My new year's resolution for 2015 was to get over my fear of drawing. Despite going to art school, as of January 2015 I had seldom drawn since my A Levels save to sketch an outline on to fabric to be embroidered over.

Life drawings from my A Level days

The resolution got off to a slow start, with just the few sketches below completed in a very amateurish way, even with my Mum booking us both on to a four week life drawing class recently.

Below are the sketches completed solo and in collaboration with others on the four week "Mark Your Mark" life drawing class, which I heartily recommend to artists of all abilities.

These sketches are designs for screen prints, which I will share here soon.

Myself and artists Katrina Bautista and Cheri Smith have started something of an artist's salon to exchange ideas, collaborate, and draw together. The most recent session resulted in the drawing below, the first drawing I am truly proud of since my A Level days. I sometimes find being with such talented artists intimidating, but these two inspire me, and I'm really excited to share the zine we are working on together.

Skin and Silk

Here is page seven of On Being Soft, about sensuality (one of the qualities of women listed by Lily van der Stokker in the quotation of hers I stitched) and the feminine form. I stitched a sketchy nude from a life drawing I did at A Level (I seem to be recycling a lot of my Art and Photography A Level work!).

The life drawing
The life drawing translated to stitch

I chose orange/magenta two-tone rough silk for the curved pocket, for its sensual lustre. Inside the pocket is a departure from all the handkerchiefs I've been embroidering recently. To go with the themes of sensuality and sexuality, I wanted to explore "pillow talk" - through "talking pillows"!

The conversation is an exchange between a man and a woman - lovers. Whilst lying in bed together, the woman says "I like your lines", and the man replies "I like your curves".

The words are stitched on to speech bubbles blanket-stitched on to one side of the miniature pillows.

I was recently interviewed about my work by a journalism student, and when I mentioned to her that I was making On Being Soft, she mentioned that the word "soft" made her think of the female body.

One final page to go and then it's time to put the book together!