100 days as dreamscapes


In the digital re-imagining of my art that I was telling you about yesterpost, I’m creating one of these collage postcards series entirely from the images in the 100 day project from earlier this year.

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I’m finding the journey of a creative practice follows a spiral path, revisiting and reinventing along the way, enriching and inspiring from the past into the future.

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These drawings nestle up together in their new arrangements as one edge blends into another.

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They contain hidden messages and fragments of found poetry from the words and phrases that wandered through my mind as I drew.

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These are glimpses into the dream scape of my imagination. And I’m only just beginning! 

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If you’re quick you can catch them in my Etsy store …

If you’re super quick you’ll catch the This-Weekend-Only-Sale of 15% off EVERYTHING and catch international shipping before the holidays! Lawks!!

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There are currently Two sets of Three Postcards available:
You can find Set 1 here & Set 2 right here


 

If you’d like regular monthly updates on my latest colorful antics, delivered right to your inbox (all the good stuff I don’t share here on the blog + special discounts on my classes and Etsy things) Hop on my mail-list right here:

and I’ll send you my ebook A Year full of Color

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Your email is utterly safe to me. It will be wrapped up snug and nestled with a ring tailed lemur until the spring arrives.  

Digital Dreamscapes


You know how I love to find new ways to find new ways.

I love to mix my drawings and graphics in with my photography experiments by way of digital collages.

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I’ve been having the most fun doing this lately and new art is emerging as I spiral around in this creative practice.

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I was so pleased with the way these designs came out I had some printed up as postcards.

They are gorgeous!

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I love how they contain hidden messages and fragments of found poetry as snippets of words and text peep through.

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They are glimpses into the dream scape of my imagination. And I’m only just beginning! 

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If you’re quick you can catch them in my Etsy store …

If you’re super quick you’ll catch the This-Weekend-Only-Sale of 15% off EVERYTHING and catch international shipping before the holidays! Lawks!!

 


 

If you’d like regular monthly updates on my latest colorful antics, delivered right to your inbox (all the good stuff I don’t share here on the blog + special discounts on my classes and Etsy things) Hop on my mail-list right here:

and I’ll send you my ebook A Year full of Color

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Your email is utterly safe to me. It will be wrapped up snug and nestled with a hot water bottle until the spring arrives.  

the planner rabbit-hole


There are two sides, separated by a void. There is no middle ground between. The title of this post will either have meaning to you or not, and that will depend on which side of the void you reside.

If you’re a list-writing, journaling, planning kinda person, if you’ve explored the online circus of delights that cater to folk like us, you’ll understand the mental-quick-sand-iness of it all.

Alternatively you might live a hundred lifetimes and never know such wonders exist.

Folks in the latter group: click away now. Anywhere. Just away. You won’t like this.

I’m going to geek about diaries. If this isn’t your jam, click away now. I wasn’t joking about the quicksand. It’s very real. (In a metaphorical sense)


A while back I happened on the system of bullet journaling.

As a long time list maker and glutton for stationery, this appealed to me on a number of levels, and for almost two years this system served me well.

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This Leuchtturm 1917 book was my travelling companion, my mental back up, home to a hundred post-its and the landing place for my brain dumps for longer than a usual diary, and I like how it provided a home for the lists that would otherwise be swirling inside my head.

But before moving forward, we need to rewind…

It was in the quest to reduce the anxiety-inducing levels of chaos I had going on in my life that lead me to discover bullet journaling. It’s when I first encountered these youtube rabbit holes: these whole communities of planners, people with planners, people planning their planners. A number of these folk have planners to organise the videos they make about organising their planners on youtube. It’s pleasingly meta and terrifyingly quicksandy all at once. That is why this is a blog post, not a video.  

As I neared the final pages of my trusty turquoise book I revisited some of the many channels devoted to listing, journaling, planning, and the like. Because it had been a while I was ready to reconsider my listing and planning options. I was ready to hop back in the quicksand.

