In Glounthaune, we are blessed to have many scenic walkways. Local groups like the Glounthaune Community Association, Tidy Towns and Men’s Shed do a lot to keep our area looking lovely and provide spaces of special interest along our walking routes. One such place is the railway garden created and maintained by Ned Stack. Situated across the road from the Ashbourne walkway between the railway station and Fitzpatrick’s Shop, this floral oasis boasted railway sleepers and a signal box. All it needed was a train to complete the locomotive theme. As an illustrator, I was asked to paint a steam engine, much like the historic ‘Puffing Billy’.
Supplied with a 4 X 8 foot piece of wood, I was once again given access to the Men’s Shed for this project. Per my usual approach to artwork, I broke down a composition into easy-to-draw shapes. A train, for example, is a composed of rectangles, circles and semi-circles.
I began with a horizontal rectangle for the train engine, a vertical rectangle for the driver’s cab, followed by the base and 3 circles for the wheels. Next I drew more rectangles for the funnel, buffer and a semicircle for the front. Finally the details – add the windows, decorative strips of colour, spokes for the wheels. Go ahead and have fun decorating with bright colours and designs!
© Maeve O’Keeffe, Illustrator