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Linda Howe Ely

ArtB Tiny Treasures 2022

Tiny Treasures is an annual Arts Association of Bellville fundraiser exhibition. The size limit is 20 x 20 cm. This year I decided on a theme of tree shaded paths for the four oil paintings I submitted. The scenes are all places I walk in around Cape Town. Two of the works sold during the exhibition.

Cecilia Forest Path

I chose the subject of this painting for the dramatic shadows the huge gum trees cast on the path by the huge gum trees growing in this part of the Cecilia Forest.

Path in Deer Park

This spot is a delight, and I loved the pattern the shadows made on the path. Deer Park is an area below the front of Table Mountain.

Path near Kirstenbosch Drive

This spot is a wooded area below the stone cottages on Kirstenbosch Drive. It was the site of Protea Village, which was demolished in terms of the infamous group areas act, and the people who lived there moved elsewhere. Something I found very poignant here was an old pear tree which still stands in the wood, blossoming and producing pears. Happily the land claim was finally acknowledged and some of the Protea Village families will return here soon. For more information on this read this article:

Tokai Path

This is a path in the Lower Tokai Park. It’s a delightful place to walk as one always sees something new, depending on the season. It was once a pine plantation, but fynbos now flourishes in a large part of the park.

Last year I chose mountain paths as my theme, see

ArtB Tiny Treasures 2021

Every year the Arts Association of Bellville holds an exhibition called Tiny Treasures. The Tiny Treasures are small works of art, limited in size to 20 x 20 cm. For ArtB Tiny Treasures 2021 I made four oil paintings of mountain paths. This year there was a selection and I was very happy that ArtB chose my works for this exhibition.

A track in the northern Cederberg

I have been hiking in the mountains for years and because I take a lot of photos, I had a large number of images of paths to choose. The first thing was to choose the right images, but that took a while. I needed to have shadows on the paths to give them depth. There also had to be something interesting to look at in the direction the path was heading.

A path in the Silvermine section of the Table Mountain National Park

I started by sketching the outlines of the paths and mountains on the canvas and used a black acrylic Posca Pen for this. The marks are quite strong and as intended, some of these marks remained visible once I started painting. Working on all four at the same time and moving from one to the other, I ensured that they all have a similar colour palette and work together as a set.

A path in the northern Cederberg

I really enjoyed painting these little works for ArtB Tiny Treasures 2021 and as I’m even more inspired by mountains now intend to do some more mountain paintings for my next body of work.

A path on Table Mountain

The exhibition is online only and ends on the 24th of July. All the works are up on the ArtB website

My 2017 ArtB Tiny Treasures are on this page

Lockdown Sketches

During lockdown I was not able to go out sketching and painting with the two groups I belong to.
One of the groups, Urban Sketchers Cape Town, suggested that we sketched what we saw at home, so I went into my garden in Plumstead and sketched there. 

Garden Sketch 1

I really enjoyed spending time in the garden and observing the plants and insects! I discovered that we have two resident lizards.

Garden Sketch 2

Sketch 3 was done after a visit to the nursery. I put the little plants on the table outside and they looked so good I had to sketch them.

Garden Sketch 3

The fourth garden sketch shows the doorway to my outside studio with some of my still lifes inside.

Garden Sketch 4

The fifth sketch was done inside. I decided to sketch some of the things on the kitchen dresser.

Sketch 5 – Kitchen Dresser

The sketches are all A5 in size. Happily one of the sketching groups has started up again and I look forward to joining them soon!

Protea Village

Our sketching group visited the site of the old Protea Village for a few weeks in a row in the spring of 2019. The arum lilies were flowering and the abundance of trees makes it a very attractive spot for artists.

The area has a history which not everyone may be aware of . Protea Village began in 1834 on the farm Protea. After the establishment of nearby Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden in 1913 many of the villagers worked there. In the late 1950’s and early 1960’s the people of the village were forcibly removed under the Group Areas Act. Many of the former residents or their descendents have finally won the right to return to the area and plans have been drawn up for the area.

Protea Village in days gone by.
Stone Cottages near Kirstenbosch

Three stone cottages remain from the village days. The sketch above shows two of them with the mountain towering behind them.

The Church of the Good Shepherd

The community built the little church on the corner of Rhodes and Kirstenbosch Drive from stones from the nearby Liesbeek River.

Sketching in Kalk Bay

Over the last few weeks our painting and sketching group has met in Kalk Bay quite a few times. (When it wasn’t raining!) There is so much to see there, we never ran out of things to paint and draw. For those who don’t know it, Kalk Bay was a fishing village, and still has a working harbour and retains its quaint atmosphere. It also has some very interesting junk and antique shops and art galleries. There are plenty of coffee shops and other places to eat. All the sketches below are A5 in size.

Kalk Bay Books, a wonderful book shop on the Main Road.
The Kalk Bay Trading Co, a fascinating shop
Fishing Boats
Kalk Bay Harbour Wall
Cormorants on a Rock

My Favourite Things

When I set up a still life, I try to use classic kitchen items. I have found that I have some favourites that I have painted a few times.