The that thing I missed when bullet journalling was having a readily fill-in-able set up for the months ahead. (There are ways around this – downloadable-printables, suggested hand-drawn-layouts, and more. But in two years of trial n error none of these gelled with me.)

Now it was time for me to re-explore a more structured planner route for a while, to find out if I could mash up a hybrid of the bits of all the systems I like.

Back into the rabbit hole of youTube. 

In the intervening years the rabbit hole had become much deeper, much more rabbitty.

[There are squillions of videos devoted to this challenge: the quest for the system that fits an ever-changing, ever-busying life. Deep down we all know there isn’t one solution, but we enjoy the quest too much to stop. Because of all the reasons.]

I emerged bleary-brained some long while later, ready to invest more than I’d usually consider because this could be the ‘Neo of planners’, the one true solution to any papery chaos and confusion. Also, these particular journals have an almost cult like following – and I needed to know why!

Unavailable in the shops here, I ordered my first Hobonichi planner through Etsy (the 6 month: July-December version) in order to dip my metaphorical toes.

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There is no limit to how much you can spend in Hobonichi stuff: all the special covers and stickers and doodads that can go along with. I didn’t. I used a clear plastic cover intended for another this-size book & a postcard of a peacock to make it pretty.

The book itself? I’m kinda sold on it. I mean, enough to try a year long experiment and see if I can make this fit. These are my impressions after a few months…

Hobonichi Pros & Cons

Pro: Paper

One of the features that gets folk all ravey about the Hobonichi books is the super thin Tomoe River paper. It’s crazy thin, so much that a book with a year’s worth of daily,  weekly,  monthly, and other pages is still under an inch thick, but this paper isn’t so flimsy it tears and lets bleed through. What the what?

If I’m honest – that in itself is what almost sold me the first book. Then there’s the other big thing:

Pro: All the options

Daily pages with a time line for appointments, weekly spreads with hourly timelines on each day, monthly spreads with a good size box for each day. And the year with 6 months to a spread. Too much? almost certainly! But until I give it a good thorough try I won’t know which part is superfluous, so 2018 is my year of discovery.

Pro: Box grids.

I’m very much into box grids instead of lined paper. I have a dislike of lined paper which gives me flashbacks to school, but boxes and dot grids have a multifunctionality that appeals to me.  It’s a yin/yang with my outside-the-edge-what-edges?-?-inherent-inner-discord-and-anarchy.

They are in an unimposingly faint print too.

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Con: so many the options

4 months into my current half-year book, I find I’m still bouncing lists chaotically between the weekly and the daily pages. One will win out over the other before long, cos I’m stubborn by nature and hate to write the same thing in more than one place.

Right now I’m enjoying having a page that ‘belongs to today’ in order to list what I’ve got to do.  But what doesn’t get done today has to float unfinished in the near past, and that unsettles me a bit. The Bullet Journal system made more allowance for floaty ‘to do soon’ lists. I think this will figure itself out into a system before long. I’m nothing if not inventive!

So……

I have two new planners lined up for 2018: My first full year long version for 2018 A5 size Hobonichi Cousin which I anticipate will become list central and the Hobonichi Weeks which is a year full but without the daily pages so it’s just regular diary size and can travel about with me. This one’s also got dozens of blank pages at the back which I plan to utilise for the bullet journal style lists. (BuJo folks call these collections, which is just gratingly quaint for me. As is BuJo. I’m absurdly sensitive to words and things, but also lazy and will take the easier typing option.)

Moving along…

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Look! I got me a new pencil case. It’s predecessor (which is almost as old as me) has been retired to box of sentimental nonsense. The part of me that associates ‘new pencil case = new start’ did not leave when I finished school.. That was the best bit of school!

Are you a planner person?  … I figure if you’ve read this far either you’re already a lister, a journaller or a planner of some kind, or you’re considering it as an option. What’s you book of choice? I’d love to know!

