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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: AJ, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 25 of 163
1. well, it's so good to be here

Nice of Dexter to come and help paint the bench.

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2. just saying it could even make it happen

Natalie
Here are a couple of portraits that I made at our last Dr Sketchy Sheffield event 'Get Your Tatts Out'. They are both on A3 paper - which is why it's taken a while to upload them. One day I will get myself an A3 scanner and not have to cart them off to print shops to get them scanned. I'm pretty chuffed with both. I did them very quickly (they were 15 min poses) with marker pens. I did add some extra cross hatching, to Natalie, at home later. But most of the shading was done with a marker pen that's running out of ink - which is currently one of my favourite tools. No decent pencil case should be without a marker pen that's running out of ink! I've told you before; I ain't a pen snob. Anything goes.
Alexis
And, the blog title? Well, to those with discerning taste, you'll know that's a Kate Bush lyric. I've just found out that I'll be going to see her in concert in September! Eeeek, eeek and more eeek. I never believed this would happen; a) she'd ever play live again and b) I'd get tickets.

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3. ink on a pin, underneath the skin

A couple more of my posters for our Dr Sketchy Sheffield events. I just love doing this poster artwork. I've been wondering why I enjoy it so much. It's obvious really, that mix of illustration and text really floats my boat. Maybe I should hire myself out as a poster artist. Have an event that you need a poster for? I'm your lady.
You can read a post about one of my poster artist heroes, the legendary Toulouse Lautrec, and see more of my own creations HERE.

0 Comments on ink on a pin, underneath the skin as of 3/7/2014 9:34:00 PM
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4. long may you run

Last Saturday we, at Dr Sketchy Sheffield, held an event celebrating the art of tattoos. I'd been wanting to do a tattoo themed event ever since I took over the running of the branch with my co-co-ordinator Lara Gothique. The idea of drawing people who are covered in drawings really does it for me.

Plus, it was a great opportunity to get some male models on board. We haven't had anywhere enough guys modelling for us - although they were pretty hard to convince. Who'd have thought these inked up guys would be so shy?

We had a great mix of guys and girls. I did these black and white drawings at the event. I added colour at home, later.

The other great thing about being the artist, in our partnership, is that I get to set some drawing exercises. My exercise for this event was to draw the (model's) body through the tattoos alone. It was more difficult to do than I'd imagined, and I still ended up adding some body lines to my attempt (above).

Despite my car braking down en-route, and being totally stressed out by that by time I got there, I still managed to get a whole load of sketches done. Many more than this in fact, but the rest were on a larger A3 sketchbook - and I'll have to get them scanned by somebody with an A3 scanner.

I'm always so impressed by the events we create. Obviously, it takes a whole lot of help from the people who get involved just for the love of the event. From the DJ, to the photographer, to the runners, to the sponsors, to the venue and the amazing models. We appreciate and thank them all. And, of course, to all the sketchers that come along and have fun, draw and ensure that Dr Sketchy Sheffield continues.
Plus, if that's not impressive enough, where else do you get to draw a tattooed Reverend? I'm guessing nowhere. I may be wrong, but if I were a betting woman I'd put money on it.

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5. these prints of our feet

Last night I dreamt that I made this drawing. I never dream about drawing. This morning this drawing, that I did in my dream, was clear as day so I quickly got it down on paper before I forgot it. I have no idea where it came from or what it means, but I love the stuff that the subconscious throws up.

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6. London calling

I love this girl. She came through for me again.
She is a part of me; my teenage self.
I made two drawings of her some years back. They were, I guess, memory drawings.
They were about being in love with reading.
And, er, being a bit of a slob (nothing changed there then).

*****
Do you sometimes find that in creativity, and in life in general, I suppose, that a theme comes along, a recurring theme, and you just can't ignore it? You feel you mustn't ignore it. It's trying to tell you something. Like a message a from the universe. Well, that's what's been happening with me of late.

That theme has been books. Books, books, books.

Autumn last year the (first) book solely about my work was published; Andrea's Book (I really should go into that rather simplistic title at some point, but hey, that's another blog post). Ever since I have been signing, wrapping and packing them off all around the world. For the wrapping paper I've been using the drawings of my girl. I can't remember how it came about - it was some kind of happy accident as the late great Bob Ross would say.