One is a porcelain jug which belonged to my grandmother. It says “CTC Coffee” on it. I believe it stands for “Cape to Cairo”. I like it because it has a simple but elegant shape.

CTC Jug and Plums

This is another white jug, enamel this time. It has a nice simple shape and I have painted it a few times. The cloth is also a favourite which belonged to my mother and has happy memories of family dinners.

White Jug and Guavas

I love enamel and have quite a collection. A lot of the pieces are turquoise, like the bowl below. They belonged to my mother and that was her favourite colour. It’s also a lovely colour to paint.

Turquoise Bowl and Lemons.

The painting below has another classic white jug in it, with a red tin given to me by my niece. The cloth is a favourite which I love painting. I bought a pair of them at a white elephant sale.

Still Life with Quinces


I discovered mountains when I was an art student. A friend invited me to come on a Mountain Club of South Africa meet, and I discovered a new world! I have taken photos on most trips but it is only relatively recently that I have really painted mountains.

Some scenes can be painted over and over, as Cezanne found with Mont Sainte-Victoire. I have not tired of the wonderful view down the valley from a spot called Bergriviersnek, in the Jonkershoek. I have done four versions of this view so far, below is the biggest one.

Jonkershoek View
Jonkershoek View

Apart from the sheer beauty of mountains and their shadows, the other things that fascinates me is cloud over mountains. Recently I did two horizontal works of ridges in cloud and mist.

Eagle's View
Eagle’s View
Mountain in Mist
Mountain in Mist

Another recent work was of the view from high up on the Camps Bay side of Table Mountain.

I have also done many sketches while in or near the mountains and hope to do many more!

Art Society Paintout

The Constantiaberg Art Society held a members exhibition at the Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden in January. During the show, on Saturday 19 January, members painted near the exhibition hall and promoted the Society and exhibition.

All participating artists were invited and six took part. Jeremy Day was first to arrive and set to work on some paintings of jars of sweets in his detailed realist style. You can see his finished works at

Next to arrive was Karin Davel, who “draws” with a sewing machine! She sat next to Jeremy and was soon busy sewing a portrait of him.

Karin Davel and Jeremy Day. Photo: Belinda Basson

Andrew Mogatla set up his easel across the way and painted the Dylan Lewis cheetah sculpture below the steps in his distinctive style. Read more about him here

Andrew Mogkatla. Photo: Belinda Basson

Belinda Basson and Elsa-Marie Fourie sat on a bench outside the hall with their easels and painted the view from there.

Belinda Basson (front) and Elsa-Marie Fourie.

I sat near Andrew and sketched Castle Rocks and the tea room and garden below.

Kirstenbosch Tea Room with Castle Rocks above.

Visitors to the garden came and chatted to the artists and went to look at the exhibition inside. We all enjoyed the day. Thanks to Kirstenbosch for letting us do this; it was fun!

Back to the Cedarberg

I was lucky enough to be invited on another hiking trip to the Cedarberg last month. We went back to the remote area near the village of Heuningvlei. There was a huge difference compared to last year’s trip in March when it was very dry. This time the landscape seemed much more alive as the streams were running strongly and there were plenty of flowers about.

Pool at Boontkjieskloof

From the Heuningvlei hut we climbed Middle Krakadouw and then went on to the Boontjieskloof hut.


Flowers next to the path

We had quite a relaxed time and I managed to do two sketches.

Sketch of Boontjieskloof Hut

Our last night was spent at the backpackers lodge at Heuningvlei where we enjoyed the hot showers and comfortable beds. Our dinner was prepared by ladies from the Heuningvlei community. It’s a picturesque old mission village and most of the houses have thatched roofs.

House at Heuningvlei

I took a lot of photos of the village in the evening and early morning.

Morning in Heuningvlei

More Holiday Sketches

After leaving the West country (see previous post) I went to spend a couple of nights with friends in a village in Herefordshire.

I did a sketch of the house before I left.

On the way back from Herefordshire I spent the afternoon in Worcester. While I was there, did a couple of small (about 8 x 8 cm) sketches in my sketchpack.

Path on the bank of the Severn, Worcester


Door, Worcester Cathedral

The next stop on the itinerary was Woodbridge in Suffolk, situated on the river Deben about 8 miles from the coast. I sat on a bench one morning when the tide was out and sketched the boats with the Tide Mill in the background.

The Tide Mill on the River Deben, Woodbridge, Suffolk.

The next evening we went to the Star Inn in Wenhaston and I just had time for a quick sketch before we went inside for our dinner.

The Star Inn, Wenhaston, Suffolk.

I spent the last week in Gloucestershire and sketched the Market Hall, in Chipping Campden. Built in 1627, it was being repaired and there was some plastic sheeting on the roof!

The Market Hall, Chipping Campden, Gloucestershire.

In Mickleton I spent a happy hour sitting on the edge of a grave, sketching the church of St Lawrence.The atmosphere was very English accompanied by the calls of rooks.

The Church of St Lawrence, Mickleton, Gloucestershire.

My final sketch was a portrait of my sister’s dog, Rufus, who posed very well!


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