These new books of mine are part of a larger getting my ducks lined up strategy.

They’re coupled with another new found interest – the Getting Things Done methods of David Allen. I also discovered him somewhere in my rabbithole adventures and was instantly hooked, I listen to GTD podcasts, I bought his book which systematically  working through.

The essence of this system is the idea the human mind is better used for thinking things up than stuffing full of things to remember. If we have an alternate, external way to store all the what-I-gotta-do-next things all that brain-RAM can work more efficiently too.

These are going to lead me into 2018 with my act far more together than ever before!

I know it’s popular to joke ‘things won’t change though’ in a self-deprecating way, but I really feel this becomes a self fulfilling ‘see – I told you I’d screw up again’ and I just don’t have time to spin in circles like that any more. 

It took getting really ill a few months ago, have most the time and energy sucked out of my days to make me realise I need to stop floundering about and get organised. I don’t know how it’s going to take shape yet, but I do know that it will. For now that’s all that matters.

 

I share my journey, my creativity and random thoughts, each month in a newsletter you could have delivered direct to you emailhole. You’ll also get special discounts on things I make like online creative classes, and actual tangible things too. All you have to do is pop your email address in here and I’ll do all the rest.

(and I’ll send you my ebook A Year full of Color as a thank you for joining)

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Your email is utterly safe to me. It will be wrapped up snug and nestled with a hot water bottle & a kitten until the spring arrives.

If you love learning about color, you’ll love my Year full of Color eCourse: TWELVTY. Find out more & Register now for 2018

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A life full of color


Some lifetimes ago, a sixteen year old version of me failed to get the place in art school that she’d pinned all her early hopes to.

Dismissed by the grown ups who’d repeatedly explained: ‘being an artist isn’t realistic’ led to years floating adrift from my calling.

(They were wrong. And this isn’t what I do, I’ve come to realise, it’s what I am)

A few years ago, rattled by some mid-life reminders of mortality, I finally fulfilled my life long ambition. But being an art student was as far as I’d thought this plan through. After spinning around in a self made feedback loop of regret for two decades, while I loved my time at college, I’d completely lost sight of the purpose.

My confusion was confounded when my course was cancelled after the foundation year. Before I’d time to consider my options my personal life fell apart, as a few weeks later my mum died.

Now I was free falling and had to find something to grasp onto, something simple I could rely on to slow the descent.  

I needed a project to latch my focus to. I needed a subject I could immerse myself in. It had to be something creative, it had to be something colourful.

It just had to be color.

 

 

I hadn’t the bandwidth for anything more complex. I needed colors, but one at a time. No other rules. Just me, a book, and whatever paints and pens and things I had to hand. In just one color. I began with the color I felt most drawn to at the time, which was red-violet, magenta. It was soothing. It was all I had space for.

I took that year, one color at a time, one month at a time.

 

 

After another family bereavement a couple of months into my year long color project, I knew I needed some accountability, some way to keep this project afloat. That’s when I started this blog.

By the end of the year I’d created a this whole book full of color.

 

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It’s still with me in my studio as a resource for inspiration – (that’s something I didn’t foresee when I began this project.)

(You can see it page by page here)

12 in 12 from mixy gecko on Vimeo.

 

 

As I showed my book of 12 colors to more of my artist friends, the idea of revisiting a year full of color began to develop. And they wanted in on it too.

So in 2017 I invented TWELVTY,  a way of sharing the adventure around the color wheel with other creatives as an online program.

It’s been an astonishing journey, (which isn’t over yet) and I’ve learned so much (more on that in another post).

I didn’t expect to run Twelvty as a program with others again after this year – it’s been all consuming and I had other plans for 2018 – but Twelvty has plans for me too, it would appear. 

So here we are, in preparation for:

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We begin the journey in the new year, but registration is open from November.

