Adventuring in Delta

I love getting in the car and driving away from the city and going on an adventure. We didn’t have to travel very far, for we went to plane watch at Delta de llobregat which is just a few miles out of Barcelona (actually its where Barcelona El Prat airport is). Such a weird combination of industrial aeronautical, yet whilst being amongst a nature reserve. The landscape is absolutely beautiful. On the coast, you walk through paths of reeds, poppies and rivers. Beautiful abandoned houses and paths. Sea views and just the weird feeling of watching planes glide over. I love nothing more than just getting out and going on a nice long walk with my camera and enjoying seeing wildlife and nature. It felt like a perfect spring day.

Making things out of nothing.

On a cold blustery day in the Welsh/English countryside we found ourselves in this wonderful, worn little workshop. Tucked away at the bottom of a garden. Where a ginger cat ruled the roost and roamed in an out. A large old range stove constantly fired up and ready to go. Everything coated in a fine orange dust. Piles and piles of clay. Tools scattered. Projects ready to be created.

There is something about manual arts and crafts which always makes me feel better and more real. Making something beautiful out of quite literally nothing makes me feel myself and takes me back to the reason of being really. As cass as that sounds. I love from a lump of almost earth you can create beautiful objects that have use. I love that out of a sheep’s’ wooly jacket you can create clothes, out of a simple piece of cloth you can create a beautiful garment and out of a piece of led or ink on paper you can create a master piece. When nothing becomes something is quite magical. Thats the reason I make to create something out of nothing, to remind my self that thoughts become things.

Learning how to throw pottery is quite a task, it looks so much easier than it actually is. Its something I really loved doing, so much technique to learn. Its a craft I want to explore more and I am itching to find some studios here in Barcelona. I loved using my hands and getting stuck in, quite literally, I loved the feeling of making something useful and functional but beautiful at the same time.

In this studio, on a cold winters day, we learnt how to make little bowls with the help and guidance (and a hell of a lot of patience) of a skilled craftsman. Just being in this scene, in this studio, made me feel alive again. For its places like these that I do love the very most!

Stuck 

__6_0091

So here I am. In bed with a cup of hot chocolate and reeling from the days events. I know having a good old moan on social media isn’t #inspo but I am feeling lost, stuck and rubbish.

Today I had to go under general anesthesia to do some intense procedures and tests to rule out yet more crap things that my body seems to want to throw at me. I don’t write this to be like, oh you poor thing “you ok hun”. I write this because having it all floating around my head and inside of me is quite literally eating at me.

I mainly wanted to write an update on how my work and illustration is going and I feel like not many illustrators or artists really share online when things are SHIT.

I feel like I am watching the world around me succeed and do well, and I celebrate it I REALLY DO.

DSCF0670But here I am left, days spent in bed, feeling awful about my abilities to create. Feeling like I am not succeeding or getting anywhere. Feeling like everything I create is pointless and just silly and amateur. I feel like a massive imposter and like my work doesn’t do or say anything and I don’t quite know how to go forward with that. I just feel like a massive failure in terms of trying this hard slog of being an illustrator. I have posted to my social media for two years everyday and feel like I am in the exact same position. It feels like no one is really willing to work with me or that I am indeed talented enough to find work. Also feeling like I have had the choice taken from me. I feel like I have been given the bad luck of the draw. I am yet to see what I am supposed to learn from this other than to give up?

I am struggling and feeling like I am fighting every day to make my mark. To be successful. To get published. To get clients. To get a little recognition for all the hard work I have been putting in. And it just seems to be going no where. I have been told that I can’t work. But this goes against what I want and who I am. I want to make something, be successful and be the best I can be. There are just so many obstacles in my way though, that it is hard to know where to start or how to begin. Even the baby steps I am making seem pointless and they are not adding up. People keep telling me it will happen and its just persistance and that pays off. But what I keep asking myself is when? When will I get lucky. I ask for little. I would just like to create everyday and work for myself in an environment that makes me happy and I get to do what I treasure and love. Why does this seem to come with such a heavy price?

I shall write a list of my worries and updates. And I would appreciate any advice there is to give with my work and what steps o can take. Because at the moment I feel shit, like a talentless joke. Like a comedy contestant on xfactor whose friends and family are too polite to say other wise.

