carolynblackart blog

update on Severnside – books flowing out the door!

Thank you to everyone for coming to my launch last week, it was a really lovely evening. I was nervous, as you can imagine, but felt supported in this lovely village of Newnham, snuggled up to the Severn.

50% have been despatched in one way or another and some people are coming back for more! Thank you!

I’ve just updated the book page on this website with other information, check it out to find out about places to view art, the book and buy it too. And about new exhibitions – more to share very soon!

Here’s a photo by Uschi Arens Price (thanks Uschi) – I think I may have been saying something a bit emotional at the time?

book launch IMG_0303




me on radio Gloucestershire yesterday, talking about binks, banks and little twizzles!

Yesterday (19/11/18) I had a conversation with David Smith on BBC Radio Glos

Nicky Price Show
first section 0:20:50  to 0:26:10
second section 0:34:27 to 0:40:15
fave words that slipped out “bink bank” and “little twizzle”!
PS they have renamed BBC iRadio ‘sounds’ – that\s the tab you need – confusing or what?
to make it easier, I’ve put it up on Soundcloud too.
and this is the poem I struggle to describe!

A book, a body of large drawings & a new toy

It’s been an interesting couple of years. Since I first put charcoal to paper in January 2017 I have been on two journeys – one, the route of returning to practice, the other, driving and walking around in circles, in circles. Realising what has happened makes me feel a little bit dizzy!

From posting the first drawing on Facebook and asking friends what they thought, and getting an amazing response, I have gradually gone full circle myself, to that of being able to say ‘I am an artist’ again. I’ve gone from 180 degrees to 360 degrees, then back to the book which is 180 degrees. Like a breath – breath in, expand, and breath out again.

The 360 degree camera has given me a whole new way of seeing the world, and it’s challenging. I set off to learn about VR but disliked the need for headsets or panning on screen. I did, however, enjoy the making of images that have been distorted by the marble lens.

The book is the peak point of the Severn series of works, the texts flowed along next to them as they evolved. I only had 100 printed, they are all signed and numbered and make great present form those who love rivers, and/or the bore. There’s information about how to order books here.

Watch the circular walking films here   (they may be on the screens in Newnham Community Library during opening hours too).

You will also find some digital prints and an original charcoal drawing on display in the library. Check their Facebook page for opening hours.

Next up is the the Newnham Arts & crafts Fair over 3 days – 7th, 8th & 9th December, various hours, please check their Facebook page too.

And then it’s off to the Wye! I’m showing some works in Brockweir and Hewelsfield Shop/Cafe from the same weekend!! Different work, several new ones about Brockweir and the Wye, and a lovely shop which is a good model for our hopes for The George development (ReNewnham).

Another week begins – I love Monday mornings because I get to plan what comes next!


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Armoury Hall Newnham Community Library – new prints from 360 camera- views from top of St Peter’s Church Tower

Am so busy thinking about my book which launches on Friday I haven’t been talking about a new set of prints for sale. They are in the Newnham Community Library on display and can be bought off the wall or produced order.

It was such a privilege to view the Severn from high up, despite my vertigo. What is odd that I sued cutting edge technology to produce what appear to be medieval imagery. And the old tower hides from the public eye that the colours of the beams up there are so brightly coloured!!

See small images below, they are of course bigger in real life, but I somehow wanted to share them. There are other River Severn works from last year, but these are the latest. (Note: colours not great on here, they are slightly bolder)


Carolyn Black Xmas Curch Tower Printsfullsizeoutput_aec

book launch – two years work, drawings and words, all about the River Severn


Art and Writing – All About Rivers

I have a new book to launch, alongside two exhibitions of drawings and prints.

I moved to Thornbury, in the South West, in the early eighties, then to the Forest of Dean in 2006. Throughout those years I’ve spent many hours contemplating the wonders of the River Severn.

