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.
I have not felt this rough for years. I really went down with the awful cold that is going round. Managed to get myself up but only to sit in an arm chair and feel terrible and sleep all day. It's taking such a long time to go too. I've had to cancel homes as I'm frightened that it could do quite a bit of damage to someone who is slightly more vulnerable as I'm supposed to be relatively fit. I feel like death warmed up. Also my cousin's son was in a terrible head on collision in Norfolk this week. Thank God he was ok, although he's still in intensive care with compound fractures and looking at more ops in future. The main thing is he is still with us all and will hopefully mend nicely in time. Enough of my whinging. Flowers are coming up and the weather appears to be brightening - it's almost like I can believe spring is coming. Not going to count my chickens yet though. This last week has been extremely tough.
Late again. I've been feeling a bit below par, I seem to have caught an annoying cough from somewhere and I think with the dreary weather, it just makes you feel like not bothering to get up in the morning. However, I have dragged myself up regardless. So I am typing in between bouts of coughing. My brother and his family came to visit this weekend and Matt took us all out for a meal, which was lovely. The above drawings are my nieces, Mina was concentrating - not grumpy. She's not generally a grumpy person. They're both very happy little girls. It was lovely to see my brother and sister-in-law too. I'll be glad when spring gets here though.
I'm a day late. Apologies, I'm always late in winter. It's like my whole system slows down. We had some snow when I got up this morning, I should have guessed, as usually the cats have disappeared when I get up, but both of them were curled up on top of my duvet. By about ten the sun was coming out and the snow was disappearing. Unfortunately, I think we can look forward to it freezing tonight. Anyway, I doodled some snowdrops as seeing them always reminds me that spring is not that far away. Not long now. I'm glad to say I've been keeping quite busy. We're gearing up for my Mum to have another operation, this time to replace a knee, so recovery may take a bit longer. I'm expecting a letter from Ipswich hospital telling me to go for more tests in the near future. If the weather is ok, then we may see my brother and his family this coming weekend.
A good start to January. Another cartoon in Private Eye. I am extremely pleased. I've felt all at odds this week. It's felt like a very difficult week. I had a few sessions which is really good and most of them were very upbeat and positive but the last one was a real effort. No staff and as I'm new to the home, I don't know the residents and they've only met me once before. It makes it a lot more difficult but we turned out a few pieces of very nice work and they were very pleased with their efforts. Hopefully, it will be a bit better next time. I have a lot of driving to do in the coming week. The homes are quite a distance from me. One of them I used to visit when I was seven, as my Mum worked there for a while and my brother and I used to go with my Dad to drop Mum off at work. These were the days before my sister came along. I never thought then that I would ever go back there but then when I was 10 and the school visited Framlingham Castle, I never thought that 25 years on I would be working round the corner from it. It's funny how life works out.
It snowed this afternoon. This is Suffolk for goodness sake. The rest of the country gets snow. We're not supposed to. It was quite pleasant as I didn't have to go out and it's raining now, so apart from worrying about if it will all freeze, no harm done. We're another week closer to spring.
The cats are far from happy. Flo copes better than R.J. She will go out and get wet in the rain, then in and straight to me so I can dry her off. R.J hangs around by the door asking to go out. When you open the door, he will stick his head out and watch it raining intently for a while, then come into the house, walk round in a circle and end up at the door asking to go out just two minutes after he last looked out. I think he thinks it might have stopped raining and dried up in that time. I also think that he imagines that we have a magic button to make the weather better but that we choose not to use it. Still, two months until spring.
This drawing is from a while ago but I still like the idea. Haven't felt so great this week but then it is January and the colds and virus's are doing the rounds and it's grey. Really grey. Depressingly grey. I really have to drag myself through January and February with a combination of routine and self determination. I'm ok when the flowers all begin to appear and the weather brightens. Even the cats seem down and not inclined to go out much. At least the days are slowly beginning to lengthen again. Good luck to my brother, he starts a new job tomorrow. He was offered three jobs recently, two in the financial centre of London, so I think he's doing ok.
I'm sorry I'm a bit late with the first post of the year. I was completely out of routine and it always takes me a little while to kick back into a nice working routine. I had a great Christmas, I ate too much and now the hard work begins again, to try and keep off the weight that wants to creep on. The hard work also begins as I have a new car which needs paying off. I'm very pleased with my new car. It's lovely. The old car had got to the stage where I was thinking, I'll keep it going as long as I can, but it was beginning to cost me money in between services and MOT's. I was very pleased with the cartoon that I got in the Private Eye Annual this year. It balanced out crashing my car. Even the fact that I'd paid for a new exhaust the day before I crashed the car. I've not got any resolutions other than to tidy the clutter in my room and this is a long term aim as, as soon as I clear it, I tend to put something else there in its place. I always know where everything is, until I tidy, then things get lost as I put them in safe places and then forget where the safe place is. Happy New Year everyone. I hope you all have a very good year.