I feel stuck in which direction to take things in. I feel like it is such a over saturated market to get into. How do I get my stuff out there? I constantly feel like there is some secret I am not privy to and also feel like a lot of creatives like to keep their tricks hidden as so not to get competition.

Over all I am tired of my health situation and all the unfair hold ups and being held up. I just am at the point of giving up really as it’s not bringing me joy and I feel blocked, stuck and in a loop of throwing all my limited energy at something I dear;y love only for it to fall on deaf ears.

How can I get better and how can I forfill my dream/goals?

Not to be overly dramatic but writing this has made me have a HUGE CRY.

Here are some things I feel:

-Everyone else is taking over the world and getting all these amazing chances. How? What’s the secret?

-What am I doing wrong?

-What if  I am just another creator trying to make it in the big pond

-What if its true that I am actually no good

-Why is everyone else super productive and confident an getting chances

-Is it all just smoke and mirrors, are platforms such as instagram and youtube just showing the best bits. Not these gritty behind the scenes sadness and panic sessions?

IMG_8682I would really love some feedback, even if it’s anonymous and even if it’s not kind. I would just love to get out of this horrible cycle I have found myself in.

I don’t have much energy left to fight anymore and after an awful experience working in a company where you were constantly made to feel like you were at the bottom of the ladder and there was no way of climbing up it and that you were/are a terrible designer and creator and are worthless. Well I am feeling that. I am feeling my body giving up on me. And I am just tired. I don’t want to take a break, I do want to push through. But what direction do I take? How do I get over this feeling that everyone else is doing it and I am still making baby steps. I still feel like I am at the bottom of the ladder and not good enough to “make it”.

It’s so hard when you are doing it alone and for yourself. I feel lonely here without any type of peers to cheer me on or give me feedback. I long to have a community round me where I can feel my best and work and get inspired and be able to create and get feedback.

SO  I always feel like there is a massive pressure to do something. To be someone and to be succesful. I have a HUGE fear of not doing what i always imagined, not being able to do what I always wanted.

So that’s my update, life you are a shitter sometimes.

 

The lost girls

DSCF8116

DSCF8170 DSCF8171DSCF8171 DSCF8172DSCF8169Ama de casa. House bound and house proud, tied to her home.

DSCF8181 DSCF8182 DSCF8183 DSCF8184DSCF8180
la Marinera Grumpy nautical and lost at see, unable to see the horizon.

DSCF8189 DSCF8197DSCF8193Bubble gum pink, sugar and spice and not all things nice. This lost girl is forever trapped in a little locket looking pretty (grumpy).

DSCF8202 DSCF8203 DSCF8204DSCF8201The redhead. Firey and prone to having a bad temper, especially when made to sit in a traditional portrait frame. She is sulky but strong.

DSCF8223
DSCF8219 DSCF8220Cheerful and sunny. She is not of the sunny disposition and quite likes her own company and staying indoors thank you very much.

DSCF8143 DSCF8145 DSCF8146 DSCF8148DSCF8146Watery and light, always watching and feeling alone. Sad and lonely but always there.

DSCF8155 DSCF8158 DSCF8159 DSCF8162 DSCF8161This girl is happy living in the forest and being wild and free. Rosy cheeks and botanical hair. Wild and free.

DSCF8213DSCF8215DSCF8214 DSCF8215Lost in the wilderness, brambles and leaves forever camouflaged, nature grows in her bones.

DSCF8233 DSCF8234 DSCF8235 DSCF8237 glittergirl Golden girl. When she was good she was very very good. Lost in her own bubble of brilliance. Lethargic and bored this lost girl is captured day dreaming about adventures and better times. She is surrounded by a gold glitter glow but sometimes feels a bit dull in comparison.

DSCF8122DSCF8121 DSCF8122 DSCF8124 DSCF8125This girl is under lots of mean clouds that tell her naughty things, sometimes she ignores them and then sometimes it rains (and really pours!)

