Sweden: sketchbook and other snippets

14 May

In April this year I spent 10 days in Sweden. My design work is largely influenced by Scandinavia so I went equipped with a sketchbook and some fat crayons for scribbling, doodling and observing my surroundings. I chose the details from each day which gave me a slice of Swedish life; a hidden museum, a fancy dress party, a volvo engulfed by a snow drift, a journey by train to beyond the arctic circle.

I drew the sights I saw in order to remember them even more.. What follows are a few images from my sketch book, a mixture of messy sketches and more polished studies. Visit the SKETCHBOOK PAGE to view my whole visual diary. 

03_Gamla Stan_Horse
10_Dog Sled 09_House and Ski Slope

The drawings are being featured in  online cultural magazine Wales Arts Review from this Friday as a visual essay. Each drawing will be accompanied by brief notes for context. I’ll post the link up here, as well as the full text, on the weekend.

Meanwhile, here are a few photos of some textiles; braids from Sami / Lapland heritage, and some jolly table linen acquired in the second hand shops in Uppsala. In Uppsala we visited a flea market and bagged the bargain of our own Dala Horse for a fraction of the tourist price.

Table runner


horse close up


Plus, a cultural vending machine at the Kultur Hus near Stockholm C:

A quirky window display featuring carved wooden figures staring at each other suspiciously.

A typographic triumph of a window display  on Gamla Stan

Colourful sign in a dry cleaners’ window in Uppsala


Milgi Mural and Mugs

4 May

I was recently asked by Cardiff’s Milgi Lounge to draw on their front window. Every few weeks they invite an illustrator to create an eye catching mural to grab the attention of punters, passers-by and drivers waiting for the lights to change at the junction. My drawing coincides with Roath’s Made in Spring Festival. Inspired by my recent trip to Sweden (in which we travelled over 1000 kilometres by train from Stockholm to the Arctic), and the film The Darjeeling Limited, I decided on a train which had been taken over by a gang of jovial animals. The picture of James McAvoy on my fridge may have influenced a certain Mr. Tumnus the faun also joining in the fun.

These photos show inspiration, planning, details and then the finished mural.

train reference

flipped image


Photo1_Milgi Window

Photo2_Milgi Window

Go and visit it in the next fortnight or so if you’re in the area!

Dala Horse Mugs: now available to buy online

mug pic 3

Following a successful launch day at the Art Carbootique, the Dala Horse mugs are now available to buy online. In bright orange and teal, they are a cheery addition to your kitchen, desk and coffee table. £7.00 + p&p: click here to visit my e-shop.

Next up – drawings and photographs from Sweden.


Mugs and prints for the Art Car Bootique

11 Apr

This Sunday I will be having a stall at the Art Car Bootique at Chapter Arts Centre in Cardiff.

In preparation I have been busy squirrelling away in the Printhaus and studio to create, at long last, my Dala Horses mugs in a lively orange and dusty teal design. In December these merry little horses won second prize in the Pedlars Product of the Month competition so I thought it was about time they went onto a mug. The mugs will be on sale at the Carbootique for £7.00 each, and following this online. Just 20 available to start with, so do come along and have a look…

Dalahorse mug


Following the popularity of the first edition, I’ve created a new colourway of the Recipe for Welshcakes. The second addition boasts Welsh colours, daffodil spring-bright colours! These will be available at the market too, alongside the last few prints from the first edition batch.

Welsh Cakes


In keeping with my fascination with drawing faces on things, here is Mr. Squash:

A week today I am heading to Sweden for 10 days to do some drawing, exploring and have a break. I’ll surely be returning with some new ideas, a full sketchbook and hopefully plenty of tales to tell…

Hopefully see you on Sunday x

Papercuts and patterns

26 Feb

My Monday started with plans to produce some handcut stencils to screen print – having not done any printmaking since the house move I was feeling the need! The design is a sample page, a combination of images and motifs that can be used in various concepts and images that I make.


The two stencils, one for each colour, took longer than I thought – they always do! So, because the clock was ticking, Inscanned my stencils with coloured paper behind. Et Voila! It produced, digitally, a similar image to how it would have been printed. I’m looking forward to trying this technique out with other designs, and playing more with the third colour created by the overlaps.

I’m going to be having a reorganise of this site very soon to make it easier to navigate as my portfolio expands. Keep checking back for developments, and also some brand new workshops to be confirmed…


This is Orange – illustration for Amelia’s Magazine

21 Feb

This is my first illustration featured in Amelia’s Magazine, for an article on how we perceive colour. I chose orange.

This is Orange by Sarah Edmonds

Paper Mechanics Trailer for National Theatre Wales

27 Jan

Introducing a light-bulb laying chicken, a pop up theatre and a flexagon bento box! I have just completed a commission for National Theatre Wales – a trailer for one of their 2013 productions screened at the season launch party last Thursday.

Here’s the trailer – for The Opportunity of Efficiency, NTW’s first international residency at New National Theatre Tokyo.

The Opportunity of Efficiency from National Theatre Wales on Vimeo.


