Ideal Home Show 2019

What a great year we’ve had at the Ideal Home Show in Glasgow this weekend.

The whole event was buzzing and there were new friends that we’ve made!

The Scottish kilty paintings we’re popular, I wasn’t too sure how they’d go down.. I love painting them.

Thank you to everyone who has popped along to say hi and introduce themselves.. It’s great to meet people in real life.

Thank you too to everyone who has asked me to paint a commission. I do like a good challenge and look forward to the next couple weeks of creating more artwork from my home to yours.

Until the next event.. Be blessed x

Retro swimmers

I’m really excited about my fat ladies on the beach canvas’! They have been selling well in Portobello, Edinburgh and I’m having fun making tonnes more.

These are also available in my Etsy shop and make great little gifts.

New collection: Edinburgh street scenes

I am in the midst of building a new collection of paintings. Mixing my love of my favourite City Edinburgh and naive / folk art.

Here are a few of my new paintings and I hope you enjoy the scenes I am building over the next year.

All originals are for sale from my website and cards/ prints will be available online or at my wee Grassmarket stall …

The Crofters

I’m creating a little series about ‘the Crofters’ just for fun .

I love Scottish history and I’m currently learning about the Highland Clearances and the Crofters ūüźď .

The Scottish farming families were run out of their community farms to make way for big farms for Cow farming and pastoral farming – the leaders in the cities thought this would bring more profit into the city.

The Highland folk were unfortunately run out of their cottages and farms and forced to the coastal areas or even emigrated abroad.

The Crofters moved in and here is a little collection of paintings about life in the crofts.

I am going to eventually turn this into a little children’s book. ūüźď

The District Nurse series

Happy new year!

I would like to start the year by introducing my new series of paintings.

I’ve decided to stick with my whimsicle style of painting as I just love painting cute little people.

Over the year I plan on creating different little characters with little stories.

It’s so much fun. Just to start off, here is Bunty, the District nurse.

We’re going to be seeing a lot more of her throughout the year.

Watch this space

The Country Living Fair 2017

The Country Living Fair was a huge success!

This was my first time as a trader at the Country Living Magazine fair and I will definitely come back next year. What a grand selection of talent from across the U.K. What a buzzing atmosphere and I made friends with the traders around me.

The customers were very lovely. It was quite quiet on a couple days but it was icy outside and the rugby was on..

Im not the best yet at selling like a street trader from Eastenders so I decided to bring my paints and make pet portraits for people whilst they shop! This was a genius idea…you could wait 4 weeks for a portrait if you ordered online.

The big panda was a hit and sold quickly. I get a bit emotional when my favourite paintings are sold. So I went home and recreated one overnight. My trader friends though this was mad ūüėĚ

<<<<<<
name-the-bear' comp on my Facebook page as I realised poor Mrs Bear didn’t have a name or a Story to tell. She’s now Beryl .

Lessons learnt?

Well, I may have been over-prepared and brought too much stock. My tiny stall looked beautiful but a bit like Steptoes yard.I had a huge help thanks from His Handsomeness who did a great job of putting up shelves and heavy paintings I also learned that I love my artworks on black. This is my signature style and will be my focus from now on.

As well as my cute cards which sold out . I’ll be making more designs of these.

I am very exciting for 2018 and all the other Trade shows I booking into now.

I’ve worked quite hard lately and now it’s time for tiny break before catching with Crimbo pet portrait orders.

Cheryl x

The day I discovered ACEO cards

Check out these teeny tiny mini paintings! Aren’t they so cute!

Today I’m halfway through a personal challenge to paint 50 ACEO paintings.

What is an ACEO? An ACEO is a little tiny work of art. ACEO stands for Art Card Originals and Editions. Collecting them is a craze that is sweeping the UK. I read somewhere however that artists have been trading art cards for a very long time. Just for fun and inspiration. Perhaps before the days of Instagram, that’s how they got their ‘likes’ and shared ideas.

