I wrote this blog post at the beginning of lockdown but for some reason didn’t share it. So I’m sharing it now…
Here are some ways to feel better. Here’s a bright inspiring wordsearch. Just a couple of minutes but the words will uplift you. Best done in a morning, to set a positive tone for the day.
You might like to create a word search of your favourite things. Maybe send it a friend who also loves the activity.
If you or the children fancy an art challenge why not paint, collage or print your bunting for home, and will also brighten up social media. If you have bunting already then maybe let it fly. Individual bunting flags around 16cm wide can be decorated and then sewn onto ribbon or placed on a length of sellotape.
Many people are making rainbows and displaying them in their windows for children to spot.
Here’s one for our window. For this technique I wet the paper where I wanted a colour to go, ie in an arc for the red. Then added gouache paint, which then flowed to the edge of the wet area. I then wet the next section and overlapped the red as I applied the yellow paint, therefore creating the orange when they layered. And so on. It’s an easy way to create a rainbow using just red, yellow, blue and an indigo, for contrast. Gouache colours are vibrant. This technique, paint on wet, needs a good thick paper or card so it remains nice and smooth and not buckled.
If video is what moves you then check out my art movies and animations on YouTube.
Leave the mixer in the cupboard and bake with just the strength and motion of your stirring, folding the ingredients. Let your mind wander as you mix and let yourself become engrossed in following the steps of a recipe. Edible treats are at the end so baking is a lovely thing to do. If you have time that you would normally have you might enjoy decorating them with pretty details.
My lovely niece enjoyed carefully decorating these buns so beautifully after breaking her foot. She enjoyed taking time in a way she wouldn’t normally and we all enjoyed these delightful bakes.
Planting and growing a garden can be so delightful and fulfilling.
For pretty much daily inspiration and content designed to make you feel better follow my Instagram and it Facebook Page,
Enjoy, be happy. Stuff will happen but we can escape into our own imagination, or each other’s imagination.
It’s been a tumultuous and busy past couple of weeks for most of the planet. I’m determined to keep sharing uplifting work, both new illustrations and ones from my back catalogue when I they are relevant.
The situation has moved fast and already has provided reflections on gratitude, for what may have previously have been undervalued, and the situation its is a reset of perspective of who is, and what is important.
Sending heaps of kindness and wellness to all those who are unwell or suffering.
I’ve been busy adapting our home for lockdown, had to make heart wrenching strategic business decisions, as well as finding tech solutions to replace face to face demonstrations. I’ve managed so squeeze some time in for illustration, which is therapeutic and can hopefully brighten someone’s day. This art from my heart follows…
I’ve been finding the terms used such as self-isolating and social distancing as having very negative connotations, and wondered whether putting a more positive slant on staying at home might make this feel more enjoyable and therefore sustainable. Here’s an example of this work, I’ll be developing these ideas and responding the World Health Organisation (@who) Creative Brief to communicate the key messages.
Home and family are everything. Despite the restrictions we must nurture our minds, bodies and relationships all from within our home. Thankfully technology can bridge between those we love but do not live with. Our families have come together for some great multi-generation live video calls which have been a great distraction and really made us laugh.
Here are a round up of the posts from my Instagram, to uplift and reassure.
This is for all those suffering with fear and anxiety. You are not alone. These feelings are understandable in this situation, so try to go easy on yourself. Comfort yourself with reassurance that you are safe and you are loved.
If there is someone that you feel would also like to see this please share. Spread the love. 💕 #stayhomestaysafe
There can be great joy in nature and this lovely season. Flashback to this watercolour painting from last year created as a book cover design.
The bright flowers are blooming to herald Spring, the birds are singing, daffodils shine bright. The sun radiates low into the rooms to warm away winter. Beautiful weather last week made the first days of lockdown easier as the garden is springing to life and the birds are full of energy and song.
Stunning spectrums that I spotted in our kitchen, cast by a refractive book cover being hit by the sun’s rays.
The March brief for #makeartthatsells was abstract wall art with a limited colour palette. This brief was a challenge when I’m so keen to communicate concepts through my art. I enjoyed the process once I got into it, and now seem to see tennis references in there. Maybe this was due to us building up to the new tennis season. I enjoyed layering of the paint, overlapping and becoming lost in the process.
