I have just finished my M.A in Children's Book Illustration at the Cambridge School of Art and thoroughly enjoyed it. I consider myself an illustrator and I work for a company called 'Creative Minds' who take art and craft sessions to older adults and adults with learning disabilities. The following entries are my drawings and musings. All images are copyright of Kerina Strevens. Please contact me on my website kerinastrevens.co.uk.
This was just a doodle that I did yesterday afternoon. It had all got a bit dreary and the cats didn't want to go out. It was a perfect day for curling up in a chair with some chocolate, a drink and a good book. So I doodled it off the top of my head, as you can probably tell. We had some blue tits nesting in one of our nest boxes, so we've been keeping the cats in at night. Birds seem to fledge quite early in the morning and we thought they could probably do without two cats watching every attempt. I don't think too many attempts would have been allowed if the cats had been there. So we're hoping that they have successfully fledged and it's all gone very quiet, as we got used to being shouted at by the birds if the cats went too near where they were working. Many was the time I had to tempt a disgruntled moggy away from the area. I must cut the grass though. It really needs cutting. I may do it today. I will do it today!
I was thinking of that phrase 'the weight of the world', this week. Strangely enough, I had a very good week. I will probably reveal more about this next week. I don't like to peak too soon. I had some good and encouraging news and a really nice session in one of the care homes I was at. I have a busy week next week however. On Saturday, my friend and fellow Cambridge student, Petronela and I went to see the illustrator Chris Riddell in Ipswich library where he was drawing answers to questions. Quite a brilliant idea in itself, pretty unique as far as I'm aware. It was enjoyed by all those who attended and it was very well attended. I was very pleased to get one of the books I have by him signed as well. I've met a few illustrators now and they all seem to be really nice, down to earth people who are really passionate about what they do. I find it inspiring and useful as it makes me want to work a bit harder and get things done.
Here we are in May and it's still freezing and the heating has gone back on. It's nice if you can get out of the freezing wind but it's a lazy wind that goes right through you instead of round you. As my Granddad would have said. I'm working on something at present but I don't want to say too much about it yet until I have it sorted out in my own head. It's nothing exciting - just a project I've set myself. The above is a bit of work I found as I went through a sketch book, I think I did it last year but again, it was a project that was discarded along the way. I seem to have a lot of them. I'm hoping it will warm up in time for my birthday. I need some warmth in our weather!!
It's been a slow week and a quiet week. We had a visit from a grey heron. We see it occasionally and the last time it was around, I wondered what one of the cats was staring at, until it stepped out from behind the chimney of the bungalow next to ours. I don't know whether Flo was thinking of it as a great challenge or whether she was terrified. It could have been either. Knowing her, she would have had a go. This is a cat that brought in two squirrels once. I'm glad she doesn't do that any more. The weather has been so cold. I don't mind cold if it's cold and bright, I don't like cold and grey though. I think we did better than a lot of the rest of the country though. You have to count your blessings that it's not worse than it is. We could still end up with snow if the weather is so inclined.
It's spring but instead of getting warmer, it's getting colder. As I don't like the cold I have stayed in a bit this last week. I am in the middle off a tidy up of the bedroom and it's coming along nicely. I have books that I have forgotten about but that I love and can't part with and other books and more books. It would appear that I am obsessed by books. Particularly books with pictures in that people have drawn. I also possess many art magazines and many magazines in general which have now gone into the bin before I can think better of it. The next job is to part the art stuff from the craft stuff and then organise it all, so it's all at hand and I'm able to easily locate it when it's needed. Then I will feel happier.
I've had a lovely week. The weather was good and not as bad as the forecast suggested and I was on a break with my family in North Norfolk. The most amazing thing was that we saw more horses where we stayed than we did cars and I didn't think anywhere still existed where that was true. We had some lovely walks and some lovely pub meals and we had a big family barbeque and a big family dinner and it was all pretty wonderful. In fact it was so good, we may consider it again.
I did a little drawing and the above was a sketch from my bedroom window. We got to see a lot of pheasants and a few hares too, so I was really pleased. When we came home my sister-in-law and nieces took me to see 'Beauty and the Beast', I thought it was very good. My smallest niece made me laugh when she jumped up mid film and shouted 'he deserved that! He REALLY deserved that!' when Gaston died after shooting the beast in the back twice. So a very good week indeed and this coming week my nose goes back to the grindstone. Onwards and upwards.
Just posting this quick as I'm having a few days away. This is a sketch of the hedge and verge opposite where we're staying. The shadows look particularly nice in the early morning sun. Home soon. I don't know why it's turned itself sideways.