My week – 13th May

Here’s installment #3 of my weekly illustration, where you can see what I’ve been up to over the last few days. I think the copious wine drinking and brownie eating has moved me to do some exercise, hence this week’s addition of a football (which I kicked), and race paraphernalia (yep, ran in a race too).

Until next week! OH, and look out soon for a post about a commission I’m working on!


New weekly illustration!

In an attempt to keep both my illustration and blog going more regularly, I’ve decided to start a new weekly illustration!

This illustration will show you what I’ve been up to over the last few days. Last week happens to have been a particularly good one (hence the inspiration to start this post), with a trip to the Lake District and a reunion with some university friends.

Oh, and I think you’ll find the food drawings will be a heavy contributor.



Dusting off the paintbrushes

Last week was my husband’s birthday, so I decided that I would try and do a painting for him, using an old canvas that was lying around. He quite likes the surrealist style, which is something that I’ve never really tried. It was difficult at first, but I learned a lot! We have this Salvador Dali painting in our apartment, which acted as a sort of inspiration for me…I love the layers in Dali’s painting, which is something that I didn’t get into mine, but perhaps on the next one!

The painting is made up of elements from the apartment we live in now. I wanted this to act as a memory for him when we move on to wherever we go next. As well as painting one of our three lovely huge sash windows in the apartment, I’ve tried to incorporate textures throughout the place – kitchen tiles and wicker chairs. I haven’t used oil paints since I did A-level art, and even then I wasn’t very good with them! I could hear my old art teacher’s voice in my head, telling me to squint so I could really see all the hidden colours in each object.


IMG_1604 (1)


Plant sitting

A few months ago my mother-in-law entrusted us with some of her house plants to look after while she was away. It’s been so lovely having them in the apartment…they’ve really brightened the place up, not to mention they’ve had some practical uses too (as plants always seem to). Only the other day did my husband arrive back from Guatemala with the crustiest burnt nose you’ve ever seen (he claimed that he didn’t need sun cream when told he was going to fry – Mexican heritage and all that), so we cut open an Aloe Vera stem and have been using it to heal his burn. I’m always amazed at how quickly it heals! I am also in love with the scented Pelargoniums. We’ve got two – one smells of citrus, and the other has a sort of pine, nutty smell, with hints of citrus too. They give out a really lovely natural fragrance, which is great when you live in a block of apartments, where all sorts of smells seep through the walls. When reading up about them yesterday I found out that they’re actually classified as herbs, and can be used in cooking! And of course, the African Violets just look cute, especially in the little bicycle plant holder.

African Violet

Aloe Vera


Gorgeous Georgia

Sorry it’s been a while folks! I’ve been busy working in another job, but am glad to say that I’m back at my desk, and have taken up the pencil again (more on that soon).

I’ve got someone to introduce to you – Gorgeous Georgia! This is a character that I worked on over time whilst I was at Fountains Abbey, and these particular incarnations ended up in a children’s trail called ‘Talking without speaking’. The trail explored sign language in the 18th century and in the medieval times (Holy Henry was her medieval counterpart, and usual companion throughout the estate).

Gorgeous Georgia figures

In the 18th century, fans were used to speak for the ladies in polite company. In the clues above, Gorgeous Georgia is using her fan to say “Yes”, “No”, “We are friends”, “Go away”, and “I am sorry”.

Kudos if you can match up the phrases with the clues!


Welcome to heyhornby, the creative blog of Gloria Hornby, historian turned illustrator. Having always loved scratching away with colouring pencils as a child, I found a creative niche in my last job illustrating children’s trails for the National Trust property  Fountains Abbey, and since then have decided to pursue a career in it. I love developing content for projects and seeing them through from concept to finish, which is why I enjoyed creating children’s trails so much. I’ve also worked on some interpretation for Fountains Abbey which you can see in my portfolio, and I’ll be going into a little more detail about each project as the blog goes on. One project that I’ve recently worked on for Fountains Abbey was illustrating their Christmas trail ‘The twelve days of Christmas’. This was a huge amount of fun, and a real opportunity to bring the characters to life. Each child (or adult!) was given a trail map at the start with the mission to find the ‘cast’ of the twelve days of Christmas, who were scattered throughout the estate (which is enormous by the way – Fountains Abbey is also a UNESCO world heritage site). My twelve illustrations were the clues, which were printed on boards and propped up in different places like so: I also created some illustrations for the trail paper to tie the whole theme together. It was fun picking out random objects from twelve illustrations to create a title and border artwork:



Here is the entire project with the complete ‘cast’. Enjoy!

The twelve days of Christmas

Illustrations for ‘The twelve days of Christmas’ trail at Fountains Abbey in 2014