this moment 2
© Ruth de Vos 2016
87cm high by 88cm wide
Fabric paint, cotton fabric, cotton batting.
Screen-printed, machine-pieced, hand- and machine-quilted.
For local clients (Perth, Western Australia), I can include a frame (email me for details). The artwork comes with hook and loop tabs for mounting into a frame. Alternatively,the artwork also has a fabric sleeve stitched onto the back for hanging purposes, and can be hung without a frame using a gallery-style hanging system, or with two screws in the wall. More info including pictures here: http://ruthdevos.com/blog/how-to-hang-an-art-quilt/
The past five weeks were taken over by drawing! I was privileged to participate in Make Art That Sells' first 'Illustrating Children's Books' workshop, and loved every bit of it. I cleared out as much of my calendar as possible, and spent a good part of every day drawing.
There were several purposes to this workshop: improving our drawings, especially our characters; learning more about how the children's book industry works; and producing a bunch of great pages for our portfolio. Every week we had a major assignment to complete, although the week began with a mini-assignment which got us focussing on something more manageable to start with. Being part of the class Facebook group was also extremely valuable – sharing our struggles, our advice, and our thoughts on what would improve our artwork before submitting it at the end of each week.
I've learned more than I imagined. Our teachers, Lilla Rogers (an art agent) and Zoe Tucker (a children's book art director) used many different children's books to demonstrate the kinds of things we should be thinking about in our drawings. It's not such a simple matter to illustrate and design a great picture book! We spent most of our time focusing on what makes a great character, and how to make that character come to life. I'm really excited to apply a lot of what I learned about this to the children in my quilts!
Of course, eventually it would be awesome to illustrate a children's book one day. For now I will continue to practice what I've learned in order to build up my illustration portfolio!
Thank you so much for the experience, Lilla, Zoe and Make Art That Sells!
In recent weeks I worked on a drawing assignment for an international competition. We had to design teacups and napkins for a cafe. I didn't make the final for the competition, but working on the illustration was an enjoyable challenge for me. I'm pleased with the final result and with what I learnt along the way.
This drawing is a digital composite of many scanned and edited drawings. A project like this still has me a bit confused with regards to a clear plan of attack/ process. I would love learn more about how experienced illustrators approach a task like this. I'm sure that it will come more easily with more experience. I also feel like my digital drawing skills are still holding me back. I would have loved to create a richer-looking backdrop with some texture, but wasn't quite sure how to do that. That's definitely something I plan to learn more about!
You might like to check out the 50 beautiful illustrations that made the final over here.
Meanwhile, here are some of the drawings and designs that went in to this illustration:
By the way, I suspect that quite a large number of you will be receiving this post via email for the first time (those who signed up for this via the pop-up box on my website). Having a look at it this week, I don't think that this automatic 'mail out' has been working up till now. I think I've fixed it now, and just wanted to explain why you are suddenly receiving these emails! Thanks for signing up!
this moment 3
(c) Ruth de Vos 2016
87cm x 88cm
Screen printed, hand-dyed, hand- and machine-pieced, hand- and machine-quilted
These would look great in a child's bedroom or in a family room.
You can browse all my available artworks here, or talk to me about a commission!
A friend recently asked about inspiring and encouraging children who love to draw. I don't know of any local drawing classes to recommend, but have given some thought to my tips in the subject. Here they are:
1. Real life.
Encourage your child to draw from real life. Yes, sometimes this feels like hard work, but it is SO valuable for developing in drawing. Seeing is half of drawing, and drawing from real life helps us to learn to see. Drawing from memory also has its place, but when we only draw from memory, our drawing can easily stagnate. So bring things into the home to encourage drawing, and also take the kids out on drawing 'excursions' – the zoo, a museum, the botanical gardens, a market, the grandparents backyard – anywhere, really!
2. Have fun.
Having stressed the importance of drawing from real life, it's also good to stimulate your child's imagination, after all, that's what kids do best, isn't it – letting imagination inspire their play and their artwork. Check out books by Shaun Tan for inspiration! I love Carla Sonheim for how she encourages us (adults too) to loosen up and play in our art making. Check out her website for online workshops, and also look up her books, including Drawing and Painting Imaginary Animals, and The Art of Silliness.
3. Good supplies.
Have some good art supplies in the house. They don't have to be expensive. Make sure you have some 2B and 4B pencils handy. These are nice and soft to draw with. Also, ONLY buy good quality colouring pencils. I buy either Crayola or Faber Castell. It is so worth spending a little bit more on these. Poor quality colouring pencils stress me out! If your child is old enough to take care of a set of watercolour paints, consider one of these, and a few water colour brushes from an art shop. (That age will vary from child to child). Teach them to never leave the brushes in a cup of water and to be very gentle with the bristles.
Give your child a sketchbook. Make a bit of a deal of it, to show that you look forward to seeing the collection of drawings that they will make in it, and that this will become a book to be treasured. Encourage your child to take it with them when you go out, and to document things that they see and experience, and also the things that they think and dream about, so that the sketchbook becomes a bit of a journal.
5.Join in the fun.
Best tip of all: get a sketchbook for yourself too, and join your child in her creative endeavours. I think you'll surprise yourself with how much you enjoy it – and your child will love sharing that activity with you!
Here's a series of blog posts I wrote a few years ago, about our stay-at-home artists retreat. Maybe you will find some inspiration there too!