Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Another monster...

I think these monsters have really gotten under my skin...

I had another sketchy idea for a monster who lives in the woods and forests and collects precious things which he keeps in a special pouch.

Here is the sketch...

So I trawled my fabric stash and found some lovely grey fake fur. Fur would suit a friendly monster that lives in the trees yes?

I think the answer is yes! The fake fur really made this little guy, and his floral pouch stands out too. The inside of his pouch is for storing badges and pins, the kind that we collect and don't do anything with, but want to keep. His name is 'Arboreal Collector'.

I thought he was cute, so I took him and 'Arctic Receiver' along to a local mixed con where my brother was exhibiting his web comic related products, just to see if anyone would like to buy him. Well little Arboreal Collector disappeared within about five minutes! Arctic Receiver hung around on our table for a little longer but was soon scooped! It was weird wandering around the con later and seeing these two guys clutched in their new owners arms. Still, I was very happy to see them go off to new homes! 

Goodbye little creations!

Friday, 25 March 2011

For some reason I've been having a real inkling to make fabric monsters. I mean, doesn't everyone? No? Well...It started with a few ideas in my little handbag sketchbook. I carry this around with me when I go to work on the train, and it really, really works for me.

I've no idea who the guy at the bottom is, but the little sketch at the top was my design for a cute little snowbound monster. I envisioned him with white fleece fur and wearing a radio belt around his waist, with lots of dials so he can tune in to radio signals as he wanders the lonely tundra. I don't know, I just liked the idea of it. Later that week I got together some white fleece, coloured felt and had a go, and here's what came out.

I think I nailed it! He's called 'Arctic Receiver'. I think I see a series of monsters coming on...

Thursday, 24 March 2011

First Foray


I've ummed and ahhed and thought long and hard about it and here I finally am. I am with blog. A quiet little unassuming corner of the internet to call my own. Of course, visitors are very, very welcome, and hopefully with time and a little schooling I'll build up some content some of you may be interested in!

So why blog, and what about? Well, I create. I have drawn doodles and written stories since I can remember, and more recently I have learned to love to sew. I'm an avid blog reader and would love to join this vibrant community of people who make. I have always loved to make. There is just something so fulfilling about it. Whether it's just getting that annoying little doodle character out of my head and onto paper, giving a handmade gift or having someone actually buy something you've made. Something my brain and my hands put together. Wow. The creative process is equal parts frustrating, annoying, exhilarating and deeply satisfying...and very, very addictive.

So what kind of things do I make? Well, that rather brings me to the explanation of the name of my blog. Sometimes, I just like to sew cute little bags and purses and things with lovely patterned cottons. Cute stuff, sweet stuff, eye candy things. Other times I draw anthropomorphic wolf detectives who smoke and drink and lurk in shadows. Then I like to write about a group of weird semi-military folks who live inside a mountain in Scotland and patrol the other conjoined fantasy realms under the leadership of an out-of-time dragon. Do you see my problem? How can I pull together an identity out of that? That's been the cause of my waiting so long to blog. Which am I? Do I adopt the cute handsewn gift identity? Or the weird webcomic loving fantasy buff and artist? I struggled with this for so long until I bought and read “The Handmade Marketplace” by Kari Chapman ( The great advice in this book made me realise I could be happy as a Jack of more-then-one Trades, and that being myself is key. Why would I want to only show one side of myself and keep the rest out? I guess we all do this to some extent, to different groups of friends. I mean, I don't talk about crafting to the rest of my (all male) Floorball Team, or talk much teams sports to my mum's group friends. But all the creative things I do are inextricably linked. They share a passion and a process that I'd been trying to split up without success. Which brings me to my identity 'The Awkward Niche'. I have a niche, and that niche is being me. Like all of us, there is no-one else quite like me. However, I sometimes struggle with that identity, and want to change it. “From now on I'll just sew, and sew pretty things, like the lovely blogs I read”...and ten minutes later I've drawn some weird, android turtles attacking a giant robot shaped like a kettle. It's no good. I'm me, but sometimes even I have to re-draw the boundaries of what that means, shift them a little, push them out or draw them in until they fit better.

So there you have it. The Awkward Niche.
Jules (excited and tired, all at once)