June 27, 2012 § 6 Comments
Just popping in to say after an exhausting few weeks of near constant ‘nasty-winter-virus’ attack we are going country. Looking forward to seeing my Dad, roasting marshmallows over a campfire and just generally taking a little time out sketching in the winter sun. And very much looking forward to coming home happy and much healthier. See you soon!
ps. Just like everybody else I have succumbed to Instagram. I have to say I do love it’s immediacy and it’s lovely old world feel. The above shot was taken on our last flight out of Hobart. The atmosphere was the most gobsmackingly intense blue that I was convinced no camera could do justice… still, Instagram got pretty close.
June 9, 2012 § 18 Comments
I won the Umbrella Prints 2012 Trimmings Competition – Peoples Choice Award!
I am thrilled to bits! Thank you to everyone that repinned my little book. The competition board was overloaded with fantastic entries – I can’t believe my luck! Thank you to the wonderful Umbrella Prints girls, Amy and Carly for a brilliant competition idea and for a wonderful product that is a pleasure to work with.
June 6, 2012 § 11 Comments
Every illustration project has it’s own journey, I thought I might share a bit about this one…
I’d been wanting to do something with mixed media for a while – something with collage and natural fibres. I’d imagined a handmade book, lovely to hold with a gentle story nestled within its pages. When the Trimmings Comp arrived it was an irresistible opportunity. I’m a huge fan of Carly and Amy’s work. Their fabric is beautifully designed and they have an uncanny ability to choose perfect palettes.
The gorgeous images above gave me an inspiration-fueled start. So by the time my pack arrived all I could see within the clear envelope was a beautiful, somewhat deconstructed kite. And when I saw Rebecca‘s lovely piecing I knew exactly the form it would take. Cutting and assembling all those little pieces was incredibly relaxing (Clever gal that Rebecca! )
When it came to the book design, I decided on a concertina fold because each double page could be read as a mini story and the whole book could still be opened out to reveal an overall connection. I also wanted to play with both sides of the paper, changing an assumption formed on one side by a quick flip to the other.
When it came to the story, the kite was my ending but what I needed was the rest. It turned out the story solution was right under my nose but all my over-thinking made it invisible to me. After an insane week of ‘going no where fast’ I stopped, remembered the importance of simplicity and finally listened to my gut. I focused on the simplest idea and suddenly the little details could breathe.
I learnt a lot on this one – I dabbled in the craft of bookbinding, learnt heaps about glue, percentages of colour and the power in a shot of neon. I got stuck trying to score and fold watercolor paper that was too thick for a crisp fold and was bailed out by the good advice of a friend. But whatever challenges it brought up I loved every minute of it and would do it again in an instant!
Thank you all for the amazing feedback, I’m more thrilled than you could imagine! Thank you Carly and Amy for such a fun opportunity, truly it’s impossible not to make something lovely with your fabrics. Best of luck to everyone who entered! Please vote for your favourites here.
Images | Kites, Hey Andre! | Happy Kids Kites, CubaGallery | Stitching by a sunny window, Rebecca Sower | All other images, Alisa Coburn | To view larger or for licencing click on image titles. Images are subject to copyright.
May 31, 2012 § 29 Comments
Here is my entry for this years Trimmings Competition – a mixed media concertina book using the gorgeous Umbrella Prints trimmings I received from Carly and Amy. Such a fun palette to play with!
My aim was to create a wordless narrative. One side shows eight women working on a sewing project together, and on the reverse their finished project is revealed. All the panels were joined with a core strip of linen which you can see the frayed edge of at the bottom – I decided not to trim it off, it reminds me of the stray cotton reality of a busy sewing workspace. The bottom two pics are my comp pack and a work in progress shot.
I’d love to write some more about it but right now I’d better just get it in. Can’t wait to see all the amazing entries – you can check them out (ETA) and vote for your favorite here.
April 24, 2012 § 5 Comments
April 17, 2012 § 10 Comments
I love the Easter holidays, they force me to get out from behind my desk and into the the sunshine with my little buddies.
I’m not sure who enjoys it more, me or them. Although I have my suspicions.
Our days have been beautiful, crisp, clear and packed with mini adventures.
We’ve discovered Silkie chickens have wild hairdos
It is possible to sneak up on a peacock.
A pony’s nose is lovely and soft in the palm of your hand, but their teeth are not.
And the most beautiful green field in the entire world is in Collingwood.
Hope your Easter break was full of lovely surprises too.
March 23, 2012 § 5 Comments
Whilst checking out some of the squillions of Etsy films on setting up shop, I stumbled upon this one on the work of Sophie Blackall. It’s such a beautiful, gentle film to watch I was genuinely disappointed that it wasn’t longer. I loved finding out more about the way she works – putting down a detailed monochrome layer of chinese ink and then applying colour washes over the top. I think you can buy the Met poster you see her working on here.
Having been thoroughly inspired I found another Sophie short on Youtube. But even better, it belongs to fifteen short films made for the recent ‘Drawn in Brooklyn’ exhibition at the Brooklyn Library. Each on a different acclaimed childrens book artist, how they work and how they feel about their brilliant, culturally rich neighbourhood.
Such a nice way to spend a Friday morning – in Brooklyn, taking in great illustration and great coffee. Maybe one day I’ll make it back there in person.