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Artist Spotlight: Alanna Cavanagh

by - Wednesday, September 22, 2010

I am always impressed by artists. I find it fascinating how someone can be inspired by the world around us, notice the simple things, and translate that into a piece of art that "speaks to me". You know that feeling that you get when you look at a work of art, be it a painting, photograph, sculpture or any other form, and instantly it connects to something deep inside you and invokes an emotional reaction? I love that feeling.

One such artist whose work speaks to me is illustrator Alanna Cavanagh. Her work is light-hearted and whimsical with a retro vibe. Looking at her art makes me think of women in fitted sweaters and cat's eye glasses, housewives in aprons, and men in dapper suits.

I especially love her silk screen prints. I'm not sure where I first saw Alanna's Big Scissors print, but it really caught my attention. My mom used to sew us clothes and she had a pair of orange-handled scissors just like this so no wonder I find the print appealing.

Then I saw these images of chef & TV personality Trish Magwood's home in my fave House & Home magazine and it literally stopped me in my tracks. The combination of Trish's beautiful, family-friendly, light and airy home paired with Alanna's colourful artwork really did me in. I had to have a piece Alanna's art of my very own.

And this is what I got...

and this lovely, complete with coffee stains.

Would you believe that I've actually planned a special wall in the basement reno to feature this print? Because I have, that's how much I love it so. Its being framed right now (yay for Michael's 60% off custom framing!). Can't wait to show it to you back in my home.

All photos courtesy of Alanna Cavanagh.

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  1. I'd love to see a series with other quotes like the one about Julia Child! It's so encouraging to hear about people who - eventually - found their way and their bliss, but only after time. Makes me feel hopeful.

    Thanks for sharing these!

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  3. I adore all of her stuff - the virginia woolf cover is wonderful. Just wish she had affordable prints in addition to the silk screened originals ... sigh.

  4. great stuff! love the ones you picked~

  5. i love, love her stuff! my favorites are "read for profit" and the one you've purchased. i wanted to go to her sale but I was busy that weekend :(

  6. Oh my! I got lost in her website and had to come back and finish reading your post. Great find. ;)

  7. What wonderful art! So friendly and heartwarming. Thank you for highlighting the Julia Child piece - I'd never realized that before!

  8. I love that you have planned a space for your new art, I think that is just how it should work! I'm actually trying to convince my husband to add on a bathroom just so I can use a wallpaper I love!

  9. Anonymous1:33 PM

    I too fell in love with her work when I saw it in H & H.

    Did you purchase the art directly from her?

    Can't wait to see the basement plans.


  10. Love her work - love her blog!

    If you get a moment - come visit my blog and enter my very first giveaway! From CSN stores!


  11. Anonymous11:23 AM

    You know, I have never actually read any Virgina Woolf. I think I need to get on that.


  12. ;-] We have a pair of Orange Scissors JUST like those sitting in a "junk jar" in our kitchen!


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