Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Back to work!

Bank Holiday or not, I've been drawing today, mind you I love it and so i'm not complaining! Had a nice family Christmas and got some really useful presents this year! Have had fun today drawing fairy doors, cute rabbits, magical crystals and tin soldiers! All in a days work...!

With any luck i'll be able to share this work with you in 2011 - gosh I hope so. in the meantime this is a picture of two Polish dancing fairies. Yes, you heard correctly. I actually did it for the actress Jeri Ryan's daughter, but it got stolen in America in a postal office before it ever reached the three year-old - how mean is that?

Friday, 23 December 2011

Fairy sketches!

Well it is nearly Christmas and I still have work to do, but I am slowing down! I'm working today and even Christmas Eve, but only a wee bit, as I've got to wrap all my Christmas presents yet!

I think one of my New Year resolutions will have to be to keep my blog up to date a bit more than I have been lately. Things are winding down though, well until January! The Agatha Christie project from my perspective has stopped for Christmas and I am slowly working my way through sketches for the book and hope to have all the roughs completed by about mid-January. I so wish I could share some sketches with you, but it would be very unprofessional of me to do so, and so I can only share sketches from projects that are already published and in the shops. So here are a few for you...

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Some mothers to 'ave 'em

Crazy old day! Sorry I haven't blogged yet this week, but I've been away. Went to see my first pantomime in decades! The Dame was great and wore wonderfully outrageous outfits and colourful wigs, and i particularly liked the striped stockings! It was meant to be Robinson Crusoe, but was absolutely nothing like the story! The children liked it and laughed a lot and there was the usual "look behind you" and "oh know I didn't - oh yes you did!".

Got home today ready to get on with some artwork and everything went wrong! Firstly I went to check something out in my loft I had left up there and found a pot of emulsion paint had spilled and covered EVERYTHING in the loft! It was still wet and so I spent an hour mopping up and cleaning everything and discovered how hard it is to take buckets of water up a narrow ladder into a loft space - on your own! Then I discovered I'd left my contact lens liquid at where I had stayed and so had to go out and get some more. To save time I got on a bus, which proceeded to take a diversion wildly far away from where I wanted to go! By this stage there was visible steam coming out of my ears!

I eventually sat down and did some work late afternoon - what a crazy day! Anyway I managed to find time to finalise two characters for a book I am illustrating at the moment. This is a really fun project, because it is all fantasy stuff, and so I can really use my imagination. Hopefully later this year I'll be able to share some of my work with you.

Thursday, 15 December 2011

What a crazy week!

Hi everyone!

I am so sorry that it has taken nearly a week to blog, but I have had such a busy one! Meeting deadlines, preparing for exams and Christmas shopping. Today I had two exams, a multiple choice and a practical exam. I had to do a fifteen minute audience participation public speech, and I was filmed! Luckily the work I have been doing for Videojug came in very handy indeed. I used all the preparation from one of my videos for the speech bit and it went surprisingly well. As I had to leave early today the examiner got me to one side and said I had done very well and she had no negative comments, so I think I've passed!

I also finished another set of Agatha Christie suspects this week for the magazine. I really enjoyed this one, and used for inspiration one of the characters, who is a herbalist and so all the colours I used were greens, lavenders and cool greys. It worked a treat! As usual I cannot divulge too much information until they start hitting the high street, but once they're selling in W H Smiths I can start to share the artwork with you, until then you'll just have to wait!

Anyway,  here's an example of what I used today for my public speech exam:

Friday, 9 December 2011

How to draw baby animals

Here's just a short blog today about how to draw a baby duck! One of the many 'how to' videos I recently did for VideoJug. See if you can follow this:

Thursday, 8 December 2011

What a dreadful day!

Today I had to set aside my artwork and go off to do the second day of my course, which was terrible, or rather I was! I didn't realise we had to prepare for a five-minute public speech/lesson and of course I had done nothing and so had to 'blag' it! I hate doing that, because you're left feeling like you've just run through a ring of fire and got your bum singed a bit. So with hair smoking and eyes rolling I did it and wanted the ground to swallow me up! I think I'll stick to my day job of drawing - lol!

Next week I have got to do a fifteen-minute session and so obviously for that I will prepare. I have decided to stick to my strengths and teach everyone how to draw something. Probably something I have already prepared for VideoJug.

I have a nice day tomorrow though, sketching my characterful pigs! Much more fun...

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

More pigs and Heath Robinson!

It is really weird and rather freudian that I should have shown you yesterday how to draw a pig when today I've got to do just that! Five pigs! But these five pigs have attitude and reflect their human counterparts. Yes it is another Agatha Christie novel in which I am illustrating the suspects for the magazine. Can any avid Christie reader out there work out the title of the book? If you can, send me a message. It's a really fun one to do, giving animals personalities is always interesting and can be quite a challenge too.

I may also be doing some more silhouetted work soon and this time it's a house, which makes me think of William Heath Robinson and his wonderful silhouettes of domestic mayhem and eccentricity. Here's a lovely Heath Robinson picture, which shows you exactly what I mean. If you would like to see more of his work, you must visit http://www.heathrobinson.org/. Isn't it beautiful?

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

How to draw a...

In the midst of doing my usual artwork, doing story time sessions and going to French classes, I am doing a short course in... well public speaking. I didn't mean to do the course, thinking it was something else, but find myself doing it anyway! It's City and Guilds course and on the final day I've got to do a fifteen minute slot in front of an audience and whatever I do must involve the audience. Well an idea popped into my head almost immediately. As you know I've been doing all these Videojug videos on how to draw various things and I thought "why not adapt a couple of them and get the audience drawing", which should be hilarious. It is guaranteed to last fifteen minutes too! So I thought i would do "how to draw a pig" and maybe something else.

I thought I would share with you today my preparation I did for the "how to draw a pig" video, which won't be broadcasted by the way until about January, or possibly February. I'll keep you posted about that!

Monday, 5 December 2011

I'm still here!!!

I can't believe the last time I blogged was last Tuesday - LAST TUESDAY! That's terrible. I must get a grip here!

Well my silhouette project is completed and I am very pleased with the results, but unfortunately I cannot share the artwork with you until it starts being used on the company's website and elsewhere. It was quite fun and I wouldn't mind doing more work like that. Next it's the book, which is apparently nearly finished and so I should be getting the list of illustrations soon.

I am also working on the magazine as usual. Wonderful period to work on, which is 1925, and so I have some great references for 1920s stockbrokers with their wonderful straw boaters, and Flappers!

Here are some lovely references I've found:

This is actually a 1924 fashion page, but I thought it was really lovely.

Check out the pince-nezs