I recently started getting into drawing architecture and scenes of my fave places, and I’m surprised I’ve never done it before given that I have and interior architecture and design degree, but I think my sketching has been an escape and tended to lead me away from my day job. That said, I absolutely love looking at architectural drawings and illustrations so when I stumbled upon these custom house portraits by Mary Frances Smith on Etsy I just had to share them:
1. It’s great to find fellow interior designers who have followed a path into illustration like myself, even if I only do it as a sideline
2. I am in a comfort zone with my biro and sketchbook but struggle to translate my ideas into different media, and cannot master watercolours so it’s great to see Mary creating a different atmosphere with a variety of materials
3. Our homes are so personal to us and to see Mary capture a sense of place, and give each scene a personality is great, after all that’s what architecture and design is about
I found it very difficult to pick my favourite 3 pieces of artwork, so I urge you to check out Mary’s website for lots more goodness.
After a bit of a crisis of confidence at the weekend, my sketching hand seemed to come back to life yesterday when I decided to pick an old and battered sketchbook off the shelf, change my pen and sit in the glorious bank holiday sunshine. This means that today was a sketching day to continue the momentum and to make the most of the sun whilst it lasts, with some new Molly and Charlie ideas I want to work on for a gocco print, so I thought these cute illustrations by Simply Me and Her were perfect for sharing today:
1. The colour combinations are sophisticated and understated for children’s illustrations and I love the fact that they’re not too bright
2. How can these cute characters not make you smile, even their names are adorable!
3. The simple block colour with the detailed line work to create detail and texture is a great combination
So, if you haven’t already then why not check out the cute and quirky illustrations of Nichola on Etsy.
At the moment I seem to have a fascination with pattern and surface design, and although I’m used to travelling everywhere with my sketchbook and pen I have found that recently I seem to be doodling patterns a lot more than just my ‘realistic’ and pre thought out compositions. I have been working on some patterns for a new Tigerprint competition which has taken me away from my usual sketches and I have been working on new designs with more intricate patterns and line work with repeating patterns. Then I discovered the intricate yet bold illustration style of Green Girl Canvas and thought I have to share it:
1. Michele‘s free flowing lines, swirls and rich detail are mesmerising
2. The ornate details are brought to life with vibrant colour that you can’t help but smile at
3. I love drawing ‘realistic’ animals but it’s great to see a different take on nature, and the giraffe in particular makes me smile every time
Off to the hospital now, so will be sat drawing in my sketchbook whilst I no doubt wait for the long delays but I’d love to hear about any new drawing styles that you have discovered or been working on.
I’ve had a busy start to the week so for a bit of downtime before bed I’ve decided to do a bit of sewing with my embroidery hoop and brightly coloured threads so when I stumbled upon Three Red Apples on Etsy I just had to share these fab and ready to hang gems of art:
1. I love the quirky subject matter from caravans to ‘the geezer’ and the somehow subtle yet striking colour combinations
2. There’s nothing I love more than ‘doodling’ with the sewing machine but I am a long way off being this accurate with my needle/pencil!
3. It’s great to see modern art which hasn’t been done on a computer and is hands on
Off to order some more hoops now, if you want something to do this eve then spend some time admiring Annabelle’s fab designs.
Following on from my last post about challenges, here is my next creative challenge already! I discovered a fab free online magazine called Moyo, thanks to Rachael Taylor and Beth Nicholls, and it’s really inspired me to start thinking about surface pattern design (even if only as a hobby) as well as being very informative about practical information for novices like me. I have never tried to design a pattern before, which is surprising given my fascination with colour, pattern and fabric, but when I saw the competition to design a series of 3 patterns based on a given theme (ikebana, stylised/arranged Japanese flowers) I couldn’t resist and I picked up my fave sketchbook and pen and started doodling straight away. I don’t want to reveal too much as I still have 2 patterns to go before I submit my entry but above is a sneak preview into my thought process for my very first surface pattern attempt based on a zoomed in area of the berries and creating abstract shapes from the highlights and shadows on the competition page from Moyo, with guest judge from Tigerprint. Any feedback would be welcome as I’m definitely like a fish out of water for this one!!
Have a great Sunday, whether it be full of challenges or not – I suspect that the snow will add more challenges to my day.
