England

This week I’ve been in England, loving the glorious sunny weather. Spring can be like that I guess, sometimes dark and grey, sometimes warm and sunny. I’ve been helping my parents sort out their garage, finding some of my old treasures in the meanwhile…

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We also went to the coast at Brighton, to look at the sea and fill our eyes with green. Here’s a sketch I did sitting at Devil’s Dyke on the South Downs,

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…and even one of me painting it (thanks dad!).

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Here are some eggs I painted with my nieces (hint - that’s Olaf!). A very Happy Easter to you all!

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Hong Kong

I’ve had a wonderful week in HK. Unfortunately with a bit of a cold. But I’ve still managed to do quite a lot! Here’s a sketch I did today in Sai Ying Pun. I’ve always loved overhead flyovers…

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I’ve done lots of walks around smaller local streets on this visit, and I look for those hidden truly ‘HK’ views.

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I sat at one of the street restaurants and had a drink while I drew this scene in Jordan, at Temple Street Night Market. I liked something about the green awnings and red flags!

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As usual, I’ve eaten all sorts of delicious meals. Here are just a few…

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I had a wonderful evening at the new nightspot Dai Bing, in Sheung Wan, and even managed a little sketch on a coaster.

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Many of the local shops have a guardian cat, and I love spotting them on the job.

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I’ve got a few more days left in HK, mostly spent in meetings, but on to London next!

teaching in Hong Kong

This week I’ve been in Hong Kong, and spent 2 days teaching 4-7 year olds about illustration at Kellett school. There were 3 different year groups, and with each we worked with the subjects they’re currently looking at. The youngest group were studying animals in Africa. I drew some example animals, and watched them draw their own lions, zebras, snakes, elephants and giraffes. My drawings are on the left, the children’s on the right…

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The it was the turn for dinosaurs - and I drew several that the children asked for. I especially liked their diplodocuses…

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The last group was reading ‘Where the Wild Things Are’, so we designed our own wild things. I asked for suggestions and my wild thing had a unicorn’s horn, a lion’s mane and the body of a crocodile!

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Each class drew together on a long scroll of paper to create a mural-type image. I think they enjoyed themselves!! I certainly did.

sakura season

The cherry blossom is blooming, and spring has arrived in Tokyo. I’ve been to see the different cherry blossom sites all around town, and here’s a selection of them. The wonderful blue skies contrasted with the deep pink of these trees around the Emperor’s palace…

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…although you can see that the trees aren’t quite at peak blossom yet.

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The night-time viewing at Naka-meguro is always wonderful along the canals…

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and it was wonderful to stroll and enjoy the festival atmosphere!

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There are cherry trees in the normal streets too, and this one is on the way to my studio. I like the mix of camelia with cherry blossom.

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And my favourite spot, the Aoyama cemetery. No rowdy hanami parties, just gorgeous avenues of quiet flowers…

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I love the cherry blossom season!

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rugs - on sale!

faux, in HK, are having a super sale right now, and two of my rugs are extremely discounted. The first is based on one of my peony etchings. You can find it here.

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The other rug is based on a drawing I made of a bamboo plant, with patterned leaves. Here’s the link.

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Both are hand-made one-off pieces in gorgeous soft wool. Hope they’ll find their way to lovely homes…

eating out - Tokyo

I’ve enjoyed many lovely Japanese meals in the last few weeks, and have even managed to do a few sketches of them…

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When we sit at the counter I often have time to sketch before we eat, but sometimes I take photos and do the sketches as soon as I get home, while the memories are still fresh.

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Sometimes, just a photograph will do, capturing the deliciousness!

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fruit drops

I suddenly wanted to try out painting on canvas, so I bought a little square one and attempted a portrait of my favourite fruit drops…

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It didn’t exactly go as planned, but on the whole, I think it’s a good start!

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I’ll try again with some different candy in a few weeks maybe…

ume (plum) blossom season

The plum blossom blooms about a month before the more famous cherry blossom, and we went to Umegaoka park in Tokyo to walk amongst the gently scented trees and enjoy the first hint of Spring.

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My favourite thing about the ume blossom is that there are so many different varieties and colours, from pure white to a deep crimson red.

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If you’re in Tokyo, hope you can take a moment to go and find some ume to enjoy!

faux website

My ceramics are produced by faux, in Hong Kong. They are the stockists for some of the larger stores there, but it’s also possible to visit their wonderful showroom on the South Side of HK Island in Ap Lei Chau, overlooking the sea, and also to shop on their website.

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They’ve just revamped their online store and you can now buy my products from anywhere in the world, as it will automatically work out international shipping, hurrah!