To read more about the production, click here to visit the National Theatre Wales (brand new shiny) website.

Created with the help of Marc Heatley.

The dish ran away with the spoon – new screen print

5 Dec

I’m pleased as pie to reveal my newest screen print, featuring a cast of a little laughing dog, a mustachioed, torch-wielding spoon, closely followed by a scampering dish with a penchant for vintage satchels. Inspired by the nursery rhyme, this was designed on a train, as much of my work is at the moment as I to and fro every other weekend to lovely Brighton, where the other half lives. Then I’ve spent the last couple of days screen printing them – 28 in total.


Dish web

Spoon web

Dish and Spoon prints

Not normally working in shades of blue and grey, I found this print a refreshing change although it still features my signature orange, found in lots of my prints.

This set of prints is the first edition, and I’m planning on developing the image further next year, trying out different colourways and effects using photoshop.

The image below began life as a papercut design. The paper was sourced from Lidl, coming in an array of bright colours. I’m going to play around with this technique quite a bit over the Christmas holidays and see what other things I can come up with.

Cabins and Hares Papercut

Last but not least, if you haven’t already please vote for my Dala Horses mug design for Pedlars Product of the month – there’s just a few days left now! See the previous post for all the details.

Right, now to create some packaging for everything in time for the weekend…

Vote for the Dala Horses!

29 Nov
Those of you who know me are aware of my Nordic influences, and the cold weather has inspired several new designs. I’m currently developing another decorative piece like the Swedish / Dala Horses, but this time featuring hares, cabins and midnight suns. I’ll put it up early next week for all to see. A dish running away with a spoon, nose-stealing blackbirds and a present-eating tree are also at various stages on the living room table. More soon, promise.
Meanwhile, I recently entered my Dala horses design (above)  into the Pedlars Product of the Month mug competition.
The winning design will be made into a mug, and from the sale of each mug £1 will go to a charity of the designer’s choice. If I were lucky enough to be successful, the charity I’d choose would be St David’s Foundation Hospice Care. I’d love to get my work out there to new audiences / independent stores like Pedlars.
So I need you to vote for my design! I Voting ends on Dec 10th so make sure you get in there in time.
Please feel free to pass this on to your friends/contacts who may want to vote too.
Thanks ever so much!

New Welsh Cakes Recipe Print & other Autumn happenings

5 Oct

This week I have mostly been printing a new design – an illustrated recipe for Welsh Cakes – at the Printhaus.  I grew up with this recipe, as my mum used to bake around 100 or more Welsh cakes each week to sell at the WI market. Here it is as a screen print for the kitchen in bright, homely colours.

These will be on sale this Sunday at the Snapped Up market at the Printhaus in Cardiff. They will shortly be on sale in my online shop, and also on a new site called The Welsh Gift shop, set up by my good friend Becca to sell and celebrate Welsh artists, writers and crafts.

Here’s a poster for Snapped Up with all the details, do come along and say hi! I’m also looking forward to it, as a friend from America is sending a messenger bearing a delivery of quince (quinces?) from his mum’s house in Cardiff. Yum!

In other news I have two courses coming up at Cardiff Open Art School (Howard Gardens). These are in Book binding, on Saturday 20 October, and Festive lino / letterpress print making on Saturday 10 November. All details are on the COAS website – do have a look and come along!

I’ve been pretty active on Pinterest recently, collecting all sorts of delightful and unusual pictures. You can view my page here.

Finally, here’s a little visual story, of Lionel, The Marrow Who Became Jam. And what lovely jam it is (Marrow, Apple and Ginger, to be precise)

Next up: Blackberry Jam, or ‘Dead Good Jam’, made with berries courtesy of Cathays cemetery.

Have good weekends, all!

Some illustrations from recent sketchbookery

13 Aug

Hello there. It’s about time I added some drawings here, as I’ve mostly been working in a sketchbook recently, drawing out some ideas and playing with my new white pen. So below are an assortment of birds (I think my favourite is Leonard, wearing a Steve Zissou inspired seafaring hat), and a tree bearing pencils, not plums. Our plum tree hasn’t produced a single one this year. Hoping that the blackberries do better.

Anyway, here they are!

Also, whilst in London last week I ventured into Covent Garden and spent some time in Neal’s Yard. A treasure of a place squeezed between two streets. A feast of good things – remedies, pastries, tea – and bright colours, so let me share this photo with you:


Do follow me on Pinterest, by the way. I’m putting most of my links to inspiring artwork and pictures on here, now. From creatures to bicycles and pattern design to Scandinavia, it’s good to see these images alongside each other.

Last but not least, I’ve recently taught a couple of classes as part of the Cardiff Open Art School’s Summer programme. I’ll be doing some more workshops in the Autumn (including festive lino-cut and letterpress, Book binding and Make Your Own Advent Calendar) and will post the dates/details up here shortly.

Here’s a photo of one of the pieces produced in the Letterpress class: we experimenting with not inking up the text and instead just pressing it, to create this lovely embossed effect. The theme of the day was first lines of books, and this one is a classic!

Have a marvellous week…