My sketchbooks #yayeveryday2016

At the beginning of this year, I began a project to make some art everyday. It took the form of #yayeveryday2016 which is a tag created by Toby on instagram. He posts prompts at the beginning of the month and artists use them to inspire creative work. As of today, I am on day 215 and have really really enjoyed having a reason to make stuff everyday. Definitely check out the tag on instagram, I keep finding amazing artists through it.

Sometimes I post in the tag but often I just make the art for my own benefit, to help keep me creative and to give me an outlet for my doodlings outside my uni work. Since we’re now well over halfway through the year, I thought I’d share a few of my favourite pages from my sketchbooks, most of which I haven’t posted on insta. I use little Moleskines which are perfect and pocket sized for artiness on the go.

January //

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Art in Action 2016

Yesterday I went to Art in Action, which is a huge summer arts festival in Oxfordshire. I’ve been lots of times before and I had a brilliant time as always, although sadly this year is its last. The festival runs until Sunday 17th July and I wholeheartedly recommend it! It features hundreds of artists and craftspeople and provides a platform for them to demonstrate their processes, show and sell their work and teach classes. It is an incredible event and I always leave feeling really inspired. Continue reading

A Portugal Sketchbook

So this year for our family holiday we went back to Portugal. We’ve been many times before and I love it so much- very happy memories. We went to the Algarve in the south for a week and stayed in a hotel on the cliffs above a lovely beach. We normally do sightseeing and exploring and things while we’re away but this year we just wanted to stop and relax (which meant I had plenty of time for drawing and sketching, yay!) Continue reading

Summer sketches: Agapanthus

We have some beautiful agapanthus plants in our garden this summer and I am completely in love with them so I wanted to document them on here so that they last longer than the few weeks that they’re in bloom. I think they’re probably my favourite flowers; I love the purple-blue and I think they are really spectacular and fun, as well as just being gorgeous.agap2agap4agap5agap3Agap1We’re off to Portugal this week and I’m going to take a sketchbook so hopefully I’ll do lots of sketching and painting while i’m there (as well as hopefully enjoying the sun).


The Summer Exhibition | The Royal Academy

I am aware that I am very late to this party but I finally got around to going to this year’s summer exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts that everyone has been raving about- and it didn’t disappoint! I thought it was eclectic, fun and colourful which is everything I want from an exhibition really. If you’re in London in the next 10 days, it’s definitely worth visiting.

IMG_8418I was excited to see the stripy staircase by Jim Lambie in person after having seen pictures of it all over the internet and I really loved it, it’s a really great entrance to the exhibition and definitely sets up the theme and feel of the whole show.

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I really liked the pink, blue and teal walls of some of the galleries, something about them made me super happy and made me more attracted to the art on them. I know that some people wondered if the bright walls took away from the paintings but I have to disagree and say that their boldness enhanced the whole visit for me. Continue reading

Lino printing @ Art in Action

When I was at Art in Action this weekend I signed up to take part in a practical linocut printing class. As always at Art in Action, the tickets for the practical classes sold out almost immediately so I was really lucky to get a place on the one I wanted. I arrived at the ticket tent 45 minutes before the show opened, and still I queued for ages and just managed to get the last linocutting ticket (phew). It’s definitely worth getting there really early if you want any choice of classes- next year I might try to book online.

Anyway, this year I did a class in linocutting which I had done before myself but hadn’t ever been taught. It was a fairly basic class, only one and a half hours, and they encouraged us to keep our designs really simple. I did a lil’ summer strawberry!

This was my final print:


^ We started by printing some backgrounds.
^ Then I sketched out my design on a piece of paper and used some white transfer tracing paper to transfer the design to the lino.


^ I masked out the area around the stalk and printed that first.
^ Then I masked out the area around the body of the strawberry and printed that on top.

IMG_8322I quite enjoyed doing the linocutting and I would like to do more in future, and maybe try something more complicated. My only mishap during the whole class was when I accidentally wound the handle of the manual printing press too far and the entire thing fell apart and landed right at the feet of a poor old man in a mobility scooter (oops).


Art in Action 2015

I spent this weekend at Art in Action at Waterperry in Oxfordshire having lots of arty fun. Art in Action is the biggest visual arts festival in the UK, it runs for 4 days every July and features 400 artists and craftspeople demonstrating their trade, exhibiting their work and teaching practical classes. I visited many times when I was little and have been every year for the last 4, I think that it probably helped inspire my creativity and interest in design from a young age and I feel a bit indebted to it. The whole event is run by volunteers and I decided this year that it was time to give back so I volunteered to work on Saturday and join the team of 600 volunteers and then I went again on Sunday just as a visitor.


Art in Action is held in the grounds of Waterperry House and Gardens which is a beautiful setting that provides the perfect backdrop for such an event. The show covers everything from sculpture to illustration, woodwork to textiles, jewellery to painting and everything in between. All the demonstrators set up studios in their respective marquees and its so cool to be able to actually talk to the artists and see their processes first hand.

^ My favourite tent! – lots of linocutting, etching, letterpress, screen printing, woodblock printing etc.
^ In the market I bought myself a giant cutting mat (woohoo)

As a volunteer I was posted in the Best of the Best tent which contained a selection of the best pieces from across the whole show and from all the different disciplines, as voted for by the artists. I really enjoyed my day but I did feel a bit annoying because I kept having to tell people to take their ice creams outside or stop touching the art (sorry everyone, but art is valuable).

^Some of the best of the best.

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Here are some of my favourite pieces from the show – my own little best of the best:

^ Lisa Wisdom – “Autumn Walk at Helford Creek”

^ I loved the way that this piece looked like a rusty old scrap of metal when I first looked at it but then I saw the detail and the fact that it is in fact a lovely landscape.

^Este Macleod- “Blue Skies”
^Sara Fordy – “Indigo and Suede”
^ Jan Bowman – “Rain” Lisbon in the Afternoon
^ Roanna Wells – “Tour de France” – Hand stitching on wool.

^ This piece is particularly appropriate because I have been obsessively watching the Tour de France over the last two weeks – Go Froome!

^ Wendy Dolan – “London on the Map” – Drawing with stitch.

I only did one sketch which was of a bench in the beautiful Waterperry Garden. I was quite happy with it.

I had such a lovely weekend, with my Grandma and my Mum, both helping out and looking round the show as a visitor. It’s always such a pleasure to see so much creativity in one place and such an enthusiastic crowd of people visiting. My souvenir this year was a lovely postcard from Hannah McVicar who studied at Falmouth years ago! Hopefully I’ll be able to follow in her footsteps – although there is no graphic design tent at Art in Action so I’ll have to take up some other arty skill in order to fulfil my dream of demonstrating there one day.


Watercolour Cards

It’s birthday season! As a summer baby, I’ve always associated June/July/August with birthdays. So I decided to paint some cards and get them printed out ready for upcoming birthdays. I’m super happy with them!


I did some illustrations and lettering on hot pressed watercolour paper and then scanned them into Photoshop and then Illustrator. The real revelation when doing this was that I really liked doing the hand lettering for the text, I had no idea writing the word ‘happy’ over and over could actually make you happy (cheesy). I also LOVE this colour scheme, so bright and fruity (can I use that as an adjective?)


I printed the cards onto cardstock, scored and folded them. (I plan on sending them in some funky orange envelopes)


^ Let’s party!
^Happy Birthday!


I added a bit on the back with my name and this blog (woo!) just to get into practice doing some personal branding. I really love the way these two designs turned out and I would love one day to be able to sell little cards like this at a craft fair or something         *dreams* . Ah one day.