Tuesday, 30 June 2020

"Passion surprises. One doesn't search it. It can happen to you tomorrow."


Day 101-102:

Yesterday seemed to fly by and I didn't take a single photo so I'm lazily adding these two days together. Last year we visited Attingham park a few times around this time of year in search of the Lesser stag for Opeies photo collection of found beetles. Each visit we came away with some photos of some interesting new beetles but sadly never the Lesser stag. As we walked home yesterday through the woodland near us, we turned over logs looking for beetles and there she was, sitting there waiting for a photo. I love how things like this can really make our day and we can now cross off Lesser stag from our list. Next up... we still haven't found Opeie's favourite, the elusive violet ground beetle.







Sunday, 28 June 2020

"Make an empty space in any corner of your mind, and creativity will instantly fill it."


Day 100:

I can't believe it's been 100 days since I started doing this picture a day lockdown thing. I'd really lost the umph for writing before I'd started this so its really good to have that back now. The last 100 days have been a huge turning point for me with my creativity too and that has definitely been helped along by that amazing girl of mine. Ive not been in a relationship before where we are creative together and all those bottles of wine and late night creative sessions are definitely what I was missing in life. Last night the conversation went from deep to just plain stupid and went on till 4am. What I loved most is that we doodled and painted during that time and the evening/early morning flew by. This relationship is completely different than anything that I've ever experienced before and I really hope that she is getting as much out of it as I am.





Saturday, 27 June 2020

"Creativity requires the courage to let go of certainties."


Day 99:

The plan for today was to go for good stomp around snail beach, we made pizza and wrapped it up for lunch but when we arrived the weather just didn't want to play ball so we drove a little further up to Stiperstones and dropped the backseats so that we could sit in the back of the car and paint. Before we could start painting though Opeie asked whether we could do a drawing activity he had created where we design products for a supermarket based around themes. I love things like this as you end up drawing things that you would never usually think of drawing. 



Thursday, 25 June 2020

"There is no remedy for love but to love more."


Day 97:

I rarely get any time to just be a grown up and its been that way for so many years. Opeie is the greatest company I could ask for and I wouldn't change anything about him being with me full time for that time, but every now and again its nice to not have to worry about anyone and just concentrate on being. Today was one of those rare occasions where he wasn't with me for a few hours so me and Becci went for a long walk deep into the woods by the house. We had nowhere to be, and zero responsibilities for that time so we just walked. We looked for fungi, spotted deer and lay on the ground amongst the trees listening to the birds, it was bliss.  

Its hard to remember to breath sometimes with all the day to day stresses and strains of life. The expectations of being a parent at times can feel like a heavy weight, especially with Opeie being home educated too, it really adds to the pressure. 

But for today, just me and that girl of mine and a day filled with love. 



Wednesday, 24 June 2020

"Intense love does not measure, it just gives."


Day 96:

Today there is excitement in the air, it's been over 2 weeks since I last saw Becci and it's not been easy being away from each other fo that time. She'll be over this afternoon and I can't wait. This lockdown period has played havoc with the both of us emotionally but I know that as soon as we see each other everything will be perfect. As the boy and I were up nice and early we headed out for a walk up the lane by us. The sheep never fail to put a huge smile on my face and as we walked, Opeie and I chatted about the future. With the current situation the way it is I think the summer holidays have started for us, so we plan to concentrate even more on creativity and having lots of fun and for the next few days we'll have someone fun here to share that with.



Tuesday, 23 June 2020

'As soon as I'd finished tinkering, it was a wrap!'


Day 95:

Ive said it so many times but this lockdown period has been all about the mini projects and I've really been loving that side of things. The Raleigh Choppers have really been keeping me occupied and today I found myself with an hour and a half to myself. I lay on the sofa and did contemplate having a cheeky nap, but my need to be tinkering got the better of me and I decided to attempt to vinyl wrap Becci's chain guard in some fitting leopard print. I had tried to wrap the mudguard last week and made a complete hash of it but this one I was pretty chuffed with. Im seriously considering looking for a cheap frame to completely wrap it in this stuff.



Monday, 22 June 2020

"The toad, without which no garden would be complete"


Day 94:

When I popped out in the garden last night I saw this little cutie quickly disappear under the shed. Tonight when I walked outside they were obviously feeling a little braver and came over to say hi. Our garden is only really small but backs on to an undisturbed piece of land with a stream so we get all sorts in there. The frogs always freak when I pick them up but this little dude happily sat on my hand for a photo shoot, my toady encounter really made my evening. 



