Today was, without question, the nicest day of the year. It was also, quite fortunately, a day where I had nothing at all timetabled. The weather forecast said 18C, but whether or not it was the long winter changing my perception, it felt damn-close to being a mid summer’s day. There wasn’t a single cloud to be seen, and I actually felt foolish for not wearing shorts for the first time in over sixth months. With no reason other than to say to myself that I’d been outside that day, I went on a walk into town. After a couple hours I came home with only a 20p packet of paracetamol, but that was enough to justify the walk. It was great seeing parks flooded with people again, even for a Wednesday afternoon. Looking ahead at the weather forecasts, it’s likely we won’t have any day like this for weeks, but it was a very welcome reminder that summer is just a couple months away.
Things have been very busy lately, with my first year at university almost coming to a close (I won’t bore you with a ‘it went by so fast’ talk) and my portfolio of work is starting to build. In just three weeks it’ll be over, and once again summer will beckon as it does every year. Before that, I have a lot of things to show and share on this blog that I’ve curated over the past couple months, and plenty of things to announce – ideas, awards, opportunities and so on.
For now, I’ll share one ‘announcement’. I was looking at a mug the other day with a crudely drawn dog running through some streets. The trees on the mug were a certain style of tree. Drawing landscapes, backgrounds, environments, has always been a pet peeve of mine, and I remembered looking at a similar tree and thinking that it was the solution: that a less detailed, but more stylized type of tree could populate my illustrations, since my ability to draw remotely realistic trees is lacking. The foliage can easily be represented as just a circle for a typical deciduous tree, or a series of triangles for an evergreen.
But then I remembered how much I adore some of the illustrations in my favourite books – Calvin and Hobbes (pictured above), The Moomins – all with fantastic drawings of trees and environments that brought the pictures to life, and didn’t just look like some poor piece of Microsoft Clipart. As with all things, practice makes perfect, so what if I drew just one tree everyday? That’s the challenge I want to set myself. I’m certain I can find just ten minutes each day to sketch a new tree, and it should be the start of a healthier relationship between me and my sketchbook. I frequently set myself new habits that I fail to stick to, of course I hope this one will be different, but I can’t make any promises – ultimately I’m a pretty lazy person.
Consider that my first tree, the tree I was never quite satisfied with, and hopefully each tree I post here each day (along with some thoughts for the day) be it hand drawn or digital, will display signs of progress.
Here’s to the coming spring and summer, and ‘turning a new leaf’, so to speak.