Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Green trunk, brown leaves

Mouse over to see the original drawing – oh I do love my Photoshop toy!

Monday, January 30, 2006

EDM - Draw a dog for Year of the Dog

Some attempts to capture Rufus for the year of the dog.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Drawings with gloves

It was so cold I kept my gloves on, but the silver lining was that as the ground was as hard as metal, I didn’t need to wash mud off Rufus.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Xavier cooking for me

Drawing while perched on a child’s stool inside the playhouse at the Rudolf Steiner kindergarten. Xavier is ‘cooking’ his favourite food for me – pasta and pesto, bread and butter and biscuits. The drawing isn’t very good, but nevertheless meaningful to me because I’ll always be able to recall this one of the many precious fleeting moments of his childhood.

Friday, January 27, 2006

BCF - My new glasses

I picked up my first pair of varifocals today from the opticians. I just love the tiny translucent plastic case that they came in, though whether I'll get used to the glasses is another matter. To see what a dull drawing this was before all the photoshop magic, mouse over the picture.

Illustration Friday - CAT

Just a quickie – playing with shades of black

Thursday, January 26, 2006

In the hospital waiting room

I loved this girl’s hairstyle and the man was the spitting image of a TV character actor who always seems to be in gentle British detective series

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Faces on the train

Another hay-fever injection, so another train trip. There was a woman who comes all the way from York to get her injections, so another reason to be thankful that we have so much virtually on our doorstep.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

BCF - Shulay’s Lilies

Very late entry to last week’s Blind Contour Friday, but I was away and nowhere near a scanner

Friday, January 20, 2006

Illustration Friday - E

Right this post is now edited to include my finished illustration for ‘E-is-for...’ Just all those Internet ‘e’ things – books, music and so on.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

EDM - Draw a landmark of your city

Although I have several landmarks to choose from in St Albans, I chose to loosely interpret this challenge and draw the main landmark of our village – our church. The drawing is in pen with colour added in Illustrator. The trees are of course completely bare but I couldn't resist anticipating the greenery to come.

Saturday, January 14, 2006

Homoeopathy — is it snake oil?

Apparently some recent scientific experiments have shown that most complementary treatments (and in particular homoeopathy) are ineffective compared to conventional treatment, which I’m perfectly prepared to accept — many of the alternative treatments seem to be juju administered by money grabbing witch doctors. What I can’t understand however, is a placebo effect working with hay fever. I’ve tried so many different conventional pills and potions, and, apart from some very dangerous injections I had in the late ’70s, nothing has worked, until I tried
homoeopathy. And hooray it seems to work. I have three injections in the winter of what is to all intents and purposes, water, and then by some kind of magic I have a relatively sneeze and itch-free summer.

Empty train seats

This kind of subject matter always looks so interesting on other illustrated blogs, but I think it’s turned out just the way it looked in real life — unutterably dull.

Friday, January 13, 2006

BCF - Self portrait with mask

Blind contour line drawing. Colour and fishes added in illustrator. I tried watercolour washes in Painter but it’s so slow I gave up.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Illustration Friday - SEA

I thought that a crisp illustration using illustrator would reflect the fact that I’ll be seeing the fishes in focus this summer now that I have a prescription mask. The funny thing is that bi-focal prescriptions were going for a cheaper price on e-bay than single prescription masks. I’m happy enough to see the fishes – I have no intention of catching up with my summer reading while I’m under the water.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Last chance to see the flying carpet

If you live in the London area you have ’till Saturday to see the wonderful production of the Flying Carpet at the Lyric Hammersmith. Last year my son Hugo and I went with his drama group to see the Lyric’s highly acclaimed production of the Firework Maker’s Daughter which was wonderful, but I thought this was even better. The story is more complex and is engaging and funny, the design of costumes and scenery – particularly the way that animal and bird characters are interpreted – is witty and beautiful, and the acting is brilliant. GO AND BUY SOME TICKETS NOW! (and find some children to take with you, they'll love it!)

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Thank you etiquette

This was a lovely home-made card I received from Didi (and her Mummy) for the present we gave her for Christmas. I’m delighted with it, but I certainly didn’t expect it, because she thanked us beautifully for her present when we gave it to her.

This led me to thinking about something that bothers me from time to time. As a busy working mother, with a huge number of things to do, I have to work out which things I should do out of politeness. So I do think that if my children receive a present in the post, they should write or telephone to thank the sender – out of courtesy but also so that the sender is not put in the uncomfortable position of having to ask us if we received it. However if they have thanked someone in person for a present as they receive it, I don’t feel that I should add writing an additional thank you letter to the huge long list of things I’m supposed to do as a mother. However I have a sneaking suspicion that some people might feel that only a written thank you is acceptable. I‘ve had this conversation with flesh and blood friends but I’d be interested in what any of you virtual friends in blogland think.

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Blind contour friday cheat

I drew the subject so many times and on the last attempt thought ‘sod it’ and looked at the paper. This poor broken mannikin, drawn for the first time before he’s binned in a clutter clear out. I’ve just spotted that Green and Stone of Chelsea don’t seem to know how to spell ‘miniature’.

Thursday, January 05, 2006


What does this mean? I have no idea, tell me if you know.

Monday, January 02, 2006

Illustration Friday - FLAVOUR

Most people seem to have a yearning for some of the foods and flavours of their childhood. I know that at times my Irish mother HAD to eat boiled bacon, cabbage and potatoes. As much of my childhood was spent in Fiji, I ate Indian and Fijian food regularly and that’s what I so often yearn to taste. I can fulfill my urges for Indian food relatively easily as there are so many shops that supply the raw materials and I’ve taught myself how to cook pretty authentic tasting Indian food. However the ethnic shops near me have yet to discover the delights of dalo, dalo leaves and duruka so I’ll just have to dream of the last time I tasted dalo, palusami and duruka in lolo.

As I don’t want to dwell any more on the foods I’ll probably never taste again, this picture is a celebration of what I can eat here in England – my breakfast – a perfect navel orange and a juicy pomegranate.

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Favourite tool(s)

This is a quick drawing of some of my favourite tools, but also to remember a wonderful typography class I had at college from a visiting lecturer whose name I’ve forgotten, (I wish I could remember – he taught at the LCP in the late ’70s). He held up each of these three tools in turn and explained that typographers are craftsmen – as he held up the craft knife, are artists – as he held up the pencil and work with the precision of surgeons – as he held up the scalpel. I believe he repeated this demonstration many times to different students, and I bet most of them, like me, remember it. I can’t imagine how this class would translate to computers, software etc.

Happy New Year

Now that Christmas is over, time for a new masthead. I’ve been posting my pictures since May and I really appreciate all the wonderful people who’ve left comments and who’ve given me glimpses of their lives and art in their blogs. Thank you all and I wish you happiness in 2006.