Etsy shop and National Trust women

Hallo there! Gosssshhhh it’s been ages since I gave you an update on what’s going on. Though the truth is, after I opened my shop on Etsy I took a little bit of a break, so I’ve not been at the drawing board very much recently.

You heard it right, I’ve opened up my own shop on Etsy! It was really exciting working with the printers to get the right look that I wanted, receiving the final prints beautifully done in the post, and working out how I wanted to package them. I’ve started small, but hopefully as my practice goes on I’ll be able to add more.

Take a look at my shop here, maybe you know someone who’d like one of my prints for Christmas!

About a month or so ago I visited a National Trust property called Acorn Bank, near Penrith, Cumbria. I was checking out an artist residency that had just gone on in the spring months of this year, which I had been following for a while. The lady who’d done the residency was called Chichi Parish, and she’d set up her studio in the house itself for three months. You could still see some of her work there when we went…she had so many interesting sketches on the walls of weird and wonderful herbs from the property’s extensive herb garden, and inspirational drawings taken from characters and animals around the site. The property is made up of a 17th Century house, a recently refurbished herb garden, apple orchards, and a beautiful wood leading down to a watermill (which is still used to grind flour today!).

The property was gifted to the National Trust in 1950 by a lady called Dorothy Una Ratcliffe, who was an amazing woman. She was a patron of the arts, a writer and a traveller. Her story is incredible for a woman of her time, much like her near contemporary, the famous Beatrix Potter, who was also so much more than a writer and illustrator. Not only did she create and own stories which were to be loved far beyond her time, in a period which was hard to do so for women, but she was as scientist, a farmer, and a philanthropist. I had no idea that she had created a series of scientific drawings in mycology, which are still used by scientists to this day.

I was so amazed by these women that I started to conceive an idea…of creating a series of mini portraits of women in the National Trust. I started with these two, we’ll see if it continues!





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