Creative Links #1: Art Journaling and Photography

Dome of St Paul's Cathedral

Rather than just sharing a photograph today I thought I’d also share some links to blog posts that I’ve enjoyed over the past week or so. I’m not sure if I’ll do this every Friday but we’ll see how it goes.

Linda is finding that getting ‘lost’ in creative projects is helping her to take care of herself during the darker winter months.

Michelle at Seaweed Kisses has a series of posts where readers get to peek inside the creative journals and diaries of all kinds of different people. I really like these Moleskine journals by José.

Nikki has recently started a new daily project sharing a black and white photograph from her everyday life, every day for a year. You can see the archive of her pictures so far on her blog, Art and Lemons.

My friend Joy runs online photography classes and I really enjoyed seeing some of the work that her students produced in her latest course. Drop her an email if you want to find out when she’ll be teaching her courses again. I can recommend her Nature Photography class and although I wasn’t able to join in this time I’m planning on signing up for her Art of Photography course on the next run.

Danny Gregory has written about art journaling, how making art can help you experience life in a different way and the importance of sharing your art with others.

Something Tiny – Just Keep Drawing

Drawing of orange string

I kind of slumped through yesterday. I woke up just before 5am, having gone to sleep at about 11:30pm and all kinds of things that aren’t worrying started to worry me, to the point that I didn’t get back to sleep.

At 7am I made some ginger tea, drank it in bed and spent the rest of the day on the sofa. I still managed to do a tiny drawing though while I listened to a couple of podcasts.

I’ve got a jar full of bits of ribbon and ideally I wanted to do some sort of collection drawing of ‘things that tie’. I didn’t really have the energy for that though so I found this bit of orange string in the jar and decided to just go with that.

I’m working on something a bit more complex today after a better night’s sleep last night but I still quite like the simplicity of this string drawing.

I Went to the Finnish Church Fair

Coloured pencil drawing of a Fazer Moomin chocolate bar

Since we came back from Finland we’ve kept meaning to visit the Finnish Church in London because they have a shop that sells our favourite rye bread, which we can’t seem to get hold of anywhere else (apart from Finland – maybe that’s a good enough excuse for a return visit).

On Sunday we decided to head down there because it was the last day of their Christmas fair. It poured with rain non-stop all day but we didn’t let that put us off. We still had a look around at the stalls outside, drank some mulled apple juice to keep us warm and ate churros (I’m still not sure what the Finnish connection is there but I’m not complaining).

Inside was the main event. It was so busy that it was difficult to have a really good look around but we got a couple of packs of bread and some Fazer Moomin sweets, including this little chocolate bar, featuring Little My.

The plan is to go back to the church shop and cafe another day when it’s not quite as busy, in search of more bread and hopefully some cloudberry jam.

A Keyhole View

Drawing of a living room seen through a keyhole

I’m using a Leuchtturm sketchbook at the moment. My last 2 sketchbooks have been Moleskine watercolour pads but trying to use watercolours in the Leuchtturm has been a bit tricky.

The paper is nice and thick (180g/m²) so ink and paint tend not to show through the other side of the page. That is unless, like me, you slosh a lot of water around on the page and then there can be a tiny bit of seepage but nothing major.

The bigger problem I’ve had is that the paint dries quite quickly so brush strokes can be visible where you don’t want them to be and it makes it difficult to blend colours on the page. And of course the paper wrinkles a bit as it dries too but then I think that’s to be expected.

Because of this I decided to practise a bit more with coloured pencils instead of watercolours and they work really nice on the smooth, white paper in the Leuchtturm book. So I think I’ll use this sketchbook mostly with pencil and coloured pencils and maybe some pen and ink drawings because it’s really not designed for watercolour paints. Plus it means I get to play around with other media for a change.

This drawing is of my living room. It’s not strictly an observational drawing though, so if you did happen to stare through the keyhole of my front door this isn’t quite the view you would get (in case you were thinking of doing that)!

I bought a copy of Andrea Joseph‘s book recently, which arrived last week. It inspired me to have a go at drawing from imagination and I also fancied learning how to draw a ‘fish-eye’ view too so that was interesting. I don’t think the perspective is perfect but it’s good enough.

I’m still trying to work out how anyone would manage to sit on my sofa if the coffee table was as close to it as I’ve drawn it here.

Illustrating a Tiny Journey

Illustrated journey to the postbox

Last week was the final week of the Sketchbook Skool Storytelling klass and our teacher was Danny. He shared thoughts and drawings from his travels and encouraged us to illustrate a journey of our own.

I seem to have been semi-hibernating for a few weeks so I kept my journey very small and illustrated my trip to the postbox around the corner from where I live in London.

I think maybe I need to go back to some of the stuff we learned in the ‘Seeing’ klass if the drawing of my shoes is anything to go by!

I started off drawing with a fine Copic brush pen but I found it a bit cumbersome so quicly went back to a multiliner 0.3 and used the brush pen for some of the fatter lines like the outlines of the boxes. Click on the image to see a bigger version if you like.