scottish illustrator

Seaside Adventure

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I’ve been working on ways to spark new creativity recently. It can be difficult to feel excited about making new things when you are constantly designing and working away at collections of illustrations. Sometimes the monotony of completion can make my brain forget that illustrating and drawing is supposed to be fun. So Ive been setting myself little artist dates with myself inspired by the book ‘The Artist’s Way’ by Julia Cameron . The idea of committing time and making space to get out of your comfort zone for the sake of creating is something that works well for me.

My first little trip was to Elie beach. Ive been following a hashtag on instagram called #walktosee created by the illustrator Helen Stephens. The aim is to get outside and draw or paint what you see. I liked the idea of making my creative pursuit into an adventure so I packed up my watercolours, stopped by a farmers market for snacks and supplies and hit the beach.

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Its bit scary painting in public but I tried to ignore the inner critic and get to work. Luckily it was bitterly windy which took my mind off it’s selfconciousness. I just got paint to paper before my fingers froze off! Its been a long time since Ive attempted landscape painting but I was quite happy with the results and it definitely blew away the creative cobwebs.

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Ive already picked out the next spot below for when I get back to the coast. Next time I’ll be taking some extra layers, hats and gloves so I can camp out a bit longer with my paints and see if I can build on my landscape skills.

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British Bird Watercolour Illustrations

Recently I launched a Birds and Botany 2019 Calendar in my shop.   I illustrated 12 British Birds mostly found in the gardens and hedgerow in the areas surrounding where I live. I thought I’d show you some of my favourites from the calendar. 

First up is my favourite bird to paint, the goldfinch. Perched upon a branch of teasel and surrounded by dog roses, this brightly coloured bird is one of my favourites to spot when Im out running.

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Next we have the brightly yellow Linnet. I’ve caught sight of these little birds in the trees and hedgerow between fields in the countryside. Their brightly coloured chests standout in the winter once the leaves have fallen away.

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Below is the wren also known as a house wren or if you remember some of the nursery rhymes as a child a Jenny wren. Even though they're a small size and have duller brown colouring compared to the brighter hedgerow birds I enjoy painting them. There is a surprising complexity to the pattern of their feathers which is enjoyable to investigate with watercolour paint. Also if you have one in your garden you will also know they can be incredibly loud for such a tiny creature.

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Finally we have a European robin. I couldn’t miss this bird out in a british bird calendar. Its a perfect bird representative for the festive season and the month of December.

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My 2019 Calendar is available in my shop in the lead up to the new year. I will also be selling the Original paintings in my shop. They would make a perfect gift for an art loving bird enthusiast. Hopefully in the future I will also be releasing a series of prints.

Now I have to decide what series of animals and birds to paint next!? Any suggestions?