If you read my blog you’ve probably heard this before, but for those who haven’t – I’ve had major surgery on my hip 3 times in the last 5 years so walking has been difficult at the best of times, nevermind with my crutches so the other day may not seem like a challenge to most but believe me getting out of the house and walking the mile in Ilkley (without crutches!) was quite a long way with said hip! I’m not shy of challenges though so once I’d actually got there I decided to head to a local, independent cafe called Avanti as I think I should follow my own mantra of supporting local and independent businesses. This wasn’t the next challenge as trust me watching the world go by and drinking coffee comes quite easily! The challenge was getting my sketchbook project out and a) sketching in public and b) sketching a subject matter that is not in my comfort zone – people!! However, it all paid off as the owner came over to have a chat after he’d seen my sketch and said he was potentially interested in putting some of my artwork up, which was a great confidence boost and also a reward for staying true to my support of small businesses when it would have been easier to disappear into the wifi crowd at Caffe Nero. I have also been back and done a couple more sketches for my Fill Me With… Sketchbook Project.
As you may have gathered by now, my new passion is for screenprinting and aside from the gorgeous fabrics of Blueberry Park that I have become familiar with I have discovered a fab shop on Etsy called The Little House Martin, full of amazing hand printed fabrics from Leanne Fanny from right here in the UK:
1. The geometric details are mesmorising and range from the bold apple pattern to the intricate star pattern, I dare you to investigate further!
2. Although you can see Leanne’s infamous designs in her etsy shop she can print to any colour to suit your needs (I’d have every pattern in every colour if my budget allowed), and I took full advantage of that when I ordered some grey and yellow prints to compliment my studio colours and create my own lampshade, watch this space for more details…
3. Not only are her patterns beautiful but the colours bring them to life and have a retro feel about them
Oh, and if you haven’t found her blog yet then let me show you the way. I’d like to also say a big thanks to Leanne for all her help with my screen-printing questions and her encouragement for a novice like me.
I thought I would continue the screenprinting theme this week and share with you some of my finished designs. After leaving the Bluberry Park workshop I came home with the knowledge of how to use what little space I have to finish printing with an embroidery hoop and some fabric, and above are the finished results. As much as I liked the blue print of my birdhouse silhouettes it was always designed as a two colour piece and the red seems to compliment it and add another dimension. Although my first screenprint since leaving my Art Foundation many a year ago I like the result so much that I want to create a screen to continue to print it in different colours and onto different fabrics/items such as bags and teatowels so any suggestions are welcome! In the meantime I just have to decide what to make with the fabric I have already printed, apart from stretching the best one onto a frame for our bedroom wall.
I urge you all to find inspiration and try something new, doing my screenprintign workshop was exactly what I needed to keep my designs fresh and ideas evolving, not to mention that challenge that I seem to strive for.
Life is one big rollercoaster, but the ride got a whole lot bumpier this week as anyone who knows me or follows this blog will know. Unfortunately that seems the way of the world and we just have to ride with it and hope for the support that we need to get us through. So, today’s Friday faves are self explanatory:
Nostalgique Images – Carnival Photography (love these colours!)
Littleramstudio – Rollercoaster, lino cut relief (can’t argue with this)
ColorWare – Red splendid spiral (A bit of fun for a Friday)
Hope you have a good weekend, I’m hoping my journey will be a bit calmer soon!
Do you ever have days where you just feel rubbish, isolated and cut off from the rest of the world? Well I’m having a few of those days, and part of me knows the reason why but then part of me doesn’t understand how it has escalated into an all consuming problem. So, how do you start to battle with it and get yourself back to normality? I’ve decided the only thing to do is hatch a creative plan of action! Here are my 3 creative things to do this week, in the hope that if I make them public I will be motivated to fulfil them and distract myself from the trials and tribulations of life:
- Finish my table cloths for my craft fairs, I already have a table cloth but it’s looking a bit tired and needs a bit of brightening up and accidentalvix-ifying! Apart from getting to play and sew with pretty fabrics this will prepare me for the Handpicked Hall dates I have signed up for in Skipton. It opens on 8th March and my first day will be Saturday 9th March and then the first Saturday of the month thereafter, it would be lovely to see you there if you are local or visiting the area
- Make some more stock for all these sales I’m hoping to have! Ok, that is a bit of a broad topic so today’s stock list is to finish my half made bibs, and hats that I have plenty of bunny ears for
- Something creative for me, with no specific purpose other than to look good in my studio and make me smile on rainy days (this will be the difficult one but it’s on my list now so no choice but to succeed)
Right, off to put some music on and get the sewing machine out – wish me luck, and I will post pictures of this week’s achievements by Sunday. Have a great week and please share your to-do-lists below. Xx