There is a huge variety of artwork available in this format. Store them in a book or display them in teeny frames or shelves. They’re going in my eBay shop tonight..Become a mini art collector today…

They are so much fun to make! ūüé®

They are also very portable! This helps greatly with transporting to markets and fairs and posting abroad …

Watch this space. I think ACEO creating is about to become a new hobby of mine.

A work in progress 

5 weeks to go and the countdown is on! 

I didn’t quite gauge how much work would be involved when I signed up for the Country Living Mag Christmas Fair this November. 

But I am enjoying the challenge of ‘quick-decide-what-your-actual-style-is-and -stick-to-it-then-make- a-tonne-of -art’ 

That was the biggest challenge – learning what art style of mine I actually love. Then deciding what I am going to paint? And how can I produce a lot of it within my budget? What’s the best size to make for shoppers? What does my ideal customer look like? 

My lounge, ahem, ‘studio’ has now being overtaken by piles of white frames and canvas’. Some will make the cut, and go proudly to the printers, others will be tossed shamelessly into the slosh pile.  

Must stop looking at other artists’ Instagram! It’s really interrupting my flow of imagination.

However, I am enjoying making a few pieces of retro nursery art. Retro kitchen art. Just retro art in general. I think this is my jam. (I have actually painted retro jam) 


Watch this space for updates of how I pull it all together in the end. 

Cheryl x

2 years since I decided to be an artist: A reflection

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Hi and how are you?¬† So, it’s been about 2 years now to the month when I decided to pick up my paint brushes and decided I was going to be an artist.¬† I feel inspired to write a little blog about what I’ve learned along the way and what went right.

What was the push to be an artist at the time? I remember just feeling so dissatisfied working my fulltime career in the NHS and having to working a lot of extra hours to pay off some debts.¬†I loved¬†painting and drawing all through my childhood and it’s the place I find joy¬†.

I was dating an artist at the time, and I guess I had a glimpse into what that ‘work-from-home-doing-what-you-love’ life looked like.¬†¬† I just had a moment one day when I decided “I’m going to make this happen ! ”

2 years now and the biggest lessons I have learned are not about how to be a skilful artist or how to produce the best pieces of art.¬† I’ve learned that whatever you want to do – just do it!¬† You¬†will¬†learn along the way.¬†¬† To get ahead in any venture, you just have to be fearless, out yourself out there and knock on a lot of doors!¬†Don’t¬†take rejection personally, but be¬†open to criticism and advice. ¬†Success doesn’t come from a lucky streak, it comes from hard work and a lot it!¬† Keep moving towards your goal.¬† Even when times are tough.

Practice in public.¬† My go-to online community is Instagram and a bit of Facebook.¬† I am so thankful for the community of people who follow me online and other inspiring creatives who I follow.¬†I¬†really value their feedback. ¬†I¬†can say I’ve made some creative friends¬†online¬†– some from other countries – and I’d love to meet them in person.¬†Practicing in public is great. Don’t wait until you’re perfect. Don’t be¬†scared to just put your artwork out there and gauge the reaction.¬† Not everyone will like your work, but the internet can be very forgiving and people generally only focus on what your currently working on.¬† I cringe when I look back at some shoddy pieces I used to upload to Instagram.¬† Ive kept them up there however. ¬†I like to think of the ¬†‘Gram as my daily diary and I look back from time to time and can remember where I was at a certain time and what was happening.

Don’t get too caught up online. By this, I mean “don’t look at other people’s artwork too much”.¬† Really. ¬†It will make you depressed and miserable and want to set your own art on fire.¬† Or else, it will turn you into a copycat creative. Nobody wants other artists ideas in their head. That art¬†wont flow with your personality and style.

Although, I do like to see how other artists work.  A great way to success is to choose someone who is already successful in your field and observe their path they took. Hang out with them even!  You can only be really great if you surround yourself with others who can inspire you and help you to be great.