Lost girls is a series I created to explore an alternative image of what it is to be a girl. A project of portraits that explore femininity in an alternative way. They also celebrate fragility, differences and a certain darkness that is not always explored in fairy tales. I wanted the illustrations to be an extension of myself and the stories I have within. I also wanted them to be quite imperfect. The series also explores the depression and anxiety that we often suffer due to not being quite perfect enough. They have been hand painted and hand cut out of thick grey card. They are “pocket” sized. A pocket sized alternative princess.

They have been painted using water colour, pencil and gouache on thick grey card and have all been hand cut.

They have been listed on my etsy shop but are currently on a special summer flash sale over on my instagram. If you would like to purchase one here then they are around 15€ (around £11).

It has been so therapeutic doing these little projects and bits of art work, as a way of reclaiming who I am a little bit. As I have been unable to work it would also be quite lovely to have a little help, both financially and for my self esteem which is why I have wanted to give a go at trying to sell my stuff.

My week in photos 17


Good things:

This week started by going to “the top”, whilst Borja runs I sit and watch the view with this chap. IMG_4285

A few new updates to my shop, some new things added.IMG_4288 IMG_4289

Daily life things like spaghetti and comfy patterns.IMG_4301 IMG_4306

Sketchbooking some idea’s. More on this in another post 😉IMG_4316IMG_4327

Felt very lonely and a bit lost this week. My remedy for that is to get my self out of the flat for a walk and an adventure. I need to listen to the warning signs and listen to when things get too much and get out and distract myself.

IMG_4323

A giant massive 8 kilo tortilla de patatas at my neighbours birthday party (convenient social events next door means I can see people and literally go straight to bed!).IMG_4334

This baby boys sleeping smile <3IMG_4272

Walking around Poblenou (love it here).DSCF8379DSCF3900
DSCF3901
DSCF3902
DSCF3904
DSCF3905
DSCF3906
DSCF3907
DSCF3910
DSCF3911
DSCF3918
DSCF3919
DSCF3928
DSCF3931
DSCF3932
DSCF3933

Not much to say about this week that isn’t a repeat of last week and the week before that and so on. The treatment has left me really knocked out with very swollen glands and a very swollen knee. I have barely left the house. I did venture out around my barrio of Poblenou though and snapped a few of my favourite bits.
Next week I have the second round of treatment so I am expecting much of the same then. Heres to naps, sleep, comfy beds, puppy hugs and good books.

See you next week xx

A week in photos / Notes from this week 15

Well this week. Not much to say apart from the fact that I have been under such a big black cloud this week battling ugly thoughts, anxiety, illness and other goings on. This has made me feel quite lonely and isolated. So there. Thats all I am going to say on here as I don’t want this blog to be a weekly moan.

There has been some shining lights through the black clouds though. Like having the time to catch up on my Lost girls series and experimenting with different materials etc. Also Saturdays quick outing, to the print studio in Gracia to see a friends work (it was great). Through all this I have realised that I am motivated and a fighter, even if I don’t feel like one. Despite everything I keep going and I am doing well. So yes.

Next week will be treatment week, so a quiet hospital recovering one. Its probably what is needed. I also need to see my family, so will have to arrange that happening.

This weeks glimpses of light (light chasing all the time atm):
1. This message from last week really rings true this week. I should get these as tattoo’s just to remind my self (a la Casey Neistat’s “DO MORE” tatt).IMG_3992IMG_3995

2. My lost girls. I love drawing them and seeing their different characters and stories come to life. I often feel like a lost girl with a lot of stories so I guess this translates into my drawings. I have really enjoyed this week, and working on the tiny postcard size drawings. They will be for sale in my shop next week and through instagram. Watch out for them. IMG_4104 IMG_4097 IMG_4072IMG_4063 IMG_4062 IMG_4058 IMG_4054 IMG_4051 IMG_4050 IMG_4046 IMG_4001 IMG_4034 IMG_4031 IMG_4036

3. Spotting the little tiny details in life.DSCF8017 DSCF8015 DSCF8002 DSCF8019 DSCF8018 DSCF8039 DSCF8072

4. Spontanious adventures and stumbling across good things like Els Gegants.DSCF8026 DSCF8034 DSCF8036 DSCF8037

5. Gracia’s streets and getting lost in them.DSCF8006 DSCF8079 DSCF8099 DSCF8096

6. Random nice/funny things.DSCF8102 DSCF8108 IMG_4040

7. Rainy Barcelona is the best. Its been raining ALL weekend and its been GLORIOUS!DSCF8008

8. Inspiring places and people (even if it was so very crowded).
DSCF8043 DSCF8041

9. Watching these naughty birds squawk from my balcony.
DSCF8114 DSCF8113

 

