Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The Fearless Flight of Dreams

The art of Cathy Nichols stirs strange emotions in me. I have nothing but admiration for the artist herself, of course, and nurture an almost childlike enthusiasm for her richly textured, vividly colored depictions of life just off the edge of reality. But as much as I love to get lost in the magic of these visions, I find it necessary at the same time to suppress a surging sense of injustice that for so many years before the Impressionists came along and shattered the old convention, painters toiled away in studios with little more than bowls of pears and brooding, pasty-faced nobles to inspire them. Nichols’ art, typified beautifully in the dreamlike Aloft, celebrates an open-aired freedom of expression we take for granted today. Set against the somewhat-surreal backdrop of a carnival at sunset, the young female subject of the painting is aloft—literally—as a cluster of balloons carries her skyward, far above even the ghostly Wonder Wheel turning jauntily beneath her. There’s a familiar mystique to the scene, even if we can’t recall ever dreaming it specifically.


Besides churning up some obvious “what if” allusions, paintings like these turn the wheels of art history, as well, recalling the wavy, curling strokes of, for example, Van Gogh’s The Olive Trees while also drawing on the pastel palette of landscapes such as Kirchner’s View of Davos. Still, Nichols’ work is all her own. And Wishing Willow is proud to announce that for one lucky reader, one of Nichols' newest pieces can be yours, too. Sanctuary, a lovely ode to Spring recently completed, really shows off the versatility of the artist. Where some of her other work might be termed evocative or even haunting, this radiant nature-collage is simply soft and sweet, employing foliage patterns that resemble fabric prints and layering pinks, peaches, and taupes as a springtime swatch.

Participating in this giveaway is a breeze: Visit Cathy Nichols' collection here, and then simply come back here to tell us your favorite print. Those who also subscribe to our newsletter will receive an extra entry. (Leave a second comment, and confirm your subscription. The winner will be chosen randomly.) You don't have to have a Google account to participate. Click "anonymous" to enter. The contest will end 10/08/08. Good luck!

**We have a winner! Amy who said: "Wow, I have a lot of favorites. sancturary, finding my true home, secret garden, coda, poem and hello friend!!! You might have just broke my piggy bank :)" Congratulations! Please email us with your contact info.***

274 comments:

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Anonymous said...

I love the "Together you are less lonely" print with the giraffe.

roblyn66 at yahoo dot com

Sandy said...

I like the day off, they aare all beautiful

myntric said...

I like Poem.

Kristan said...

i like 3 little birds.
andrewandkristan(at)hotmail(dot)com

Renee' Simmons said...

I love the I am beautiful print, I think we all need one of those to remind us!

Thank you for the opportunity!

Renee' Simmons said...

I will also be blogging it in a little bit!

Berry said...

I like Big Moon and Sanctuary.

Berry said...

I subscribe also.

Jess said...

Wow, amazing giveaway! Thank you so much for even having a giveaway like this! The prize is fantastic! :)

My favorite print would have to be "Day Off." The colors are gorgeous!

http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=15095818

jess^^^4002 [at] gmail [dot] com
(without the ^^^)

Jess said...

I confirmed and subscribed to the newsletter! :) Best of luck everyone!

jess^^^4002 [at] gmail [dot] com
(without the ^^^)

layla said...

Such beautiful artwork. Two of my favorites are "Hello Friend" and "Room for Everyone".
laylarenee[at]cfl.rr.com

layla said...

I'm a subscriber.
laylarenee[at]cfl.rr.com

Stacy said...

The Never Let You Go is very romantic.

hetz-junk(at)hotmail(dot)com

Donna said...

I like the "You Are Beautifyl" print for my daughters.

dgodoy@bestweb.net

piece of me said...

I love the You Are Beautiful print but my favorite is the sanctuary print.
livlifelov at yahoo dot com

rosannepm said...

I love the explorer

Anonymous said...

