Sketchperimenting

On finding my style - and getting bored with it...

In the initial months following what I now refer to as 'That moment at that life drawing class when I re-discovered my long-lost love of drawing and realised what it was I was put on this planet to do', I was worried that I'd never find my way to a distinct style.   Friends argued otherwise, but I was convinced my work would never have a strong enough identity or consistency. 

Over two years on and I know I've finally found that style, but the 'problem' I face now is that I get bored! It's great to see the consistency and personality sing through from the pages of my sketchbook, but in the name of creative play and progress I like to experiment on a regular basis; to try out new tools and techniques that enable me to push my work further.  The last thing I want is to feel/get stuck: a fear and feeling I'm sure many artists and creatives share.   

Sometimes it all goes 'wrong', but sometimes these little 'sketchperiments' throw back some real gems.  For me, it's the sketching equivalent of the masterchef invention test: take a few random ingredients (art materials), throw them in the pan (sketchbook) and see what your hands can work up!  And on that note, I'm starving: so will leave you to enjoy a few of my recent sketchperiments... 

AW Fashion Week Sketchup

New York, London, Milan, Paris... SKETCHUP!

With the AW17 Fashion Week whirlwind finally over, it was great to set aside my sketchbook and host another sellout edition of The Social Sketchup this week!

For this month's edition, I'd curated some special catwalk-inspired activities; including magazine cover design, make-up colour-ins and the grand finale: another showstopping dressmaking challenge!  This month's winning design had something of Chanel AW17 & Cleopatra vibe and was made by a talented team of co-workers from X! 

Take a look at some of my favourite shots and sketches from the night - and watch this space for news of the next Social Sketchup! 

Sketchy times at Drink Shop & Do

Things got a bit messy at The Social Sketchup last week: messy in a colourful, creative, charcoal-covered way! 

There's nothing I enjoy more than getting creative and encouraging others to do the same, so I'm always in my element at these events.  And as usual, the Sketchup crowd surprised and surpassed themselves with their incredible creations, including Picasso-style portraits and paper dress designs that wouldn't look out of place at Couture Fashion Week!  

It's a joy to watch people experiment and grow in confidence over the course of night, then see them leave armed with sketchbooks and buzzing from all the creative action - and all the cocktails! 

Thanks again to all who came for making the night so fabulous.  The next Social Sketchup will be in March. Watch this space for details!

New year = new Sketch Shop!

Pick up an original piece of fashion art: fresh from the Dulcimer Draws drawing board!

Happy 2017!

So, how are you going to make your life even more fabulous this year?  New job? New hair? New man? 

Why not start with the basics and get something in your life that will make you feel good every day throughout this year - and beyond?

Try this: 

1)      Bag yourself a beautiful bargain from my new Sketch Shop

2)      Place it on a prominent place/wall as a daily reminder of how #FABULOUS you are

3)      Repeat the above and fill your whole house/year with fabulousness!

Each month, I’ll announce a ‘secret’ flash sale on a new collection of original artworks, which will be available to buy exclusive on my site, on a first-come first-served basis!  

I’ll be revealing the first collection, The January Blues, on Instagram very soon: so be sure to follow me there to ensure you’re first through Dulcimer Draws’ doors! 

 

January Blues

Festive Face-Off

This December, whilst you're busy getting off your faces; I thought I'd share one or two of mine! 

In the absence of time to create anything more spectacular (than a #cheeseadventcalendar !), I've decided to countdown to 2017 with some of my favourite portraits from amid the masses I've produced this year.  I draw every day, so you can imagine how things have stacked up - in a rather Santa's Grotto-esque way! 

If you're not already doing so, follow me on Instagram for a daily shot of 'Fabulous Faces'! 

   

Baby It's COLD

Hurrah: It's time to get my annual grump on about how fricking freezing it is and how I really, really must move some place warmer!  

The only good thing about this season (apart from the obvious festive ding-donging) is that we all get to buy  - or at least lust after - some fabulous new winter coats! 

So, in the name of busting those winter blues, I decided to revisit some sketches I did during A/W 16 fashion week and pick out a few favourites.  (see below)

And now, back to being a miserable bastard. 

 

Sketchup success!

Better late than never, here are some visual highlights from The Social Sketchup!  Thank you to all those who came and made the night such fabulous fun.  It was such a joy to see people unleashing and connecting with their creativity - and to wonder at the incredible, unique results!

I'll be back at Drink Shop & Do to host the next Social Sketchup on Tuesday 31st January 2017.  Here's to another sellout, sketchy success!   

 

The Social Sketchup @DSD!

I'm so excited: The Social Sketchup is back and in a brand-new home at Drink Shop & Do! 