In January 2017 I began to work on a series of large-scale, panoramic, charcoal drawings of the Severn, several of which were exhibited and sold. I worked in my studio on the drawings, and wrote at home on my computer – fact-gathering and collating memoirs about my long relationship with the Severn. In other words, I wrote a book.

Like the drawings, the book is in panoramic format. The retail price for this beautiful, fifty-page hard back book is £28 – come along to my talk in the Armoury Hall, Newnham, at 6.30pm on Friday 16th November – the first edition is for one hundred copies only. At the Newnham launch, I will give a short talk about my passion for the Severn and you have an opportunity to buy a signed copy for only £25. There will be a number of original drawings and prints available to buy, which will be displayed in Newnham Community Library from 5th November.

Others will adorn the café walls of The Brockweir & Hewelsfield Village Shop, which launches on 6.30pm Friday 14th December, again, come to the launch to buy a signed copy for only £25. The Brockweir show will also include some new work about the Wye.

Don’t forget, you only get the discounted price if you come to the launches – and there are only a hundred copies available of this first edition, published by

I’m delighted to be under imprint and look forward to seeing more of their publications as they expand their publishing house. They run some great conferences at Dartington, and further afield too. Newnham designer Paul Manning did the layout for the book and is highly recommended, having the patience of a saint.

Dates: Friday 16th November 6.30-8pm Armoury Hall, Dean Rd, Newnham GL14 1AD  Book launch, exhibition and talk

Friday 14th December 6.30-8 pm Brockweir & Hewelsfield Village Shop, Brockweir, Chepstow, NP16 7NW Exhibition launch in Café, including new work about the Wye & copies of Severnside: An Artist’s View Of The Severn will be available (exhibition from 5th December – not too late to order Christmas prints)

Of church bells, towers & vertigo – 360-degree images from high above the River Severn

Earlier this year Andy Vivian very kindly took me up into the bell tower of St. Peter’s Church in Newnham. We were armed with my 360-degree camera which I controlled remotely. Those who know me well are aware that if I stand on a chair I get dizzy and wobbly, so going up into the tower was a feat and looking out of the window almost impossible for me. With support from Andy, I managed to position the camera precariously on a tripod to capture some stunning views.

I was fine on the level of the Carolan bells and took several photos of the view through the windows. But the real bell tower, where the enormous church bells are, is yet another storey up. My knees turned to jelly. No way could I do that. Climbing up the tight spiral staircase to the entry point was one thing, but climbing up through a hole in the floor, and balancing on beams, was unimaginable for me.

Andy kindly did that bit and positioned the camera in various locations with instructions from below, as I directed from my iPhone screen – “left a bit, turn it a bit, yes, perfect, now hide!”.

Viewing on the tiny phone screen, the image was not very clear, but when I uploaded them onto my computer –  wow – I was stunned! The views through the windows have a medieval timelessness to them. The river framed by wonderful architectural arches and the lichen and stonework revealed. The images of the big bells were something entirely unexpected.

The surprise was the playschool colour of the steel beams in the upper bell chamber. I was expecting bronze-y, dirty colours but BOOM! Bright red, yellow and green powder coated steel rang out loud and clear!

I’ve been working with the images the last few days, preparing some to put up in the Newnham Community Library. Seeing them together as a set makes me realise what a privilege it was, both to go up there and to have a 360 camera I can experiment with.

Library hours are limited, but if you are in the Armoury Hall for other reasons, do nip in and have a look at them on the wall. They are presented in 18cm square frames, black or white. I’ve a feeling they may be popular, and the exhibition will be up right through to Christmas, so I can take orders. Deadline for orders will be 1st December 2018 and dependant on availability of the frames.

There will be other works in the library, original, large, panoramic drawings and a few smaller prints.

And a show coming up in Brockweir Community Shop.

And my book Severnside: An Artist’s View Of The River Severn will be launched very soon.

Here’s a little preview of the church photographs, not great due to reflections but I never complain about sunshine!