Monday, 24 December 2012

Oh, look! #17


Bond Street / View from Waterloo Bridge
Poinsettia / Christmas soup

And some inspiring links:

Wonderful tattoo illustrations, with the stories behind them.

Sunday, 23 December 2012

Sunday Sketchblog #44

A little break from the EDMs, here's a festive flower instead.

Friday, 21 December 2012

Illustration Friday: Snow

Busybusybusy, but here's a quick illustration for this Friday's topic, snow.

Although, no snow for a few days please - don't really want to move house in a blizzard!

Sunday, 16 December 2012

Sunday Sketchblog #43

EDM#30 - drawing a chair was not very inspiring, as I drew the bottle of evening primrose oil capsules sitting on my desk instead.

Friday, 14 December 2012

Illustration Friday: Explore

Think I'll just get this Illustration Friday in before they announce next week's... Due to the busy, just a quick drawing collage for 'explore'. I love old maps.

Monday, 10 December 2012

'tis the season...

to be very busy. Excitingly, we're hosting Christmas for the first time this year... in a house we're moving into on the 21st December... at the end of what have turned out to be my and Nick's busiest weeks of the year at work...

Oh, and wedding planning as well. I'm currently embroiled in not-very-festive invitation designing.

So please bear with me for a little while and excuse any random or erratic posts until January!

Sunday, 9 December 2012

Sunday Sketchblog #42

EDM #29 asks you to draw something architectural. This is yet another bit of the view from my office window, but I don't think I've drawn it before. I love how the tops of the buildings are so fancy and ornate, but you never notice them when you're rushing about on the pavement.

This is the corner of Bond Street and Piccadilly - I like to think of it as my private view of somewhere very public and famous.

Emma's was powering through the EDMs last week - visit The Gift Shed to see if she's got any further.

Friday, 7 December 2012

Illustration Friday: Stretch

It's clearly creature week for me or something as, following the pup on Wednesday, I've ended up with a cat for this week's Illustration Friday. Cats are the masters of stretching though, so it was a pretty obvious choice.

Wednesday, 5 December 2012


Despite the fact that we've just had the first 'snow' of the season (which I only identified as such because it delayed all my trains, despite walking through it to get to the station...) today's drawing is not so festive.

This is Meggie, who belongs to my mama and her partner. It's his 60th birthday this week, so this is going to be his birthday card. 

They live in the wilds of Rutland, so Meggie spends most of her time tearing through the undergrowth chasing 'vermin' (anything small that scampers about) but rarely catching it.

Monday, 3 December 2012

Dashing through the snow.

It's December, so my self-imposed thinking about Christmas ban is over!

I think this is going to be our Christmas card this year. I was feeling quite uninspired until I came across two images on Pinterest that just seemed to be asking to be combined... this one and this one.

Obviously, it's an entirely realistic depiction of Nick's and my tree-selection process. Staines is bound to be covered in snow, and is of course surrounded by deep pine forests... I do have some furry black snow boots, though!

Sunday, 2 December 2012

Sunday Sketchblog #41

EDM#28 - draw an appliance or anything else you like. For appliance I thought fridge, then coffee machine. But I was feeling lazy and didn't want to get up, so went with the anything else instead and drew my little Winsor and Newton paint box.

Emma's promised she doesn't spend her whole life sketching in pubs... so I wonder if she's found somewhere else to draw this week?

Friday, 30 November 2012

Illustration Friday: Whiskers

As a child, my favourite books were the Anne of Green Gables series by L.M. Montgomery. In the last one, Rilla of Ingleside, there's a character nicknamed Whiskers-on-the-Moon (because 'his face is so round and red, with that fringe of sandy whisker about it') and that's what I thought of for this week's Illustration Friday.

No kittens or puppies, just a big smiley moon-face with a moustache.

Wednesday, 28 November 2012


I don't read a lot of fashion blogs (or magazines for that matter). Maybe working in the middle of London means I see enough to inspire me in the streets and windows every day? But I spotted this photo on Karla's Closet (which is, to be honest, not in any way every day inspiration...) and something about the strappy shoes made me want to sketch it.

Maybe the strappy shoes, maybe the fact that a warm, bright autumn day looked very appealing compared to dark, wet, blustery London!

Monday, 26 November 2012

It's beginning to look a bit like...

... the month before you can start thinking about Christmas. But certainly wintery and festive, thanks to issue six of Wrap magazine with its 'Nordic Lights' theme.

Cover art by Rjorn Rune Lie

Darling Clementine

Lotta Nieminen

Riikka Sormunen

Sunday, 25 November 2012

Sunday Sketchblog #40

EDM#27 was draw a book. I went for the little notebook I did all my self-portaits in. Which is itself a mini version of the book I do my EDMs in. Which are both Moleskine watercolour sketchbooks.

Emma had some lovely pub sketches last week... see where she's been this week?

Friday, 23 November 2012

Illustration Friday: Zoom

After impressing myself last week by finding time when I thought it would be impossible, I've gone the other way and am terrifically late with this Friday's illustration... so much so they've already announced next week's topic.