I think it speaks for itself that some of this year’s Twelveteers have already joined up for a second trip around the color wheel in 2018!

There are a limited number of discounted places available to folks on my mailing list. If you aren’t signed up already – what the hey?!! – scoot down to the end of this post to add your email before they’re all swooped up!

 

Seven days without color: day 7


“Seven days. Seven black and white photos of your life. No people. No explanation. Challenge someone new each day.”

Seven days without color: day 7

#blackandwhitephotochallenge #sevendayschallenge #sevendayphotochallenge

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“Good morning, world”

Phew! what a week! and we’re only half way through!

This little black and white photo project has been just the light relief I’ve needed amid all the full color planning for TWELVTY 2018. (TWEL-what? — go look-see over here)

Although it doesn’t begin for a couple of months (cos the name is a clue, right?) you can register now and then in the new year we’ll get started on a new adventure around the color wheel.

I’ve got exciting new ideas for this next run of the program so 2018 will be even more fun – y’know I’ve got folks from the 2017 group joining again for a second trip! That speaks for itself!

If you’re in my mailing list then you’ll have access to a limited number of reduced rate spaces – normal price £97 GBP for the year, or £65 if you nip in quick and snag an early bird place! Lawks!

So if you’re not already, get on the mailing list. I send out newsletters about once a month and you can always unsubscribe if that gets too much 😉


 

(and I’ll send you my shiny new ebook A Year full of Color (2017 version) as a thank you for joining)

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introducing my inner adult…


Y’know about the Sketchbook Project, right? (If not, and you’re intrigued, I wrote a little about it here.)

All through this month I’ve been prompted and nudged along by Inktober, seeing daily reminders to keep inkdrawing from the good folks of the youtubes & the instagrams. They kept me company as developed this stream of consciousness doodle running through my sketchbook-project-sketchbook, leading from one page to the next, a little like this (also like this)

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(the shadows and hiccups in continuity show the folds in the book or the turn of the page… this is just 3 pages, it would be too wide to show it all like this, you get the idea tho’)

And now it’s ready to begin coloring. Which I plan to do throughout November.

I’ll give you a moment if you fell off your chair at the news I’ve not added any color yet …………… ok? ………….before I tell you that the coloring won’t begin straight away either.

For three reasons:

  1. This sketchbook is the foundation to a new project I’m developing for launch in 2018. “TWELVTY EXTRA” – a companion course to “TWELVTY – a year full of color” (which you can read all about here).  I’ve got a clear idea of exactly how I’m gonna color my doodle, which colors, even which paints…
  2. As I was nearing the end of my last massive’normous art escapade I planned to reward myself with a little treat in the form of a set of Daniel Smith’s Watercolors. (These aren’t any old watercolors, these are proper fancypants watercolors. The purchase of which was preceded by a full on 2 week dither while they languished in my online shopping cart.) And now the delivery has been delayed!
    But I’m saving this book for these colors!
  3. (this is the biggie) I’m cultivating a bit of self control. Instead of running full pelt at my life and my art with wild abandon and all colors flying aimlessly, I’m experimenting with something new (to me). Planning. …….Interesting, huh?

 

Now I’ve eked out all the enjoyment, focus and concentration I can from the black and white and inking stage, and I’d like to report back: I kinda like this new strategy. It’s still got an edge of impetuous childlike impatience as a driving force, but my inner adult is developing her voice, taking moments of authority, even making some of the decisions.

How will this play out? check back over the next month and I’ll show you how it’s going.  Or hop aboard my email list for updates direct to your emailbox every month.

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I’ll send you a copy of my (newly updated) eBook ‘a year full of color’ as well as exclusive discounts for my ecourses. 

Your email is utterly safe with me. I’ll sing it to sleep and bring it tea when it wakes up.


TWELVTY 2018 launches for pre-registration in November!

TWELVTY 2018: find out more penngregory.com/twelvty

find out more here

100 lessons from 100 drawings


“Life imitates art” but art imitates life too.