*****
A few weeks back a friend sent me a link to a project that is taking place in London over the summer. From July, there will be a trail of 'book benches' displayed throughout the capital. It is a Wild In Art project, working in partnership with the National Literacy Trust, called 'Books About Town'. You can read and see more about it HERE. The link was for artist's to submit their designs for the chance of getting their own bench commissioned. Artists could choose from a list of books, all linked to London in some way, or come up with an idea of their own. That was the only rule; the book bench design had to have some link to the capital. The issue I had was that the deadline was nearly up and I had just a few days to choose a book and come up with a design.

I really wanted this gig and my head was spinning trying to get an idea together. I'd read quite a few books on the list, but many years ago and none of them were jumping out at me. Sleepless nights ensued as I went over and over it. But I was trying to force an idea and that's not how I like to work.

I continued to get on with the other things I need to do; going to work, signing and wrapping and sending lot's more of my books off around the world. Always coming back to my girl. There she was, she was still reading. What was she reading I asked myself. What book was she engrossed in I asked her. What was teenage me reading then? Then it came to me. 
*****
Back in the day, like many other kid of the 1980s, I was obsessed with Adrian Mole. A while ago I reread the books and they were still as funny and brilliant as when I first read them. I've grown up with the character and loved everything about him, from his political views (fiercely anti Thatcher) and his burning desire to lead the life less ordinary. I knew that's what my girl was reading. There was my book; The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole 13 3/4 by Sue Townsend. But what did it have to do with London? Adrian famously lived in the Midlands. Then I recalled that he went on a school trip to London. Tenuous? Actually, I don't think so. Suddenly I was feeling passionate.
So there it was. That was my pitch; 'The book I have chosen to illustrate is The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole. In the book Adrian, and his classmates, go on a school trip to London. For most people living outside of the capital, a school trip is usually their first experience of London. It was mine'.

*****
So, that's the story of how I ended up with a MASSIVE open book, or bench (depending on how you look at it) in my living room. Yes, my idea was selected and yesterday there was another book in my life. I like to think having a huge open book staying with me is symbolic. I haven't decided what it symbolises yet. I hope it'll reveal that over the next two months (yes, TWO months).

OH! Oh, and my design for the bench? Well, there could only be one thing . I say one 'thing', but I mean one girl. Yes, I was all so obvious really. It was always there. She was always there.

I love this girl. She came through for me again.


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7. witt woo

We are coming soon. We really are.  We were supposed to be here for Valentines Day but that would have been a bit obvious, a bit predictable, you know, with us being lovebirds and all. AJ is just doing a little more tweaking and then we'll be ready to be introduced to you - properly. Catch you later.

4 Comments on witt woo, last added: 2/26/2013
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8. i'm not out to convince you or draw upon your mind

 Finally, it's here! Yes, my copy of Danny Gregory's new book 'An Illustrated Journey' has arrived. And, somebody can't wait to see inside.
And, I don't blame her. It really is amazing. Really, I'm not just saying that because I'm in it. It's page after page of gorgeous sketchbook artwork. A cornucopia of carnet de voyage.
 My pages are nestled inbetween Cathy Johnson and Tommy Kane. Can you imagine that? Way back in my own (illustrated) journey I'd marvel at both of their work and dream of, one day, being a teeny weeny bit as good as them.
 Plus, there are just SO many other artists that I adore. ADORE, I won't mention any for the fear of leaving some out. You'll just have to get your own copy. It's worth every penny.
 A huge thank you to Danny for including me in this book. Now, I'm off for a cuppa. Then I'm going to sit down and travel the world, because somebody is just not prepared to wait any longer....
Oh, and you can get it HERE.

9 Comments on i'm not out to convince you or draw upon your mind, last added: 3/4/2013
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9. and it gleamed in the distance and it shone like the sun

A new one here. When I started this it was going to be one of my trademark pen drawings. Just a bunch of pens on a page. I don't know at what point it became London Bridge. That's even if it is London bridge and not, in fact, Tower Bridge.

Can you read the text on this one? Cos, I seriously have NO idea what I'm doing when it comes to resizing these days. It's pot luck.

Anyway, this one drawing is not just new to my blog, but it's new to my shop too. I've put a few originals up for sale over the last few days. Have a gander HERE.

8 Comments on and it gleamed in the distance and it shone like the sun, last added: 3/4/2013
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10. put your lights on

I'm back. Circus life was not for me. No, I have too much baggage (well, boxes) to lug around.
Not much to say about this drawing, really, except that throughout it this song was in my mind;

Hey now, all you sinners
Put your lights on,
put your lights on

'Cause there's a monster,
living under my bed,
whispering in my ear
And there's an angel,
with a hand on my head
She say I got nothing to fear

There's a darkness,
living deep in my soul
it still got a purpose to serve               
So let your lights shine,
deep into my home
God don't let me lose my nerve,
don't let me lose my nerve

From Supernatural by Santana.
'Put Your Lights On' lyrics by Everlast.

