What, a year!

I have to say that I’m shocked that it’s been over a year since my last blog post, where has the time go & what have I done in this past year?

Firstly, it’s almost a year to the day that my mum came out of hospital after having spent a good 8 weeks being looked after by some wonderful doctors and nurses.  My mum is a schizophrenic & an alcoholic and was free from the booze a year ago for a good 4 months until someone bought her a bottle of wine.  Since that day she’s been on a very slippery slope and is drinking plenty again.  I’m sharing this because my mum is part of the reason I haven’t blogged (in a year! I still can’t believe it) Below (second of the two) is a very rare moment (selfie) taken in June this year of my mum and myself. It’s rare because my mum never likes having her photo taken and the fact that she’s smiling and has agreed to the photo is a small miracle.  I think the last photo of me and my mum together where she smiles was when I was in my late teens (I’m in my 40’s now) which says something.

My Mum and Me (the before photo)

Before and after photos  of my mum and me

My Mum and Me

I’m not sure how best to sum up a year’s worth of posts in one post so I though maybe a selection of photos (in no particular order) would be a great way to summarise what I’ve got up to this past year.

I was lucky enough to get onto a pilot photoshop course run by a lovely lady called Sherry London www.prancingpixel.com which was a real eye opener for me as my photoshop skills aren’t what they should be but I’m getting better all the time.  Below is my ‘Dudes’ pattern after using the Kaleidoscope template.

My Dudes pattern using the Kaleidoscope template

Back in November I had a stall at The Spice Island Inn, Old Portsmouth.  The venue is beautiful and the staff were wonderful along with the other stall holders and customers alike.

Spice Island Christmas Fair

I’m slowly but surely working on an illustration project for a wonderful children’s story and hope to be able to update you with the progress soon. Below is one of the early teddy drawings that I played with in Photoshop

Bear with Me

In January I took up going to the gym for the first time ever and thank my sister-in-law for coming with me the first few times as I don’t think I would have done it with out her.  I’m now a regular and love it.  Below is a pic of me on the scales at the gym, you have to bear in mind that 3 or 4 years ago my weight was at least 105kg.  I’m in the research process of coming up with some gym related designs which I’m excited about.

My Gym Visit

In July I had my first attempt at playing with henna, it’s a lot harder that it looks bit was great fun.

First Henna Attempt

By chance, the other day I came across this competition/website and thought why not. I downloaded the first edition of the magazine which is full of wonderful patterns by amazing designers along with tips and advice from leading experts in their field. http://uppercasemagazine.com/surfacepattern

I’ve been very fortunate to have been invited to some events called ‘Poise’, organised by some wonderful people. Each event is a mixture of amazing poetry, awesome music and incredible art which in turn creates a fantastic and inspiring evening.  One such event motivated me to pen this poem.

Reading Aloud

What would happen if I took to the stage and open a page,

And read a poem I wrote about the fear of reading aloud . . . at my age.

Something tells me I’d be red in the face,

But not from the light that would glare so bright.

My heart would do one of two things –

Stop altogether or climb up my throat in a desperate hope that I might die,

Rather than stand there in a paralyzed stance.

My mind would say fly, fly far away,

It’s time to escape all the burning eyes that seem to look,

Right into the very pit of my stomach.

And with their magical powers they turn it inside out,

Again and again and again.

Of course there’s always the hope that perhaps the listeners don’t really listen,

Instead they drift off into their ‘wonders and what ifs’.

And when I speak the last word they suddenly wake from their beautiful thoughts,

And pretend they were listening all along.

Would that make the experience any less painful?

I wonder.

I hope you’ve enjoyed the quick skip through my past year, I’m glad life isn’t as edited as this.  Here’s to more regular posts.




Patterns Galore

A little while ago I made a little video featuring many of my doodle patterns and posted it to Youtube, I was really pleased about as I’d never made one before.  I’m not technically minded when it comes to video editing so when the idea came to me to submit my work to my local Big Screen Portsmouth I thought I’d have some problems . . . how wrong was I, it was so much easier than I thought and I’m really please I did it.

My little video

The Big Screen Portsmouth
Pretty Boy
Happy Days
Happy Days

Omega Art Fair

I had a lovely time at the Omega Art fair yesterday, it was so lovely to see such amazingly talented & friendly people gathered together for the first Omega Art Fair.  Here’s hoping they will organise another in the near future.

The wonderful creations in the top left of this picture belong to the very talented & equally lovely Kendal James www.etsy.com/uk/shop/kendaljames

My creations

Spring is coming

Self-promotionAs Spring is coming I thought I would put together some samples to promote my work.  I have had printed around 20 designs/artworks & have put 4 random prints into each envelope.  I hope to place the envelopes in various coffee shops & libraries in and around Southsea for unsuspecting passers-by to enjoy.