Have Courage, Hold On. We are stronger than this thing. #alonetogether
I sprayed this positive quote from Audrey Hepburn in our garden, as a reminder, and for a little spray painting therapy.
Relaxing retreating in reading at the end of the day.
Watercolour and digital. You might recognise this scene from my chalet picture. Worked with a work in progress scan digitally to create this piece with a work in progress scan digitally to create this piece. #stayhomesavelives
Backlit beauty. The low setting sun lighting up this stunning tulip. When this tulip got snapped whilst moving pots I brought it indoors and popped it in water in a perfume bottle. First of my tulip bulbs to bloom, love it. If we can find joy in nature, whether it is growing or on TV there is a wealth of good to enjoy in the natural world.
Enjoy the Great Indoors. Whether you choose to scale your stairs for a work out, adventure to far flung places on Netflix or enjoy some Eastern philosophy on your yoga mat, wishing you a lovely day. #stayhomestaysafe
Created this house in watercolours on wet then developed this further to create the composition at the top of this post…
And finally: Only Tweet the good. Trying to only share positive and factual content. The birds are so active around our home, their beautiful song so clear in the stillness.
Thanks for being here. Stay safe, stay home and if there’s somebody who you feel would like to see my work please share the blog with them.
I’ve been reviewing the past 12 months and evaluating my favourite work.
Best 9s are a great way to do this. Here are my Best 9 of the year. Work that I feel pleased with as they broke new ground in terms of skills and technique progress.
It’s been great to apply art to commercial illustration briefs and to monetise my practice, as above.
Here are my painted Best 9. A real break through this year was the workshop that I did in Rotterdam with Helen Dardik. The techniques Helen shared, and the products she’s uses, are a real revelation. With practice and care my painting skills are building.
Fabric and Textiles Best 9 – I enjoy the colours and textures that I create on fabrics. Florals and birds were key themes of my work in these mediums this year.
Here’s to 2020. I’m excited to see what emerges this year. I hope your have a great year.
Please like my post, if you do. Thank you so much.
I’ve been busy working on these bespoke Christmas illustrations. It was important that the illustrations were on brand and in line with the style of the company logo, website and social media channels.
I created two commercial illustrations in line with the brief for K Steels to use on social media. The illustrations reinforce key product lines and service messages.
The illustrations included photographic elements, cut paper and digital art using the K Steels brand colour palette.
Hoping that you and yours have a truly wonderful Christmas.
For more information about bespoke communications solutions for your business or organisation visit the following link:
Please Like my post if you do, and share with organisations who would like am on brand illustration. Thank you so much.
Great days start with great mornings so I wanted to create a positive, inspiring breakfast cereal in response to the brief: Create a fun sized design concept and packaging for a new cereal product.
I wanted to inspire and uplift women through a positive, confident image of a female pilot. She already has three stripes so she’s doing well; metaphorically and literally she is flying high.
Here are my rough drawings whilst brainstorming ideas for the box creative…
The character was further inspired by the aviation PR work I’ve been busy enjoying in recent weeks, thanks to my client in Florida.
I thought that aeroplane shaped breakfast cereal would be fun and novel. This idea was warmly received in consumer testing, with enthusiastic feedback.
I later added the fruit, and additional cereal aircraft, into the bowl for the final iteration.
Once I had the character idea I felt the breakfast cereal design concept formed around her.
In order to create the entire packaging concept it was necessary to define the target market, and what would appeal to them, to decide the ingredients, flavours, also to create a cereal brand, logo and product name.
I had all this in mind when choosing the colour palette of gold, red wine and cobalt blue. These were colours I could use throughout to represent the morning sun, and the colourful sunrise sky.
I chose ‘Inspired Mornings’ for the cereal company brand, and after painting a sun in watercolours I recreated the round window effect of my ‘Inspire by Kim’ logo and added the new brand name.
Nutrition and natural ingredients are key to wellbeing, which is fuel for a positive frame of mind, so I wanted the flavours and sweetness to be natural, therefore I chose fruit flavours on a Tropical theme, This flavour choice was to evoke the idea that the pilot is flying to a tropical island destination.
Travel, new experiences and the relaxation enjoyed on holiday/ vacation are fundamental to enjoyment of life, so by bringing flavours that are associated with holidays into the cereal concept the consumer would start the day enjoying a breakfast that the brain can associate with positive, pleasant experiences and help the person benefit from the associated holiday feelgood factor.