I love the LemonLime. The colors are so lovely and the scene just makes me feel rejuvenated, perhaps from the lovely blooms and the promise of renewal.

smw1166@earthlink.net

Jenn S. said...

I like the "falling, yes i am falling" print.

DV- Rebecca L. said...

I love the feel of the 'Birdie Garden' - it's perfect for my toddler and new baby's room :) Wow!

Krista said...

"Never Let You Go" if my favorite, I think I have to have it!

strawberry3d said...

my favorite print is secret garden.

Rebecca said...

I really like Harvest Moon, I love the feel of her art.

legacyofbrutalitysa{AT}gmail.com

Rebecca said...

I am a subscriber!

legacyofbrutalitysa{AT}gmail.com

Anonymous said...

mommy tree talking to baby tree

Nora
neneelynn@yahoo.com

blueviolet said...

I love the one called Poem!
doot65{at}comcast[dot]net
Elizabeth

blueviolet said...

I'm subscribed too!
doot65{at}comcast[dot]net
Elizabeth

Deborah said...

I like Lemon Lime. It's so vibrant.

traymona said...

Wow! Great prints. My favorite is Beach Day followed closely by Lemon Lime. Bright, happy prints.I have just the place for either one.
traymona[at]aol.com

Holly Bartos said...

I am a huge fan of Cathy Nichols art and would love a print! My favorite is "Wedding Day", but print-wise, I also love "Home by the Sea".

Anonymous said...

So hard to choose...they are all so lovely. I think "You Are Beautiful" would be so sweet in my baby girl's room.

annmariejonesca@yahoo.com

sue14625 said...

wow all are wonderful if i have ot pick it wouold be ALOFT

Rhiannon said...

I loved Together You are Less Lonely so much that I bought two - one for me and one for my aunt.

Tina12312 said...

I am in love with "Day Off", lovely. Thank you!

migrator said...

'Magicland' evokes a sentiment rare and wonderful.

Anonymous said...

It's impossible to pick just one! "Coda" is my favorite right now, but I also love "Hello Friend" (which might not be in print any longer), "Never Let You Go," and "Two Lovebirds". Cathy is incredibly talented!

sacrain at yahoo dot com

idahomom said...

Poem is very nice.

sillelin said...

Never let you go

Anonymous said...

I love 'falling, yes i am falling'. They are all absolutely beautiful...I love her choice of colors.

Thanks for the giveaway!

mikelisa32 at verizon dot net

Anonymous said...

I just subscribed to your newsletter...thanks!

mikelisa32 at verizon dot net

Mia J. said...

They are all lovely but my favorite is Day Off.

andeeram said...

Home at Last is my favorite

andeeram said...

I subsribed to your newsletter too.

Anonymous said...

My favorite print is Little Star.
-Terra
partymix25(at)hotmail(dot)com

Sunnyvale said...

I like the colors in the print Lemon Lime

kmbennet said...

Like the Never Let You Go. Thanx for the contest.

pintolinda said...

I like the Day Off art block. The colors are refreshing.
pintolinda(at)hotmail(dot)com

pintolinda said...

I susbscribed by email.
pintolinda(at)hotmail(dot)com

mensa63 said...

What a wonderful and unique style this artist has. Enjoyed seeing them all but Coda is my far and away favorite. The starkness of the trees, the sweetness of the young lovers and the finally the intrustion of the girl's red socks makes for an interesting and somewhat intriguing work. One found onself wondering if the artist's intent with the red socks was to breakup up the black and white starkness or just to add a bit of mischief. At any rate it is effective and interesting.

Melissa said...

Harvest moon is gorgeous! I would love to win one of her fabulous prints.

Baba said...

I love the Big Moon!

Anna Lloyd said...

I love them all, but "Four Songs" is especially lovely.

janehixon said...

Aloft!

kdkdkd said...

I like the Aloft print best

bookworm said...

I like the "Coda" print, it reminds me of my husband!

DOODLEGIRL said...

Day Off Art Block

Dawn said...

