Puppy Diaries Vol.1 – Meet Lilly!

Elsie & LillySo…we got a puppy! :D If you saw my post from last week you will already know that I was eager to get a little friend for Elsie. We always thought we would get another slightly older dog but after seeing how well Elsie get on with Vada we realised a pup might be a good fit for her. It all happened really quickly after chatting about it we decided to visit the Dog’s Trust where we got Elsie from because they were amazing when we got Elsie. It was the weekend after I puppy sat and we went with the view to chatting about puppies and finding out some more info. The Dog’s Trust don’t generally advertise puppies for obvious reasons and we didn’t expect to see any on our visit but we had a look around and we spotted this little cutie! Uh oh! A week later she was home… 
LillyMeet Lilly. She’s a 13 & a half week old whippet cross Jack russell and a little bundle of energy (although not from these pics!) She is really petite with long legs and such a lovely nature. She was previously rehomed but unfortunately given back after she was too playful with the owners cat – such a shame that people don’t understand puppies and it results in them being tossed back and forth. Lilly & ElsieWe picked her up last Saturday and we’ve started crate training her so she has somewhere safe to go at night and whenever she needs to. She’s been really good with toilet training and only had a few accidents, mainly because we haven’t been quick enough! She’s learnt to go to the door now when she wants to go.
PawsElsie has been really sweet bless her. It’s a big change for her and she’s handling it really well. Playing gently with the pup and letting Lilly jump all over her. On Sunday there were a few problems when we decided to give Elsie a new bone which in hindsight wasn’t the best idea as she became a bit possessive and was teasing Lilly with it and then getting annoyed when Lilly tried to get it. I think you learn things as you go and since reading more about introducing another dog I’ve read that it’s best not to give new toys and bones in the early days until they’re both completely comfortable with each other. Since then there hasn’t been any problems and it’s so lovely to watch a bond build between them. They’re currently lying next to each other sleeping and as you can see from the above pic Lilly uses any part of Elsie to lean and rest on, it’s so cute, she loves to be near her.TailsOne of the things on my 28 things to do before turning 29 was to practise photography and start a photo tradition so I thought I’d try to do a weekly pup-date. It’ll be a chance to document Lilly as a pup, see her grow and share how her and Elsie are getting on and what it’s like to have a puppy. So far it’s definitely hard work (especially with the night time toilet breaks!) but so worth it. I’m excited for the puppy adventures to come!

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New Illustrations for Super Yacht Life magazine

Map of TurkeyI was thrilled to be recently commissioned by Ian Pierce, the art director of ‘The Superyacht Life,’ a magazine combining a mixture of lifestyle, inspirational and independent content. It was the largest editorial commission I’ve been asked to do as the commission was x3 double page spreads and 1 full page illustration. Usually in editorial I’ve worked on up to one double page spread so this was a nice opportunity to create a few pieces on the same theme. You can see two of the double page spreads above that I re-worked a little by merging them to create a large map of Turkey. (You can click it to enlarge.) In the magazine versions there’s more water and space for the text copy.ThailandAbove is a scene of Thailand with a mix of old and new: the temples and the skyscrapers. The illustrations were created with type placement in mind so the river is a deeper blue and the magazine text copy sits in white on the waves. Each building is individually drawn at around A4/A5 size so that when it is scanned in and decreased the line work is detailed and intricate. I then layer colour, tones and textures on photoshop. Drawing buildings is time consuming as I obsessively draw all the little details, shapes and patterns of the architecture. These sorts of commissions don’t come up that regularly for me so I love it when they do, it’s nice to be able to indulge in all the little details, I hope you like them! 

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New personal portrait illustration

Personal portraitI hope today is a happy Monday for you! Today is Blue Monday which is reported to be the most depressing day of the year. Personally I find that in itself quite depressing! I hope you’re not feeling too blue and your week has started off well.

