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)


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)



10th anniversary Tree of Life

Yesterpost I was showing you the Tree of Life, the drawing that’s been with me for (still finding this bit hard to believe) ten years.

I’ve photoshopped it through a few variations over this time, and to celebrate it’s tenth birthday I decided to reinvent one more incarnation for 2017.

More vivid, more zingy, the colors are almost an inverse of the one I showed you yesterday. Here they are together side by side.

TOL2017small TOLfullcolor

I’m fascinated by how the mood shifts with the colors.

The underwater-y-ness is amped up with the sharper blues. I like the way that once again it’s completed a circle, as the beginning drawing was in shades of blue, and here we are back in this side of the spectrum.

Here she is in some little detail pieces…

So that the new version isn’t lonely (yes, that is a thing with drawings, didn’t you know?) it’s joined by a newly spruced up version of the original drawing, so a bluer blue version is out there too. TOL_bluesmall.jpg

All three trees of life are all available a prints in Society6 

Screen Shot 2017-03-24 at 18.03.35

Would you like to get sporadic updates on my thoughts and drawings delivered right to your inbox? Hop onto my email list right here.

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

Your email is utterly safe to me. It will be wrapped up in blankets. I will bring it tea and biscuits as required. (subject to availability)

tree of life

Life often moves in a spiral motion: I’ve been here before, haven’t you?

The view is a little bit different through today’s lens but what I see looks distinctly familiar.

It feels like no time passed, in so many senses, but the numbers tell me it’s approaching 10 years since I drew this.



I remember so vividly, when this drawing came through me. (Not to me, most definitely through me)

Have you had this happen too?

I had the strongest sense of just being a vehicle through which this drawing wanted to be made real. It could have been anyone.


Of everything I’ve ever drawn, I’ve felt the least able to claim this as ‘mine’. If anything, I am its.

I remember the day it happened, I remember the big pad of watercolor paper, the watercolor pencils and paints, the frenzy of leaves and curves and wispy bits.

I remember watching it happen in front of me: Connected, and separate. Both at once.


The drawing had its own spirit, and was not willing to stay on paper.

It wanted to grow, to have more color, more depth, more vibrancy. What It had me draw was only a skeleton.


it demanded scanning and tinkering, new layers of color, new detail.


Even all these years later, through it’s many incarnations and variations, it’s the most loved of all my drawings.

It’s me, and it isn’t me.

It’s an enigma.

It is, Tree of Life.


To celebrate 10 years of Tree of Life I’ve adapted it for printables, so it can manifest itself around the world.

Would you like to give this drawing a space in your world? It’s available from Society6 in many shapes and forms.

Art prints in many sizes, framed or unframed

Notebooks for musings & doodles, lists & lyrics, poems & plans. Cases, covers & skins for phones/ ipods. Totes & zippy pouches for carrying important things around in! And more! 


 All these & more can be found at: society6.com/mixy


If you like this, and things like this, you can get sporadic updates on my thoughts and drawings delivered right to your inbox. Hop onto my email list right here.

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

Your email is utterly safe to me. I will ensure it is guarded at all times by dragons. Hungry dragons.

just lurking

Hello lovely friends of the internet, I’ve missed you, where have you been?

IMG_7875 IMG_7873 IMG_7885

I haven’t posted in a little while due to an absence of images.

IMG_7910 IMG_7904 IMG_7914

This is the coming together of a doodly thing I did a few weeks back

IMG_7902 IMG_7908

Watercolour and fountain pen,  intricate and involved but in a stilted inhibited style, so I left it there

IMG_7937 IMG_7916

My creative mojo has dropped off temporarily, the tide’s gone out, so I’m patiently waiting it out.

Meanwhile, I wish you all a beautiful Solstice, whatever that means to you. Be well, lovely souls X

imaginary animals

Some of the characters I collected in my camera at the V&A last week, having filtered through my imagination, turned up in my art journal.


As they evolved along the way,


some got a little lost under the layers.


faces merge animals and human,


some characters from other projects join them.


As the weekend wore on,


the colours developed


The doodles built up


The tribe became established on the page


I can’t think of any meditation I enjoy more than getting lost in patterns and colours.



Happy New Love

Toward the tail end of last year I fell upon #selflove365, a daily drawing practice, meditation, and focus. I chose the book I wanted to use, I drew a grid of 1 inch squares, and I waited for January to begin.

Here we go.

Two days in, I’m finding my way.

almost completely (50/52)

Every week this year I’ve worked on one page of this art journal.


There’s a poignancy to the last pages of a book, a wanting to eke out the fun….


mixed with a readiness to move on to new projects.
Oh so many new projects lined up!


This is an almost complete page of the almost complete book….


We’re so close to the end now I’m going to save the completed page until I can show you the whole book at once 🙂

ingredients of a week (49/52)


In no particular order, this week’s page is built out of these things…


Derwent XL Graphite (same folks who make the Inktense stuff). Big chunky blocks that are also water soluble. Great for grubby grimy grunge. Vague shapes and noises to form the ambiance.


Brené Brown vividly describes something I’ve been focused on this year, these words showed up this week…

“Owning our story can be hard but not nearly as difficult as spending our lives running from it. Embracing our vulnerabilities is risky but not nearly as dangerous as giving up on love and belonging and joy—the experiences that make us the most vulnerable. Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our light.”


Scroobius PipThe  Beat That My Heart Skipped (and much more). Such a fine Wordsmith, a rhyming genius…

“Especially in this instance
Never ending persistence
To use the words in each sentence
As if they were blunt instruments
To beat a hole in their defence
Of this beauty and her innocence
Which serves to build resistance
In spite of all my good intents.”


Copic Pens (I don’t have them with me, I forget exactly which ones) – lovely delicate translucent colors. Layers of hazy background.


Sakura Gelly Roll Pens Oh my! I could just write for miles and miles in these pens. Buttery soft. Love. And some colours really zing too.


Regular old graphite pencils. Everything about writing and drawing in pencil whisks me back to childhood. Mixed memories. Shiny greys on the page, shiny grey smudges on pages, on hands, on faces… Timeless.


Carne Griffiths I fell across CG’s work again on DeviantArt this week. I remembered it from researching drawing styles online for an artschool project a couple of years or so back. Some aspects of his style has leaked back into my subconscious this week. (I’m glad)


Perspective. Is upsidedown intrinsically wrong and in need of re-orienting? Writing is more than words of information, it’s shapes and connections and flow. The angle of the eyeline defines the view not the object. That’s what everything in the news boils down to (from where I’m looking)


Pilot Gel Ink Pen Super rich black ink, words spill out with ease.

Thanks for dropping by…………X