Friday, 27 September 2013

The season of mists and mellow fruitfulness..

Can't believe it's Friday again! Lots of things going by in a whiz at the moment and big changes in the near future but whilst I had a moment I thought I would take in all the inspiration that Autumn is giving me. At the moment, wherever I go, there seems to be lots of woodland creatures in all kinds of patterns. I've seen lots of foxes, owls, deer and am especially fond of Paperchase's new collection "Woodland"
This has inspired me to start gathering ideas of my own and I have started doing some drawings from natural objects that I see when I walk the dog. Lots of conkers, seed pods and leaves. I'm at the early stage at the moment but can't wait to see how these develop!

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Words of Wisdom

Dreaming on a Star
I was doing a spot of pondering yesterday as there are a lot of big changes around the corner for me. I have already Blogged about this huge step I am taking, giving up a career in teaching to pursue my great love of Surface Design. I am full of enthusiasm and ideas but have a lot of self doubt (I think all artists do!). As these thought crossed through my mind what should pop up on Twitter but this great poster. How true this is! Doubt can be such a destructive force. I would rather say that I had tried my dream and failed than had never tried at all because I doubted myself. These words of wisdom came from a very talented designer called Tina Devins (Dreaming on a Star). Please click on the link above and visit her website as it is full of lovely designs and illustrations. Her work always makes me smile!

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Ups and Downs!

Sometimes I wonder whether I am attempting to put too many fingers in too many pies! In my last blog post I shared with you how happy I was to get into the Top 100 of Tigerprint's "Black and White" design competition. Sadly my three designs went no further but I began to think about how I could use them in other ways as I was really pleased with them. As part of my plan to get my designs "out there" I decided to sign up to Bespo and open a shop on Folksy. I thought my black and white design would be ideal on Bespo so have tried them out on mugs and cushions so far, what do you think?

I am really pleased with them! You can see them here in my shop
Slumbermonkey's Bespo Shop.

I think that I will always try and remember that old saying that when one door closes another one opens. I have got to keep trying!

Talking of shops I have also opened a shop on Folksy (Folksy). This is a showcase for items I have made and I will talk more about that tomorrow!

Friday, 6 September 2013

Every little helps!

In the last post I talked about doubts and insecurities. These are really natural in the creative process and I am learning that I have to accept them however difficult they may feel. I love designing and really believe in what I'm doing and the bonus is that some other people like it too. I am only at the beginning of this process and cannot succumb to discouragement. That's why every little like, kind comment or feedback is so great. Yesterday I had some great news that three of my designs made it into the Top 100 of Tigerprint's "Black and White" design competition. Was really chuffed about that. For the three designs I tried to work in a more simple way and I am pleased that this approach has been appreciated. The three designs are;

The results are on Monday so fingers crossed!

Monday, 2 September 2013

I'm trying to juggle!

I'm feeling a bit panicky at the moment. I have so many ideas and things that I want to do that I am finding it a bit overwhelming at times. I'm beginning to find that this is totally normal for designers and especially those that are just starting out. You may remember me mentioning that I gave up a really good teaching career to pursue my dream and as my (now) ex-colleagues go back to work I think reality is beginning to set in. I have made so much progress in the short time I have been doing this and everyone doing the Art and Business of Surface Pattern is so supportive, but still the doubts creep in. It really is a juggling act at the moment. I am trying to get to grips with all the social media that is available and make connections between them all (think my Blog is going well- you tell me!!!). I am entering lots of contests and building up a good portfolio on Behance ( and Moyo ( I am also getting lots of excellent feedback on my designs. Actually when I read back what I've written and think about it, I am making progress. I think that I should really call the title of this blog, "Stop Being Hard on Yourself and Believe in What You are Doing" !!!

P.S A cheeky plug to vote for my design in new Front Row Society scarf competition, if you like it vote for me by clicking the "I Love It" button.

Vote for my scarf design!