Paint Your Own Sketchbook Cover and Express Yourself

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New Sketchbook 'issues'

The New Year always gets me excited about the potential possibilities of new journals and sketchbooks and what I can do to fill them - you too?  However, I always struggle with the plain black cover and long to put my own personality and creativity into it.  

So, this time around I've painted my own cover on my new Daler & Rowney sketchbook and thought I'd share my process with you all.

In the video, I share my supplies and process in full.  For one of my favourite finishing touches, I added a matching ribbon to place inside my sketchbook, just because.

Click the button below to watch my YouTube art tutorial ...

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This will be my last post for 2017 and to that end I wish you all a fun-filled and abundant 2018.  Enjoy your New Year celebrations. See you on the other side in January!

Take care.

Jane x

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All Is Calm - Art Video and De-stressing At Christmas

Would you like to de-stress a little this Christmas?  

I can't wave a magic wand but I CAN share some tips/ideas that help me to manage my stress levels at this crazy time of year and of course, art always slows us down.  The girl is holding some 'fairy lights' - you can never have too many fairy lights, right?! ;)

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Art Video

I'm also showing you the full process (starting at about 8 mins) for creating the portrait above entitled All Is Calm.  I've sped the recording up, so you'll see the whole project in just over 20 minutes. 

I used willow charcoal, warm white soft pastel, charcoal pencils and compressed charcoal on toned paper.  Here is the link to the reference photo I used. 

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I hope you enjoy this video and please share with your friends. 

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The Darkness, The Light and Charcoal

It can seem that there is darkness everywhere...

So many events happening in our world (and personal lives) are just heartbreaking.  There's pain, tragedy, evil and brokenness all around.  Take for instance, war torn Syria, starving Yemen, North Korea, the Middle East and closer to home, here in the UK, so much unrest due to the Brexit negotiations.  

Do you ever feel like you could be swallowed up by the pain and devastation that seems evident everywhere you turn?

Yes, me too.  When I feel saddened with global news, family difficulties, friends who are struggling; I turn to drawing, creativity and there I meet The One.

Below is a charcoal portrait that I actually finished in the dark (almost) because I hadn't realised the time.  I can't tell you how much I needed to just lose myself and find myself again.

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If you’re feeling a heavy burden, I want you to know that yes, the darkness can threaten to engulf you but remember it’s when the night sky is at it’s darkest, that a simple candle flame can have the biggest impact... 
— Jane Hinchliffe

So, Sweet One, take a little time out from the hustle and bustle of Christmas organising and prepations and grab those knitting needles, that favourite baking pan along with the edible glitter you've had stashed at the back of your cupboard, that new art supply you've been aching to use, your art journal, or simply take that bath you've been meaning to, along with adding a few drops of lavender oil, some soothing music and then ENJOY this simple act, FULLY... 

Then give thanks because there's always something to be grateful for...  

Remember, you're not alone... 

and...

You never will be...  

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Confessions and New Artwork

Today, I'm wanting to let you know about my new style 'Confessions Of An Artist' Newsletter/Letter and to show you some brand new artwork... 

The Confessions Letter has been on my heart for some time now.  It's my way of 'getting real' and sharing honestly with you.  It's about deep connection, being vulnerable and pushing aside the Instagram or Pinterest version of life (just for a little while - it's all in the balance right?).  If you'd like to receive my next Letter, please click here

New artworks

Now for my new pastel paintings - the top one being 'hot off the easel' just yesterday.  They're all available from my shop and prints will be available here too.

I've so enjoyed creating these pieces.  They've felt gentle, feminine, nurturing and just what I've needed.   I hope you love them too.

Flowers are an easy, eloquent expression of love at a time when words can seem clumsy and inadequate.
— Lynn Coady

The flowers have all come from my garden - yes, I can't believe it either - roses still at the end of November in England!  Yep, I know.

The piece above includes some flowers from my patio - Salvia and a beautiful patio rose. The milk jug is based upon a Cath Kidston one that I own and love to use for flowers - as well as milk ;). 

Take care friends and I'll see you next time...

 

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Feeling Blessed 48 Hour SALE!

Hello Lovely Readers,

I hope you're all having a wonderful week and for those of you in the States - Happy Thanksgiving! 

I'm thrilled to announce a 'Feeling Blessed' 48 hour sale! Head over here to receive 25% off BOTH ecourses - Portraits In Time and Fragments Of Joy.  

Please enter: FEELINGBLESSED at checkout to receive your discount on either art class.

Here's to happy creating this winter season!

Note: For both classes, enjoy instant access with lifetime duration.  Enjoy some time 'just for you' this winter season - a time of year that brings with it so much joy but also busyness, which can soon take it's toll without some nurturing and creative 'time out'.

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You Can't Be Your 'Best Self' If You Ignore Your Emotional, Physical + Spiritual Well-Being

Do you ever find yourself feeling ruled by your 'to do' list?  Do you feel as if you're being dragged through your day, struggling to keep up with so many obligations, other people to take care of, tasks and thoughts crowding your head, that somehow YOU never feel nurtured?  Lastly, do you sometimes get irritated with your nearest and dearest and then feel desperately sorry and guilty? Yes, I know - I've been there too...

The Joyful Encounter - click to purchase...

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 Credit:  Becca Lee , Pinterest

Credit: Becca Lee, Pinterest

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I was listening to Sally Clarkson and Kristen Kill on their podcast yesterday and their discussion came around to this very topic and it reminded me of how I used to feel (and truth be told, sometimes I still do on a particularly challenging day...) before I paid attention to the needs, desires and whispers of my heart.

Sally went on to say, that you can't deny your 'emotional and physical' needs consistently as sooner or later, you'll  end up being in pieces.  She states: 'no-one can take care of your happiness, only you' - isn't that the truth?  Sally talks about 'building rhythms into our lives' for daily nurture time and that life is not about being 'dragged across the finish line' but rather to embrace life.  Sally shares that the '... best gift you can give your child [husband, parent, work colleague etc] is the gift of being a content and happy person'

Once upon a time, I used to suffer crippling depression and whilst the 'outside world' couldn't have guessed, my family certainly could.  As I started to feel better, I did a number of things but the thing I've come back to, is endeavouring to listen to what my heart needs as best as I can.  

Enter art!  Art fills me up and reminds me of who I am.  It helps still my mind from its incessant chatter, encourages me to 'see' beyond myself and teaches me that I'm abundantly loved by God.

So, it's your turn dearest...

  • What stirs your heart?  What are those whispers you are trying to ignore?
  • How can you practically tend that weary heart of yours?
  • Are you an introvert or extravert? Are you in desperate need of some space to 'be' or a favourite friend to enjoy a cup of tea and a chat with? 
  • If picking up brushes and dipping in paint does that for you, please do this for yourself.  If it's gardening, sewing, having a vintage tea party with friends - whatever it is, take this time and do it regularly.  
  • Journal what comes up for you and then take some small action towards a positive change.

If what I've shared resonates, you have some tips/suggestions or just want to share your heart, please leave a comment below.  

 

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