I had my coloured and my graphite pencils and would do both styles and at school I loved art classes (and maths too but I don’t admit that very often). In art we explored different methods - silk screen printing, tie dye, batik, pen, paints, stamping and did a project at the end of the year where we had to produce clothing. I studied old victorian fashion, I loved the huge skirts and corseted bodices and designed and made (with mum’s help) a puff ball dress in tartan! Don’t laugh, remember when puff balls were in vogue!! I don’t have photos from that time - sorry about that, you know me well enough that I would post if I had!…
My mum was a creative child too, I’ve seen her art work and she would make many of her own clothes, crochet, knit (she could knit and watch tv and talk!), cross stitch and she showed me the how to of these things. I wasn’t that good or patient and cutting in a straight line was not my forte. My dad also has a creative side, he was a engineer and would design routes and roads - creativity comes in many guises. They were both good at maths too - I believe this is meant to be a link between maths and art and music.
Every time we moved house, there was a trip to the DIY store to buy new wall paper (yes we did!!) and paints and flowers (for the garden) and "redo" the house and even now they still create and paint their home and garden. It was such fun every time we moved and got to recreate our space.
Until writing this I never sat and considered how much art in some form was around me, we didn’t go to galleries or the like, and I still don't actually, but it was within us as a family.
However, art was not encouraged as much as science as I grew up and I went on to study Maths, Chemistry, Physics A levels and as a second choice ended up at Nene Poly doing combined Arts and Maths degree… I quit after a term, I wanted to leave home for Uni and also the art didn't inspire me for some reason. I left and went away to do a straight Maths degree in Leeds and art took a back seat. I failed that as well (oops) and moved home to figure things out.
At some point I picked up a camera and would start clicking away, I had a good eye (so I was told) for framing the shot and saw things from cool angles - and I enjoyed it. I bought myself an SLR and some lenses, took a few courses, played with photoshop and my creative side was reborn. Certainly not claiming to be a photographer, having been the other side as a model I've seen the skill these guys have and how they work the lens. I love taking pictures though and capturing moments and playing with photoshop and I'm still doing it at times.
About 2 years ago I started doing zentangle art - it was inspired by a girl who has chronic pain and her escape and passion when she’s well is art. She showed me some basics and offI went to the art shop (a dangerous place) to build my art box.
I loved the patterns and the swirls and freedom involved in it and the free flow and lack of format. I bought books, searched the internet, looked at mandalas and henna designs and started doing my own.
The first major one I did is the big hearts drawing - done as a christmas present/card in 2015, rather than buy stuff that let’s be honest no one really needs. It took hours, maybe 20 and I was engrossed when I drew and the passion and the memories and the childhood bliss returned. All I wanted to do was draw, but I also had other things in life to do - erm like work…
I fitted in art wherever I could and whenever I started a drawing it was like an alien gnawing at me - draw me draw me! Chocolate in the fridge is similar “eat me eat me”….. I started doing photoshop again, took more pictures, opened my creative eye - printed images on canvas, drew photos I loved ( the flowers), had ideas how to frame photos with patterns, or create a diary with patterns and quotes and and - once my brain starts on ideas it goes off the richter scale!!
It slowly dawned on me that many of my drawings involved hearts and flowers….
Light bulb moment…
Hearts and flowers - what a cool concept.
I let it sit in me a while, hearts and flowers - what could I do with it, and why!
For me they are two of the most beautiful things in the world - both full of love, growth, beauty, colour, they close and open and are reborn. They survive in all places and climates and bring joy to others.
Hearts and Flowers.
Now most of my art work has both of them on it somewhere. The card series came from doing some doodles and then I thought I could turn it into a little business on the side - the colouring in theme still be popular, other pictures are ones I simply wanted to do.
When I sit to draw now, I might have a flower in mind and I’ll google it and find an image that resonates with me - or I’ll just sit and draw and see where it takes me. I search and look at other artists work and gain ideas from there - shapes, styles, patterns and the more I do and the more I colour them in the more my creative juices flow.
There’s some bigger drawings waiting to emerge from within and they are brewing! Jim Carey’s video was awesome and inspirational - I need a big space I can play in!!!
I love it when I draw a card for someone, something I know they love and done with love. It may not always get to them on time though but when it does….
My desire now is that people see my drawings and want to colour them and give them as a gift card to their loved ones, or even blank for them to colour. It’s still in early stages and I’m figuring out how I do something with it (total non business person) - the main thing I know is that I love it - art brings me alive, I smile as I write that and I want to spread that smile and feeling as far as I can through hears and flowers and love.
Thank you Heather (there’s a drawing to be done!) for the inspiration behind this blog.