I love "Across the Bay." I owe the Blue bicycle original and they would look good together!

mimi said...

love "protected" ..they are all beautiful

thanks for this giveaway
el

Missesprincess said...

~ cODA IS STIMULATING FOR SURE ~ missesprinces69@hotmail.com

RE said...

Beautiful prints! I'd love "Never Let You Go". Thanks!

Pat Connors said...

I like the Big Moon and Sanctuary. Thanks for the contest.

risanjax@metrocast.net

zekebamm said...

I love "Coda." It's simple, yet it really says a lot to me.

vboackle said...

never let you go is nice.

Fangirl Jen said...

I have looked at all of the prints, and I actually like Sanctuary the best.

SeahorseLady said...

I like her style. I'll Follow the Sun is my favorite.

studiotau said...

I can't decide between Girl in Conch Shell Necklace and Beach Day! I'm a huge fan. :)

Serena said...

I love all of Cathy's work but I feel drawn to 'Day Off'...LOVE the colours and mood.

Whimsical Creations said...

My favorite is birdy garden.

=) melanie
http://melaniescrafts.blogspot.com
melanieadey at hotmail dot com

Whimsical Creations said...

I subscribed.

=) melanie
http://melaniescrafts.blogspot.com
melanieadey at hotmail dot com

windycindy said...

Your prints are lovely. I had a very difficult time choosing just one!
The "3 Little Birds" is one of my favorites! Please enter me in your delightful drawing. Many thanks, Cindi
jchoppes[at]hotmail[dot]com

windycindy said...

I am a subscriber! Thanks, Cindi
jchoppes[at]hotmail[dot]com

Abby said...

You are beautiful is my fave!

ajcmeyer AT go DOT com

janetfaye said...

I like mommy tree talking to baby tree (even though they are separated), Hello Friend, and my favorite is Home at Last.

janetfaye (at) gmail (dot) com

janetfaye said...

Subscribed.

janetfaye (at) gmail (dot) com

sarah said...

I like "never let you go". i guess it just means something to me based on my own experiences on love.

fertawert AT yahoo DOT com

vadjutka said...

Oh, this giveaway would be a perfect b-day (09.10) gift for me :-)

I love all of cathy's work. From her shop my favourites are: hello summer 3 and poem.

vadjutka at gmail dot com

My name is Diana. said...

What beautiful artwork. "Home at Last" would have to be my favorite. But it was very hard to choose. I loved "Harvest Moon" too!

My name is Diana. said...

Just subscribed to your newsletter too!

Betty said...

I love all the prints under "Great for children", but Birdie Garden is my favorite.

Betty said...

Also subscribe to your feed

Nadia said...

I like Birdie Garden. But Sanctuary is actually my fave. =)

treflea4 at gmail dot com

elaine said...

All the prints are lovely,I especially like Mommy Tree Talking-lovely concept!
Elaine R
emrosser@shaw.ca

Miss Anne said...

"You Are Beautiful" is so lovely.

Excellent work!

:)

Becca Ann said...

mommy tree talking to baby tree is my favorite!
xxbeccaannxx@gmail.com

Miss Anne said...

*subscribed*

:) yay!

Imanoptimisticbeauty said...

Wow! Awesome contest. I love the print called Coda. Something about it speaks to me.

imanoptimisticbeauty[at]yahoo[dot]com

Imanoptimisticbeauty said...

subscribed!

imanoptimisticbeauty[at]yahoo[dot]ca

kygirl said...

Day Off is my favorite.

jnmacdonald said...

I like Poem.

Terri Fisher said...

I like "Never Let You Go"...beautiful artwork!

tfisher83 AT myexcel DOT com

Marigold said...

As I am writing this while at work, the print that most appeals to me is, of course, the Day Off print. I love the bright colors, the composition, the ghostly transparency of the ship... All very dreamy and peaceful, just what I need.

boldnessbe(at)gmail(dot)com

Anonymous said...