(I read that as ‘art irritates life’ just now. Also true) 

 

100 daily drawings taught me a lot more about drawing, more than I realised I didn’t know. Drawing techniques, practicalities, possibilities, and all that comes along with steady daily practice.

But there seemed to be bigger lessons showing up as well.

These were observations I heard over and over again in my thoughts, page after page. Of course many of these revelations aren’t really about drawing. They are about everything.

In no particular order, these are the top 100 realisations that accompanied this project.

  1. It’s been an exercise in letting go of expectations, of ideal outcomes, and the accompanying paralysis of progress.
  2. I’m learning to let go of ‘finished looking’  – being finished – being a ‘piece of art’ (whatever that might be).
  3. Letting go of what other folks think, a neediness for approval or validation.
  4. Letting go of the rules. This is my book: my rules. Rule 1: there are no rules.
  5. ‘Drawing every day’ isn’t even a rule.
  6. Drawing for 100 days doesn’t mean 100 consecutive days.  Don’t make up excuses to stop. Pick up and start again. Keep doing this. Just get to 100. 
  7. The photo is only a guide, a suggestion, a jumping off point. This isn’t an exercise in copying. A drawing can’t be wrong.
  8. It doesn’t have to have the same colors, same shape, same perspective.
  9. It doesn’t have to be the same every day – the same time, the same ‘style’, the same anything. Just another day, another page, another drawing. Keep exploring the other-ness
  10. Some days have a flow to them – some days have an awkwardness – some days are fuelled by imagination – some days are an uphill slog.
  11. Some are bits of all of these and flit and flicker between.
  12. Some pages have words – information – data – facts – important-to-remembers.
  13. Some page’s words and rememberings are from another day and don’t make sense any more. And that’s okay.
  14. Some days are unfinished. They will stay that way. I don’t have to go back. (there is no real ‘finished’).
  15. Some days get lost and forgotten.
  16. Some days are just made for catch ups.
  17. Some catch ups are liberating – rejuvenating – expansive – explosions of imagination.
  18. Some catch ups are uncomfortable and riddled with angst.
  19. Some catch ups are a cold hard slog and bring up all the WHY???s


  20. Sometimes it feels like a trajectory that cannot fail.
  21. Sometimes it feels like losing footing – in slow motion – in the dark.
  22. Sometimes it feels like treading water – waiting – waiting – waiting….
  23. Sometimes it feels like falling – sinking – drowning.
  24. Some drawings take on their own life with unseen meaning.
  25. Some drawings take on their own life with an energy that didn’t come from me.
  26. Some drawings have their own momentum – I watch them take shape with the curiosity of an outside observer.
  27. Some drawings just don’t care. I could learn the most from these.
  28. Some drawings have to be inched out slowly.
  29. Some drawings surprise me by the reactions they evoke from others.
  30. Some drawings surprise me by the feelings they evoke in me.
  31. Some drawings overwhelm, some disappoint, some pass unjudged.
  32. Some drawings have stories that let out secrets.
  33. Some drawings are stories that hide more than they reveal.
  34. Some stories are universal, everyone recognises a little bit of it in themselves.
  35. Some stories are so deep they are unfathomable.

