Before I had cats, I had no interest in them whatsoever. But now that I have Merlin and Storm, a ‘mad cat lady’ phenomenon has taken over me and my art!
Here are Storm and Merlin. I even use words like ‘fur babies.’ Oh the shame of it! But as you can see, they are rather gorgeous.
Someone once told me they thought Storm the grey cat was a Prussian Blue cat. But after a bit of research I don’t think he is but that did give me an idea for this week’s theme of Blue.
Week 41: Island
I was born on the island of Jersey in the Channel Islands, UK.
Week 42: Dog
Week 43: Rainbow
Lots of digital practice this month so it seems. Which is good as I need to really develop my skills in this area. It is also the perfect thing to preoccupy myself with while I am waiting with fingers crossed for replies from manuscripts that are out there in the publishing world.
Today is also #PBPitch day on Twitter. I have entered a few, have you?
Wow! We are half way through the year and I have managed to keep on going for another month with my illustrations. Which is certainly a good thing. When my writing seems to be getting no where I have my illustrations to focus on, otherwise it can get a bit depressing wondering if you are pursuing something you may not ever make a success at. So here are this month’s illustrations:
Week 27: Canberra
gelli printing using 3 colours
Week 28: Knitting
Digital art using Tayasui App on ipad
Week 29: Collage
scrap bits of paper and fineliner
Week 30: Vintage
old photo scanned and placed in to Illustrator Adobe with digital art added on top
I always feel a sense or relief at the end of each month when I can look back at the illustrations I have completed. Any little bit of achievement is important to your well being and keeps me going during a time where my writing feels it may never be good enough to be published.
Have I said before that every week I think I am going to fail and not complete an illustration? Probably. Well, surprise, surprise I felt like that again this week. It’s not always down to the lack of time. Many times I wrack my brain for an idea for the week’s theme and feel completely stumped. But I can breath a sigh of relief as it seems I always manage something in the end regardless of the outcome. So here are April’s illustrations:
Week 14: Camping
Gelli printing, pastels, posca pens
I hadn’t used pastels for years so it was good to get them out again.
Week 15: Ocean
Gelli printing, copic markers
Working with a gelli print plate always has an element of surprise which is part of the joy of working with this medium.
Week 16: Mirror
Copic markers, fineliner pens
I am enjoying developing my skills and drawing animal characters and felt quite pleased with this little ducky.
Week 17: Collector
I collect many things as a family historian, teacher, mother, illustrator and finally writer. I am hoping soon I will be collecting acceptance’s from publishers rather than rejections. 🙂
So now it is May with the following themes of grandmother, adventure, still life and ink. I wonder what I will come up with???
I am not really pleased with this illustration. I had limited time this week and it showed in the outcome but I still participated and stuck to my goal of entering on time each week regardless of the standard of work.
Week 41: Sweets
Copic markers & Artline pen
As you can see I had the event of Halloween in my mind. I enjoyed doing this illustration and am pleased with how it looks. 🙂
Week 42: Instrument
Gelli printing & Acrylic paint
I felt the need to use a different medium again and gelli printing felt perfect for this weeks challenge. I don’t play the saxophone (which may show in the detail or lack of) but it was fun to use the rollers again. As you never really know how the print is going to turn out the element of surprise makes this an enjoyable and challenging medium to work with, which is what 52 Weeks is all about, challenging yourself!
Week 43: Monster
Copic markers & thin textas
Well it is Halloween to day and what a perfect way to finish the month then with a monster themed illustration.
Yesterday I visited Hachette Publishing House. They had opened their doors for paid visits. It was a great opportunity to see the inside of a publishing house, listen to the editors and marketers explain how the process of commissioning and promoting a book goes.
Seated from left are the host from the Emerging Writers Festival (sorry no name), Suzanne O’Sullivan (Children’s publisher), Robert Watkins (Fiction and Non-Fiction publisher) and Rebecca Saunders (Fiction publisher).
Suzanne O’Sullivan likes you to be on social media, likes your pitch to be brief and often reads on her e-reader, so likes to see the full manuscript.