7 Comments on put your lights on, last added: 4/8/2013
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11. looking down on everything

Just an acorn. A little acorn. That's all.
And, it's here. For you. For a penny. Just a little penny.

3 Comments on looking down on everything, last added: 3/23/2013
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12. here is a song for you

Here's a new drawing. Well, it's a new old drawing. You may well have seen it before. Quite recently actually.

I have a string of half finished drawings hanging around the house. I come across them all the time. In the strangest of places. Drawings that I've given up on for various reasons. Now and again though I'll try and breathe new life into them. This is what happened here.

This drawing must be at least three years old. It actually had a shoe print on it that I had to erase (I really do find them in strange places). I remember that I'd had this great idea of drawing each and every one of my pencil cases. I got half way through this before realising what a rubbish idea that was.

There was, however, another reason that I resumed this drawing; for a long time now people have been asking me if I'd considered making a film of me in action (drawing that is). When I came across this drawing I felt it could be used to show how I go about cross hatching. So, that's what I did - I say that's what 'I' did but I actually mean that's what a friend with the technology and know-how did.  Thanks Tim!

You can see the film in my last blog post or HERE.

Plus, you can get your hands on this drawing, and film star (haven't you always wanted to get your hands on a film star?),  as it is for sale in my little Etsy shop HERE.

1 Comments on here is a song for you, last added: 9/5/2013
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13. four drawings, three places, one sketchbook

Four drawings, three places in one sketchbook.
And, a shedload of different pens and pencils.
Edale
Red marker pen, two red ballpoints and two red pencils.
Various green pencils.
Sheffield
Blue fine liner and blue brush pen.
Whaley Bridge
 (above)
Black fine liner, 3B pencil and various colour pencils
(below)
Blue, pink and yellow fine liners.
Blue, pink and yellow pencils.
All made in the small Moleskine sketchbook. I was never that interested in using such a small sketchbook before I got this. It took a few years of drawing before I bought it and I still wasn't convinced. It sat on my shelf for another year or so. Now I'm coming close to finishing this sketchbook - just a few pages left. I really must get a new one in because it's become one of my favourites. A sketchbook I wouldn't be without.

3 Comments on four drawings, three places, one sketchbook, last added: 9/11/2013
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14. could be in a dream

Here's another sketchbook that I've just about finished. I'm not sure of the brand, I bought it because I wanted a different page shape and size from the Moleskine and this had nice thick paper too. I've really enjoyed working on a more panoramic (?) page and will need to replace it with something similar if I can't find another of these.

I made the top drawing at a field day that had all sorts of events going on. I'm really happy with some of the lines I achieved in this drawing. I used a fine liner and a calligraphy pen to get them. And, the one below is from one of our Dr Sketchy events.
The rest of the drawings from this book can be viewed HERE.

2 Comments on could be in a dream, last added: 9/18/2013
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15. you can still hear sweet mysteries calling you

You know, I do this every single year; I think 'hmmm, I'm sure it's my blog's birthday soon' and then find out it was last week some time. Yep, six years of blogging. It's been an amazing six years for me. I've got nothing but love my blog but I often wonder whether blogging is still relevant. Do you know what I mean? With the rise and rise of social networking, and so many places to post ones work, I sometimes wonder whether blogging is a thing of the past. Anyway, while people still continue to visit, I'll keep on going.
I also always intend to do some birthday related drawing but that never happens either. Here is a new drawing, though. Like the last post, this one is also from my graphic novel idea. I'm really getting into (obsessing over) this idea, and story, again. It's hard to give time to these projects, with everything else going on, so I long for the day that a publisher agrees that this book needs to go to print and I get to give it the time it really deserves.
If you'd like to read the letter to Edward then click on the drawing.
And, if you'd like to see the rest of the book (so far) click HERE.
Finally, Happy belated sixth Birthday to my blog. I loves ya.

24 Comments on you can still hear sweet mysteries calling you, last added: 10/16/2012
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16. we're in for more rain

Well, another couple of weeks have passed and I am still finding it difficult to pick up a pen and draw. I made this little one some time back, in my mini Moleskine sketchbook, at Yorkshire Sculpture Park. Tomorrow my sketch crawl group return to the park, for lots of sketching goodness, but I'll be working the day job so I won't even have a sketchcrawl to kick start some drawing. It's okay though. As frustrating as these periods are, I know it will pass. It will, it will, it WILL pass.

