Children, reading, and Tough Magic
Widdershins collage #2

The end of summer, diving into "deep work," and Widdershins collage #1

Studio garden

Howard and I are developing the practice of taking regular Work Retreats: a few days in every month in which we hole ourselves up in our respective studios, the Internet switched off and the phone disengaged, in order to focus with greater attention than is possible during ordinary interrupted working days. Today is a holiday here in Britain, but starting tomorrow, and for the rest of the week, I'll be incommunicado in my quiet studio. Then I'll be back online again on Monday, September 5th.

Studio garden

Book & Burne-Jones coffee mug

Late summer morning

I'm working on a writing project right now, while Howard has several things on his plate, from Commedia to puppetry. Come step through the gap in the garden hedge that leads from my studio cabin to his....

The path from studio to studio

...where you'll find him at work (in the picture below) building the frame for a Punch & Judy booth.

Howard Gayton

Each day, a wide range of sounds floats over the hedge from his busy workspace to mine: sawing, singing, accordion or mandolin practice, the laughter of theatre collaborators. the distinctive raspy voice of Mr. Punch...

Punch & Judy puppets

The hound

Commedia puppets

...a steady murmur of creativity that is close enough to feel companionable, yet distant enough to preserve the peacefulness I crave as I write or paint.

Garden path

Meanwhile, the Widdershins exhibition at Green Hill has ended -- and I do remember that I promised to share my art for it here once the show had closed its doors. Below is the first of my six Widdershins collages. I've set up the other five for automatic posting each morning of the week ahead while I'm on Retreat, one per day.

This one is called Once Upon a Time....

Once Upon a Time by Terri Windling

Here it is framed in my studio before the exhibition, and on the wall at Green Hill with the other five pieces in the series:

Collages by Terri Windling

Alan Lee, and collages by Terri Windling

I hope the end of your summer is gentle, peaceful, and full of creativity. See you in a week.

Ripe plums

Studio garden

"Sometimes I need only to stand wherever I am to be blessed."  - Mary Oliver

Tilly, August 2016


Have a quiet, welcome retreat and come back to us refreshed.

In the final picture, the William Morris willow bough in red at the top of the page. I have been looking everywhere for a supplier of that particular pattern to either buy or make a duvet. Is it an old piece or something you have recently found?


It's an old piece, found mercifully cheap on Ebay a couple of years ago. Have you checked Morris & Co lately? They've been slowly bringing back old patterns. I covet their Strawberry Thief duvets myself, but alas, we're on much too tight a budget these days. But I keep my eye on Ebay, where Morris fabrics are still pricey but every one in awhile I get lucky.


Yes--that's where I got a Willowbough duvet this summer for my green room. But the pillowcases are all out of stock.

I thought about Strawberry thief duvet but it's too bold for my taste in this room. AND I ran out of discretionary funds as I always do in late summer and no royalties till fall.


I noticed the red Willow right off! I will see what I can do about red Willow tile tomorrow. Down the rabbit hole...

Enjoy your space prolific in your work well and most of all ...have fun xx

What a magical and beautiful place, you live in.

Love "Once Upon A Time"...

And of course, love your black Lab. One of our sons and his wife, have and have had black Labs. They are precious.

Enjoy and use your work time, and rest from technology. It sounds like a wonderful idea, for all of us.

Gentle hugs,
Luna Crone

Enjoy your time away from technology. U am looking forward to your art postings while you are on retreat.

The photos you posted this morning were rejuvenating of themselves--help to the weary. I hope you have a productive and peaceful retreat.

Dear Terri,

Thank you for your admirable example of balance and discipline through Work Retreats. May this be a deeply nourishing time for your soul and for your work.
Also, thank you so much for the "in passing" sort of book recommendations...I will be seeking out Deep Work through my library soon.

Love and Peace to You, Howard and Tilly!

And Candace with an A thanks you as well for the book recommendation--I've requested it from my library! There's another book, Mindful Tech by David M Levy, with mindful practices that are helping me ease away from so many interruptions throughout my day.

Enjoy your week of deep work, and thank you for the beautiful photos and narrative to inspire me to do likewise, enjoying the end of summer.

What a wonderful luxury to have such space and peace to work. And I love the phrase, "deep work." Have a wonderful week :-)

It looks and sounds delightful...

I appreciate the recommendation, and will definitely look it up. Coming to grips with tech is so important these days, even for Country Mice like me....

Well, I'm back from the Retreat, and it was...interesting. I'll report on it a further post.

Terri, quite an interesting collage. I love how you've got them "popping out" of their little leaf frame. Your photos are also lovely and artsy! Thank you for sharing.

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