Monday, 26 February 2018

Studio Snapshots

My studio may be small but it's full of my most treasured items. It's a room brimming with inspiration and procrastination; where I communicate with the rest of the world, and where I really feel at ease. Take a look below for a few snapshots from my favourite place...

~ Rachel x

Packing up todays orders. The 'radio' biscuit tin is where I keep my mail receipts
(I wish there were still biscuits in that tin).

Each drawer is full of a different colour Pro Marker, or a variety of different pens.
I love to have artwork all around me - including a mix of my own work with other illustrators I like.

I prefer to use various interesting mugs and tins to hold my pens and pencils.
Each print is hand-stamped with my logo on the reverse. 

I have two large pin boards where I display many things I've collected through the years. This board is largely devoted to vintage Valentine's. I love making and typing funny telegrams on my typewriter - not everything in my studio has to be serious work ;)

Wednesday, 29 November 2017

Stand by Me

I'm delighted to announce that Stand by Me by Judi Curtin (The O'Brien Press), won the National Book Tokens Children’s Book of the Year (Senior) award at the Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Awards last night! I illustrated the front cover of this wonderful retro-inspired book. It was a delight to illustrate 1960s style buses, records, and old long-lost (but not forgotten) letters.

~ Rachel x

Thursday, 16 November 2017

Nice to greet you!

I think my favourite part of running my shop, is packing-up greeting cards. It may sound mundane, but I love folding the little cards and slipping them into their protective sleeves. They're almost like mini art prints. And you know what is even better? Check out the teeny tiny icons on the reverse of each card. I like to add little magical details like these; a playful accent to entice the viewer. I think my favourite is the miniature Mendl's gift box from my 'Agatha' card.

I have recently changed printers, and I now use a heavy cream card, which has a wonderful texture and weight. The card is also FSC-certified, so it's in-keeping with my eco-friendly ethos. I happily accept wholesale orders, so please get in contact if you would like to stock my products!

~ Rachel x

Sunday, 5 November 2017

Live illustration with Ted Baker

Yesterday I participated in my very first live illustration event. I was approached by the wonderful people at Ted Baker, London, to illustrate in their Kildare Village store for the 'Make it Yours' event. With every Ted purchase over €150, lucky customers received a free personalized tote bag by myself. It was such a fun and enlightening experience. I drew a range of illustrations; including flowers, floral patterns, quotes, monograms, portraits, and cats!

I think the theme of the day was definitely floral, along with inspiring quotes. And the most popular colour was purple (and glitter, of course). I love finding out details like this, as it helps me to gauge what customers are looking for in personalized illustrations/designs. I used mainly Promarkers, Posca, and Sharpie pens as they dry much quicker than paint. The newly purchased Fabrico pens were ok, but weren't as smooth in their application as the other pens. Tote bags are tricky enough to illustrate on due to the variety of materials they can be made from, but it was exciting to illustrate on a new surface for a change, as I'm usually a paper-loving girl! 

~ Rachel x

Some of the pens I used during the day. Posca and Sharpie were better suited to the task and the type of tote bag material. The Promarkers bled a little bit as the material was quite light, but the shading and blending of Promarkers is one of the things I love about them, and it resulted in quite a nice watercolour-wash effect.

Before I began illustrating on the bags I sketched a few doodles to warm-up. 
I also brought a scrap of canvas material to test colours and ink absorbency before applying them on the tote bags.

During quiet times, I illustrated some Ted Baker-buying winter customers in my tiny sketchbook.

Sunday, 29 October 2017

Museum Activity Book

I'm delighted to reveal a project I've been working on since late last year, The Usborne Museum Activity Book. Myself and 3 other illustrators have provided an array of museum themed illustrations for this amazing activity book. There's colouring-in pages, stickers, puzzles, quizzes and lots more! 

Before moving into the world of illustration and design, I was an archaeologist and art historian, with a serious love of museums, galleries and daydreams of long forgotten worlds. It was so great to have the opportunity to combine all these passions into one single project. My illustrations adorn the following pages: 14-15, 24-25, 28-29, 40-43, 52-54, and 58-61. I've included several of the spreads below. Available to purchase in all good book stores.

~ Rachel x

Wednesday, 25 October 2017

Little Harry Potter (Pre-Order)


I have compiled all my inktober characters into one special print. I have launched a
pre-order from October 23rd-31st, and the prints will ship from November 6th. This magical A3 sized print is printed on FSC certified paper with plant-based inks, and I will be hand painting enchanting shiny details emanating from the wands with Finetec sparkly watercolour paints. I will also personally sign the print on the front within the border. If any little witch or wizard would like to purchase one of these special edition prints, please follow this link Little Harry Potter.
A3 size print with hand painted shiny magical details are available with the pre-order only. Don't miss out!

~ Rachel x

Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Inktober 2017

I love October. Not only was I born during this month, but I relish the Autumnal colours and soft lighting, the cool turf-doused air, and the urge to get ink all over my hands! Inktober is a creative online project that encourages artists all over the world to take up pens, brushes and ink during the month of October. I usually set my own theme, as seen last year with my popular Frightening Females series. 

This year, I found a tiny sketchbook, which was waiting to be used, deep within my paper drawer. It's the 20th anniversary of Harry Potter this year, and I decided this would be the perfect theme for my Inktober project: Tiny sketchbook + Harry Potter = Little Harry Potter.

My Little Harry Potter series was posted on my InstagramFacebook and Twitter

Each illustration was created using Promarkers, Indian ink, dip pens, and fine liners.

Who is your favourite character?

~ Rachel x