When lovely Emma at AQuietStyle asked me to take part in this blog hop, I jumped at to the opportunity (ehem excuse the pun). It’s a chance to share with you, in 3 questions, a little a bit about my process, inspiration and how I manage that elusive work life balance. So here goes:
What have you been making at your desk this week?
Illustrations. At the moment I’m focused on building a body of work. I’ve only recently decided to make art my full time pursuit so I need to build my portfolio. I have a goal to create 10 to 15 finished Illustrations by December – quite a task when I only have 3 child-free mornings per week. Next year I would like to spend more time promoting myself and focus on my Etsy shop, but I can’t do that without a cohesive portfolio.
I’m also taking part in the Christmas Fairy Tale Craft Fair at Brighton Racecourse, so some of those pieces are intended for that. There’s nothing like a bit of pressure to make me jump into action.
The image you see above is a work in progress of my Elizabeth Taylor Illustration. She is the epitome of glamour.
Although I have a studio at the bottom of the garden I can only use it when my daughter is in nursery and the boys are in school. The rest of the time, the dining table and our ‘den/playroom/snug/messy room’ floor is my workspace. Plus the sofa. I’ll draw here or blog whilst snuggled up with the kids, (now we have a shiny new laptop). This is where I am right now. I work when and I where I can basically!
Where am I currently finding my inspiration?
I’m always on the look out for the perfect face. Wedding imagery is a big inspiration, because it’s so feminine. I’m obsessed with 1950’s glamour at the moment too – well actually I’ve always loved it. Vintage vogue, screen sirens such as Elizabeth Taylor or Audrey Hepburn. This period oozes glamour, femininity and sophistication. I’m also playing with patterns at the moment, something I want to incorporate more into my Illustrations.
I think there is a real trend at the moment, to celebrate pretty things and find beauty in the everyday. Instagram is fantastic for people who share this desire and is another big inspiration for me. Instagram forces me to look for the beauty in the everyday whilst enjoying the gorgeous imagery that other people are sharing. Flowers especially. Simple and beautiful. Something I’m hoping to communicate in my work.
How important is being creative to you, and how do you blend this with your work/life/family balance?
Being creative means everything to me. Everything around me falls to pieces if I can’t be creative! I denied it for many years and was miserable as a result. I have never felt so satisfied as I have in the last few months following the decision to make my art a priority in my life
I like to think I’m a better Mum and Wife as a result too. The house may get messy, the washing may not always be up to date, the clutter may be spreading. However I’m just a lighter person when I have a creative project on my desk; when I’m drawing everyday.
And that illusive work life balance? Well is anyone on top of that? I like to think I achieve some sort of balance. I still feel that my creative work takes a back seat to the needs of my family, but I guess that is how it has to be when you have 3 children, one of whom is only 22 months old. Everything takes twice as long (sorry Emma for taking so long to write this post!), but that’s just something I have to accept. I balance my work and life by accepting that it won’t be balanced for quite a while yet. That applies to many Mums I think?
Passing the Blog Hopping Baton
So I now pass the blog hopping baton onto another couple of creatives. Introducing:
Literally a couple, who are creatives, Ali & Jam aka HelloDodo. I first me these playful printers at a craft fair and became an instant fan of their work. They sell their wonderful hand screen-printed wares via their successful Etsy shop and NotOnTheHighStreet. I have a couple of their prints and they always make me smile.
Anna from Anna’s Drawing Room, another printmaker/illustrator, who has a beautiful illustration style. Her nature inspired designs are just charming. I haven’t actually met Anna as yet. I’m just a fan of her work! I really enjoy reading about the progression of her artwork on her blog.
Do show these wonderful Brighton creatives some love and I’ll give you a shout via this blog and social media when their blog posts go live.
Have a great day and I hope you’ve enjoyed a little blog hopping 😉