Made in Cayman: A calendar for art lovers

By Christopher Tobutt

12 October 2021

A swathe of white gold fading to blue wraps gently rippling waters on a row of boats lined along a pale green bank, with four masts reflected in the water.

This is the cover image of the Cayman Watercolours 2022 calendar. "Yacht Club Sunset," painted by Jerome Wilson, is just one of 14 works of art donated to the Watercolours Charitable Trust by local artists in support of the National Children’s Voluntary Organizations and Jasmine, the non-profit organisation that offers palliative and hospice care.

The annual fundraising calendars, which are on sale for CI$15 in various Camana Bay shops including Next Chapter and West Indies Wine Company, are all images of original watercolour paintings created specifically for this project. Those original paintings were auctioned off earlier this year to also raise funds for the two charities.

The included paintings display spirit-lifting Cayman Islands scenes. Recipes for local dishes join the paintings for each month of the year.

The year starts with January’s "Botanic Breadfruit," by Gabrielle Wheaton, who also supplied August’s "Blue Marlin Hunting," a study of the stately aquatic predator.

February takes the viewer back in time with "Bygone" looking down Shedden Road to the brightness of Hog Sty Bay. It is rendered from an old photograph in pale yellow-brown and sepia tones by Bernadette Devlin, one of Cayman’s most enduring artists.

March is set on fire by "Red Beauty," a close-up of a flower by Deborah Richie, and for April, Robert McKendrick captures several weather-aged sea grape trees in "Rum Point."

calendar cover

Various creatures grace the next three months, with St. Ignatius student Rhianna Ebanks' proud rooster in May, Villence Buchanan's golden seahorse in seagrass in June and a big blue iguana painted by Caroline Courtis, one of the driving forces behind the calendar, in July.

"Although we have had a painting of the Blue Iguana in a previous calendar, I decided that it was worth another portrait," said Courtis. "This majestic creature, which is a true native of the Cayman Islands, is an iconic symbol of the Islands."

September’s "Palm, Peace, Paradise" by Shilpa Tagalpallewar shows two palm trees alongside a beach cabana, while October’s "Underwater Garden," by Sarah James, depicts a swimming turtle in an underwater scene.

November’s "Pretty in Pink" by Dubadah Boldeau captures the soul of a flower, arrayed like a long pink dress, and December’s "The Road Home," by Gordon Solomon, shows two young cyclists pedalling their way down a lushly landscaped road.

The popular calendars are donated by the Watercolours Charitable Trust to Jasmine and the National Children’s Voluntary Organizations, which then arrange for various retail outlets to sell them.

"One hundred percent of the proceeds from our calendar sales go to support our work,” said Jasmine’s Marketing & Fundraising Manager Ansley Easterlin. “People love getting their Watercolours calendar.”

This article was originally featured in the October 2021 print edition of Camana Bay Times.

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