I'll Protect You

I really love painting with deep, muddy colours and purple toned reds, so here are a few small things I made recently.

I don't know when or why I started painting/drawing uplifting and encouraging messages so much, but I'm glad I do and I hope it comes off as genuine and supportive, because really I make them for myself (to spur myself on) and I find it really helpful. It might seem a little forced or overly cutesy to someone else, but these are kinda private thoughts that I have for myself. They're just little things I tell myself, and if they help me then I hope they might be able to help other people too. So please try your best, take care of yourself, and I'll do my best to protect you in this one small way.

Diary: I'm Not A Chicken

I've been trying to make sure I go for lots of walks lately. It's strange how hard it can be to drag yourself outside when all you want to do is eat a pile of toast and watch a video of a cat swatting a banana onto the floor, or whatever. It's important, though, and it always feels right once I get outside (and sometimes there are real cats outside that I can meet, although rarely do I see any stray bananas on my walks).

I've been making some gifs lately (mostly for my SHINee blog, aiwadreamer), and there is something uniquely satisfying about it. I guess there's lots of reasons why we enjoy the looping motion of a pleasant, oscillating image, but there is a certain calm to it sometimes. Making them feels a bit like putting something in my pocket. Putting a little piece of a video in my pocket. It's good.

I also tried painting some muddy coloured moths, which was nice. It felt a bit different since I don't often draw from references or real life these days. Most things are more based on whatever shapes are inside my head, but now it feels so relaxing sometimes to just sit and paint/draw something real with lots of shadows and textures and edges. I realised I like painting birds because of their combination of round, soft bodies and pointy beaks, and I'll have to paint moths a bit more to figure out the best parts of painting them.

I also went and got some new clothes, approximately five thousand years after deciding I wanted some new jumpers. H&M always has some things I really like, and I was not disappointed this time. I picked up two jumpers, a top, a pair of tights, and some cute hair scrunchies.

I also found a weird jumper with a sequinned chicken design, which, well, you have to see this one.

Amazing. I didn't buy it, but I had to try it on. For research purposes.

Me & Rilakkuma Having A Nice Time

Hi. Here's me and a Rilakkuma charm which is also supposed to be a sandwich. Sandwiches and cute bears? A good combo. I've been kinda missing shooting little mini room portraits or a bunch of candid shots at a time, so I had some fun just taking these pictures in a time lull.

I've missed taking outfit pictures too, but to be honest I fall away from doing them because it can be hard to get a nice pose and every clothing item well represented at the same time AND get my face to look like I'm not having a big think about the logistics of global politics/the co-existence of all beings/particularly complicated sandwiches. I think sometimes it's just nicer to get some partial outfit shots that are more about the setting, and the time, and the capture of a real little moment. Because after all, our clothes are simply a part of our lives. A kind of frame we dress ourselves in to do whatever it is we're doing.

I guess that's one reason why I love borrowed clothes, or hand-me-downs, or old clothes found ten years later - because it's nice to have a part of life with you like a memory or moment, or the smell of a friend or a nice place, or just nostalgia for 1998. Whatever an old or previously used piece of clothing carries with it. I like that just as much as how something looks or feels.

So here's my red skirt and blue cardigan, but in the context of this day with sandwich bear, and a little spherical chocolate, and a mint-coloured bunny drawing. A happy day of small things, and the red and blue primary colour combo that always reminds me of that one Rupert the Bear nightdress I've had for a long time. There's something childish and nice and bright about it.

Nice day, nice moment, nice colours.

5 Favourite Moomin Comic Strip Moments

Moomin has always been a huge inspiration and source of wonder to me, and after reading through a big book anthology of the comic strip, I thought it would be nice to pick out a few of my favourite moments to celebrate all that is magical and strange and delightful about Moomin and all his friends, family members, enemies, and lovely flowers.

Here are five of the best.

1. When Stinky ate Moomin's house.

2. When Moomin found love and wouldn't let it go.

3. When Snorkmaiden tried lipstick (and decided against it).

4. When Snorkmaiden and Little My got excited about pirates.

5. When Moomin thought about art.

Beautiful & Wild Things

Sometimes blogging gets too formulaic and predictable. A list of my favourite jumpers is all well and good, but what about the tiny things? What about the reason I'm here in the first place? Because it was all to record the tiniest of things. The feeling of excitement when you find a punnet of grapes reduced to 12p. This nice card with a painting of some flowers on it that my grandma sent me for my birthday. Remembering that one Smash Hits compilation CD I used to have, with an Aaron Carter song on it.

It's those things that keep all the secrets and the dusty memories. It's not the list of topics I can conjure up to write about, but the things hidden between words and kept under pillows. Making stuff, remembering stuff, loving stuff, and being stuff - it's all about everything the way it is. Buying a new pair of floral socks, or watching 2009 Eurovision entries for three hours with your hair half parted the wrong way. Those kinds of things.

Inspiration Journal ♡ Mood Boards

I currently still have a slightly excessive amount of notebooks waiting for me to use them, so I decided to turn one very small and cute notebook into a nice little place filled with some themed mood boards and inspiration collages. One of my favourite things about being online is the constant access to an incredible array of inspiring images and art pieces and photographs of things such as beautiful flowers, dogs, and old Tamagotchis, so it makes sense to make a home for all of those things offline too.

I think this will be a really useful resource for finding styles, colour palettes, aesthetics, or just drawing references and ideas. Curating some special things to look through can do a lot for your happiness and focus.

A page of cute dogs will be sure to cheer me up at any time.

These are just the initial pages, but I'm already very happy with these layouts and I feel inspired and calm. Pink sunsets and night skies and glowing lights are so nice.

I'm going to try collecting lots of cutesy stuff, fashion inspiration, scenic landscapes, nostalgic toy stuff, scientific illustrations, intimate flower arrangements, and who knows what else in here.

Magazine Collages: WANT/HOME

I found a roll of acetate lying around recently, so now I can do some cool paintings that are easy to layer to give collages a little bit of extra texture. It's really fun to paint on, so I'll probably be doing it a lot.

I kinda wanted to find some homely/comforting images to collages with this time. So some nice fruits, soft pinks, red stripes and gingham was what I found. I love reds and pinks and warm purples so much. And of course, raspberries are my passion.