Urban Colours

It seems like the only time I have to draw out and about is when I’m eating. All except for the one in the park was sitting at a cafe/restaurant/gelati shop etc. For a closer look click here.  Cheers!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


Colour Me Impressed

There is so much going on online, again I feel like I have barely scratched the surface. It’s great how you can do online courses in watercolours or even sketchbook journalling, but I like the ones that really challenge my creativity, and allow me some freedom to play around with ideas and techniques etc. It’s also a great way to see other people’s work, there is so much inspiration out there – it’s amazing.

I’ve taken to a couple, and really that’s about all the time I have for them.


Every Day in May 2011

The first one I was introduced to was Every Day Matter Challenges and that was a great push for me to not feel like I had to have a whole Sunday to paint or sketch. The online community of EDMers are so cool, always supportive, explorative and enthusiastic.

Then not that far off is Every Day in May. I think most people know what that is and have joined in as well. Sometimes I wish they had chosen February because there are only 28 days in that month, but it’s all about challenging oneself I guess.

To view my 2011 Every Day in May artwork please click here.

This year I decided to keep it a bit more practical (ie, in the comfort of my own living room) and focussed on a handful of  toilet rolls I kept aside because I thought they would make great tools for practicing tonal drawings. So again, this project allowed me to explore other techniques and mediums. If you would like to see them in more detail please click here.


This slideshow requires JavaScript.


Urban Sketches

When I was asked to contribute to Urban Sketches I wanted a theme to all my drawings. I didn’t have a distinctive style as yet, and I guess because of my commercial background my drawings can go from cartoony/overly gestured to very controlled realism, and I didn’t want a hodge-podge of styles and mediums in one book. So I decided to use a felt pen and water brush pen. I also decided to use my local area as the subject matter, and when I finished my first book my second one was based on scenes from bus stops.

But with my new found style using colour inks I want to start another book – arrrghhh!!! Or I’ll just flip my current book and start it at the back.

To view my Urban Sketches 2011 book please click here.


Sketchbook Project

As Every Day in May almost killed me (admittedly what I pictured in my head was a lot simpler than what resulted) when I signed up for The Sketchbook Project I decided to keep it fun and as easy as possible. Some of my friends may beg to differ on that last comment but it really was a lot easier to execute than if I had chosen a particular medium and style to illustrate the entire book with. My subject was ‘Sandwich’. It was something I thought would remain fun no matter what direction I took it in. When I sat down to work out the angle of the book I could only come up with lots of small ideas, not one that would last the distance of the entire book. So I decided to do all the little ideas instead. It thus became more exciting and enjoyable to work on as I could use different mediums and styles and not worry about consistency.

To view my Sketchbook Project ‘Sandwich’ please click here.


4, 5, 6, 7…Sketchbooks

Before I met all my sketchbook buddies I only ever used drawing books to work out ideas in – they were full of scribbles, notes and taped in clippings and especially not for sharing.

But the phenomena of sketchbooks more as personally illustrated journals has rubbed off on me. Now I probably have more sketchbooks than I need. I slap my hand for going down this path. Sometimes I think they cause more grief than pleasure. Especially the way we have started to perceive sketchbooks these days – as visual narratives of our lives. Some are like lovingly prepared visual journals than a messy processing of our creative thoughts. Maybe because they are are such wonderfully bound books with lovely paper inside that forces us to make sure that whatever we put in there is special. And when you do flip through them and look at all the finished pages one after the other it is like a little storybook. Though it can place pressure to keep the contents consistent or neat and perfect.

The small page format can also be constraining and I will always prefer a big old sketch pad or watercolour pad than a small sketchbook. But they do have a plus side. The small format does make them a practical size to pop in your bag so you have absolutely no excuse not to sketch when you’re out and about. It’s also neater than having piles of loose leaf sheets piling up on your shelves. And if you decide to theme them, like I do, it can push you to explore your artwork with different mediums or subject matter. So I like them for that. And if they are travel journals its a wonderful way to preserve memories.

So below are links to a few of my sketchbooks.


I started this in 2008 on my last trip to Antarctica. I wish I had kept travel drawing journals all my life because most of my travelling was done before then. Oh well, admittedly though, even at this point in time, I still wasn’t very comfortable about drawing out in public, so the entries aren’t as extensive as I would have liked.

To view click here.


