last one…

…last big fair of the year! this weekend will see me take part in my biggest fair yet – Script Events’ Christmas Craft Fair at Elsecar Heritage Centre. This was the first winter fair that I sorted out – way back in June! I couldn’t believe it when I was first contacted about it – it was early JUNE! Time has passed and this week I have been sorting out any last bits of drawing and making in the hope of being ready for the big weekend ahead. More information can be found here – plus I am still waiting for someone to come and ask me to draw them a doodle – I dare you! there has been no takers yet. Admission is free and there is ample free parking on site. As well as the Craft Fair itself, there will be Christmas-themed entertainment in the form of Barnsley Metropolitan Brass Band and performances by local schoolchildren together with various food stalls. It sounds like it will be a great event.

I must say a huge thank you to those who have bought my portfolio clear-out prints – I am trying to clear out more but I am unsure about some and whether I should keep them for portfolio pieces for a while longer. This evening I am catching up on Merlin via the BBC iplayer whilst sewing some hedgehogs that I intended to make way back in March after the first prototype was made.

on the web…

…trying to do more of the online thing as possible – I sent two pieces of my work to Made It – Flaunt It and both were accepted for their December Showcase. Hurrah. The full showcase can be seen here as my computer screen would only allow me to ‘printscreen’ a portion of it. But as well as trying to do more online stuff, I have decided to show less of my sketchbook work while I try and work on new-ish and new ideas. I think it may be better for me to mull over ideas without feeling too exposed. Alot has been written/said about ‘illustration and inspiration’ lately. I would like to try and explore and experiment on my own for a tad.

In other news, I would like to thank everyone who has visited my travelling stall these past three weeks and to anyone who has been to see my work at any of the shops/galleries. The last fair will be this weekend at the Elsecar Heritage Centre in/near Barnsley – two day event. Today I dropped off some pieces at a shop in our village – Unravel for display within their Christmas Craft Exhibition. There are also some new pieces in The Cooper Gallery in Barnsley – bits and bobs. This evening I am busy making up some more badges and have ninety percent decided that once these materials run out – no more will be made of the small illustrated badges. I am also hoping to sew some more raincloud mobiles as they have been waiting for couple of weeks in the to-do box.

double date…

…this weekend in Leeds at the Corn Exchange – just a short walk round from the train station – with ReetSweet Craft Events, I will be there with the lovely Kim of Finest Imaginary. Two days of two of us with two lots of work to look at and buy if you have spare pennies. Oh yes – tow days this weekend – Saturday and Sunday! There will be other fabulous stalls full of goodies and treat. Prices to suit all pockets big and small. Please come along and support little independent businesses. More info here. Again – please bring your sketchbook along or a piece of paper and ask for a doodle!

i have been busy this week with all sorts of little jobs. Making up things from the ‘to-do’ box and trying my best to draw new pictures. I will hopefully try and take some pictures tomorrow at the fair of our shared stall and of the Corn Exchange as it is a beautiful building.

this winter…

…has been a mish mash of things. generally good things. lots of seeing friends, lots of work making, lots of thinking, lots of investigating, lots of doing and seeing and lots of clearing out. i am the opposite to a squirrel this winter – instead of hiding food which means keeping work, i have made the decision to set it free. you may have seen earlier posts about my portfolio clear out. at the weekend i decided to out an item at a SALE price – Mr Robotington Cross-stitch. I made these as a reason to use certain supplies I had and did so about February time. He is now in etsy and folksy at HALF-PRICE (P+P is extra) Bargain to be had there. Work wise – I am thinking of restarting the Lion Sketchbook in a new one. I was very unsure about this but it helps me draw alot more and just drawing without the lions has been a little hard.

fresh out of retirement…

…is the pirate lion. first printed over two years ago – while getting stuck into the printing, i decided to get the pirate lion design out and stick him on a screen. first time he went on the wrong way round but now he is the right way – either way he is sometimes a ‘lefty’ or a ‘righty’ with his pencil but it doesn’t really matter which way round he is. tomorrow I will be in Sheffield at the ReetSweet Fair with Finest Imaginary and I am just labelling up some more printed wares. Some nice news to share is that my work is now stocked in a couple of new places!

NEW
The Bowery – Leeds
Grundy Art Gallery – Blackpool
Gemma Scully Jewellery – Manchester at the Christmas Markets
Soon – Grotto Shop – Pop Up Shop – Manchester

ALSO
The Cooper Gallery – Barnsley
Harris Museum and Art Gallery – Preston
Comma – Oxford

enjoying…

…working on Christmas things which is something I have never really done before – except for the bunting I made last year. above you can see a decent enough photo of my first screen printed Christmas card. it is printed in a very nice blue and was based upon a lino print that I did for the lino printing workshop – which went very well. i forgot to take any photos of the evening but it was fun and i really enjoyed showing people how to get to grips with lino. the snowman card is now for sale online and in various shops – it will also be at the fairs. today and this evening, bits of work are being finished off, sorted out and packed. sketchbook hopes to be out later to solve the problems of the new print – think the pencil crayons need to come out as well.

roll up…

…roll up! If you fancy a day out, ReetSweet are having their first Christmas shindig of handmade loveliness this weekend at the Millennium Gallery in Sheffield. It is a very easy place to get to and there are some details above and more via the underlined link. Kim Lawler of Finest Imaginary and I will be sharing a table and so there will be two of us! Two of us to talk to, two lots of things to look at and two little independent businesses to support. If you would like me to – bring your sketchbook or a piece of paper and I may draw you a squiggle or a lion of sorts. Please keep you eyes on the blog for item updates and pictures as tomorrow is a day of working at home – I will be spending the day printing at home, chasing the natural light in hope of online shop photographs and just general ‘doing’ of work. Any Q + A’s – get in touch via email.

Please remember that I am now available for screen-printing commissions – also printing of your work – contact me for more information if you would like me to work on a joint project. Owt is possible.

thank you…

…to all you came to my stall at yesterday’s Super Duper Christmas Fair that was in Blackpool. The fair was a good start to the Christmas markets and people are snapping up prints that I have taken out of my portfolio which is great! Bit sad to see them go but there is no need for me to store them away when they could be out in frames and displayed. Above is a photo of another print – it got a lot of attention yesterday but no takers – it is online and will be at the next fairs until it finds a home. I have selected a couple more prints to crop/wrap and these will be  making an appearance soon. today i am off out on Victor with Dr Mr as he came home for visit which was unplanned. We are going to the Yorkshire Sculpture Park which is near to where we live – there is a Donna Wilson exhibition on.

Little Mr Robotington – Photo-Etch Print NOW SOLD Thank you

spreading my wings…


…to my first collaboration with one of my friends – the amazing Mark Penman. Since I can now print a bit more freely and a bit more freely at home – I came up with a plan of printing for others and first thoughts were that Mark’s work would look amazing as screen-prints. We agreed to break in the idea gently with two one-colour screen prints for him to take to the Thought Bubble Festival. It is the UK’s largest annual event which celebrates sequential art in all its forms, including everything from superheroes to independent and small press comics. They are a non profit making organisation dedicated to promoting comics and graphic novels as an important cultural art form. Thought Bubble is taking place in Leeds with a main two day convention being held this weekend – 19th & 20th November.

If anybody would like to work together with me on anything illustrated related or print related – please get in touch.

this weekend…

…my work and me will be in lovely Blackpool at the event mentioned in the poster above. I am no good at writing promotional words but this is the first of four Christmas Markets that I am taking part in this year. I also have work for sale at The Cooper Gallery in Barnsley as part of their Christmas Craft Exhibition which is taking place right now through to 24th December. If there is anything that has caught your eye – come along and take a closer peek. tomorrow is a print room day – exposing screens with the first printing/illustration collaboration and hopefully new things by me on my own.

clear out…

…whilst getting ready for the Christmas Craft Markets and while I am not so well, I have decided that it is now time to have a portfolio clear out. the dry point print in the photo above can now be found in my etsy shop at a very reasonable price. many more pieces will be either online or at the markets at great prices – in the hope that pieces of my work may find a home in which they are displayed and loved. any sales will help raise money to go towards a possible period of further study for myself as this week has been the start of some MA investigations. The Mr Dr also had an interview earlier this week for a permanent job as a Research Fellow at the University of Warwick and GOT IT!

LION AND ACCORDION – NOW SOLD! Thank you.

poster…

…to let you all know about The Bowery’s Headingley Arts Trail that is taking part this weekend from 10am on Saturday. My work was selected to be within this lovely event and four prints can be found upon the walls of a lovely little (yummy) place on Otley Road. I ain’t going to tell you exactly where or pass on a lot of information as then it can be like a treasure hunt! The work I chose to show is a selection from my printmaking portfolio and to describe it, I would say it is a positive reflection on who I was, am and trying to be/do as an illustrator. I had intentions of creating some new pieces but the return to self-employment was not smooth. More information about the Arts Trail can be found by clicking on this link. (I had written a lovely post about this event but blogger was having severe issues and lost my writing.) Also, I am taking part in Finest Imaginary’s Christmas Giveaways – Kim is creative friend and we met a couple of years ago at a Manchester Craft Mafia Christmas Fair. Please click on this link – yes another one – to read a little interview about me and to enter. If you would like to feature my work on your blog/website or Q & A me, just get in touch.

visit…

…today we have a photo and a few words from my good friend Cat. thought it would be nice to share something new and have a little change from my work and rambles. please enjoy.

My name is Catherine and I run a shop on Etsy.com called JumpUp selling eco-friendly accessories, plushes and embroideries.
 These brooches are inspired by mountains and made out of a lovely grey jumper that someone accidentally shrunk in the wash and donated to charity. It was a gorgeous jumper by Lyle & Scott but it was too small and misshapen for the charity to sell normally. The fabric was beautifully felty and soft…so I bought it from the charity myself and used it to create new things.


The snow caps on the tips of the triangles are white wool yarn which I stitched by hand. The felt triangles are sewn together by hand in layers to create a thick brooch. You could wear these on a jumper, cardigan, or pin them to your bag…anywhere you like!


I make all my items from my studio in my home in the south west of England (Cornwall, land of scones and clotted cream!) but I can mail them anywhere in the world. I make my own envelopes for mailing, using pages from books with damaged covers, sheet music, etc. You can see my shop homepage here.

second outing…

…of this ‘ere print. originally i had said that there would not be another edition of this print but with the new print room, I felt that it was best to get stuck in with a print that I knew gave me good results – plus this print was the quickest selling print that I had ever done and it was all sold out. about four weeks ago, I took it to said new print room. there were problems with exposing and then huge problems with printing which caused a huge headache, a new squeegee was ordered, i took a break from the print room and today i returned where there was printing with very minimal mistakes. I attempted ten for the edition but got nine – good going. once natural light can be found, they will be in the online shops and will also be out  at the forthcoming fairs but remember these were hotcakes first time around. they will definitely not be printed again – am not keen on giving myself a triple headache anytime soon. once they are gone – they are gone. in other news – i am off to spend the next few days lino cutting and doing some more work in preparation for the workshop. everything i have drawn has got woolly hats or scarves on.

round…

…the corner is the ‘C’ word and this little fella may make an appearance if it should happen to s-n-o-w! He is a little lino print that I have been working on as part of the prep-work for my first ever lino printing workshop. I drew this design super quick while trying to come up with christmas themed things and think he came out rather nice. He may soon be turned in to a screen printed card ready for the fairs as it will be quicker for me to screenprint then lino print as there is a lot on my plate. below are the dates and places of the fairs that I am taking my work to show, tell and sell. Come and say hello.

Headingly Arts Trail, Leeds – 12th & 13th November 2011 (Exact Location to Be Confirmed)
Super Duper Fair, Floral Hall of the Winter Gardens, Blackpool – 19th November 2011
ReetSweet Christmas Fair, Millennium Gallery, Sheffield – 27th November 2011
ReetSweet Christmas Fair, Corn Exchange, Leeds – 3rd & 4th December 2011
Christmas Craft Fair, Elsecar Heritage Centre, Barnsley – 10th and 11th December 2011

There is also something special planned for the month of May 2012…

basics…

…nothing is more enjoyable than just drawing. being self-employed is something i am proud of but these past few weeks have been tough. there has been problems with printing, problems with getting things made up and problems with chasing up late payments owed. this week i was asked to draw some Alice in Wonderland character roughs and draw I did. Unfortunately they decided to go in-house with the commission/work and I thought after the pap few weeks that i had, that out of it, i had enjoyed drawing the most even though the project didnt go anywhere. so i decided to just start drawing as after all it is where everything starts. i have scaled back printing plans i had until something clicks.

action…

…from last week, while the sticker was from my birthday visit to the lovely Yorkshire Dales. We just so happened to be staying a small walk away from the Wensleydale Creamery in Hawes. The Dr Mr was happy as if wasn’t a molecular biologist – he would be a cheese maker. last week was week three of self-employment and I think, looking back over my shoulder – that I got quite a lot done. I even tackled the accounts, reattempted the making of new screens and didn’t get that upset when i figured out i was on the wrong bus! tomorrow, i am back in the print room to print said screens and no doubt there will be an update to come on that.

just round the corner…

…is that ‘C’ word season. last year while travelling around America, we found, well I found some lovely snowman fabric that I wasn’t quite sure what to do with. earlier in the year, i had started making and selling bunting that was made from my screen printed fabric bits but due to popular demand I couldn’t print enough fabric to keep up so i started making it from my fabric stash. after the America trip, i thought bunting made with the snowman fabric would be nice and took it to all the winter fairs i did last year. it proved very popular and would be the first thing to sell out so this year, with plenty of time to go, i have started sewing some. above is the best way I thought of photographing it as the weather has gone down hill since last weeks sunshine. four lots of bunting can be found in the online shops and there will be some at the coming fairs along with regular colours of bunting.

for the next couple of hours today – i am playing office – doing the accounts so that it is all up to date. i used to be an administrator and quite like inputting data.

rain rain…

…well the weather was beautiful last week and for a couple of days, i was walking round with my legs out and flip flops on. this week, the proper autumn/winter/UK weather is back and so are the clouds – grey ones with blue raindrops are back in stock and up on/in the online shops. soon to be making the last batch for the upcoming fairs, online shops and stockists. today’s mission to the print workshop went very well and I will be printing a second edition of the raincloud pattern print on Tuesday – about 20 i think. whilst waiting for the screens to dry, i attempted character development with drawing the butterfly man, Martin. This task is not over and will continue in to the weekend – see where we get to with that project.

virtual tabletop…
…if you take a peek over on BlogAndBuy, you will find a selection of twenty stalls by talented creative sellers and one of them stalls, Stall 20 is where you will find my work. I am so pleased to be part of such a big thing – proof that going part-time at the day job was worth it as it allows me the time to find out opportunities. When you view my stall, please share the link on Twitter and Facebook ‘like it’ – comment and anything you can do to help promote it. It will be there for four weeks.

Today is the first day of working properly at home, I have mainly been sorting bits out and tidying up the house. Hoping to print later after I have gone in search of breakfast and cleaned all the things off the dining table so that I can use it as a print drying table.