Week 2 #makeartthatsells with @lillarogers – Pods and Flowers

I decided to challenge myself in a different way this week. Years ago I was fairly good at water-colour. One of my first jobs on leaving college was to paint in front of a camera all day while my work was photographed for a ‘How to paint’ water-colour book by Dorling Kindersley. I’d be nervous of that now! ( I’ve never earned that much in one day before or since 😉


Last week I drew in brown ink and then used Illustrator to finish the piece. Something very VERY new to me. Normally I work in acrylic on gesso.

This week I’ve decided to use inks in a watercolour style and Photoshop to finish the piece off in layers but essentially all hand done. We don’t yet have the brief but it’s likely to be some sort of dinner ware  that we need to design a pattern for. I can’t wait until tomorrow to find out.


When I started using inks again, for the first time in years really, I felt uncomfortable and started to panic a bit .. ‘Should I stop and revert to acrylics and use those in a watercolour style…?’ ( which is what I used to do all those years ago when I graduated from Kingston Poly (as it was then). Are the images I am making too simple – too old fashioned, too bright? too plain?!

what started to excite me was the white space and some of the lines created with the square flat brush I used to paint this large forget me not.. You can't see it that well from these phone pics!

what started to excite me was the white space and some of the lines created with the square flat brush I used to paint this large forget me not.. You can’t see it that well from these phone pics!

I decided to stick with it and found my excitement growing. I’ll carry on tomorrow as I am starting to find out what I like. It’s so true that the only way to be happy with your art- work is to do lots of it. I’ve a long way to go to get back and then progress from where I was but as I often say “It’s a start!”

This is a glimpse of my cram packed studio and inspiration gathered from my garden..


As you can see from this last image of my desk and the piece of paper I’ve been using as a surface for my scraps of water-colour, I have a cartoony style in me too. Makes for head spin!


I am going to get an early night tonight as I was up working til gone midnight on private commissions  – itching to get back to water colours in the morning and to read what Lilla has in store.


These are a few things I did last week – before I had any printing tools! I wanted to do something different but it didn’t turn out that way… although I did learn something 🙂


Inspired by Hellebore picture in Country Living

What I like looking at these pictures now is the black and white element – a large blow up pattern like shape extracted from looking really closely at the pollen grains in the picture; and I like the water-colour acrylic sketch with its little curly quirks.

copyright – Gabriella Buckingham 2012 – acrylic sketch

I loved exploring just the one flower – although I had an idea for a card…( I really did try to forget about being commercial but force of habit etc!!) I found that once I’d painted the hellebore at the top I lost interest in painting the rest of the floral wreath. I’d already designed it in my mind and it seemed old-fashioned – in this style at least, like something I’d have done 15 years ago. It’s more the style than the colours or idea. I like the Autumn colours.

copyright – Gabriella Buckingham 2012- painted on wood


copyright – Gabriella Buckingham – almost wreath 2012

Experiments are never a waste of time, even though it can feel like that at the time!