My first forray into showing my work online. It’s a great idea for anyone of any drawing skill. It shows you that you don’t have to travel to an exotic location to find something interesting to draw.

To view click here. Or to see the EDM challenge list click here.


When I cook at home sometimes during the preparation certain foods, cutlery etc. looks really cool. Whether it’s the natural lighting, the way they the ingredients are cut or how the food looks when it comes out of the oven – it looks really awesome. So I’ve been taking photos to use as inspiration for paintings and drawings.

To view click here.


As most museums don’t allow people to sketch with things other than pencils or writing pens I found it pointless taking in so many art materials to an exhibition. So it’s usually just a pen or pencil, and depending on the gallery I will sneak in a pocket-sized water colour palette and my water brush pen. Also, these places get very congested with people so there is very little room for anything more than a small sketchbook.

To view click here.


Since my Urban Sketches books are stylised and themed I wanted one for any occasion when I’m out and about. This one is freer in style and subject matter, and it’s good to have so I wont have any excuses to draw when I’m out.

To view click here.

It’s Easy As…

I’ve created a couple of new pages showcasing all the materials I use as well as my own personal tips on how to handle them or how I use them. I dont have any professional background when I offer this advice, it’s garnered from regular use and a lot of jumping in the deep end but I hope it helps. I would also love other people’s feedback on anything listed below.


My new love. Using colour inks is like moving into a new house. It’s all very exciting in the beginning – new scenery, new thoughts but mostly unexplored and you’re not quite settled in. Some things are still in boxes and only the necessities have been unpacked.

My drawing style is a bit out there, but as far as exploring what these inks and other kinds of colour inks can do I still haven’t breached the surface. I have no idea what the difference is between my Winsor & Newton drawing inks and Acrylic inks, so if anyone has any info to share that would be great. Click here to read my review on colour inks.


People familiar with my old blog will have seen my extensive use of Indian ink and dip pen. It’s still a favourite and I will continue to push it to its limits, despite the mess! Click here to read my review on Indian ink and dip pens.


Not a medium I use a lot, but when I see objects sitting in natural light, my first thought is “That would look great in pencil”. I recently did a small drawing using a rubber or eraser as part of the drawing process. I quite liked it and will explore that technique more one day. Click here to read my review on graphite pencils.


Another new medium that has great colour intensity. I love its saturation. It reminds me of those picture books where all you had to do was add water with a brush and the colours would appear. Of course the paper was terrible and by the time you finished “painting” a page it looked more like a swimming pool. But it was always exciting to see colours appear from nothing just by adding water. And Inktense pencils are the same – I cant wait to add the water to see how it all comes together. Click here to read my review on Inktense pencils.


Watercolours have become my salt and pepper, I add it to almost everything. Especially my half pan palette. As much as I love using watercolours, I think it’s more the format which makes it so handy. You can add colour quickly to a sketch, or paint up a last minute birthday card. If you have a travel palette small enough you can even sneak into a museum or gallery. Click here to read my review on watercolours.


Not sure if that’s what you call them these days. But I always make sure I have a handful of fresh pens around to use. When I use to work in a design studio I hated it when the “suits” wanted to use these pens to write with. They were under the false impression that it made their writing neater – WRONG! They were so heavy handed with them that they would push the nib into the metal bit and ruin a perfectly good pen. Bloody suits! Click here to read my review on pens.

A, B, C…

Greetings everyone, welcome to my new-ish blog makeover!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

To see more colour ink work please click here.

With much deliberation of what to do with this blog after my satisfying breakthrough using colour inks, I’ve decided to showcase a bit more of my work besides black and white ink. Which will be quite nice – to not place any restraints on what I upload.

I will only select my better work rather than throw everything on it, “everything” however, will appear on my flickr site.  And I will also include online projects like Every Day in May and The Sketchbook Project.

To see more watercolours please click on image.
To see more pencil work please click on the image.









Something I have always appreciated from the online community are the personal reviews, especially of art materials. They’re always a lot more honest and in depth than the promotional write ups from the manufacturer and I value them. So I’m a few posts away from doing the same. I don’t use a whole lot of materials and I probably don’t use them correctly, but what I use I use a lot, and hopefully they’ll be of some value to some people. Plus I’ll thrown in my own tips on how I use them.

So thank you to all the people who have taken an interest in my blog and I hope you continue to enjoy it.


Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: