Monday, 23 December 2013

Collaboration with Knittynudo!

So so so SO sorry for the lack of posts recently! I've been super-busy working for Hallmark and visiting my nan (she turned 100 recently!) preparing for Christmas and generally trying to get myself on track! It's been the busiest few months I've ever had, I think. Anyway, there's a backlog of stuff I have to tell you about! I'll keep it simple and do it post by post, over the next few weeks hopefully - one of my New Year's resolutions is to just generally sort things out and get more organised, which includes updating my blog as often as I can.

In short, Caroline (AKA Knittynudo) is a talented needle felter - we became friends earlier this year through a mutual respect of each other's work, and general kindred-spiritness. I loved her felties so much that I decided to illustrate a few of them in what I thought their 'natural habitats' might look like ~

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We also did a collaboration, where I drew some creatures and Knittynudo felted them, and vice versa. The original results are available to buy on Etsy (although I sort of hope nobody buys them as I've grown rather attached!)

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'Fox Friends'
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'Bear Pair'
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Hope you like :)

I'll update you with other stuff I've been up to soon! Have a lovely Christmas!!

Soph x

Saturday, 26 October 2013

Hallmark Cards!

A couple of weeks ago, you might remember me mentioning a two week placement at Hallmark Cards I was about to go on. Well, I've been and come back, and it was such a brilliant experience!

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Placements with knitted finger-warmers -
Hannah Tolson, me, and Gemma Luxton.
Couldn't believe how fantastic the Hallmark office was. Cute, interesting (and rather distracting!) things were dotted around all over the office, it was a wonder I got any work done at all really. And then there was the atmosphere, and the really interesting, funny, and lively people! I even ended up learning to knit while I was away, which is something I've wanted to do for ages. Sadly, I can't share the work I did with you on my placement, as it could be chosen to be on a card at some point (I really want to though! D: Maybe in the future).

I stayed at Hallmark's special little house especially for placements, and it was great. I really miss the bed, it was huge... and the house was in a perfect spot right next to a chip shop and an Asda. The other placements sharing the house with me couldn't have been nicer, or more talented! That was something I was a bit worried about as I'd never house-shared before, but it really wasn't anything to worry about. It's good to be home, but I do quite miss it.

Here's some photos I got during my stay in Leeds (the Hallmark office is in Bradford, quite close to the house I stayed in). Also had a couple of days out in the city centre and in Halifax on the weekend. It was like a little working holiday :3

On the last day of my placement, I was asked to come back and work for Hallmark as a freelancer! I couldn't believe it - I felt so lucky! So the plan now is that I'm going back every Wednesday. I've been back twice now, and I love it! Couldn't be happier with the way things have turned out.

Thanks for stopping by!

Soph x

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Portraits & A Placement...

Recently I've been taking on a few portrait commissions! Besides working on my own stuff, I really love doing commissions because in a way it sort of reminds me of Uni - I have a set brief, and usually a time I need to complete it by.

Here's a small family portrait I did for a christening ~

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Ideas sketches I e-mailed to my client

I absolutely loved working on this! I was given so much creative freedom. My suggestion of setting it in woodland surrounded by cute animals was thankfully something they liked! It's only A5 so it's pretty small, but I was quite pleased that I'd managed to do a traditional artwork with no mistakes, without resorting to digital editing. I learned so much about my way of working through this little portrait :)

Here's another commission I did recently ~ a lady contacted me about doing a portrait of her daughter, who sadly passed away a couple of years ago.

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More ideas sketches!

She wanted her cats in the picture, and her daughter was a very outdoorsy football player (hence the grassy field background) - with an absolutely amazing smile! Her story pretty much broke my heart, and it was an honour to be asked to create such an important illustration.

These have been pretty challenging because I've gotten so used to editing my work digitally - probably because of convenience - but I've found when I take my time a bit more, plan out my pieces beforehand, and tell myself I'm not going to use any sort of digital editing, I'm usually really pleased with what I come up with. That being said, I don't want my work to end up too polished and precise, because I've made that mistake in the past and the work has lost all of its initial charm... I think it's probably about doing just the right amount of planning!


 photo 895e7c2d269f8627_zpsc0283825.png Besides working on commissions, I've also been preparing for a two week placement with Hallmark cards! Kept that pretty quiet, I know ~ but those of you who follow my twitter might already know. They saw my work at D&AD New Blood and must have liked it :D I'm very excited - it starts on Monday! I get to stay in a house in Leeds specifically for people on Hallmark and Tigerprint placements, and it's 9-5, but I don't know much else about it! I'll tell you all I can about it once I get back - eep :)

