Gathering Inspiration

Well Hello

I've started my scrummy yummy course this week about Surface Pattern design..
Its been pretty low key I think so far, although I suspect this is to lead us in gently - because from what I can see some of the other students are preeeeettyyy damn good and they are going to need quite a bit to keep them stimulated.!!

It's really nice though to see other peoples work and 'be nosy' - our national hobby.
I've seen some great stuff and I'm really enjoying it. I think it is going to be really great.

So basically to give you some idea - this week we have been working on getting things together, gathering inspiration, recording it, and getting creative. I must say its all very informative and encouraging.

One of the tasks was to go out and photograph shapes. I chose circles and squares - and later we could use these photos to make drawings and let the creativity flow..

I should point out at this stage, that in comparison to some of the work, which is accurate, detailed and follows the brief, mine looks like I'm about 1 hr away from cutting my ear off. (is that true I don't know) Maybe that will be the case if the kids don't go back to school soon... pleeeaasse..

There are students on the course from everywhere - from Uk, Hong Kong to Australia. Also not everyone on the course is as novice as me, a few are already 'practicing' designers and have their e-shop and are up and running. I think this is good, because it sets the pace a bit and keeps it competitive in a nice way..

Here are some of my drawing efforts this week..

And finally .... after scanning into Photoshop and then Illustrator  - get yourself a pattern...
I haven't coloured it in yet, that comes later - but just need to practice, practice, practice...

Well - will post again soon

bye for now. x

If you want to check out the course here is the Link

Getting ready...

Well, hello fellows..
I'm just so excited about this course I'm starting on Monday. It's going to be fabulishous...
It's call The Art and Business of Surface Pattern design ran by some very talented people in the pattern and design business called Rachael Taylor and Beth Nicholls ..
I'm sure it will be pretty intense at times, but hopefully my passion for colour and patterns will help me through..

Even more exciting for them is the launch of a new magazine Moyo - all about Surface pattern design, you can read it here. If anyone is ever going to get into patterns and more importantly, do something with them - you need to read this first..
I think its great that both of these ladies are doing something exciting and inspiring for us all..


The other day I visited a beautiful National Trust property, (I need to get my monies worth this year) called Tyntesfield for inspiration. 

Here a couple of pics from the trip. They have made several improvements this year and the shop / cafe is much better. The house is open, but has been kept (as I like) as it was left to them. 
I didn't go in this time because the queue was quite long and there is a limit to how long you can leave 4 kids (only 3 of mine) - outside in charge of the pushchair.
(and as its still not legal to leave them locked in the car - I couldn't do that either)

Anyway after the odd tantrum, and i'm sure its not just my children who throw themselves into the gravel because they have to share.. I did take some very nice pics.
There was also a couple of florists there who were letting you make your own little posy to take home from the wild flowers... also a very nice touch.

Wild flowers in the kitchen garden...

Bye for now

I'm a happy lady

Hello again honeys.

Here I am on the 'confuser' again - although some of the grey mist is clearing with Illustrator and I do feel more confident. I can now get my own drawings in and honestly get in the pattern groove... the one above I just made, still can't work out how the colour the background... (Gfaw!!! I hear, well I'm sorry but its really not clear to me) I can do it, but I've got extra boxes, very frustrating...
Will keep picking at it, besides I've got loads of photos and mags to go through and gather gather gather that inspiration..

Hopefully I can pick up the pace with my drawings and get down to some fine art work soon... Somerset Art Works is coming up - so I shall be doing the rounds soon.. might just add in a few extra blogs for you to see...
For the most part the standard is pretty high - so might be a few nice things to see (and buy)

More importantly - I've only got a few days to wait until the start of my course ABSPD .... so I'm better get my ass in gear and start getting ready.

Below are a couple more paintings I'm rolling out, which is crap because I need to be rolling out patterns, not paintings...
Bye for now



Well, here I am, still alive, still working and not having thrown my Mac out of the window - I have been painstakingly (the hint) going through some photoshop tutorials...
It's not that easy, but my guess is that it's not that hard either - if you know how.

Why doesn't it come with a big sign which says, by the way - you fools, you Scan into photoshop and save it as a Photoshop file BEFORE you attempt to get it into Illustrator..
If someone had of told me this - my life would be 10 hours ahead. It seems that if you need to get your own stuff into Illustrator you need Photoshop..
I've not yet learnt how to isolate things - but I will. (I mean I must if i'm not going to crash off a cliff soon)

Before you take in the pics below, I'd like you all to know that these were achieved like this :-

Open file, change nappy
Place object, answer door - deal with post, (which usually comprises of my husbands 'gift to himself' each day in the form of a Jazz cd)
Trace picture (which i've just stamped on the scanner to get going) - make dinner
Move about and stuff - finish pots - sort washing - change nappy - go to bed.
Take kids to Alton towers, use credit card unjustifiably.. just so you have a better picture..