My weekend was spent with friends, looking at puppies (spoiler, we found one!!) and generally relaxing. On Saturday I got up early and went to the gym for a spin class then drove home in the snow and got ready to go to London for a birthday celebration for one of my best friends Toobie. I made her the little portrait above for her birthday, she was super fun to draw! We went to the ICA to check out the Julie Verhoven exhibition which we really enjoyed then we went and had burritos and margaritas in Covent Garden. I love days like that :)

I hope you had a lovely weekend too.

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Puppy sitting

Puppy loveOn Wednesday I shared a few photo’s from a winter’s day out when we took Elsie to the beach and today keeping with the doggy theme I thought I’d share a few pics I took whilst puppy sitting. Avie had txt me asking if I would mind puppy sitting for her work friends new dog, a little pup named Vada. I said yes, working from home it suited me plus this time of year is quiet for me so I really didn’t mind. Here are some photo’s of our day because they’re just too cute not to post. Happy Friday!Cute VadaVadaI’ve wanted to get a little friend for Elsie for awhile now (and of course after sitting Vada I really want a puppy now!) Elsie was really good with Vada letting her play with her toys, sleep in her bed and not minding all the attention/cuddles she was getting. Read more

A winters day at the beach

Golden ElsieToday I’m puppy sitting a 9 week old cocker spaniel (adorably cute & not helping my desire to get a puppy pal for Elsie!)…Also productivity out the window…see ya later! I’m feeling the puppy love at the moment so I thought it would be the perfect moment to share some pics of my pup that I took a couple of weeks ago after Avie and I decided to go for a little day trip to Southend on Sea. We filled the car with petrol grabbed some coffees and croissants and car snacks because, well every car journey needs car snacks (…if you’re asking us) and headed to the sea.

Seaside funWe took a ball for Elsie and walked along the sea front, ate hot chips, doughnuts and drunk coffee. The weather had started to get really chilly a few days before we decided to go so we made sure we wrapped up, it was so incredibly sunny though, a perfect winters day.Elsie's first time at the beach Read more

New illustration for Boots Health & Beauty mag

Boots Health & Beauty magHere’s a little illustration I worked on for the latest issue of Boots Health & Beauty magazine. The illustration was to accompany an article titled ‘The journey of a cold,’ for their January/February issue. Honey & lemon drinkThey also have an e-zine you can read here where they have animated the VW van (top left) to move through the map as you click on each number to reveal the corresponding text. It was a fun little map to work on!

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Fitness journal

Daily Greatness journalI’ve been thinking about creating a few more fitness based posts here on the blog. Fitness is a big part of my life and I enjoy reading other peoples fitness related posts as I find them inspiring and I like seeing what people are up to with their regimes. I guess it’s just nosiness really or maybe a better way to put it is intrigue! If you’ve seen my 28 before 29 list you might’ve noticed one of my goals was to complete my 12 week Daily greatness journal. I started it this Monday so I thought I’d share a little more about what it is and how I’m using it.

You’ve probably already guessed by the title it’s a fitness journal with a 12 week time frame. It’s full of inspiring quotes, goal strategies and prompts to inspire a training program and encourage you to eat clean. I saw it online and I was immediately interested, for one it’s pretty! You can’t really see in the picture but it’s hot pink with gold foil lettering, I love the quotes inside and the idea behind it.

This year I’ve set myself a fitness goal of running the BUPA 10k race in support of Crohn’s and Colitis UK. The race is in May so I thought the journal would be the perfect fitness tool to help me get on track. I have 5 months to train and most running programs I’ve seen are 3 months so this gives me a bit of extra time which will allow me to gradually build up my distance and become a (hopefully) confident runner. On Christmas eve I ran my first 4k and didn’t run again until 3rd January which was just over a week but I definitely felt the effect of the break and It was also the first time I ran on a treadmill which I found really boring!Goodness bowlI’ve been trying for awhile to eat as clean as possible so the journal is a good tool for that too as it also has a section for your daily food diary. Yesterday I was in London so popped to the Good life eatery for lunch. Above is their Goodness bowl – it was incredible! I also had a Choc Norris smoothie which was really tasty. I’m slowly weaning myself onto eating cacao nibs after buying a big bag and finding them really bitter!

