly to get the email to me in the first place. My name isn't difficult, it's also at... Continue Reading →

The Garden of Earthly Delights – Hieronymus Bosch

Sometimes there are pieces of art that I love, but put off writing about as it looks like it is going to be a big job, until someone (you know who you are kkatch22) asks if I have ever written about a painting. So today is the day that I give this painting a whirl... Continue Reading →

The Deep – Jackson Pollock

Life can be pretty hard sometimes.  It really is a test on a person of how they deal with this time and show their true colours.  Some stick their head in the sand, some will plough on until they get through it, but some way or another most will see those hard times through and... Continue Reading →

The five senses: Touch, Sight, Hearing, Smell, Taste – Jan Miense Molenaer

I work with a guy, and I have no qualms in telling you this as I know he reads this blog, and he baffles me. He doesn't watch films, he doesn't read things that aren't in some way factual, he doesn't really like TV... he does how ever like the conversations about films, as he... Continue Reading →

Arrangement in grey and black No. 1 – James McNeill Whistler

Firstly...Happy Mother's Day to mothers everywhere.  This is your day so I hope that you are kicking back and letting the kids and your respective other half make you appalling cups of tea and fold towels badly, which you admire them for trying, but the OCD side of you is screaming internally that they are... Continue Reading →

Lilith – John Collier

It was International Women's Day yesterday... if you hadn't heard.  It's a day to break down barriers and try and dispel behaviours which bring about a gender gap.  I like to think that the gender gap is dwindling, but there are times when the perception of men and women wildly differ.  For example, if a... Continue Reading →

Lot and his Daughters – Jan Steen

If you hadn't heard... It has been snowing in the UK with the joys of the 'beast from the east' making an appearance over our tiny island, and with storm Emma due to hit soon, it is feeling a little like the new ice age combined with some of the descriptions of hell which I... Continue Reading →

The Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Nicolaes Tulp – Rembrandt

I don't know about you, but it is hellish trying to get a doctors appointment in the UK these days.  You really have to schedule in being ill if you want to see a doctor, as if you are ill on the spare of the moment, you are unlikely to be able to see a... Continue Reading →

Green Eyed Horns – Travis Louie

There is an Arab proverb that says "Love sees sharply, hatred sees even more sharp, but Jealousy sees the sharpest for it is love and hate at the same time".  When I saw this painting on my travels, it brought this quote to mind. Travis Louie is a painter, who has developed another world which... Continue Reading →

Red on Maroon – Mark Rothko

I usually write about things that I like, or that have inspired me.  Today I thought I would give you an artist which I recently said I didn't like when I wrote about "The Blacker Gachet" simply because if you haven't heard of Rothko, you wouldn't know what I was talking about or why I... Continue Reading →

The Flowers of Evil – Thomas Theodore Heine

I have really enjoyed the gauntlets which some people have thrown down for me, but you can always guarantee that someone will throw something your way that makes the cogs tick more than most.  I can thank Artschaft for throwing this head scratcher at me. Heine was a german artist, born in 1867.   He was a... Continue Reading →

Anti-Racism or Human Stupidity…

https://parkstone.international/2018/02/06/shelleys-art-musings-anti-racism-or-human-stupidity/

The Temptation of St. Anthony – Joos Van Craesbeeck

I am the quintessential over thinker.  My brain is always buzzing, which can really help with somethings, but when I am wondering if all dogs bark in the same language at 2 am it can get tiresome. This was the first thing that struck me about this painting, the giant head washed up on the... Continue Reading →

La Commedia Illumina Firenze – Domenico Di Michelino

We all have our own personal idea of hell. Mine is either being stuck in a room full of crying babies or being in a world where I was unable to get a caffeine fix. Ok so neither may seem that terrifying or daunting and there are hundreds of things that in reality are worse... Continue Reading →

The Blacker Gachet I – Mark Alexander

Do you know what I am not a fan of? Just blocks of colour.  I can get on board with most art movements, and I feel I definitely give time to anything I see before I just dismiss it, but I don't get works by people like Mark Rothko, where squares of colour appear on... Continue Reading →

A man seated reading at a table in a lofty room – Artist Unknown

Sometimes I see things and they just amaze me.  This can be something really silly like perfect reflections in water, to something much more dramatic like great works of art (I know...shocking...who knew I was in to art!). I know I have talked a fair bit this week about items I have seen in the... Continue Reading →

George and the Dragon – Paolo Uccello

Did you know that during the years 1920-1940 the film industry instigated colour coding for good guys and villains in cowboy films?  Good guys got white hats and bad guys had black ones.  While this was a standardised convention during this time to assist audiences in categorising the characters the first time this was used... Continue Reading →

A Muse (Calliope?) – Cosimo Tura

There is a reason that my alias is WidowCranky, one it is obviously a play on the panto character, Widow Twanky from Aladdin, the comedy stock character, who nags and moans, which led me to the change the name to Cranky as I only really moan when I see something that doesn't sit right with... Continue Reading →

Art Critic – Tom Brown

How many documentaries on art have you watched? How many gallery or museum tours have you walked through? How many books on art have you picked up, and then not finished reading? Today I'm not really talking about the painting, although it does summarise nicely the little moan that I'm going to have. I have... Continue Reading →

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