  36. Some projects are way larger than the sum of their parts. This is certainly one of them.
  37. Some projects are a stepping stone to a place I never knew existed before I started.
  38. Some projects are meant to be finite. Done is done.
  39. Some projects are meant to be repeated – reiterated – revisited.
  40. Some projects are not supposed to be finished. They hang….
  41. Some projects are so deeply enmeshed in a life, we are one and the same.
  42. Some projects are fun to watch – to join – to play along.
  43. Some projects never escape the confines of my mind, jammed up in the mechanism of the mental rotadex.
  44. Sometimes the purpose will shift and change midway through. Over and over. The act of shifting becomes the purpose.
  45. Sometimes the purpose won’t show itself until long after it’s over.
  46. Sometimes the purpose is only clear to others.
  47. Sometimes the purpose is only clear to me – and that’s all that matters.
  48. Sometimes the purpose is unique to everyone who witnesses it.
  49. Sometimes the purpose is unique to the season – or to the day.
  50. Sometimes the way it seems, is the way it is. Sometimes it’s not been close.
  51. Sometimes the way it seems is only a clue. It’s a seed, or a plan, or part of a bigger pattern.
  52. The more I look for patterns the more I see them.
  53. Patterns can be visual, patterns can be habitual, patterns repeat.
  54. Patterns within patterns fascinate me most.
  55. It’s ok to get stuck in one color for a while, the other colors will wait.
  56. It’s ok to use all the colors – or none of them – or not care which.
  57. It’ll never be finished, so keep moving forwards. 
  58. It’ll never be perfect, don’t ask it to be.
  59. This might not answer the questions you thought it would.
  60. This might not answer any questions. It might lead to more questions…
  61. This might have no meaning at all – right now – or ever. And that’s okay too.
  62. If a meaning wants to show itself to you, it will find a way.
  63. Whatever is underneath, showing through, is part of what is now. Let all the elements become parts of the whole. Allow the merge.
  64. Describe the drawing in words –  this is where the metaphors hide.
  65. Describe the drawing out loud,  it’s subtly different.
  66. Shift the emphasis foreground to background, positive to negative space. Dance in between them.
  67. Choose which details to use, which details to ignore, and which to make up.
  68. Choose the image from within the image.
  69. Find the art inside the photo.

  70. Notice how some images repeat, return and revisit.
  71. Notice how some characters keep showing up.
  72. Notice how some character’s expressions are the same: the face that asks: you still trying to draw me?
  73. Notice how color schemes repeat.
  74. Notice the themes of facing pages match unconsciously.
  75. Notice how time concertinas in and out when you count the days.
  76. Notice how the seemingly simple is really complex. And how the complex can be divided into manageable size bites.
  77. How complexity presents a challenge, then the victory, the good enough level of mastery.
  78. Balancing good enough against keep trying.
  79. Knowing when to stop, knowing when to keep going.
  80. How it’s all a freaking metaphor (and that’s all of these too).
  81. The bravery to pursue a doomed drawing, to trust it to turn around and turn out good, or just okay.
  82. The bravery to post a picture I didn’t like, and the ones I did.
  83. The bravery of sending these out into the wilds of the internet. It can be cold out there.
  84. The revelation that others might like what I didn’t, see a beauty I can’t.
  85. The revelation of turning the page, not looking back for a few weeks. How what’s on the page ‘gets better’ when it’s left to rest.
  86. The revelation of drawings I hated, that hold no strong feelings now. And drawings I loved.


  87. How much a background wash or splot of paint makes adds to a drawing.
  88. How much a patch of color shifts a mood.
  89. How much the character of the drawing is from the colors.
  90. How much a drawing style develops over time, but can’t be seen from such close quarters or day to day.
  91. How much a drawing style develops through simple repetition.
  92. How much simple repetition is the key to it all. How much simple repetition is the key to it all. How much simple repetition is the key to it all. 😉
  93. How ideas will hide and evade when called for, then descend en masse when it’s too late (and how it’s never really too late).
  94. How some ways of making are so ingrained I don’t know there are other ways.
  95. How chasing the other ways is part of the learning.
  96. How finding other ways leads to new kinds of learning.
  97. There are always going to be new ways of learning!
  98. The journey is a spiral. The path isn’t re-trodden, next loop around looks familiar, but the view has altered.
  99. The journey keeps going. Keeps going.
  100. The mixed emotions at the end of a project, the end of an adventure, the intangible closure.

 


Catch more of my musing and artings in my monthly-ish newsletter delivered right to your inbox: clickety-hop aboard my email list right here.