Sunday, 21 June 2020

"When one has not had a good father, one must create one."


Day 93:

Fathers day has always been one of my favourite days of the year and this one was lush, I got breakfast and coffee in bed, a lovely card and most importantly lots of cuddles. The weather wasn't great but we managed to find a spot by the river in Jackfield where we could park, open the boot and paint in the back of the car while it thrashed it down, perfection.





Saturday, 20 June 2020

"The art of photography is all about directing the attention of the viewer."


Day 91 and 92:

Opeie has really been getting into his LEGO photography for his latest comic idea. He's been in the garden with all sorts of kits and bricks creating scenes for each picture and its been so lovely to watch. As I really wasn't in the mood to write yesterday I decided to use two of his photos for today. I can't wait to see the finished piece, its starting to look really interesting.





Thursday, 18 June 2020

“Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.”


Day 90:

Homeschooling (in our usual way) went out the window pretty quickly when all this crazy started. For most of us the days have all just merged into one big oddity, Ive lost all track of days and time and in my foggy head I'm now stuck at 'before Corona (BC)' and During Corona (DC). It's get harder and harder to motivate Opeie in the way I would have BC because he misses his friends so much. So I now just fully focus on what makes him happy. His latest idea for a comic has been keeping us busy in the LEGO department, focusing on set designs and letting our brick creativity flow. This should be a pretty awesome project, stay tuned.




Tuesday, 16 June 2020

"The more violent the storm, the quicker it passes."


Day 88:

Last nights awful lack of sleep meant that when I got up I just wanted to get out. At times like this I feel so claustrophobic and I just can't breathe. Opeie and I decided to pack a lunch, books, and sketchpads and head to Titterstones (our own peaceful getaway). The weather wasn't great but we drove up as high as we could get, opened the boot and listen to the thunder, it was pretty beautiful. 
I hope these storms pass soon (all of them).



Monday, 15 June 2020

"Insomnia is a vertiginous lucidity that can convert paradise itself into a place of torture."


Day 87:

Life is really starting to get me down, It seems like the only thing I can get right these days is being a dad, which to be fair is a pretty good job as I love that kid to bits. It doesn't look like I'm going to be sleeping tonight as my head is so busy and I'm struggling to clear the noise, so I decided to paint, because it's one of the few things that seems to calm me these days. I'm so thankful for this creative brain of mine, I feel like I'd be a wreck without it.





Sunday, 14 June 2020

"The essence of pleasure is spontaneity."


Day 86:

Ever feel like you are living Groundhog Day over and over? I wake up some mornings thinking 'well here we go again'. I'm so used to being spontaneous, jumping in the car and driving wherever in search of adventure, This whole lockdown thing is slowly sucking the life out of us. So In order to combat the ever growing rutt we are trying to add a little crazy back into our life. With the weather looking like it's turning a little, we decided to bring the trampoline indoors and use it to build a den in the LEGO room. It's partially filling that void but we are definitely desperate for our lives back.



Saturday, 13 June 2020

"Treat your friends as you do your best pictures, and place them in their best light."


Day 85:

Ive distanced myself from FB since all this lockdown craziness started but today I signed in and was greeted by this and it really perked me up. This smug face (because of that amazing boy of mine) hasn't changed in the 9 years he's been with me. Becoming a dad was my defining moment and it has shaped everything I have done since that special day. Ive been through happy times, Ive been through heartbreaking times but he's been there next to me through it all. Theres not a person on this planet I could love more, my best friend



Friday, 12 June 2020

"The greatest healing therapy is friendship and love." ... 'and LEGO'


Day 84:

Today was another one of those days that can just do one. When these days pop up you can guarantee that myself and Opeie always turn to the LEGO for a pick me up. Those magical bricks have some crazy healing power. 

Hoping for a few happy days please.



Thursday, 11 June 2020

"To practice any art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow. So do it."


Day 83:

I don't know what we'd do if it wasn't for all the creativity in the house, it seems like we are always drawing and painting these days. Since becoming a single dad the evenings have always been the hardest for me and this whole lockdown thing has just magnified that. That feeling of being alone and disconnected is horrible. sketching has been a huge way of taking my attention off of that and has helped to keep me in a much more positive headspace. It's been great to look back on all the things we have created and I look forward to putting it all into a fun photo diary for Opeie to look back on. 