There'll be speed-sketching.  There'll be colouring.  There'll be cocktails.  

You'll get to meet and make paper dresses with a team of fabulous new friends.  You'll also get to illustrate and take home your very own beauty box - and a balloon with your face on it! 

What's not to love?!  

Get your tickets (£12 inc. glass of red/white) here

For press tickets email: dulcimer@dulcimerdraws.com 

The September Issue

Or How Not to Blog

Well I've clearly broken two of the golden rules of blogging: "blog frequently and blog consistently".  But I like to think I've got a good excuse - or several! 

Firstly, I blame my colouring event @3INA in Covent Garden, where I spent the first Saturday of the month meeting, greeting and getting creative with lots of fabulous new friends!  Thank you to all those who came along and made the day such fun: especially those who shared their talents with us in our colouring competition.  Also, big thanks to the two girls pictured for being so excited to take home a Dulcimer Draws tote bag - you really made my day!

Secondly, I blame my friend's stunning wedding in Sevilla.   The photo speaks for itself: it was the stuff of Hello magazine and Hollywood dreams!

Thirdly, I blame SS17 fashion week madness!  New York, London, Milan, Paris... there really is no rest for this sketch addict! Results/sketchbook to follow in my next post... maybe around December time? ;) 

Getting my colour on for 3INA!

I'm excited to be busy prepping for my first creative instore event for the amazing 3INA! I first met the 3INA girls at Graduate Fashion Week back in May, where I was struck by their bold and bright colours and their playful, on-trend marketing activities: including my old school fave, a tombola! 

Several months and conversations later, I'm delighted that we're working on our first project together: a 3 hour creative colouring session at their flagship Covent Garden store! 

There'll be colouring.  There'll be makeovers.  There'll be giveaways.

So, if you're looking for something fun free and fabulous to do this Saturday 3rd September, come along to 3INA from 2-5pm! 

XXX

 

Going BUST!

It's 'BUST Craftacular Eve and my living room still looks like a (rather stylish) bombsite!  It takes a lot longer than you realise to prepare and pack for a big craft fair: god help me if I ever have to plan a wedding!  But at long last I'm all set and ready to SMASH IT with my new Patsy pins, notebooks and originals -  and a shed load of other fabulous things!    

If you're in London tomorrow (Sunday August 21st) come along!  London Bust Craftacular @ York Hall, Bethnal Green: 11am - 5pm. 

BEAUTY & THE BARD

All the (fashion) world’s a stage !

My AW16 couture fashion week sketchfest continues: as does, I'm pleased to see, Shakespeare's influence on the runway! 

The Bard was alive and well at Valentino, where ruffled necklines, tight tailoring and thigh-high boots conjured an elegant Elizabeth vibe.  

And this is just the latest in a long line of collections that have been inspired by Shakespeare; as I re-discovered earlier this year, when I set out to create a series of illustrations to commemorate the 400th anniversary of his death in 2016.  From early McQueen to the latest Veronique Branquinho: it's clear that Shakespeare is - and has always been - in fashion! 

The end result of my research? My new 'Beauty and Bard' collection: a series of fashion-inspired portraits of Shakespeare's most iconic leading ladies - and one of the good man himself! 

Open for business!

At long last: you can now buy my artwork online – and/or direct from me at Spitalfields Market!

I’m still buzzing (and recovering!) from my first weekend of trading.  It was so exciting to see people come by and respond to my work and wares: to see what images and products captivate.  Instagram is a great indicator, but it’s no substitute for face-to-face contact and conversation with all you fabulous people who appreciate my art!

 

Why Spitalfields?

Whilst the cool kids rave it up in Dalston, Shoreditch and Spitalfields continue to pull a stylish crowd. And thanks to an endless stream of pop-ups, Truman Brewery events, Box Park and the likes of Versus on Redchurch Street: the area shows no sign of losing its cool.  

Case in point: my first customer was the gorgeous fashion blogger The Blonde Latte, who was on a quick visit to Europe with her equally glamorous mother.  She was quick to snap up one of my Karl Lagerfeld ‘love your selfie’ mirrors – among other Dulcimer Draws treats!

I also met a highly-discerning and stylish couple from Newcastle, proprietors of various trendy businesses including Mister Woods.  Their sharp eye for design was clear from the off, and they took home a fine selection of prints and set of fashionista pizzas.   Great taste guys! 

I can’t wait to meet more fabulous folk over the coming weeks.  It’s such a great place for me to spot and sketch the stylish crowds - and to meet my customers face-to-face.  If you’re based in London, pop down to Spitalfields and say hello! 

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