(and I’ll send you my ebook A Year full of Color as a thank you for joining)

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Your email is utterly safe to me. It will be wrapped up snug and nestled with a hot water bottle & a kitten until the spring arrives.   

100 drawings: the closing pages.


100 days: 93-100

“I try to create fantastic things, magical things, things like in a dream. The world needs more fantasy.”

~ Salvador Dali.

100 doodles from 100 photos in my phone.

This is the final instalment of my extended summer project. I set out on this adventure on 1st June and I doodled the last doodle on 25th October. Life got in the way in the middle so it took longer than planned, but I’m so glad I saw it through. This is what the last week of pages look like…

day 93

Day 93 is another quirky animal, one of a pair of china cats in the Brighton Art Museum.

Here’s something I’ve noticed they all have in common: the facial expression that says “c’mon, aren’t you done yet?” Like they got somewhere else to be.

(China Cat Sunflower… You humming along?)

day 94

One of the lessons this project has taught me is that the images that look relatively easy to reproduce are almost always the trickiest.  There are ways around this. One of the ways is to crop it down to just one detail, just a corner, or in this case, just one bird.

 

day 95

These last few days/months (maybe more) reality seems to be sharper and more tense. So a well timed word from Mr Salvador Dali himself seems to fit today.

I got this little clip-on fisheye lens doodad for my phone, this was its first outing, and what could be better to distort than the master of weirdness himself?

 

day 96

Practice, practice, practice… faces are tricky. The trickiest. The character lies in the lines and the details and something I can’t quite get. Yet. But I am getting closer.

This is is George Morris.

A while back I was scavenging the internets to find out about my family tree. I traced my mum’s mum’s side back 100s of years, but mum’s dad was not so easy. This might or maybe get not be my mum’s dad’s dad. (A long story, not for now). But if I’m right in my research then my great grandad was a jockey in the late 1800s. This photo was a newspaper I found on eBay. I know! The internet is amazing.

 

day 97

One day last spring, a last minute change of plan meant I had a free afternoon. so I took myself off to London to find the legendary Atlantis art store. I was not disappointed. This is their sign.

 

day 98

The part of the story where Alice is either to tall to get through the door, or small enough but can’t reach the key. Oh, Alice, I know this feeling so well. I’m there.  How did the key get back up on the table? What is going on??

 

day 99

Time is such a curiously paradoxical thing. This project of 100 drawings feels like it’s been going on forever, in one sense, and yet these final days appeared so suddenly.

Huh? How does that even happen? I’ve literally been keeping count!

But the end was always  forever-away right up until page 99. And then suddenly it was almost over. This day was a pyjama day. These are my pyjamas. Seems fitting for the evening of the project.

 

day 100

The final doodle from phone photos is a mural I found in Barcelona. What are these? Are they fish or are they space aliens? Or alien space fish? Whatever they are, they made a fun end to the book.

So that’s all, folks! I’ve learned so much in doing this. I’ll tell you more about the surprising lessons soon, but that’s for another day. 

 


If you missed the previous parts, you can find them here:

Week 1 ~ Week 2  ~ Week 3 ~ Week~ Week 5 ~ Week 6 ~ Week 7 ~ Week 8 ~ Week 9 ~ Week 10 ~ Week 11 Week 12 ~ Week 13

 


For regular monthly updates on what I’m doing, making and thinking about, direct to your inbox, hop aboard my little list here.

(and I’ll send you my ebook A Year full of Color as a thank you for joining)

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100 drawings: almost full circle.


100 days: 85-92

Imagination will often carry us to worlds that never were. But without it we go nowhere..”

~  Carl Sagan.

100 doodles from 100 photos in my phone.