On another note - if your still reading, I'm just going to post a couple of pictures i've been working on recently - very quick things, only fill a couple of hours
(you should know that I do all my paining in the 'wash room' with the washer - with no chair - leaning over the work top - well, cus the light is so good at this side of the house of course..

Mad, formal, Mad, Photoshop, crazy colours, Illustrator..

bye for now and thanks for reading..

Those Blooming Lupins

Those blooming Lupins

Don't laugh my honey buns, I know its not much to shout about, but I took the picture from the garden of the Lupins (see previous post) and made myself a little painting. I quite like it and if my intention was to sell cards or something it would be fine. (with perhaps a bit more work) However, what makes a good card?

Anyway reluctant to waste my paint (and to get on with the washing, finish Ironing - which is the most unrewarding job ever) I did a couple more a bit looser, but I did get myself less hung up on detail and more focused on the fact that I now need to get these into the dreaded Adobe Illustrator. Dreaded because I don't have a flipping clue who to change the background colour, how annoying is that.. 
I'm sure I will be able to if I spend a bit more time on darn thing.. It is still the best thing on this Mac so I'm not knocking it

The one above is of the Peonies which were also in the garden. Yes I know it doesn't really look like it but to me its more fluid and shows more movement, I think the bigger brush helps...

Now if I can I want to see what sort of surface pattern I can get from them -
I've been looking at a wonderful website recently, can't keep my eyes from it. It's called Bluebellgrey and I think i'll have to put it on the list for 'Next purchase'..

Anyway back when I've done a few more drawings and put the paints away...

Now what

Pictures from the Garden

Hello my fellows, I have been so busy reading other peoples blogs I seem to have forgotten my own little web toe dangler.. Thought I'd post you a couple of pics from the garden. I took them - well, when the sun was shinning which must have been other year because honestly this lack of sun now is just rude considering its supposed to be August.

So why post pics from the garden on my blog, which is supposed to be about pattens and making stuff? Well, some how my intention is to use these to get to a pattern of some sort.
My guess is that I should now put pencil to paper and start to sketch out a few bits and see what happens, hhhmmm, lets see how that goes in a few days.

I'll let you know how well I get on some time in the future.
That will be of course when I have mastered Adobe Illustrator for 10,000 hrs, since it takes this long in practice to master anything of worth, or so I'm told.

Anyway in the mean time, I'll be commencing the wonderfully anticipated course on pattern design at the end of August and here is the link if you want to have a quick peak... 

Note to self - must post on blog more often than I shout at the kids, and since thats all I do in the holidays, I'm onto a winner.

I was born to surf

Well, let's be honest it isn't like I have anything else to do is it...?..
Ok I have my IPhone next to me, (I never call anyone if I can help it)... Himself, (that's my husband) said it will burn any grey matter which I do poses...
So I've got the IPad, which I'm supposed to be using to do some yoga of sorts, but actually only use to search stuff, and boy do I search.
I've viewed some wonderful, lovely fantastic stuff, and when I can I'm going to put some links on for you all to see...
Spoke to a fab company today about branding and they really do deliver offer some gorgeous things... Just need to decide what I'm doing and how I'm going to do it now..


When you buy a computer program which you have no idea how to use, maybe the shop assistant can install a chip in you somewhere that means you don't have to learn anything, it's already there in your head... Now that would be cool.

Ooh scary

Ooh very scary
Welcome to my blog, thanks for stopping by..
Here I am now installed into this vast vast world of blogging.. Thank heaven it has spell check on automatic.
A Bit about me -
I've spent the last few months painting, drawing and photographing things that I love... Namely my garden and any sort of colourful stuff... So what do I do with it, huh hmmm dilemma.... I've always wanted to work for myself and love anything colourful and different... I love buying pretty notebooks, paper, pens and lush fabrics and have lots of  pretty 'bits' I just needed to have. I've painted watercolours since I was a teenager, (that was when petrol cost 50p) but stopped when work and a family took over.
Last year I plopped myself onto a screen printing course at college which delt with patterns and pizzazz, I'm hooked on patterns...
Anyway as its not possible to run off to London, join the fabric designers at Liberty (see I do have dreams) as I have 3 children and a husband who need me, I've done the next best thing and signed up for a Surface Pattern design course starting in a few weeks..
Since then I've been researching and thinking and surfing, and reading all kinds of stuff to do with pattern.
So here's to the next few months journey! See you on the otherside..

P.s I've also installed Cs6 Illastrator which is a bit tricky