Thursday, February 28, 2008

Bye bye grunge

Robin tells me that if I want to project a sharp, designery image (and earn lots of money) I need to get rid of this masthead. So I hope the new one is as sharp and designery as I need it to be.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Boys in a tree

Photocomposite digital illustration

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Maths homework

Tom distracted from his maths homework by all that culture spilling out of British television.
Pen in sketchbook

Monday, February 25, 2008

Found type

Whilst walking on Nomansland common I found this memorial carved into the glorious tree-climbing tree by someone who loved type and Margaret Field. Despite the words breaking up slightly where the bark has split the type, it’s still very recognisably ‘Desdemona’ which fits in rather beautifully with the art nouveau feel of the sinewy flowing branches of the tree. Photo taken on my mobile phone (the latest toy to force me to keep up with all the youthful mobile-phone literate texting mothers).

Friday, February 22, 2008

Flo and Robin

Flo painting nails, Robin watching a documentary about kamikaze pilots.

Pen in sketchbook

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Link love

I’ve just been reading my son’s music blog and although I’m sure his interests aren’t likely to be the same as those of you who visit my blog, I recommend reading the last paragraph of this post.

Holly and Flo

A very unflattering and inaccurate portrait of Holly. But I’m sure I’ll be forgiven by Holly and her family when they see all the disastrous drawings I’ve produced of Flo. A lovely evening with the two girls, We ate a delicious winter couscous (recipe to be found here, though I found multiplying the recipe for four by two and a half only just about provided sufficient for seven) and then the girls made a chocolate cake and watched a film. For those of you that dread their children reaching their teens, I can tell you that if you’re as lucky as me you’ll have evenings like this in company of delightful young adults and the occasional moment of teenage stroppiness is a small price to pay, for the pleasure of such engaging, stimulating company.
Pencil in sketchbook

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

And another mock CD cover

Gmina Radziłów
In her debut album singer-songwriter Radziłów belies the apparent simplicity of these chansons, and hits you in the solar plexus with the aching lyrics and subtle weaving of harmony and conter-harmony that thread their way through each tiny masterpiece.
Yep another teenager whining along with Garage-Band in her bedroom.

Many thanks to SW who provided the photograph which can be seen here
together with lots of other wonderful pics

Fun graphic design meme

Terras de Bouro. His new album 'Whose Time has Come' is a melodic fusion of cool smoky jazz with a futuristic techno undertone.

I picked this fun game up at the
Creative Review blog
And so this is my first attempt at creating a sleeve for Flickr’s CD Cover meme.

It’s a simple game:

1. The first article title on this randomly generated Wikipedia page is the name of your band.

2. The last four words of the very last quote from this random page from is the title of your album.

3. The third picture on this page, Flickr’s list of interesting pictures from the past seven days, is your album cover.

However rather than picking a picture from the last link (and upset photographers who haven't given a Creative Commons license to their pictures) I used a photograph from this clever link which generates random images from the most Interesting photos list where the photographer has granted permission to alter and re-use their work, in accordance with their Creative Commons license.

The first image that came up for me from there was, Canopy of the Austrian Centre by Flickr member magnaram.

Faux silk screen

Pretending I have a gocco printer (which I would dearly love, but can’t justify as I’d have to import everything from half-way round the world).
Digital treatment of brushpen illustration

Monday, February 18, 2008

First swimming lesson

It’s wonderful how proud they are of you when they’re little. It’s funny to think that in just a few short years the last thing he’ll want to do is point out his parents to his friends.

Digitally coloured sketchbook pen drawing

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Wellington Hotel Boscastle re-visited

When I have too much on to fit in some proper drawing or art, I get out my sketchbooks, find a suitable black and white page I drew earlier and colour it in. A pleasant reversion to childhood colouring books.
Brushpen and watercolour in sketchbook

And some more colouring in

Sketches of Tintagel, colour added from the comfort of home.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

The tow path at Nash Mills

A quick ten minute impression of the canal. Robin was repairing his canoe in preparation for another one of his action man challenges – the Devizes to Westminster International Canoe Marathon (DW) – The longest non-stop canoe marathon in the world. I’ve been a canoeing widow for some time now so I’ll be glad when the whole thing is over.

Brushpen and watercolour in Roberson watercolour sketch book

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Tom reading on the train

Pen with digitally added colour

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Xavier posing

We were walking along the Embankment after a whistle-stop visit to the Tate art gallery when Xavier jumped onto this carved stone piece and posed saying ‘Mummy, Mummy, take a photo of me’, to which I replied ‘But I don’t have a camera with me’, so then he said ‘Well OK, take a drawing of me then’. I tried my best to be as quick as a camera.
Pen and watercolour in small sketchbook

Monday, February 11, 2008

Flo, version 2

Revisiting my illustration of Flo. This one is based on the real colours at the time. The wall is gold, the settee is blue, her top was dark green. The previous illustration of Tom was a palette of my imagination. I wonder whether I am too literal at times and whether I should be abandoning reality far earlier on in the process. What do you do?

Brushpen illustration with digital colour

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Tom version 2

I stayed up late last night and played around with a tutorial on this site. Isn’t it wonderful how people use the internet to generously share their knowledge. Think I may have got carried away with the grungey effects.

Pen and ink drawing digitally enhanced in Illustrator and Photoshop

Old masthead

I didn’t like this masthead very much so it’s going now.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Flo looking like a ballet dancer

Brushpen in sketchbook

The road by the school

Pen and watercolour in tiny sketchbook

Monday, February 04, 2008

Some recent people sketches


Saturday, February 02, 2008

The gondolier

I was at last able to finish this watercolour I started ages ago. I rather liked the look of this coolly indifferent be-jewelled gondolier when we took traghetto across the Grand Canal last summer, so I made sure I took a few snapshots of him and the Pescheria behind and made a kind of drawing and painting composite from the photos that I displayed on my computer screen.
345mm x 450mm watercolour on Winsor and Newton watercolour paper

Friday, February 01, 2008

The path up to the school

I stood for an hour on this windswept spot watching after-school football. Not one of the things I shall remember with fondness. I don’t think Xavier will either.
Five minute ink sketch