This week: Eunice, the beach, newness, guest rooms & garden rooms.
18th February 2022
It's been a busy few weeks. Not one of those busy-with-big-things times, more a series of smaller tasks that have needed care and attention. Some tasks have gone smoothly, others not so. My new office springs to mind with the build having a setback. Ever positive, I took it as a sign to stay inside for a few more weeks, until build resumes (and completes 🤞🤞🤞) next week. The saying "everything for a reason" springs to mind and, as I type, there are 70 mile an hour gusts outside. Cosy in the guest room is the best place to be.
So, what's been going on in this corner of Hampshire?
Firstly, I couldn't post Friday 5 without tipping my hat to the worst storm in 30 years, Hello Storm Eunice. My cousin has sent me the link to 'Live Landing at Heathrow' (here's the link ). I've been working with the landings in the background, brilliant commentary. I couldn't go anywhere if I wanted to. The main road out of here is blocked by a fallen tree.
In other news, the beach has the starring role on the website this month, our homepage features beach and coastal art:
I'm working on some new blue sea prints, for the coastal ranges, and they will be ready in a few weeks. Lots of pale, inky shades with inspiration from Rimini & antique love letters.
I'm also working on some new landscape inspired pieces. A much darker pallet, with lots of nature and inspiration from the Hampshire countryside. I'll preview these as soon as I get to a place where I'm happy.
Meanwhile, at home, we are still settling in gradually and working on the interior. The guest room really is the nicest room in the house. It's cosy, warm and has two windows overlooking the Church spire. Once I've stopped using the room as my office, moved into my new studio, the decor will be finished and we can welcome friends to our home. I've gone for quality linens, soothing scents, soft blankets and thoughtful touches. I'll post pics when complete.
In tandem with the interior within our new home is the outside space, the very exciting project of planting a garden and building a design studio for my illustration work. I've learnt that setting up a design space is very different to setting up a working warehouse and designing a garden is very different to any gardening I have previously tackled.
Having moved the production of my work to Surrey, London, LA, Barcelona and Australia I no longer work where my stock is kept, which means an entirely different way of working has unfolded. During the change it became clear I needed a versatile working space. One that wouldn't be a problem to leave when travelling with work, or be an issue when working away with my production partners. Factor in during covid I began to work very early in the morning and the solution was clear; to build an illustration studio at home.
I haven't worked from home in a very long time and began so once again during Covid. Although I quite like the whole staying in PJ's until noon, it really isn't me. I'm an up-and-at-it early bird and I do not want to stay working in the house long term. Primarily because I've been inclined to get distracted by worldle, the laundry, the novelty of being here and housework. I like to leave home behind and walk to work, even if it is a skip down the garden path.
The initial ideas around designing a studio could be summed up in two words: "glass house". I wanted a building that would feel immersed in the garden and gradually become part of the landscape. A charming addition to the garden. I put some images together, got myself a vision board and worked out what I needed in terms of functionality and what I wanted aesthetically.
The brief was to create a design studio that will melt into the landscape, is quirky and has lots of space for painting. Jars of paintbrushes and design space to enable me to paint whenever I need. Up until this point I've always had to clear away my paints for packing, my new space has 3 glorious meters of space devoted to drawing and painting.
An aesthetic that feels like a glass house, achieved through white washing the interior and adding greenery throughout.
This isn't a beach house, it's a garden room with hidden drawers to reveal endless art supplies. A view that is inspiring, natural and immersive within the Hampshire countryside.
Those were the starting ideas. It's been an exciting task, a work in progress that's long from finished. The first stage, the building, should be in place next week. Then we can live with the seasons (I haven't seen a sunset here yet) in order to make the most out of the garden planting. I'll let you know how it's going. Keep your fingers crossed for the next week the final install happens.
Meantime, thanks for reading, have a good week and stay safe in the storms.