She is, if you will, a visual poet weaving images, symbols and archetypes into paintings that resonate in the subconscious and linger there like half-remembered dreams or the dark fairy stories with which she has such affiliation

Pip Palmer, Galleries Magazine


Artist, Writer, Photographer, and award-winning Illustrator Catherine Hyde lives in Helston in Cornwall and works in her ‘studio in the sky’ at the top of her Victorian house.  She trained in Fine Art Painting at The Central School of Art in London and is renowned for her symbolic, atmospheric paintings and her poetic books.  

Winner of the Holyer an Gof Award for Poetry for The Bee and The Sun (Zephyr) and The English Association Award for best-illustrated book for The Princess’ Blankets by Carol Ann Duffy (Templar), all of her children’s picture books have been nominated for the prestigious Kate Greenaway Award for Illustration.

She produces hand-printed limited edition reproductions of her paintings and sells these along with cards, books and originals in the online Catherine Hyde Shop.



May/June: Cornwall Open Studios



b.1960 Dartford, Kent

1979/82: BA (Hons) Fine art painting Central School of Art, London

1978/9: Foundation studies Medway College of Design, Kent



I grew up in the ancient port town of Gravesend in North Kent, a more urban than rural childhood but with the freedom, as was common then, to roam and play outside all day long. This, combined with a home full of poetry and books, visits to museums and galleries, outings to castles and gardens in our camper van or my father’s vintage car all fuelled my instinctive love for Nature.

I was lucky enough to be a precocious reader: from an early age I devoured Blake, galloped through Grimm (with terror at my heels), constantly revisited the melancholy world of Hans Christian Andersen and gleefully recited the poetry of AA Milne and Spike Milligan. As I grew older I read everything but my greatest love became increasingly for stories where I found not just lyricism but a suggestion of something more indefinable: the mythology of the landscape shaped by layers of time and the workings of man.  I was drawn back again and again to the worlds of John Masefield, L.M Boston, Eleanor Farjeon, Elizabeth Goudge, C.S. Lewis and Alan Garner.  

Having studied A level Art, Literature and History I went on to train in Fine Art Painting at Central School of Art in London. At the end of the three years, much as I loved London, I was ready to leave city life and my love affair with the countryside began.  I became increasingly fascinated by folklore, the imagery of the Green Man, the cycle of the seasons and of course the mythology of the hare.

My journey into illustration has only been a significant part of my practice over the last decade. In this time the boundaries, such as they are, between my painting and my illustration have become happily mixed and I like to reference works on canvas with words from books and poetry and bring as many painterly qualities to my illustrations as possible.

With such a rich background it is not surprising that I love referencing symbols and archetypes, layering meanings, and striving to create an atmosphere that touches upon the liminal.  In these profound moments of connection it has always been my intention to evoke visceral sensations of being the watcher in the landscape and to paint it with as much wonder as I felt watching the full moon rise over the garden trees as a child.  


Lighthouse Gallery, Penzance

Foss Fine Art London

John Noott Gallery, Broadway

Ainscough Contemporary London

Beaux Art Bath

Mall Galleries London

Lemon Street Gallery Truro

Iona House Gallery Woodstock

Charleston Farmhouse Sussex

Elementum Gallery, Sherborne

The Yew Tree Gallery Morvah Cornwall

The Illustration Gallery London

Falmouth Art Gallery

Towner Gallery Eastbourne

Twenty Twenty Gallery Much Wenlock



  • Due 2024: DARKLING: The Owl’s Song: Apollo/Zephyr an imprint of Bloomsbury

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  • The Bee and The Sun: a calendar of herbs by Catherine Hyde: Zephyr 2021

  • Winner of the Holyer an Gof Award for Poetry

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  • The Hare and the Moon: a calendar of paintings by Catherine Hyde:  Zephyr

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  • Editions 1 – 5: Elementum Journal

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  • The Snow Angel by Lauren St John: Zephyr

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  • The Star Tree by Catherine Hyde: Frances Lincoln 

  • Shortlisted for the 2017 Cambridgeshire Children’s Picture Book Award

  • Nominated for The Kate Greenaway Award

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  • Little Evie in the Wild Wood by Jackie Morris: Frances Lincoln

  • Nominated for the Kate Greenaway Award

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  • Firebird by Saviour Pirrotta: Templar

  • Awarded an Aesop Accolade by the American Folklore Society

  • Nominated for the Kate Greenaway Award

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  • The Princess’s Blankets by Carol Ann Duffy: Templar

  • Winner of the English Association Best Illustrated book Key Stage 2

  • Nominated for UKLA and The Kate Greenaway Award