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You can buy my Hong Kong Toile range, my Hong Kong Willow collection, and also my London Toile collection and smaller Beijing range too! Happy shopping!

wood paper box - (un)fold

I recently went to Huntsville Alabama to meet with my friends Katie Baldwin and Yoonmi Nam, the other members of our art collective wood paper box. We got together to make the boxes for our third collaborative printmaking project, (un)fold.

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For this project we chose a mustardy yellow bookcloth, and grey paper for the inside. I always forget how long it takes to make clamshell boxes, but I always love how they turn out. I can’t wait to put all our lovely prints inside to complete the project!

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We also started our woodpaperbox instagram, please follow us for all our printmaking news!

Chinese New Year sweet tray

This year I designed a sweet tray with an special version of my new Hong Kong willow pattern. It’s available exclusively instore at Lane Crawford department store in Hong Kong, in a strictly limited edition. It features different areas of HK island in the individual segments of the tray, such as Wanchai and Happy Valley.

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The sweet tray is a traditional part of the Chinese New Year family celebration. It contains all the family’s favourite seasonal treats, such as mandarin segments, chocolate and nuts. If you bought one of my trays, I’d love to see how you use it this year!

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And most of all, a big Kung Hei Fat Choi to you all! May the year of the pig be a lucky one.

in the details exhibition 2

Our Art Byte Critique group show in the details has been up and doing well all this week. I hung my frames salon style, in a sort of diamond shape, curating a selection of my ceramic/tea prints.

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It’s a lovely space, full of light, and all the artists’ work seems to complement each other super well.

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The reception event was extremely well attended last night, and a good time was had by all. Thank you if you came to visit!

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I did an artist interview for the in the details blog. You can read it here.

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The show is still on and closes tomorrow at 5pm. Hope you can make it!

exhibition this week in Tokyo

The group show in the details opens on tuesday, in Shibuya, Tokyo, Japan. I’m showing some new work, such as this mokuhanga print with hand-colouring:

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and this mokuhanga print with ink line, from a few years ago:

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…as well as some of my older etchings, like this one:

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I’ve attempted to curate a small selection of my prints, in a way that makes sense thematically and visually, with tea, ceramics, and patterns of both East and West to hold everything together.

I’ll be at the reception on friday evening, from 6pm, and occasionally at the show during the week. Hope to see you there!

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in the details exhibition

I’m taking part in a group exhibition in Tokyo, in 2 weeks time, and am trying to finish a few prints to show there. I’m also going to show a few of my older prints, both etchings and mokuhanga.

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Here are the details for the show:

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Hope you’ll make it to the opening if you’re around! I’ll be there to meet you.

sketch night

My lovely friends Courtney and Mike arranged a sketching get-together while I’m here in San Francisco. It’s so nice to catch-up and paint at the same time! We swapped drawings/paintings and experimented on each other’s work. Here’s a little picture I started of some houses, on top of a paint swatch that Courtney made…

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…and here’s the finished picture.

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Here you can see the wonderful paint palettes of all three of us!

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Niseko visit

We spent an incredible few days in Niseko, Hokkaido, between Christmas and New Year, staying with friends in their beautiful house in the snow.

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We did go outside, even snowshoeing (!) but most of our time was spent cosy inside, looking at the heavy snowfall, and I did lots of sketches of the wintery landscape.

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It was a real challenge for me to draw this sort of view, as I’m not used to it, but I enjoyed trying to capture all the different types of whites and blues…

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I’ve never seen this kind of soft powdery snow, it was magical…

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The sky changed constantly, from pure snow white to brilliant blue, and the trees were sometimes silhouettes and sometimes full of vivid colour.

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I’ll always remember the softness in the air, that made everything dream-like…

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A very happy new year to you all, may 2019 be full of magical things!

happy christmas!

This year my Christmas card illustration was based on my family christmas tree, in our London home. We have a fir tree up to the ceiling, covered with lights and decorations.

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Our fairy, always sitting on top of the tree, was made by my grandmother in the 1920’s. We all adore her, she even has tartan bloomers on underneath her dress!

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Here are some of the baubles I illustrated for the card. The post-box is new, but the birds are Victorian, and there are many of varying ages in between…

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Hope you all have a lovely, warm, and cosy holiday season, wherever you are!

Peak Tram Christmas campaign

This year I was commissioned to create the illustrations for the ‘Winter Fest’ Christmas campaign for the Peak Tram in Hong Kong.

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The illustrations were used on the facade of the Peak Tower, and throughout the interiors of both the Tower and the Lower Peak Tram station.

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I drew the Peak Tower itself, the Tram, and people enjoying carol singing and writing Christmas letters to their loved ones…

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Unfortunately, my hand-lettering wasn’t used in the final designs, but I guess that happens a lot to illustrators!

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I hope the illustrations make all the visitors to the Peak feel happy and Christmassy!

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