By illustrating the ingredients it was possible to give the consumer quick visual references and these were to denote the fresh, healthy, natural qualities of the product and brand values.
The reverse side of the cereal box was a great fun opportunity to further inspire the consumer and providing positive affirmations to start the day, in the form of a circular word search.
The wordsearch was placed over the watercolour sun using my favourite digital application of present, Procreate.
I created a template to fit the sizes in the brief, 4×3 inches, and arranged the completed panels within this.
This was the completed concept.
I was delighted that as I completed the design I saw the Virgin Atlantic campaign to inspire young women with a day of activity using the hasttag #seeherfly Wonderful that this timing coincided with my design.
I’m pleased to have made it through to the fourth and final week of #Inktober. Here are this week’s ink artworks… apologies that they aren’t in order.
A tricky prompt was day 25, tasty. I did a line drawing which has been a bit of a breakthrough piece for me as it has helped me realise that it is conceptual illustration that I really want to excel at.
I did an ink line drawing which I then developed into a painted piece. Painted on the beach whilst on holiday in Turkey, in my favourite watercolours.
“The Doctor will see you now”. Ink and cherry 🍒 juice.
I’m not really into Halloween anymore but the illustration prompts are all part of the challenge. So here is my macabre drawing for the Day 22 #Inktober prompt Ghost and #portfolioclub which gave me the haunted prompts ‘doctor’ and ‘conservatory’.
Happened upon this ancient species today, sadly it was dead. So have honoured it for today’s #inktober2019 drawing.
This fascinating ancient species was a pleasure to study.
These next three pieces I drew inflight, whilst travelling back from my holiday. I find the seating and table position on aircraft ideal for drawing.
Inktober day 27 prompt is coat. This and recent observations made me think about how inhibitions, self-consciousness and fear can become a heavy, restrictive coat, holding a person back from fully enjoying life.
#Inktober day 29 prompt is Injured. This of course took me back to my knee injury and this climb back from injury that I’ve illustrated is ‘inspired’ by the long rehab experience.
I started with a page from #breathemagazine that I thought represented the climb back from the lows of injury, the uphill struggle and having to keep picking oneself up, both mentally and physically. Drawn inflight.
#Inktober day 31 – the final prompt of the month is Ripe. Without colour ripeness if a tricky thing to show so I thought about readiness, strength, mental preparedness in the form of belief, being at your best, in your prime and from somewhere came a superhero strawberry wearing power pants.
And with that I’ll call #inktober2019 officially done. And I’ll sigh, rest my eyes for a moment and then get on to the next project, powered up and ready for creative challenges.
Ps I find this piece kind of weird but haven’t got time to do anything else. 🤣
Also in a line drawn style I recently made this card for the newest bundle of joy to arrive in our family. Tiny sparkles were added to the paper card which was personalised with baby’s name and birth date.
Cheers for being here to see my work. Sharing helps me to continue developing my work. I figure it will only get better with practise and keeping creating. So support and feeling my work is reaching people really helps spur me on. I’m always interested to read comments and hear which pieces you like so feel free to comment. Supportive comments always most welcome.
Here are the previous weeks drawings. I’ll be selecting my favourite ones and then calling #Inktober2019 done!
New drink Jasmine Juice by Inspired Infusions. Bottle brand design.
Promoted by the wonderful portfolio building Illustration Workshop by Mary-Kate McDevitt.
I explored icons related to tranquility, calm and serenity and painted them before cutting them out and playing further with the composition.
I chose pink jasmine which grows in Burma and China and this chose a Birmese Buddha figure to work with. Sunset and sunrise are when the sky’s colours are most striking. A good day always seems to start with a beautiful sunrise or end with a heartwarming sunset. I wanted this to create the atmosphere for this new drink experience.
I created a bottle shape that has a kind of tincture bottle feel to it. I painted the bottle in acrylic gouache.
After creating the hand lettering in Procreate app I brought the elements together in Pixelmator app.
I duplicated the completed bottle design and reduced the size before popping it between the buddha’s hands.
I’m pleased with the resulting outcome.
Thanks so much for being here. Thanks to those who’ve been following my journey. I’m now bringing my ongoing PR career together with my visual art. Watch this space.