HK/Japan

This week my mokuhanga artists residency starts in rural Japan. On my way here I spent a day in Hong Kong……a few days in Tokyo……and am now here, through the mountains…..at the foot of Mt Fuji. I’m looking forward to spending some time in one place, making prints.

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toile ceramics online

My toile ceramics are now available to buy online! You can purchase them from faux in Hong Kong here, and they can deliver internationally.

You can buy both the HK toile collection…

and the London toile collection…Happy shopping!

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London wedding

My brother-in-law got married this weekend in London, and it was a beautiful day.I sketched as much as I could, and loved seeing how my designs were used on the day.

For Luke & Amy’s wedding stationery, I started with an illustration of the happy couple on a London bus, with pink flowers in the background, which was used for the Save the Dates. I started them off in casual clothes, and added a simple hand-drawn pink border around the card.I developed this motif and drew a more detailed background for the formal invitation, including important places from their life together and secret elements from the wedding reception, like the ice-cream cart, the bowling pin and neon arrow, to hint at what would be in store on the day. I also put them in more traditional wedding attire.For the welcome reception, before the wedding, I created a simpler version of the illustration, with a celebratory bottle of champagne…

….and then for all of the other stationery, another version with just a few of the details from the full invitation illustration.It was used on the menu

for the wedding lunch, which was delicious, and the table where I sat was full of interesting and beautiful people to draw.There was dancing and cocktails…and an awesome sweet bar: check out the sweet bags! I hadn’t seen this, but the bride was given a special dressing gown with the illustration embroidered onto the back. Isn’t it amazing!I also made a square-bordered version of the illustration (with an added heart detail) to have printed onto a pillow for the bride and groom as a gift.I have more drawings of the day, but this is my favourite of the bride, my new sister-in-law. Welcome to the family!

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London week three

This week, I visited more museums, and happily spent time sketching. These were both taken in the V & A my most very favourite museum in the world.And then at the weekend, a visit to the Cotswolds. We stayed in an adorable house in the tiny village of Lower Slaughter, and spent time chatting and walking in the countryside. We stayed right by this lovely watermill, and I took an early morning walk one day…We went to the farmers market in Chipping Norton……where I managed to do a few watercolours, in spite of the drizzle.This is a little sketch of the house where we stayed. I loved sitting in the tiny garden courtyard…And then it was back to the city for my last week, and no visit to London would be complete without a cake and cup of tea at Maison Bertaux.

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London week two

This week I spent some time with friends in lovely places, and managed to do a little sketching too: here’s a watercolour of a quiet garden inside Regent’s Park.I also did a little drawing while I was having a tasty afternoon tea with scones at the Mock Turtle cafe in Brighton,and here’s an atmospheric shot of my sketchbook in the window of Kew Palace, the summer home of King George III, inside Kew Gardens, one of my very favourite places in London. I’m loving being here, seeing all the familiar places with new eyes and sketching every day…

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London

I’m in the UK for a while, and working hard, while trying to fit in some visits and exhibitions when I can. Here’s a sketch I did today watching my niece and her dance group in the little town of Horsham. It was adorable, and sort of like going back in time.Whenever there’s a chance, I stroll in the garden, and soak up the green-ness of the Spring. I could sketch plants and flowers forever…I’ve been inspired by some amazing exhibitions, sketching and making notes as I go. This one was at the London Original Print Fair at the Royal Academy. I love trying to work out how different prints were made, and what techniques were used…

I especially loved the Josef Frank exhibition at the Fashion and Textile Museum. So many incredible patterns and designs!I was incredibly moved by the Howard Hodgkin exhibition Absent Friends at the National Portrait Museum. I’ve always loved his work, but this show made me see the paintings in a different way…So much to do while I’m here. More London sketches next week!

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shop update

I’ve just added some peony teacup etching prints into my online shop, hurrah! Some are from my archive: they’re small editions and very sweet… and there are two new hand-painted ones too. I love this one with the polka dots!All the funds I raise are going towards my mokuhanga printmaking residency in Japan this summer. Please spread the word if you know anyone who might like to purchase a print, thank you!

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hot air balloon

This weekend we went to Napa Valley, north of San Francisco, to go up in a hot air balloon. We waited in the pre-dawn for the balloons to be lit and the baskets prepared, and nervously readied for the ride.

We watched the sun come up and it was magical… I managed to bring one brush, a little sketchbook and travel paints in my pockets and did several watercolour paintings. It was a surreal sketching experience unlike anything I’ve had before: painting while over 1000ft up in the air, feeling the sun and breeze ruffling the pages.Napa Valley in all its glory glided past slowly, with San Francisco in the far distance.Here’s a little sketch I did of the vineyards below us as we floated gently past…If you ever get the chance to go up in a balloon, I recommend it! Thank you Napa Valley Balloons

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HOBBS USA

HOBBS of London, a boutique fashion brand I’ve done a bit of work for recently, famously known for being a favourite of Duchess Kate, has just opened their first US store in Greenwich Connecticut. I did several pieces of new artwork for both the store itself and its launch.Some of the artwork I did for the London stores, plus a few new pieces, have been printed and framed inside the elegant new location.I love the way the artwork has been mixed and matched and hung together in different combinations to create a ‘collection’. Some has even been framed up for the changing rooms…I also did a detailed map of the area around the new store, full of interesting buildings, a park, and some historic houses……which is now framed up and on display.It looks like a wonderful store, I hope I’ll get to visit one day. Thank you to Hobbs for providing these photos.

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my shop!

I’ve finally launched my own little online shop! I’m going to Japan this summer for a mokuhanga print residency, and to help with funding it I’ve decided to try and sell some prints. There’s a new small cat + jug print, exclusively and for the first time on sale:A new version of my Meyer Lemon print, this time with gold pigment in the lemons:And a selection of my San Francisco Snowdome prints…Please go and take a look and let me know what you think. Happy shopping!

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