Huge thanks for all your kind and supportive messages in response to my last couple of posts. I'll have some drawings to share soon.

3 Comments on we're in for more rain, last added: 10/16/2012
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17. for the roses

I can always tell when a new term has started from the amount of mail I get from students who have decided to study my work (I never fail to be astounded by that). If you are one of those students, I am very sorry but I just do not have the time to answer all of your questions. But, just for you, here's a little post that may make your research a little easier.
Here are a couple of previous posts on how I might go about creating one of my drawings, in this case a shoe;
How to draw the Adidas Gazelle (as seen above) HERE
How to draw a Converse boot HERE.
Here's a few interviews too. One for the excellent Empty Kingdom, Funky 44 and you can find a three-parter by searching the charming Make Do and Mend.
If that's not enough you could always purchase my zines. They contain a whole load of info (how I create the stuff I do, pen reviews, etc, etc). I hope that helps. Plus, of course, this is a whole blog that'll tell you everything you need to know (and everything that I want people to know). Go, do your research!

You can also follow me on Twitter, for all updates of new drawings and blog posts, HERE. Cheers, my dears.

3 Comments on for the roses, last added: 11/2/2012
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18. out of the sinking

Here's a piece that I have made for an upcoming exhibition organised by Cardboard Shelter (a charity that raises money and awareness about homelessness). They can explain, what they do, better than I can, so, if you are interested, check out their website HERE. Plus, there's some lovely artwork to look at.

But, the gist of it is that a bunch of artists contribute a piece of work, to be sold at the exhibition. No themes and just one rule; the artwork must be on cardboard. 'The idea of the cardboard canvas is a nod towards the material which provides shelter to many homeless'. I pinched that quote from their site. See, I told you they could explain it better.

For this piece, I reworked one of the sketches I'd made at a Dr. Sketchy event, of the lovely Hell's Belle, on a piece of cardboard from an old, used, sketchbook (what else?). I knew that I kept those old pieces of cardboard for a reason.

Making this got me thinking; I hardly ever draw on coloured paper. I don't know why. I must do it more often. I like the effect and the tones I got from blending the graphite pencil into the grey board. But, don't hold your breath, I was saying something similar when I contributed to this good cause some time ago. Check THIS out.

7 Comments on out of the sinking, last added: 11/20/2012
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19. i heard it through the telegraph pole

A little birdie told me that there may be some feathered (ish) visitors arriving at this blog very soon. Tweet tweet.

6 Comments on i heard it through the telegraph pole, last added: 2/5/2013
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20. love me doodle

Posting a couple of oldies here, whilst I get my head around Photoshop and while I tackle (struggle with) my tax returns. It really is the worse job of the year. Made only worse when you leave it until the last minute.

These drawings are both on sale. And, are both on a sale (?). Excuse me for peddling my wares but yes, I'm skint again. It seems being a professional doodler isn't the most lucrative way of making a living. The original, of the drawing above, is on sale at a ridiculously cheap price. One of my gorgeous friends said that this drawing was like 'jewellery flotsam, a tide-line of trinkets' and, you know, that's exactly the effect I was going for. The price has been reduced, by a third, and you can buy it HERE.


The print of this, probably my most famous drawing, is also currently on sale. HALF PRICE! And you can get your mits on it HERE.

The day started so well. Me, and this drawing, are featured in the London Metro today. In a piece about doodling. If you'd like to read it here's THE LINK. To be honest, just being mentioned in the same article as Larry David has made my day, week, year.

Something tells me, though, that today's going to go downhill from here. Right then, *rolls up sleeves* come on you tax returns. Let's be having you.

10 Comments on love me doodle, last added: 2/19/2013
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21. love is a two way street

trying to get home why i went missingthe one that got awaythree brown pumpstake a pinch of keyholetrying to find the words to say
hat pinsyou are my sistermellow yellowwhere were you when we were getting high?i've been waiting for youbelt up
little moleyyou've got a lot to answer forpinboard wizardsmells like teen spiritlooking down on everythingopen up your door
what's new pussycat?born to (not) runi'll be whistling down the street i can see all i have done'everything comes and goes...room at the top
your faves (25+), a set on Flickr.
Just thought I'd share this with you. Here is a set of pictures I made on Flickr. Damn, I bloody love Flickr - but that's not the point.