I love aloft. It reminds me of my fear of Ferris wheels as a child.

Bebemiqui said...

I like "The Explorer"
bebemiqui82(at)yahoo(dot)com

Anonymous said...

I would love to own aloft.
It makes me feel like a child again when I look at it.

ChristiS said...

I really like the Room for Everyone tree print! Thanks for sharing!

The Saunders Family said...

never let you go is great!
mom2maria at hotmail dot com

gunzie said...

I love the "Day off" one, I love the colors. Thanks for the great giveaway!
ann dot guns at mac dot com

gunzie said...

I'm also a subscriber.
ann dot guns at mac dot com

ThreadBeaur said...

What a great giveaway from a great etsy shop!
I love Coda, the trees are so nice.
threadbeaur [at] yahoo . com

Sara Cross said...

Thanks for the giveaway! I would pick "You are Beautiful" for my daugther to hang in her room. Yes, she is only one year old but we are working hard on 'self esteem' at a young age!

sweetsue said...

These are so unique! I want one for every room in my house. My favorite is the Never Let You Go print.

Xenia S said...

These are gorgeous! I'd love to hang the You Are Beautiful print in my daughter's room so as she grows up it's a positive reminder every day.

Thanks!
xpsundell(at)gmail(dot)com

Heather R said...

I like Sweetness.

Genevieve P said...

I like Hello Summer 1.
parknj at basicisp dot net

Cool Crafty Mom said...

I love the Hello Birdie painting.

Gina said...

I love the "Room for Everyone" because I refer to my little ones as owlets LOL

gkstratos said...

I just love Harvest Moon
gkstratos@yahoo.com

gkstratos said...

Subscriber
gkstratos@yahoo.com

Kristin said...

I love love love both "Hello Friend" and "Where You Go I Follow."

Kristin said...

and I subscribed. :)

kmc.love@gmail.com

michelle g. said...

I love Hello Summer 3.

cathyhall said...

Hi, I loved the You Are Beautiful print, - fantastic artwork.

cathyhall said...

I'm a subscriber

Roberta said...

I love the Coda and the $ songs, great prints and a great giveaway, thank you.


rhubbert(at)socal(dot)rr(dot)com

Roberta said...

I also subscribe, thanks

rhubbert(at)socal(dot)rr(dot)com

yyeres said...

i like the Never Let You Go print

Claire Ishino said...

They are all so very beautiful! I love "Never let you go" (*o*)/

Blessings Abound said...

I like the Sweetness print! Thanks!

akblessingsabound[at]gmail.com

Kristen Taylor said...

I love 'Never let you go'

wow. beautiful...

mrchips said...

I like The Highline Autumn

Moody Girl said...

I seriously can't decide on a favorite they are all so good. She is incredibly talented. This one stood out because of the title though. When One Door Opens http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=12503040

Viv said...

I love the evocative, "Never let you go" with the couple holding on to each other so tightly as the wind blows. Wow.

I'm Viv from Cool Moms Rule!
vbruss AT cfl DOT rr DOT com

Jenny said...

I like "Never Let You Go." They are all beautiful though.

the_other_alice_(at)yahoo.com

Treasuresofjoy said...

I LOVE "sanctuary"!!

mensa63 said...

In mt first posting I chose Coda and now I am choosing Aloft. Not only do I like the colors and the freedom effect of the soaring child but it reminds me of my ride on the London Eye last year. You can see the whole of mid-town London You can see Big Ben, Buckingham Palace and the ever moving Thames with its endless traffic and so much more. Really a great ride.

big hair betty said...

These are very fun prints! I like "Hello Friend" and "Sweetness."

Allison said...

I really like "Day Off" -- that's where I would love to be right now! But I really enjoy the colors in the 4 Songs. Thanks for sharing this artist with us!

Lori said...

I like "just you and me"

yadgirl said...

I Like Magicland

PS said...

I love the Together You are Less Lonely, the girl hugging the tree is just beautiful.