Wednesday, 10 June 2020

"Art attracts us only by what it reveals of our most secret self."


Day 82:

I never really understood why people created self portraits? It always seemed like such a bizarre thing to do. Currently though we are living in a pretty bizarre world so as I enjoyed creating the picture of Opeie and Becci earlier in the week so much, I thought I'd give it a go. Its definitely not something I could see myself doing again but I'm glad I had a go. Im really loving this new style of drawing, we may be mid lockdown but this limited life that we are all living has definitely unlocked my creative side and given me a real hunger to keep those creative juices flowing.



Tuesday, 9 June 2020

"The desire to create is one of the deepest yearnings of the human soul."


Day 81:

We've been out and about taking photos of Opeie's LEGO minifigures for an upcoming project of his. I really love how we've managed to get through these bizarre months by being creative every day. I like to think that by the end of all this Opeie will come out of it a lot more confident with his creative abilities and even more open to trying new things.



Monday, 8 June 2020

“The true secret of happiness lies in the taking a genuine interest in all the details of daily life.”


Day 80:

I have absolutely loved cruising around Telford with Opeie on the Raleigh choppers over the last few days. It''s not only been us with the smiles on our faces either. We've had people honking at us, giving us thumbs up and a few people stopping for a (distanced) chat about how they owned one when they were younger. It turns out that these little beauties are happiness on wheels. 








Sunday, 7 June 2020

"Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep."


Day 79:

One thing that I'm excited to take away from this insane lockdown period that we're all going through is this new 'just do it' attitude I seemed to have developed from a very creative couple of months. We've really created our way through this time and we've both got a lot more confident in our artistic abilities. The old me would have had an Idea for something but then gradually swayed towards his comfort zone but this new blasé me just throws himself in there with no fear of messing up because Ive realised that for me it is more about the process than the end piece. Its that relaxing time focusing on nothing but what I have in from of me. Its been nice to see Opeie picking up his pens so much too and he's also really thriving with all the creativity. This positive, colourful, design based learning is definitely a path I'm sticking with for both of us.





Saturday, 6 June 2020

"It takes half your life before you discover life is a do-it-yourself project."



Day 78:

Today we all went out on our new rides and it was lush. I was so gutted selling my chopper years ago when I knew that Opeie was on his way and after picking one up for Becci last weekend, me and that retro loving boy of mine couldn't stop thinking about riding it around the park. So I sold my mountain bike and went hunting online for choppers for ourselves. We managed to find a couple pretty easy and picked them up on the same day. Since then we've been tinkering, adding parts and cleaning them up. It's like I always say, it's good to have a project or two on the go, and now we can head out on some seriously stylish adventures.





Friday, 5 June 2020

"Evolution is a light illuminating all facts, a curve that all lines must follow."



Day 77:

I found myself parked up on my own for an hour today which is unheard of. My first thought was to put the seat back and have a nap with my music on but instead I grabbed my sketchbook and started my piece for todays #creativelockdownproject. Id told Opeie earlier in the day that I was going to draw Charles Darwins head and he needed to pick me a Pokemon body for him. I figured he would pick one of the cute ones but instead chose Rayquaza, it ended up working perfectly I thought.





Wednesday, 3 June 2020

Hmmmmmm......


Day 75:

Its just one of those pictures that is only aimed at one person, so I'm not even going to explain. Enjoy.



Tuesday, 2 June 2020

"Inspiration exists, but it has to find us working."


Day 74:

I went to bed last night with the intention of having a creative morning but when I woke up and got going I had zero motivation to to do anything. This is frustrating not just for me but also because it can have a knock on effect to how Opeie is feeling too. After passing back and forth a few messages with Becci as I drank my morning coffee she talked about what she was getting up to and I was flooded with inspiration. I went straight for my pens and within 10 minutes me and Opeie were sitting in the sun and our creative juices were flowing. All it takes sometimes is the right person to get you going and that lady of mine always does.



Monday, 1 June 2020

"“Dare to love yourself as if you were a rainbow with gold at both ends.”"


Day 73:

Ive said it so many times since this lockdown started, The #creativelockdownproject that Becci started has really kept me and Opeie in a happy creative headspace and I don't think I've ever been this creatively motivated in a long time. Its been great to really reinforce to Opeie that art is everywhere and it doesn't have to be something that has taken a chunk of time to create, to make people smile. as the creative word today is 'books' Opeie decided to search through his collection and make a book rainbow. It certainly put a smile on my face.