THE END, see you next week 🙂

 

 

 

Notes from this week/ my week in photos 12

This week has been much the same as the weeks before that. Hospitals, bed and trying to get little things done and producing things that make me happy. Spring/summer has definitely arrived. Its hot, this scares me. I hate the heat.
IMG_3592 IMG_3598 IMG_3599 IMG_3600

My lovely stripey covers and my little doggy noodle. And trying to read as much as I can. Very interested in war time novels at the moment. Especially based around the London Blitz. Also recipe and cook books. I love the Elly Pear book thats just come out- yum!

DSCF5203 DSCF5204 IMG_3618IMG_3616 I had to go to Hospital de l’Esperanza in the north of the city (near Parc Guell). I had never really ventured up this way before besides visting the park. The buildings and every thing felt so different than other parts of the city. I had to have a few scans and was done fairly quickly (not the usual occurrence in hospital-land).IMG_3622
DSCF5210 DSCF5213 DSCF5220 DSCF5222
It was fairly near Gracia, so I decided to walk very down very slowly. I adore this part of the city. Carrer Verdi on a week day is such a nice place to be. The weather was so glorious (breezy and cool in the shade but sunny and warm-not too hot). Everything in bloom. I spied some pretty shops, cafes and buildings. I stopped in a cafe that had nice tiles and wall colour.IMG_3629 IMG_3633 IMG_3634 IMG_3636
In the 9 years that I have lived in Barcelona I have always spied the flower market on Valencia but have never ever been inside. Its pretty cool. I did think it was bigger than it actually is though, but cool and pretty all the same. I then got my tired and achey legs on the bus home where I flopped into bed hugging my pup. I don’t get why or how he can stand being under the covers:
IMG_3612
DSCF5224 DSCF5226 IMG_3652
I made a very good, if I do say so myself, shepherds pie. Yum!

IMG_3602 IMG_3606 IMG_3607 IMG_3639 IMG_3655
I am enjoying drawing people a lot, even if they are a little weird. I like to imagine these girls in their own weird lost worlds. Floating on their own lonely islands. Its nice to get my hands messy and to feel like I am creating something.

IMG_3677 IMG_3686 IMG_3687 IMG_3688 IMG_3689 IMG_3690A small little stroll was made up to The Top. Aka one of my all time favourite places ever. I love how it feels to have the city at ones feet and to be above it all in the fresh, cool air and survey all the city and its goings on. Its so meditative to be there for me and its been months since I have been able to go. I do love it so so much.

IMG_3718 IMG_3720 IMG_3721 IMG_3722 IMG_3727 IMG_3728
I had to pop into the centre to get some supplies. Paper and the like. I love Raima so so much, it really is a treasure of a shop. It is a paper supply, stationary shop in a really old street in Barcelona. It is on two different levels, with the more traditional stationary on the ground floor and the paper supply on the second floor. Its a paper lovers dream. I love how much character it has and the staff are lovely too.

DSCF5304 DSCF5308 DSCF5309 DSCF5339Pretty Barcelona streets. I also love visiting El Borne and El Gotic too. Getting lost in tiny dark streets, always discovering the weird and the wonderful.

So that was my week, I love how it looks so busy and fun. The other bits I don’t really show. It has been nice to get out a bit. I have had to cancel plans and be bad because I have felt so very tired though, and therefor have actually spent most of the week in bed- again.

This weeks Good things:
Spring (blossom against blue skies, lighter evenings, pretty light and wearing spring jackets)
Sitting on terraces having a coffee
Going on a few walks around the barrio
Planning for future things and feeling like: i can do this!
A few head revelations- good at realising things again and thinking clearly. Feeling stronger mentally than I have in a while. Black cloud is almost clearing!
Chats with friends and family on whatsap.

Next week: Knee op, MRI’s, Doctors appointments and lots of netflix I predict.