Leafy hangouts

hanging plants 1 girl and bird

Spring is really setting in, and it’s very tempting to just wander through the sunshine in a fresh new leaves & flowers daze.

Here are some straight to ink planty pen doodles I coloured in to wish you a bright and happy week 🌷

hanging plants 2 block

hanging plants 4 four little ones together

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Featuring a few Australian birds

A little while ago I had the pleasure of painting this commission of my cousin and her fiancé, who both studied birds in Australia, commissioned by my other cousin, Marjolein, as a gift. Rosellas are Leonie and Raoul’s particular area of expertise, but I couldn’t help going all out researching and adding Australian birds until the drawing was packed with them – they’re just too amazing! I love looking up birds, time and again I just get swept away with wonder at their shapes and colours.Leonie and Raoul for blog

As a little extra gift I made these little ink and watercolour bonus images below; one for Leonie and Raoul with rosellas and fairy wrens, and one for tea-expert Marjolein – thanks so much again for this sweet commission!

Extra L and RExtra M


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moominland tent

I went to Moominland this week! You can find a handy portal into it at the Southbank Centre by Waterloo. You have to book in advance as only small groups of people can go in at a time because the settings are small (because, of course, Moomins are small), & no photography was allowed, but here’s an illustrated representation of a snippet of the experience.
Tove Jansson is a hero of mine, so it was magical to get to see some of her original drawings and objects, quite apart from getting to wander through a whole variety of beautifully built rooms and experiences, which may or may not have included Snufkin’s lantern-lit tent, a leafy forest with glowing flowers and golden butterflies, and the ominous growls of the Groke.
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Tanuki time

tanuki card.jpg

Drew this tanuki for a friend’s birthday 🎉🍃🍶🌿🌰✨

I loved seeing these often gormless looking guardians while in Japan, statues ranging in size from ankle to waist height, keeping watch by home, storefront and restaurant doors.

Chingodo shrine in Tokyo is dedicated to tanuki, the trickster raccoon dogs of Japanese folktales – the story goes the shrine was built in an attempt to stop roving bands of raccoon dogs from plaguing the district a long time ago. It’s a small and lovely space with beautiful trees, the perfect peaceful courtyard to step into for a moment to catch your breath and pay your respects to the tanuki in busy Asakusa.

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Canal visitors

bookworm-mermaidThis mermaid bookworm + parents and younger sister were drawn quite some time ago, but I still like thinking about them and what their stories could be. I might draw some more if I get the time.

(Couldn’t quite decide on the colours in the evening canal-side illustration below, so here they both are.)

Hope your Friday sees some great leisure / pleasure reading and maybe even a swim!together-mermaid-fam-drawingstogether-canal-side-mermaids

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A few young Discworld witches

I love the Discworld witches so much! Here are some of the younger generation ones: Tiffany Aching, with Petulia Gristle and Annagramma Hawkin from Terry Pratchett’s A Hat Full of Sky.tiffany-petulia-annagramma
Some of Terry Pratchett’s witches cast misty-eyed wrinkled-apple-smiles at their sticky toddler grandsons, others deal out icy death glares to just about anyone crossing their path. Some are at the cool and collected end of the ‘perfectly poised’ scale while others verge quaveringly towards nervous wreck. Be they young or old, living in bare simplicity or fully padded comfort, they’re all flawed, brilliant and hilarious, and, above all, they have strength – the strength to make impossible decisions, to face their mistakes, to look after those who need help, to do what needs doing and to fight for what’s right. They’re fiercely independent but they notice what their society needs and they make it happen. Whenever I reread Terry Pratchett’s books I’m filled with wonder all over again at the way humour, fantastical world building and these incredible dynamic characters are woven together to ring with finely tuned underlying social messages. If you haven’t read his books yet you’re in for such a treat!
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Hourly Comics Day 2017

Yesterday was hourly comics day, for which you draw a small comic for every hour of the day. I’ve taken part in the past (here are the ones for 2015, 2014, 2012, and here’s one I did for a journey of 26 hours). I like looking back on them and love seeing other people’s, their styles and storytelling and the glimpses into their day!

I decided to do these straight to ink on post-it note sized squares to make myself work faster. It felt good to make comics, even for a day in which not much happened, and fun to see I’m getting quicker with straight to ink pen drawings 🙂

Here they are posted in two by twos. The time-telling fox who keeps track of the hour makes a reappearance, but sometimes only shows up at the end of a square. I tried to reason with him but to no avail.

hourlies-2017-aHourlies 2017 B.jpgHourlies 2017 C.jpghourlies-2017-d


Hope you had and have a good day!

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