Soph x

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Illustration Friday - 'Totem'

I absolutely loved this week's Illustration Friday theme, so I did three images for it instead of one! Hippo, Puppy, and Croc. Maybe I'll create a small series with this idea, I find it really cute. I could draw animals stacking on top of one another all day to be honest. Hope you like :)

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I have a few exciting and interesting things so fill you in on - I'm a little slow at blogging recently due to being quite busy, but all will be revealed soon! :D

Soph x

Thursday, 29 August 2013

Illustration Friday - 'Rescue'

My submission for this week's Illustration Friday theme 'Rescue'. It's a little portrait of the lovely Canadian singer/songwriter Leonard Cohen. Check the lyrics below to get a better idea of the theme. Hope you like!

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"It feels so good
And it feels so right
It feels like I've been rescued
In the middle of the night
And the sweetest voice has spoken
And the deepest wound is healed
And the darkness is exploding
And it feels, it just feels
Thank you Babe, thank you Babe"

~ 'It Just Feels' by Leonard Cohen
& David A. Stewart

I'm challenging myself to do more people portraits recently, and Leo's such a cool guy with unusual features! He was very fun to draw. If you're lucky enough to have seen him perform live, please be aware that I am quite jealous of you.

Soph x

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

My Birthday & Axolotl Art

Last Friday, it was my 22nd birthday! On a whim, Thursday evening I came up with this ~

Hopefully it speaks for itself. I spammed social media sites with the image (sorry if I annoyed anyone! Hehe), but it was worth it in the end. Throughout my birthday, I had loads of submissions of axolotl art, and it totally made my day!

 photo anxietydecendingontwitter_zps97e6c02d.jpg photo DaniLabrosse_zps5e6d108e.jpg photo beckihinge_zpsd3272476.jpg photo amywitham_zps95f40c94.jpg photo janeeccles_zps77e02bd2.jpg photo katiecorrigan_zps3566df9e.jpg photo anon_zps5b30bd79.jpg photo itsmerizwaneontwitter_zpsf975df16.jpg photo mattcorrigan_zps8c7420ce.jpg photo mydad_zpsdbef9daa.jpg photo httpinsecurities-kill-the-perfecttumblrcom_zps5ec54626.jpg photo mymum_zps59af5949.jpg photo edallen_zps6c9742a8.jpg photo foxboy_zps37912dce.jpg photo alexyoungaweeprintstudio_zpsd9d70920.jpg photo heatherfranzenartbyhezooonfacebook_zps31b6db67.png photo laurathompsonlthompsonartontwitter_zpsb7f7bfc2.jpg photo leonel_zpsb7336c1a.jpg photo lizzwatson_zps23fcfcdd.jpg photo margaretchamberlain_zps0e4ca9d1.jpg photo jasbirdillustrations_zpsa80fe036.jpg photo marialincoln_zpse8d9364e.jpg photo nikithorridge_zpsd1417ebb.jpg photo nikitahorridge2_zps9cd676de.jpg photo rosievegro_zpsc08eea58.jpg photo Olgawassupbrothers_zpsd81f5fb3.jpg photo samcookson_zpsa6878a54.jpg photo sarahcrosby_zps69470bbd.jpg photo sharonburn_zps039915e6.jpg photo tressalapham-green_zps50b3b734.jpg photo saralynncramb_zps21cfbe43.jpg photo tomcollins_zps761fc3f8.jpg photo sophieheywood_zps996ab354.jpg

Check out the brilliant people who created them via my facebook page. Thanks again to everyone who joined in - and if you still want to draw me an axxie, I'll be more than happy to add it to the gallery! My axolotls are so pleased with all of you guys. And I intend to do something similar every year.

Speaking of axolotls, I'd like to introduce you all to my new little bro, Johnson ~

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He's not so easy to photograph because he's a melanoid, but he's a little sweetie.

Apart from the awesome bunch of drawings, for my birthday, I got a Wii U (my family tend to spoil me!) and a whole bunch of wonderful, thoughtful gifts, including a Dexter boxset, a jumper with a squirrel on it, and this plushie ~

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 It was a pretty great day.

Soph x