31 December 2014

A Misty New Year

I love this floaty hazy sometimes-sunny time between Christmas and New Year, when the city turns quiet and everyone else heads off on their summer holidays. We had our own pre-Christmas holiday back in Wenderholm, which is now officially one of my best places ever and somewhere I think about when life in Auckland gets a bit too noisy, which these days is a lot of the time. It was misty, grey and rained bucketloads, but I didn't care.

On this equally overcast New Year's Eve I'm thinking of (and thankful for) the opportunities that have come my way this year. Lots of making stuff, lots of drawing, a number of downs but way more ups, and finally learning how to use my time more wisely (never my strongest point). Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to leave comments here; I love reading them and finding out what you are up to in your lives all over the world. Happy New Year!

13 December 2014

Holiday Slug

Over the past week I've been taking part in a daily drawing challenge (#illo_advent) on Twitter. It keeps me practicing instead of eating all the Christmas shortbread that has found its way into the house. Sort of! Are you prepared for Christmas? I'm not. After reading this column about the difference between holiday go-getters and holiday slugs, I can confirm that I am indeed the latter. Full of good intentions but very slow to take action and always running late, especially with Christmas cards and trees. Lalala...

26 November 2014

Take it Easy

I'm not very good at taking my own advice. If anyone else had spent most of a year taking on fairly intense artmaking courses and projects, on top of the usual mix of daily life drama and commitments, what would I say to that person? 'You need a rest', that's what I'd say. 'Take some time out. Have a break.' But oh no. What do I do? Keep on going like a slightly manic not very well-functioning machine. Then I get sick and wonder why.

So this week, after a stern talking-to by my sister and my own inner sometimes-sensible self, I'm taking it easy. Pottering around, walking a bit, writing a bit, watching Masterchef a lot and definitely not doing any housework. Obeying orders, and not pretending to be someone who can do everything, for a change.

5 November 2014


My contribution to this week's Illustration Friday is a reworked pic from my handy stash of 100 Days drawings!

Gidday = interjection (Australia & NZ) | hello, greetings, how do you do? Often followed by 'mate,' but possibly in this case 'darling.' Smooth.

23 October 2014

100 Days Later

I thought it was going to be easy, but boy was I wrong! A hundred days sometimes seemed like forever, and at times I got very grumpy about 'having' to do a drawing every day.

It turns out that it really wasn't about the result, but about the process of committing to a task and seeing it through. So many self-imposed blocks, excuses, delays and dragging of feet went on, but always beforehand - once I got into the flow of things I could have gone on forever.

For me, probably the most important lesson of all was learning how to ignore those pesky inner voices and just keep on making a little something every day, regardless. This weekend all the Auckland participants are coming together to show their projects, and I'm super excited - I think it's my very first exhibition ever, not counting school and student-ey things.

2 October 2014

Wish Upon a Cloud

Illustration Friday's theme this week is 'wish.' It reminded me of another one of my favourite childhood hobbies - lying in the grass seeing animals in the clouds while making wishes. Things like: 'I wish I had different parents not my mean ones who don't let me do anything/was a fashion designer/had a pair of patent leather shoes and some socks with anchors on them.' These days my wishes are quite different, usually involving an imaginary magical seaside house with a giant studio, where I can splatter paint around and make a mess to my heart's content.

19 September 2014

Paint & Patterns

Day 71 of the 100 Days Project and just over a month to go! Discoveries include the joy of deliberate messiness, how great it is to slop ink and paint around and exactly how much I love making patterns. I'm also learning to not be so self-critical, which is a massive achievement for me, the master of picking my own work to pieces. There have been some sticky uninspired patches for sure, but now the end is in sight with a 100 Days exhibition in November, I'm starting to get all excited again.

8 September 2014


This week's Illustration Friday theme is radio - and also one of my 100 Days Project prompts (hurray for killing two birds with one stone!)

When I was a kid I had a little transistor radio like this one. It went everywhere with me - even into the bathroom, where it sat on the window ledge playing the American Top 40 and BBC crime dramas while I wallowed for what seemed like hours in the steamy bath.