Nicole G said...

I like Come Inside, but they all wonderful. :)

Roger said...

Aloft lifts me up. So totally awesome!

single mom with tiny tot said...

Harvest Moon is my favorite. I love the contrasting colors. And even thought it's named for the moon, the house and the trees are much more in focus. I like that.

~Lisa~ said...

"where you go i follow" for myself, but I bet my daughter would really love "Sanctuary." Thanks.

mommyjen99 said...

I like this one for my bedroom
Never Let You Go
jen62728@aol.com

Jennifer said...

My favorite is the mommy tree talking to baby tree (even though they are separated) Thank you fr the chance to win a piece of the artists beautiful work :-)

thedirtyshirtblog(at)gmail(dot)com

Page said...

I wish I could do art like this. Your paintings remind me of dreams. My favorite one is "Spun" as is the story of my life :).. Keep up the great work.

fancyschmancy58@gmail.com

Wanda said...

Where You Go I Will Follow

Aisling said...

I really like the Sanctuary print, but two of my other favorites are the Birdie Garden and Little Star. What a lovely collection of paintings!

jochrisbryan said...

I love I'll Follow the Sun and I want to be in the picture doing just that, its so reminds me of hazy lazy beach days.

The Mommy said...

My very favorite is Harvest Moon, although I find it a bit unfair that I must choose only one, for her paintings are simply gorgeous. The colors that she uses, and the dream-like quality of the images are just full of wonder and exploration. I want to step inside the paintings as one would desire to be a part of a well-written story book. Harvest Moon evokes all of those beautiful thoughts of autumn that I'm overwhelmed with right now. The scents of cinnemon, the warmth of that first ever log in our fire pit outside and the rustling of the leaves outside. I can almost feel that cool evening breeze and the smell of freshness that fall brings when I look at that print. Thank you for such a glorious opportunity. She really is a very talented artist!

Beth (roundcat) said...

Wow, beautiful work! I love both pieces featured here, plus also Saturday in the Park and Il Nido. There are different moods to all the pieces in her gallery, with such a wide range of emotion. Good stuff.

*~Dani~* said...

What an amazing artist! Thank you for introducing me to her. I think my favorite, although hard to pick one, would be the Coda painting. Beautiful

Sue Wintz said...

I really like "Poem". Such beautiful work.

Becky said...

I had a really hard time picking just one. I narrowed it down to two LOL. I really love the soft colors in this one Sweetness. I also love the serene feeling while looking at Day Off.

Thanks for the contest.

tiff said...

The Sweetness print is my fave. That would look awesome in my kitchen.

texan_michael(AT)yahoo(DOT)com

Trish said...

I have to say the giveaway print "Sanctuary" is my favorite. I also like "Room for Everyone".

Trish said...

I also subscribed to your newsletter! Thanks!

Monica and Stuart said...

'where you go i follow' is fantastic!

julie said...

my daughter's fave animal is the giraffe and I love the scene in Together you are less lonely
3beez at bellsouth dot net

Anonymous said...

dreams

KCC said...

I love "falling, yes i am falling." I can see one of her prints in every room of my house! Love her work. www.kccpets.com click contact

Hayley said...

I really like the Au Printemps print!

oreo89 [at] gmail [dot] com

Jennae @ Green Your Decor said...

I love the "You are Beautiful" and "Together you are less lonely" prints. Her imagination and artistry are awesome! I would love to hang these in my daughter's room. Email: jennae {at} greenyourdecor {dot} com

Anonymous said...

KawaiiNeko2008 (at) aol (dot) com
"Day Off" or "Aloft"

Tracy Barton said...

I love the print "Day off the Block"!! Absolutely beautiful!

Megan said...

I like I Believe in Love

Lessa said...

My favorite is definitely the "Think Pink" art block. Great subject and wonderful colors!

Lessa said...

I subscribed to your newsletter too!

LisaW said...

My favorite is Day Off. Thanks!