Each of the 300 drawings (and a few photos) in this set have been 'Favourited' 25+ times. Three hundred!!!

Thanks for the the Faves, comments, visits on Flickr, Blogger, Facebook, Twitter, Etsy, etc. I appreciate them more than you know.

7 Comments on love is a two way street, last added: 2/8/2013
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22. i guess i'll call it sickness gone

Here's another sketchbook spread that, until now, had remained unposted. I made this some time last summer at my friend, and drawing companion, Lynne Chapman's house. Lynne was planning a workshop that she was giving at last year's Urban Sketcher's Symposium and used some of our Sketchcrawl group as guinea pigs.

I've made no secret that I've been finding it difficult to get into drawing for some time. Jeez, I've been banging on about it for months. It's funny though, it's only when I am out drawing with other people that it's not an issue. I actually enjoy that more than when I'm sat at home drawing, doing my own thing. Perhaps it's because I'm stretching myself. I dunno. But, I do know this; the little drawing of a typewriter, and the bike actually, have pleased me more than anything else I've drawn in quite some time. They were drawn in a totally alien way to how I would normally draw (water colour pencil was put on the page before I drew the shapes in) and that's exciting.

Maybe it's time for a change.

6 Comments on i guess i'll call it sickness gone, last added: 2/15/2013
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23. it's an old romance, it hasn't gone to sleep

Hey guys, just thought I'd let you know that not only does Danny Gregory have a new book out but I'm featured in it. And, I'm pretty damn well chuffed. It was finding the Everyday Matter's group, all those years ago, that kick started my own creative journey. Plus, I'm snuggled under the covers with artists that I totally adore. Read more on Danny's blog. Cannot wait to get my copy.

16 Comments on it's an old romance, it hasn't gone to sleep, last added: 2/28/2013
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24. what am i doing here? what am i doing here?

I made this drawing on the plane home from France a couple of months back. This girl, who I was sitting next to, slept for most of the journey and so I got to draw her a few times. I added a bit of colour when I got home. I can't decide whether I like it or really dislike it, but hey ho - that's the way it goes.

A huge thanks for the big response to my last post about protecting one's artwork online. It seems that watermarking is probably the best option but I'm still undecided. I'm not a fan, in all honesty. I always want to give the viewers of my work the best way to, er, view my work. I guess, I now have to weigh up the options of watermarking, resizing images or just continuing to post as I always have.

Plus, I have to work out how to use Photoshop, which, I can tell you, is NOT coming easy. So, bear with me, and excuse my images being too big, too small, unreadable, etc. And, excuse me for being an ignoramus.

10 Comments on what am i doing here? what am i doing here?, last added: 2/24/2013
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25. side by side in idle talk

It seems wrong talking about Christmas at this time of year. Quite frankly, I don't want to even think about it until next December, (December the 24th to be precise), but due to all my recent technology issues I never got to post the drawings from our Sketchcrawl Christmas lunch/get-together. We met on a Saturday afternoon at the Harland Cafe in Sheffield. What a great little place. And, so cheap. I can't remember the last time I had a meal, dessert and a couple of drinks for less than a tenner. Plus, I had an extra portion of chips - which were amazing. But, this is what's known as going off on a tangent (it's the sort of thing I remember, though; good chips). Here are just a few sketches I made. I came home with absolutely tonnes of drawings. Some days are like that, though, right? Some days you're just unstoppable.  
 Anyway, I'd like to introduce you to a couple of our group;.
Harry has been drawing with Sketchcrawl North for longer than me. Despite being one of our youngest members he is a veteran. I think he'd been scribbling away since about the age of ten (ish). His work is great now, so I can only imagine what it'll be like in a few years time if he continues at this rate.
Now, I can't pretend I know this baby. He, or she, was sat on a table close by. On these sketchcrawl outings I try to take a few tools that I wouldn't normally use, to change things up a bit. I made this baby sketch with one of my lovely old calligraphy pens. I really must use them more. I pinched a blue pencil, from one of the group, to create his, or her, rosy cheeks.
And, finally, another of our regulars Jane, in her lovely jumper. It's so nice I drew it twice. Here and in the top drawing.

Thanks for all the recent response about resizing vs watermarking images, etc. As you might be able to tell, from this post, I still don't have a bloody clue what I'm doing.

Happy Christmas!

3 Comments on side by side in idle talk, last added: 2/25/2013
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