Have a regular outlet.¬† I am also very thankful for my regular monthly stall in the Grassmarket in Edinburgh, as well as other craft fairs I’ve attended over the past 2 years.¬† I must say that I haven’t signed up to too many this year as I spent a small ¬†fortune on stall fees in 2016.¬† Nonetheless, from my little stall, my art has sold to customers from all over the World.¬† I always ask where they are taking my art to.

I love market day and meeting the people. I’ve discovered that my favourite feeling is when children walk past my stall and see the colourful funny paintings and their little faces light up.¬† I do think children should be in charge of the money at all times.¬† Trading at the markets is also a great way to test the market and experiment with new styles to¬†discover ¬†what people want to buy.

I love my Etsy shop too.  Etsy is a great easy to use platform to sell art across the World.

You can be one of 2 types of artist; An artist who just paints what they want and puts it out there. Or, ¬†you can paint what people want to buy.¬† Hmm, I would say I’m a bit of both.¬† With my greetings cards, I just paint what I want and it’s objective.¬† Someone somewhere will appreciate it.¬† I also provide an art service by taking custom orders for portraits.¬† This really generates a lot of work.¬† And its still fun.

`Decide your style. This is my biggest bugbear!¬† I have a few different styles on the go. No set colour scheme. No set medium.¬† I wish some days that I was a more organised artist with a set colour pallete and style.¬† This way I would have a ‘brand’.¬† Right now however, I’m still playing around with different styles and techniques. Acrylic on canvas, watercolours, painting animals, painting retro images.¬† I have found though that acrylic paintings are a nightmare to manage when you live in a tiny house.¬†¬† You make a mess and clutter all over the studio area. You have to varnish them. They are heavy to ship off.¬† They get ripped sometimes when you’re transporting them.

I don’t have a studio -yet -There is only so much space out there in my shed to store all these oversized paintings I love to create.

Working with watercolours at a desk is so much more practical and can be stored away in drawers.

This leads me to my next section – What’s next?¬† Well, I really love creating illustrations.¬† I love creating little characters and quirky designs.¬† I have decided to make this my focus for the foreseeable future and concentrate on creating greetings cards, children’s book illustrations and other paper goods that can be sold online.

I keep telling people that if you go to any of these run down towns and high streets¬†across the UK now, there are always 2 shops that stand strong : The COOP, and the Card Shop!¬†¬†¬† Because in the UK, people LOVE cards.¬† FACT. We love sending cards. We don’t write letter anymore, but a birthday text is too impersonal.¬† What a great business to be in – the business of helping people send love in the form an art card.

There’s a whole paper world out there to be explored.

Be prepared for hard graft. I work very hard.Some days I am up at 5 am painting and researching.  My brain goes like a fair most of the time. Like most people who are trying to run a small creative business, I also have another job to earn my living. Fortunatly I also love my other job,and I am gratfeful that I get to work in a team and do life in the hospital.

It does suck up a lot of my energy however and my goal this year is to work part time and make art the rest of the time.

It’s important to have some down time for relaxation. For me, this is my regular walks up the woods or the beach with Obi the dog or catching up with friends.¬† Sometimes the best inspiration comes from the peace and silence.

Hard work isn’t all that bad when your doing what you love though.¬† In fact, its rather enjoyable.

Lastly, I’ve learned that you don’t just get ‘discovered’ one day – that only happens in the movies.¬† You make things happen by knocking, asking, seeking.¬† Making changes when you find what works and what doesn’t. Asking for help when you need help.

Just be you. In your most organic creative form.  And love the people you make art for.

 

My goals for 2018 are:

  • To be accepted for ‘Not On The High Street’ online store
  • To get really¬†confident at Marketing to local businesses and knock on a few doors
  • Illustrate some picture books
  • Trade weekly at my stall and other craft events throughout Scotland…and maybe beyond
  • Learn how to blog

 

I hope this has inspired you.  Please leave me a comment.

Love Cheryl x