A couple of weeks ago, I noticed that my stress levels were on the increase again & that my brow was settling into a state of permanent furrow. I guess I could have solved this with industrial strength wrinkle cream & a chill pill, but instead I reached for a new book, 'Drawing Lab for Mixed Media Artists' by Carla Sonheim. Oh boy - THIS IS FUN! This book is packed to the brim with imaginative ideas designed to help you to learn how to develop your drawing skills & broaden your creativity. It's not a stiff drawing course - it's a lavishly illustrated fun factory, full of experiments & prompts that will inspire & feed you. It's so full of juice that I defy anyone not to find something that inspires them & sends them scampering off to gather up their favourite art materials. If you're in a drawing rut or feeling artistically blocked, then this book may well be able to coax your brain cells into exciting, exhilarating action again.
This isn't a children's book but I'm very grateful to have discovered it prior to the start of the long summer school holiday. There are ideas aplenty for each member of my Brood, whether it be creating imaginary creatures with 10 year Lula, developing illustrations & collage with Ellie or looking at life drawing with 16 year old Tom. I'm going to pack 'Drawing Lab' in our holiday luggage so that we can take it out sketching with us when we're out on the prowl in Devon & Cornwall.
As this book explores creative thinking in tandem with drawing matters, I think Carla's book will empower me to delve deeper into my imagination. It will be interesting for me to see anything 'rubs off' on my jewellery!
Carla's blog can be found here. Another art blog I'd like to recommend is UK artist Sarah Wilde's 'Curious Crow'. Sarah is another summer holiday saviour as she is currently on Day 17 of a Sketchbook Challenge which is so fascinating that the Brood & I are going to trace her journey as soon as they break up from school. Don't forget to check out the sidebars on Sarah's blog! There you will find links which will take you to her sketchbooks & art journals - I find her Non-Dom Hand Sketches both mind-boggling & enthralling! Go, see, enjoy :-)
Can I squeeze in a quick mention of a blog that sees me through moments of stress? Henrik Edberg's The Positivity Blog is a little gem that dispenses sensible advice that's easy to read & follow. It's neither preachy nor sanctimonious - I heartily recommend it!
And now for the chair....
Oh husband of mine! I know you won't probably won't read this, but if we win the lottery, please could I buy the stripey Louis patchwork chair for my Shack? If I had this chair, I would curl up in it to read & you wouldn't see me for hours. Just think - you'd have the kitchen to yourself & be able to make as much mess as you desire whilst cooking. This chair by clever Kelly Swallow would keep me out of what's left of your hair ;-)
Your Shack Hag xox