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The Silence of Owls

On my monthly trips to Somerset Crafts gallery, I drive the quiet way through the lanes through the Somerset levels. One fresh December morning last year I had to stop as I spotted something quite beautiful through my rear view mirror.

A trail of mist was weaving a path across the distant woods.

mist on the Somerset Levels

It was very quiet, the mist absorbed the sound just like the silent flight of an owl.

The first time I became aware of the silence of owls was when I was living in South Wales after leaving art college. I sat in the half light of dusk on my doorstep drinking beer and an owl flew out of the trees. It glided majestically with great wings that seemed to sweep up all the usual sounds around me.

It’s interesting to read about the science behind the owls flight, and about how the structure of their downy feathers soak up sound. Have a look at this article if you are interested. https://asknature.org/strategy/wing-feathers-enable-near-silent-flight/

And have a look at this video to see and hear the proof of the silence! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d_FEaFgJyfA

And I thought it was my imagination!

The Owl Who Brings the Silence
The Owl Who Brings The Silence

(iridescent glass, ceramic tile, vitreous glass, metallic backed glass, marble) (SOLD)

The Owl Who Weaves Silence
The Owl Who Weaves Silence

((iridescent glass, ceramic tile, vitreous glass, metal backed glass, hand gilded metal leaf glass, marble)

‘The Owl Who Weaves Silence’ is framed and for sale on my online shop

I couldn’t find a myth about an owl weaving mist (although now we have one 😉 ) , please let me know if you find one and come back soon to see some more owls and read a bit about Roman and Greek owl mythology.


If you enjoyed reading this post please consider supporting my work and buying me a coffee …

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  1. Stunning as ever!! Cxx On Apr 15, 2018 4:34 PM, “Kate Rattray’s Mosaic Blog” wrote:

    > Kate Rattray posted: “On my monthly trips to Somerset Crafts gallery, I > drive the quiet way through the lanes through the Somerset levels. One > fresh December morning last year I had to stop as I spotted something quite > beautiful through my rear view mirror. A trail of mist ” >

  2. Beautiful art, and I enjoyed learning about the stealthiness of owl flight. I keep chickens and feed wild birds, so this was fascinating to me. Thank you!

  3. Hi Kate! Your work is incredibly beautiful, Mosiac has always caughtmy eye.
    You wrote “hear the proof of silence” in reference to Owls, that reminds me of the song “sounds of silence” by Simon and Garfunkel. 🙂

  4. Me and my sister used to listen to our parents albums (a thing of the past) which I still have, and my own collection too, and still have a record player to play them on! Anyway I think the album was “Bridge over Troubled Water”, love all the songs, especially Sounds of Silence and Cecilia! Thanks for the trip down memory lane! 🙂

  5. The photo you captured with the fog hanging amidst the tree line – that is such a majestic setting. I enjoyed your analogy of the owl and your art is awe-inspiring. I made a friend in Ukraine a few years ago who is a mosaicist and she helped renovate the beautiful mosaic installed in the St. Sophia church in Kyiv, Ukraine – the mosaic there was inlayed with gold and valuable rare gems from Mongolia. Ever since she showed me the process of creating mosaics, I have developed an overwhelming respect for the art. Thank you for sharing!

  6. I am impressed with your tile work as is the true nature of the owl…facinating
    Thank you for sharing with me my friend!

    Michelle Octavia, MDiv, CENA

  7. Kate, do you have an agent? I am an art agent. I am only 4 years into this endeavor, yet I just this very moment thought about you and how you really have a challenge to be the artist and management, booking, shows, all the things that are the downer part of being a truly great artist, as you are. If you know what’s good for you we will explore this dimension of your beautiful imprint on life. …

    Michelle Octavia

    1. Hi Michelle, no I don’t have an agent…I do it all myself. Thanks for your kind offer, if you are from the UK I might consider it, if so please contact me via email on my about page

  8. The silence of the owl is also a sign of wisdom, as can be felt from the beautiful mosaics and the inspiring photograph. In my childhood we watched The Owl, a Dutch television series that bound old and young for its wise cackle and funny tunes. The misty owl sometimes dons the sycamore tree in our backyard, then disappears and I wish I knew where.

  9. Really been looking for some inspiration and this post was spot on. Beautiful word smithing, photography and mosaics.

  10. Wow! Your mosaic is beautiful – as is the photo of the mist. Looks like the sort we get here in mid-Wales coming off the river.

    1. Thanks Val. The Somerset levels is often very misty and mysterious, usually early in the morning, but it means a trip down the road so I’m rarely up early enough these days to see it! I know what you mean by the Welsh river mist, I lived in South Wales after leaving art college for a while, right by a river, it was magical!

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