This year….

…has been one of learning a lot about drawing by doing it most days and falling in love with ink.  I really, really do love ink. And being messy, and splattering it about, and mixing it with paint, and drawing with different pens, and watering it down, and painting with it, and getting it under my fingernails….

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It’s also been a year of getting lots of encouragement and realising that people enjoy seeing my work. Twitter has been great for that. I’ve enjoyed it. Even more amazingly people have bought stuff and commissioned stuff.. 🙂

And I’ve illustrated a whole book! That really is not something I ever imagined I would do. Thank you, Dom, for telling me I could do it. 🙂

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I’ve also made a few illustrations for Dom’s poems on Inkology.co.uk. Here are a few of the latest:

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And there have, of course, been bears…..

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Looking forward to starting on some exciting new illustration projects in 2015, more jewellery making and those little origami books…..

…..and more bears. 🙂

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Making things…

The best part of making jewellery is having ideas and trying out new things.  So far my adventures with shrink plastic have been restricted to drawing, then scanning and printing onto shrink paper.  I did some drawing directly onto the shrinky paper recently, when I had a medium sized child on loan. We used permanent fineliners in bright colours, but I wasn’t very keen on the quality of the line once they were shrunk down. As I like my Rotring pens so very much I thought I’d have a try with those, although I wasn’t sure if Indian Ink would work…  I used two different nib sizes, 0.25  for darker lines and 0.18 for fine lines and shading.

After several experiments on scraps…

making-2So far so good. Next trimming into a slightly irregular shape and hole punching to take a jump ring.  These are the second pair in progress.

making-3And the first pair, shrunk and made into earrings.

houseearrings-3 copyThe next level of experimentation involved working out how to protect the surface, as I’m not sure how durable the ink will be.  I usually spray on a light coat of matt acrylic varnish, but I’ve seen shrinkie jewellery with a shiny domed finish.  Internet research revealed that ice resin was one way of achieving this look, however Glossy Accents (which I already had) produces a similar look.  First attempt… got a few air bubbles. Pretty sure I can get it perfect with practice. 🙂

makingI applied it with the findings still attached because I am lazy and because I wasn’t sure if it would block the hole.  It should dry perfectly clear and hard.  I will post a photo when they are finished.  Then wear them!

I have a few other things on the boil as well, but as they are presents and supposed to be surprises I can’t show you yet. 🙂  Also starting to try bending and shaping the plastic while it’s hot… more news on that to come.

And here are the dry earrings.. complete with air bubbles… which don’t really show when you’re wearing them..

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