Robert Watkin’s said about your story that … “There has to be natural lows and peaks to maintain a reader’s interests.”
Rebecca Saunders said that to her… “the title is important,” and she “wants it to be commercial.” She also wanted to know what your USP (Unique Selling Point) was.
I really enjoyed doing this illustration. I loved trying to create humourous characters in as simple a style as I could (I can get bogged down with realism and detail).
Collage, copic markers, Artline pen 0.4
Week 18: Art Deco
I love the style of Art Deco in buildings and furniture and had never had a reason to try the style myself until now. I stumbled across a shop recently that was selling weaved card for a good price so i bought a few packets of a variety of colours. The card was the perfect medium for cutting and collage and the weaved texture added to the overall look.
Week 19: Eat
Week 20: Melancholy
This theme brought out quite an emotional week on the 52 Week Illustration Challenge page on Facebook. As I fam trying to keep focused on picture book styles I thought about what kind of things make children feel meloncholic and being left out of the playground games is one of them. This little monster doesn’t like being left out of the skipping game.
Week 21: Stripes
This theme style was inspired by the photo below and the poem ‘Tiger Tiger’ by William Blake:
I haven’t quite got the same level of talent as Brooklyn-based illustrator and printmaker JooHee Yoon but it is always good to be inspired and aspire to someone creative.
Here’s my version using gelli printing and Artline pen 0.4:
We break up for the Easter holidays today. I am sure Easter was on my mind when I completed Week 12’s Costume illustration. I was thrilled to see it included in Nicky’s picks here:52 Week Illustration Challenge
As the last week of March it has been busy due to the closing dates for the following competitions:
SCBWI Work In Progress Grant
Rate Your Story Writing Contest
Caterpillar Poetry Prize
I can relax for a few days before I prepare manuscriipts for the next competitions:
I can’t believe the year is over – which means The 52 Week Illustration Challenge founded by Tania McCartney is also over! It has been a great challenge to be part of and I have created over 52 illustrations that certainly wouldn’t have existed had I not participated. It was a delight to see everyone else’s creations too. If you would like to see the complete collection click here: 52 Week Illustration Challenge 2014
Week 51: Silhouette
My other hobby is family history and I love the old silhouettes or Victorian era cameos that were in fashion as broaches and wall portraits. This is my daughter drawn using textas onto white oval shaped paper and then stuck onto black card. Ignore the dodgy and wonky outline of the oval, I had to draw the shape by hand. 🙂
Week 52: Fireworks
Last night was New Years Eve and so it was apt to finish with fireworks. Using a Gelli printing plate can be a bit hit and miss. I love this aspect about this medium. Using cut out firework shapes I created layers of different colours and finished the illustration by adding the cut outs on top to create a mixed media collage.
I had a great evening watching the Sydney fireworks with family. So Happy New Year everyone and thank you for all your wonderful support throughout this creative year!
Lucky you, you get four illustrations this week. Gee, life is flying by so fast at the moment, I can barely keep up. School’s are breaking up tomorrow for the long Christmas holidays, so kids will be home!
Week 47: New York
This was a dufficult theme for me. It was too abstract. But I will not quit or avoid the challenge. I like history and was thinking about New York when it was new and young.
Week 48: Fox
Foxes are harder to draw than I thought. I felt nervous and therefore decided to keep it small.
Week 49: Sunshine
Whilst still unpacking the house from a recent move I found my printing resources again. I was a bit out of practise and the first few attempts were disastrous, but I was pleased with the final result. I wasn’t brave enough to add the dark inner circles to my sunflowers. I didn’t want to ruin the illustration. It is sometimes important to know when to stop.
Week 50: Christmas
I love Robins! When I thought of Christmas, I thought of Robins, which then led me to think of worms and some kind of Christmas truce. Just like the truce on Christmas Day between the soldiers of opposing sides during World war 1.
Now to mull over next weeks theme which starts tomorrow (Wednesday): Sillouette