I’ve only been using the journal for 5 days and so far I love it. The first bit takes a bit of time as there’s lots of intentions and goals to write down and then each day you have to give yourself a little bit of time in the morning to set out your intentions for the day and then a bit of time in the evening to review it. It really helps you to focus on what you want to achieve in a day and look back at the end of the day to see what you did well or would improve upon. It’s also obviously a great way to track and plan your workouts. This week I’ve done two Pilates classes, boxing and two runs (in the rain!) Tomorrow is my rest day then I have another run on sunday…I’m feeling a bit achey today that’s for sure.

I’m hoping to share updates of how I’m finding using the journal and how my training is going. Please feel free to share your own running or exercise tips if you have any, all advice welcome! :)

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28 things to do before turning 29

28 before 29This post is a little overdue seeing as my birthday was in December. Things got in the way and I never managed to post it. Anyway better late than never :)

At the moment theres lots of talk of new years resolutions (obviously) but this year I decided to do something a little different. I feel like goals can be made any time of the year and since last month it was my 28th birthday I decided to make a list of 28 things I would like to do before I’m 29. I’ve already made a start to my list because I made it last month and I’m planning to share my progress here on the blog. I’m not sure how many things I’ll complete but it feels good to write it out as it makes me feel more accountable. Here’s what’s on my list… (in no particular order!) Deadline 14th December 2015.

1. Practise Pilates and continuing building my core strength.

2. Learn a new creative skill.

3. Take Elsie to the beach.

4. Train and take part in a 10k charity run.

5. Continue saving to buy our first home and start researching.

6. Take a photo every week (take more photo’s featuring people, not just Elsie & objects!)

7. Cook or bake something new each month & document it in some way.

8. Complete my 12 week ‘Daily greatness training journal.’

9. Go for dinner at Dans le Noir.

10. Document everyday and special moments through the course of the year and print/display them in my project life binder.

11. Start an inspiration scrapbook or vision board dedicated to health, fitness & wellbeing.

12. Go on a weekend away with Christophe. Read more

A few of my favourite commissions of 2014

Hello and Happy New Year to you! I thought I’d kick off the new year with a little look back at some of my favourite projects of 2014. Some of my most favourite projects happened at the end of the year which unfortunately I can’t share just yet so these are a handful of commissions I loved working on from March 2014 up until September time. ChiswickFirst up is a private commission I created in March of a pub scene in Chiswick, England. This was created for a birthday gift and was a reminder of a special place for the recipient. It was fun working with all the little details and using a bright colour palette.Giant sketchingLive-drawing-in-MunichNext is a project I worked on with story telling agency Make Believe, where I travelled with them to Munich and drew live in a giant sketchbook. It was a really exciting experience and I loved the challenge of it. You can read more about the commission here.  United States of bread final coverUnited States of Bread was the first book project I worked on with Running Press, it was also my very first book cover. I was lucky enough to work on 4 other cover illustrations in 2014 after this one, I absolutely love working on book covers. They’re definitely something I hope to do more of this year. Chapter openers from United States of BreadI also created the interior artwork including the above chapter opener patterns. This was a fun project for many reasons including that it gave me an incentive to try my hand at bread baking as I set myself the challenge of baking a bread from each chapter. You can see all the posts and more artwork hereRye & raisin sourdoughA pic of my first sourdough, it was rye and raisin, yum!Printweek-illustration-by-Lindsey-SpinksI had the pleasure of working with Print week on the above illustration for their packaging and labels report. This was a detail dream and just a genuinely fun piece to work on. Circus-fabric-patternThis pattern is a sample of my illustrated fabric! Not technically a commission but a personal project I started at the end of last year and I’m so excited to finish this, I’ll be sharing progress here on the blog of the finished dress that I intend to make with the fabric.

And that’s it for now. 2014 brought a lot of fun and sometimes challenging commissions, I learnt a lot and I’m excited about the new year and the new illustrated adventures to be had!

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