Kelly said...

I love "never let you go." how sweet.

Nancy said...

I like Sweetness best!
Nancy
allibrary [at] aol [dot] com

delfina said...

Spun and Aloft are my faves.

Paige said...

I like the Home at Last and Poem. I can't decide which I like better. They're both so gorgeous!

Ardy22 said...

The Harvest Moon looks so serene and peaceful!

Lynn H said...

Beach Day would be my choice!

mverno said...

the dayoff is sweet

judybrittle said...

My favorite is Aloft. Wonderful memories of childhood riding the ferris wheel. Thank you so much!

judybrittle said...

I just subscribed

Rachel said...

Day Off and Sweetness

toughturtles said...

Aloft is my favorite

sailorxx said...

i like "coda"--- its quite different. aloft is nice too!

Minxy Mimi said...

I like the Magicland
Its cool!

mimibunny31@gmail.com

Minxy Mimi said...

I am a subscriber now!
mimibunny31@gmail.com

imjasonc said...

You Are Beautiful, is my favorite.

Madam Pince said...

I'm torn between three prints, but think I would ultimately pick Big Moon.

M.A. said...

I like BIG MOON because I can tell it wants to hang over my dining room table.

Lisa said...

I love Birdie Garden

marcyp06@hotmail.com said...

I love the "falling, yes i am falling", beautiful!

monky said...

I really like the You Are Beautiful one it's awesome!! :)


:) Thank you for the great giveaway! :)

Karen said...

Love the "day off" !!

InMyHeart01 said...

I like Big moon, it's moody and that fits me haha

tracytreehouse said...

sanctuary and aloft are so nice...but they're all so nice...
simpsonville91@yahoo.com

Kathleen said...

Blue Bicycle is definitely my favorite. Her work is so magical, and in a strange way, haunting. I love it!

Kathleen said...

I'm a subscriber too at katwalck at hotmail dot com

PinkDaisyGirl said...

I actually love the two you show here the best, Aloft and Sanctuary. Either one would look wonderful in one of my daughter's rooms.

PinkDaisyGirl said...

I'm subscribed too.

Janice Golden said...

Cathedral
Jaleigh78[at]aol[dot]com

Angie said...

I like the "Lemon Lime" print! It is lovely with white and yellow flowers! Reminds me of peonies!

thanks!
baileybobby6(at)hotmail.com

Anonymous said...

I love them all but tonight The Highline Autumn is my favorite.

dcala said...

I really do like them all but the Hello Friend print is probably my favorite.

Trish said...

what a hard decision! I have to say Big Moon is my favorite, but they are all great!

ihchicky said...

My #1 favorite is Harvest Moon. My 2nd favorite is Big Moon. Lovely pictures!

Just Another Hofeling said...

I love Harvest Moon..such a mellow feeling picture.
Autum

Angie said...

I love the The Highline Autumn print!

ravenwins @ comporium.net

Anonymous said...

Christina - xristya@rock.com - I admire the Girl In Conch Shell Necklace artwork - the girl seems windswept with summer, not caring about her looks in societal terms (as a model would) but instead humanly friendly and happy with her beach find!

VIVI7729 said...

My favorite is the Big Moon print!

Michele said...

Well, my comment didn't show up, and I got an error message, so I'll try again.

I'm in love!!! Cathy Nichols is AMAZINGLY talented!! What gorgeous works of art!!

My favorite is Sanctuary, and my second favorite is a tie between Together You Are Less Lonely and Room For Everyone. Love 'em all!!

Great giveaway!! I'm so excited for this one!!!

Thanks so much!!
Michele R.(CA)
luvkittysmeowmail@gmail.com

Michele said...

I'm now a subscriber!!

Thanks so much!!
Michele R.(CA)
luvkittysmeowmail@gmail.com

blog mom said...

what a fantastic artist! Big Moon is my favorite.

Kirby McCauley said...

I love love love "Protected"!!!

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