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CLAIRE WALTIER MACGILLIVRAY
We are so pleased that Claire Waltier MacGillivray has created this year's Christmas Card, and we are sure that the striking design is destined to make everyone's winter merry and bright!
Over the summer, Claire spent time in Horatio's Garden Midlands as a visiting artist, running workshops with patients.
Read more about Claire, her time in the garden and her beautiful design here.
“After completing my degree in Fine Art (painting) I gained experience working in both design and art education.
“Working freelance I’ve designed hand painted artwork for fashion, interiors and collaborated to create a soft furnishing brand.
“In art education I’ve implemented and taught a year’s programme in printed textiles and constructed and run various art workshops for adults and children."
“A particular creative inspiration for me are flowers and I decided to plant dahlias in my own garden specifically to paint. There began my obsession with my dahlia garden which now has over 100 plants and I’m happiest sat amongst them painting with my watercolours.
“In my studio I make larger works based on the studies made in the garden and I have recently designed a collection of scarves derived from my garden inspiration. These will be launching on my website this year."
“When the opportunity arose for me to be artist in residence at Horatio’s Garden Midlands I couldn’t have anticipated how enriching and rewarding working with the patients would be.
“Doctors, nurses, occupational therapists, family members of patients and patients themselves have all conveyed to me how much the benefits of the garden and the activities within the garden contribute to the patients’ wellbeing and recovery.
“I have seen how the garden turned a life around from dark to light with all the caring and nurturing possibilities that the charity provides. I’ve also witnessed numerous other patients experiencing the garden as a haven. Full of positive benefits for their wellbeing."
“I was super excited to design this year’s Christmas card for the charity.
“I felt that I wanted to move away from the obvious traditional colours that are usually associated with Christmas. I decided to paint the background magenta which I thought was uplifting and refreshing. The watercolour paints that I work with lend themselves to a lightness of touch and give a clarity of colour to the artwork. The wreath design has lots of bright pops of colour which continue onto the back of the card where the elements disperse as if blowing in the wind."
Bill Amberg Studio has existed for over 30 years, and today stands as an industry leader in bespoke leather products, interiors and furniture. Bringing together artisans from the worlds of saddlery, case-making, bookbinding and other forms of fine leathercraft, the studio has a mission to explore the aesthetic and material possibilities of leather.
The team reuse all offcuts, and are incredibly imaginative to make sure that nothing goes to waste. In 2019 the team created our tote bags in a range of colours, but this year their design for us is a little different.
As Bill says, “my inspiration to create a beautiful wellie bag was born out of the frustration of putting muddy wellies in bags with stuck zippers. I wanted to bring an aesthetic twist to this weekend essential. Using the strongest vinyl and sturdiest rope and leather, this bag has been hand made in the UK by my team. It is finished with a bespoke label for your initials so you will never lose it!”
The quality of this bag will ensure that it is the only kit-bag you will ever need, and we are so grateful that Bill and his team felt it would be the perfect item to complement our range and help us to create and care for our gardens.Purchase the Kit Bag
Every item you will find in the Horatio’s Garden shop has been carefully selected to feature in our collection. Everything we sell is intended to be beautiful, unique and reflect the ethos of the charity. When you buy our products, you can be sure you that your purchase is both supporting the charity and the planet.
We work with a range of wonderful artists who create exclusive, bespoke items and have been engaged with the charity as visiting artists in our gardens. When selecting companies to help us create our products, we consciously choose those who share our interest and dedication to high quality and sustainability. Wherever possible we don’t use plastic, all wood and paper are FSC certified and all other materials are ethically sourced.
The photographs of our shop items are taken by professional photographer Richard Foster, a leading specialist in still life photography and moving image. Richard is a wonderful supporter of Horatio’s Garden, and he himself lives with a C5/C6 complete spinal cord injury. You can see him in action and get tips on how to take pictures of your own garden in this wonderful Arty Afternoon film Richard created for us in 2020.