Anyway, better late than never, here's my 'zoom'. It had to be a bike, really.

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Feed Me!

Organised, domestic goddess types have probably made their Christmas cakes already and have devised a schedule to regularly feed them with brandy, ensuring they're* properly tipsy by Christmas Day. 

I don't tend to do that... I  like fruit cake, but firmly believe marzipan was created by someone attempting to replicate ear wax as a viable food source. So I just make an easier version nearer the time. This year I think I'm going to go for Nigella's Chocolate Fruit Cake (you can't really taste the chocolate, it just adds a little bit of depth) so made a trial run at the weekend. It tastes like Christmas pudding, is perfect without marzipan, and is much less demanding the the traditional sort...

* Cakes, not goddesses.

Monday, 19 November 2012

Blonde, Brunette, Red

I've always quite wanted red hair, but been too much of a 'fraidy cat to dye it. I suspect drawings like this may be as close as I ever get.

Sunday, 18 November 2012

Sunday Sketchblog #39

EDM #26 is draw anything you like. So I had a hunt for something I was pretty sure wouldn't be coming up in a future EDM and found this finger fright sitting atop a nail file. I like to think of him as a little presiding household god, a sort of googley eyed penate.

Visit Emma to see what's in her sketchbook today.

Saturday, 17 November 2012

Oh, look! #16

Recent nice things...

Book sculpture in a gallery on the King's Road // Baking bread
Curling up on the sofa // Festive lights

I think Quentin Blake's probably one of the few illustrators whose work almost everyone in the country would recognise, and there was a really interesting interview with him on Monday's Front Row on Radio 4.

A thought-provoking post from Jillian Tamaki on the difference between drawing and illustrating.

Friday, 16 November 2012

Illustration Friday: Tree

I've surprised myself a little this week by finding time for a Friday illustration after all. The topic is 'tree' and it made me think of Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening, by Robert Frost.

Whose woods these are I think I know. His house is in the village though; He will not see me stopping here To watch his woods fill up with snow. My little horse must think it queer To stop without a farmhouse near Between the woods and frozen lake The darkest evening of the year. He gives his harness bells a shake To ask if there is some mistake. The only other sound's the sweep Of the easy wind and downy flake. The woods are lovely, dark, and deep, But I have promises to keep, And miles to go before I sleep, And miles to go before I sleep.

Except my woods aren't snowy, as it's still too autumnal here to be thinking about that sort of thing.

(Inspired by this image I spotted on Pinterest.)

My Week #5

(Normal service will now be resumed...)

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

My Week #3

(To Heathrow to pick Nick up. Somehow I drove for twenty miles to cover the four mile journey... Terminal 4 is not well sign-posted.)

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Monday, 12 November 2012

My Week #1

(I'm having a rather busy week, so this week I'm just going to tell you what I did last week.) (Too many 'weeks' in that last sentence.)

Sunday, 11 November 2012

Sunday Sketchblog #38

EDM#24 is draw a piece of fruit.  I went for a kiwi, as it seemed to offer slightly more interesting textures than the everyday selection of apples and bananas.

I wasn't massively pleased with my first drawing though, so I ate it and tried again. Clearly needed the drawing-fuel as I like the second attempt a lot more.

Visit Emma and see what's in her sketchbook today.

Friday, 9 November 2012

Illustration Friday: Shy

This week's topic is 'shy'.

People quite often think I'm shy, which is odd because I don't think I am at all. I've decided it's probably because I'm quite softly spoken and have been known to sit in busy rooms reading my book. That's not because I'm scared of talking to people though... it's mostly because I really want to read my book!

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

First Frost

Gosh, it got cold all of a sudden. Everything was frosty and pastel coloured when I got up this morning.

Still, not all bad. Cold weather is a pretty good excuse for nice warm bright coloured things...

Monday, 5 November 2012


As promised, here are all sixty drawings from my Self Portrait Project - the good, the bad and the one that looks like an alien.

I hadn't noticed till I put them all together like this how much I went through phases of drawing in certain styles or perspectives. I'm also pretty pleased to be able to say that I definitely like the later ones more than the first... progress!

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Sunday Sketchblog #37

EDM#23 is draw your foot. As I've already done a shoe and my socks tend to be quite unremarkable, I figured it had better be a naked foot.

This might look a bit odd, but it's actually a pretty realistic depiction of my toes - for some reason they really are that slanty. Inappropriate but pretty shoes have a lot to answer for...

Saturday, 3 November 2012

CPSH October Favourites

As the picker of the topics for this month, I also get to choose my favourite photos from each category.


Sally's beautiful snowy shot

Something I Made

The lovely colours in S's garland.


Margot's thermos of tea!


Rach's as-yet uncarved pumpkins.


And Emma's beautiful bath salts.

Emma's picking the topics for November, so visit The Gift Shed over the next few days to see what they are and let her know if you want to join in.