• Wonderful World of Wellies
    Children's Books,  Current Projects

    The Wonderful World of Wellies

    Written by Lisa Esposito and Warren Glynn. Illustrations by Claire Kitcher Over the last couple of years, I have been working with children’s book authors Lisa Esposito and Warren Glynn on an exciting new project, the Wonderful World Wellies. Together, we have been developing a whole range of fun new Twellie Wellie characters, then illustrating the pages and producing the final print ready book. The brief was very specific, the characters had to be fun and appeal to young children, but not too cartoon like. Background images had to be realistic and incorporate the authors’ big brown dog and little black cat with one white whisker, so it was very…

  • Children's Books,  Current Projects

    Hero Hoverfly and Friends

    Written and Illustrated by Claire Kitcher Working on the Wonderful World of Wellies book in collaboration with authors, Lisa Esposito and Warren Glynn has really whetted my appetite to write and illustrate my own books. By chance I was talking to my lovely neighbours, when a hoverfly faced up to a bubble from a bubble machine. It followed the bubble until it burst. This was quite magical to see and was the inspiration behind… Hero Hoverfly and Friends in the Bubble Monster Adventure Join little Hero hoverfly and his friends, Daisy dragonfly, Willow wasp and Bumble bee in their very first adventure. They are looking for fun but get far…

  • New Forest Ponies Shading in the Copse
    Painting Gallery

    Ponies Shading in a New Forest Copse

    On Wootton Heath, very near to our own horse’s field, there is a small oak and holly copse. The copse has always been a popular haunt for the New Forest ponies and cattle, as it provides shade from the heat and flies in the summer, shelter and valuable forage in the winter. The hollies are often cut by the Forestry Commission during the winter to provide a source of food for the commoners ponies. I was working from some reference photos that I had taken the previous year, but you must take into account that the contrast will always seem higher in photographs compared to real life. Pastels were used…

  • Children's Books,  General Posts

    Climbing Trees and Muddy Knees.

    As grandparents and like so many others, we missed our twin grandsons so much during the lockdown. I wrote this poem for them and illustrated it just to make them smile, and must admit it was great fun to do.I hope you enjoy it. If grandparents as well, I’m sure that you will appreciate the sentiment from that time.I must add of course, that we did miss our daughter and son-in-law as well! Digital Illustrations using Procreate on an iPad Pro Climbing trees and muddy kneesAre things we miss like crazy.Without you boys to run round withWe’re getting kinda lazy Those fun filled days will soon be back,And you can…

  • Painting Gallery,  Projects Archive

    A New Forest Cattle Drive

    Back in October 2018 I was asked by a commoner friend if he could commission an unusual oil painting. He has a large herd of cattle which run on the New Forest that had to come in for TB testing. This meant driving the cattle back to his farm across the open forest with horses. I leapt at the chance, although cattle drifts are not uncommon, it is very rare to see quite so many cattle being driven across open forest and to have advanced knowledge of the route was a great opportunity for a painting which really couldn’t be missed Photos of the drive The view was to be…

  • Painting Gallery,  Projects Archive

    Rutting Fallow Bucks

    In 2016 I received a commission from a New Forest Keeper for an oil painting of rutting fallow bucks. Getting up very early one morning to try and film scenes of the annual fallow rut in his quiet corner of the forest with his video recorder, he was especially thrilled to have successfully captured the scene with a rare white buck. He asked for the painting to be set in the exact spot where he had witnessed the rut taking place. I took a selection of stills from the videos and put together an autumn scene incorporating most of the large herd, including the many males that had gathered there.…

  • Projects Archive

    A Celebration of Commoning

    A Celebration of Commoning was painted to Commemorate 100 years of the New Forest Commoners Defence Association. It was sold by auction at the 2009 New Forest Show, with all proceeds going to the NFCDA. The central watercolour depicts a typical New Forest pony drift scene across South Weirs, Brockenhurst. It is surrounded by pencil sketches of local commoners and scenes depicting various aspects of commoning life. The top section represents the administrative bodies of commoning.Starting in the top left corner: Agisters of the past, Jesse Taylor, Charles Evemy, and Albert Evemy. The Verderers Court, overseeing the commoning community, then modern day faces, retired Head Agister, Brian Ingram, current Head…

  • Claire Kitcher & Father Joe Wilding
    Projects Archive

    Brushwood – Father & Daughter Exhibition

    In 2006 I held a successful exhibition at the New Forest Heritage Centre with my Father, woodcarver Joe Wilding. Exhibition Details New forest based father and daughter artists, Woodcarver, Joe Wilding and Claire Kitcher, are holding their first joint exhibition, since they exhibited together back in 1987.The exhibition will feature a section…The New Forest through the eyes of Claire Kitcher…and a section of various subjects. Claire enjoys painting in watercolour, pastels and oils… all mediums are covered in the exhibition, plus a few sketches to show some preliminary work. They are both members of the prestigious Woodlanders art group, who exhibit together in Burley every September. Joe won the Ron…

  • General Posts

    TV Appearances

    I have been involved in two television programs featuring the New Forest. A Wild Autumn Day – BBC 2 A wonderful program featuring the New Forest in autumn. Local people talk about their love of the forest at this special time of year, including myself giving an artists perspective. A Wild Autumn Day – Program Details “A look at the wildlife in the New Forest on an early autumn day. Red deer stags fight for a stake in the future while adders and common lizards face their last chance to find a meal before winter. And it’s also time for one of Britain’s answer to the Wild West, when local…

  • The White Horse Romsey
    Painting Gallery,  Projects Archive

    The White Horse Hotel Romsey

    In 2007 I was asked to produce a large “Stubbs” style oil painting for the main reception room of the refurbished White Horse Hotel in Romsey. I was asked for a gentle New Forest scene featuring a grey forest mare in the foreground with an oak tree and typical forest background. The view is from the Wilverley end of Longslade near Sway, with Hinchelsea woods in the distance on the left. In reality there is no Oaktree growing here, so I added this one using artistic license. This hopefully makes for a more aesthetically pleasing picture, fitting the brief, and giving the three ponies in the foreground somewhere to shade.…