This is the last but one week of my extended summer project, the last steps of a marathon. I have mixed feelings about it ending – I’ll be glad in a way – as all challenges need to come to a close. But as it’s become a part of my daily habits it will leave a gap. Already I’m looking forward to the next projects that will fill the void. I’ve been eying up new sketchbooks online…

Meanwhile, the story continues: 

 

day 85

As this project moves on I’m exploring more than just straight drawing from photos. By playing with scale, finding a detail I like, making a drawing more than just copying some shapes. As the days and the pages mount up I’m looking for more challenges.

Have you ever done something like this project? I’d love to hear what you learned in the process.

day 86

There’s looking at a thing, then there’s looking with a view to drawing a thing.And then there’s the kind of looking while drawing a thing.  And there’s a subtle, but big difference.

In redrawing this illustration of a duck I noticed it was made up of things. But until I came to draw it, I didn’t see that that thing that made it’s head was a tomato. Or the thing that made it’s eye was a spider. (Not really, but that’s what it looked like as I drew it)

This will stay with me every time I see a duck now. And every time I see a tomato. Just one example of how drawing enriches the everyday things in life.

 

day 87

I saw this poster outside an exhibition I didn’t go in to see, by fashion designer Mary Katranzou. All sorts of metaphors here: emptiness – butterflies – blindness – you make your own story up. For me on that day it stood for the empty vagueness I’ve still got lingering after being sick, a sense of merging invisibly into the background. I feel like I’m here, but not entirely. The parameters are visible, the boundaries still in place,  but the essence isn’t showing through like normal.

 

day 88

I’m trying as many techniques and styles as I can find and remember though this project. Today we have a blind contour drawing. I figured as faces and hands are the trickiest things to draw, how much harder can it be to draw without looking?

(not so much, as it turns out)

day 89

Today’s drawing is from an 18th century Indian shadow puppet in the Brighton Museum. Oh those eyes!!

day 90

It’s all about nuance in capturing a face.  The angle and weight of the line can totally change the expression and the character. And the species too, sometimes. Today’s curious beast looks like a dog in my drawing but the photo is more furious sheep (I think – can’t be certain.)

 

day 91

Anything orange makes me happy so this time of year is one of my faves. These jellyfish are everywhere in October 😉

day 92

One of the tricks to drawing I’ve discovered is not to be deterred by images that are way too complicated to accurately capture. Because accurate capture is what the camera is for. This thinking really takes away the pressure; it doesn’t matter if the proportions are skewed, the bits don’t line up, the missed details, the shapes and shadows that aren’t as they are in real life. Once those expectations are set aside it’s much easier to get on with the actual drawing. And that’s how the practice gets done.

 

Join me back here next week (-ish) for the final exciting instalment!


If you missed the previous parts, you can find them here:

Week 1 ~ Week 2  ~ Week 3 ~ Week~ Week 5 ~ Week 6 ~ Week 7 ~ Week 8 ~ Week 9 ~ Week 10 ~ Week 11 Week 12 ~

If you want to follow along this project day by day I’m posting on Instagram (where you can also see more WIP & detail pix) & Facebook


For regular monthly updates on what I’m doing, making and thinking about, direct to your inbox, hop aboard my little list here.

(and I’ll send you my ebook A Year full of Color as a thank you for joining)

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The magic of magenta


2017 is my year full of color, each month I dedicate to a new color: “TWELVTY” – 12 colors in 12 months, is a trip around the color wheel. And what a trip!

In August we explored red-violet: the magic of magenta, mauve & maroon!

Each month gets a few pages in the TWELVTY art journal, where I dive deep into pattern making and monochrome mixed media doodling.

 

Here’s how August’s pages turned out …. 
 

In September we explored the color Red — I’ll catch you up on this month soon!

 


Meanwhile, I’m fine tuning the details for the 2018 iteration of Twelvty. Yikes! 

Are you interested in exploring the color wheel with us next year?

If you’re even a little bit intrigued, why not hop on my mail list today. I’ll send you my eBook all about color to give you a flavour of the program, AND you’ll be first to hear about the launch closer to the time.

 

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