Tuesday, 26 April 2011

A week in photos - flowers, markets and more flowers!

Hello hello! My apologies that I didn't post at all last week, I've had my head down busily working away on some brand spanking new work. At times like that I can't help but think 'argh I don't have time to blog, I need to work!', though I know that's probably not the right attitude to have...

The pieces aren't quite ready to reveal yet, so in the meantime, here's some photos from my week up in Leicestershire.

Tuesday - continental market. These are pretty common in the UK nowadays but the one visiting on this occasion was particularly varied and well presented. Gotta love those gorgeous Dutch flowers!

Greek market selling everything from feta cheese topped flatbreads to different varieties of parika.

Disco disco dicso... crepes?

Friday - what's mum been growing in the garden while I've been gone? Well many things, including forget-me-nots, daffodils, violets, primroses... as well as this snake's head fritillary, which despite it's exotic looks is a rarely-seen British wildflower. I was so pleased to see them for real that I decided to include some in one of my new pieces!

Sunday - time to go home... well almost! First let's squash in a trip to the nearby arboretum and another rare find, this time a horsehair. It's an odd plant that looks a bit like a stick of asparagus growing out of the ground (perhaps its related to asparagus? I don't even know if the horsehair is technically a plant, actually! Research needed...) And, a cherry tree that I simply couldn't resist. I don't think I've ever seen one so heavily loaded with blossoms!

Hope you all have fun this friday and for those of you that just don't want to know... good luck with shutting it all out (I promise I won't say the W-word!) Thanks for reading, as always xxx

Saturday, 16 April 2011

Time To Fly

Greetings everyone! Well my time in the midlands is drawing to a close and tomorrow I will be heading back to London. I'm sad to be saying goodbye to my family, especially as the reason we've all gotten together is because my oldest brother is going to be moving to Australia later this year... so we don't know when we will all be together again. However I am looking forward to rejoining my other half, who has been on his own in our flat all week, poor thing!

But before I start packing I'll share some exciting news with you - you may remember that I had a private commission for a painting of a pair of owls, which I am pleased to report is now complete! I was really happy with how the picture turned out, especially as I put a lot of work into drawing all the feathers and patterning them beautifully. The recipients were very pleased too so it was a win-win situation! It's also inspired me to create more large-scale pieces in future, and with a show I'm involved in coming up this summer, I certainly have a good opportunity to do so... but more on that another time!

Thanks for reading folks, hope to see you next time!

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Cute song thrushes in wild cherry blossoms - illustration for travelling sketchbook project

Hello hello! Just dropping in to share this with you, it's an illustration for a travelling sketchbook project I've taken part in recently, you can read more about it here. There are some excellent artists taking part, and at the end the sketchbook will be auctioned or sold with the proceeds going toward a good cause (said cause is as of yet, undetermined, but I'm sure it will be very worthy!) Spring was in the air as I was making this, so I celebrated the fine weather with song-thrushes and wild cherry blossoms.

Today sees me back in Leicestershire enjoying the hospitality of my parents for a week - I am feeling much more rested and relaxed already (I've tried to talk them into letting me help with chores but nooooooo..!) However, a trip to the doctor's this morning revealed that I have infected tonsils. It's a bit uncomfortable but on the upside they will clear up by themselves within a week (I hope). The doctor hasn't prescribed me anything but advised that if they're sore I can eat ice-cream to soothe them. Oh doctor, as IF I ever needed an excuse to have ice-cream! Like music to my ears...

Hope the weather is fine where you are, thanks for reading!

Wednesday, 6 April 2011

River Thames Competition entry

My goodness what a busy few days I've had, been rushing about all over the place! The to-do list is finally starting to shorten, so that's rather gratifying. I think in future I need to pace myself a bit better though, monday finished with me crashing from exhaustion at about 7.30 pm and not stirring 'til morning! When your body really needs rest, it find ways of forcing you to do so (i.e., it completely ceases to function, ha-ha). Anyhow I allowed myself an evening off to recuperate and am feeling much perkier today... the lovely sunshine helped too!

Speaking of days spent outside... this is my entry for the River Thames Competition. It was a pretty tight deadline and I had to practically chain myself to my desk three days straight to get it done (and even then I only had 10 minutes to spare!) I'm pretty happy with what I achieved in such a short space of time, although of course there are loads of improvements I would have liked to have made... still, I think it shows the energy and activity of the river well. It was a challenge to draw people (they are not my usual subjects) but I think it's something need to get more confident at doing. I'll have to go pay the river a visit this summer. Although, I won't promise to go kayaking on it!

Hope you have all been well, thanks for reading!

Sunday, 3 April 2011

Donation to How Bazaar! illustration auction

I posted this off yesterday to the lovely ladies at How Bazaar! as a donation to their illustration auction. All the proceeds are going towards Large Ride Down to help raise money for Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research. It's an excellent cause, and they are still accepting donations of artwork until the 1st May! If you want to get involved or just know more about the event, have a gander at their facebook page.

As you can see, it's a high-quality print of my Yorkshire Christmas Pie piece, in an acrylic Muji frame (courtesy of my lovely fiance!)

It's all ready to go... d'you think I used enough Sellotape?