How Now Highland Cow

It appears that I’ve been on a unplanned break from blogging… who knew?
Well I certainly didn’t.
I’ve been enjoying the summer and keeping myself extremely busy, but the autumnal weather seems to have arrived, so I’m thinking it’s time to come indoors and indulge in my indoor pursuits… blogging being one of them.
The other pursuit that I can’t imagine ever giving up is producing and creating more artwork.
This is my latest piece… the Highland Cow.

Highland Cow.jpg

Yes, I know another one, but I really enjoyed playing with him.
I even left my glasses off at times in order to keep him loose.
I have great difficulty in keeping my artwork loose… that and knowing when to stop!
I thought this cow was previously finished at least three times, but went back to just add a little here and there.
I’ve decided that am definitely calling it a day now and surprisingly I’m pleased with him.
I suppose he just needs a name… I’m saying ‘He’, but I suppose it could be a ‘she’?


Great to chat with you and now I’m off to indulge in another of my new indoor pursuits… making bread!
Maybe I’ll post about my sourdough at another time.
(If you’d like to check them out now, then take a peek at my Instagram account… #denise.allan)
Have a great day and I’d love to hear if you have a suggestion for a name for the Highland Cow.

Sew Happy

I haven't picked up a needle or even sewn a button on anything for years, so I had an additional struggle trying to relate to the Make Art That Sells April assignment.
The assignment was to draw/paint a sewing equipment design for a tray.
For inspiration, I thought I'd take a peak into my old sewing box, which was like opening a treasure chest. 
Since then I've been sketching ever since.
These assignments have certainly taken me on a journey of discovery in more ways than one!
Thanks Lilla Rogers

Sewing Tray MATS.psd 72dpi.jpg

I even had a play in Photoshop (although the word play maybe stretching things a little) but I've still got so much to learn.
I'm entering this sewing tray for the Make Art That Sells April assignment.


The sun is shining here, so I'm off out to play! 
Have a wonderful weekend everyone and thanks for visiting.

Tasseography... Tea Leaf Reading

Hello Everyone
I've been missing in action lately on the blog front, as I just haven't seemed to find the time for blogging, favouring a quick line or two with a photograph into my Instagram account.
I've often thought...ooh that would be great for a blog post, but then move on quickly.
One of the things that has been keeping me busy over the last few months, has been my artist Bootcamp assignments from the makeartthatsells online course.
February's assignment was 'Tea'
Anyone that knows me knows I'm a huge teapot!
I drink copious amounts of tea per day, so this assignment was just my cup of tea (Aghh...sorry)
Anyway, for the main assignment it was to paint an illustration for 'Tea Leaf Reading'.
Fond memories of my favourite Aunt came flooding back to me.
My Aunt was quite a fun loving character and always up for a laugh.
Now I'm not saying that tea leaf reading isn't serious for some, but the vision of my Aunt bent over a china teacup with her face so serious, relaying someones future tickled me, but her readings were very popular.
I personally believed every single word she said!
I was probably under the age of 10 at the time.
Here's my design...
Did you know that the art of tea leaf reading is called 'Tasseography,' because I certainly didn't.

Tea Mock Up.png

(This is my mock up practice ... with the help of my son)
Right... I'm off to make a cuppa with loose tea leaves.
Who knows, I may have the gift of fortune telling?
I'll have to see if I can see anything in my future.
Have a great weekend.

A Hug in a Mug

There's something very reassuring about having a cup of hot tea.
Maybe it's my British upbringing or maybe it stems back to my Grandmother introducing me to tea from an early age. I remember how thrilled I was one day, when she poured a little of her tea from her china cup, into her saucer to let me take a sip.
I knew it was frowned upon and maybe that's why it tasted all the more sweeter.
I've never lost that love of tea, from my first cup in a morning brought to me by my hubby, copious amounts during the day, to my last one of the evening.
I even copied my father and put three spoonfuls of sugar in my cup in my teenage years.
Obviously, the calorie intake wasn't given a thought back then... if Dad did it... it must be right! 
I now happy to say I have no sugar... (I'm sweet enough without...haha) and haven't taken any for years.
We've travelled extensively and when living in the tropics, one of my top priorities was to take my own tea bags in my luggage.
Even though I'm a huge tea drinker, I can't seem to take to herbal or flavoured tea for some reason. I wish I could because I feel I'm missing out!
I did drink black coffee in my early working career... perhaps I needed the full hit of caffeine back then, but as soon as I became pregnant with my daughter, I had to stop... I tried to drink it after, but when pregnant with my son I had to gave it up again.
I really haven't started again since, preferring my cuppa instead.

When the #MakeArtThatSells mini assignment for last week's Bootcamp was to draw/paint anything to do with tea... I was thrilled.
The only trouble with having a topic that is a favourite, means you can be overwhelmed with all of the prospects and it took me a few days to actually start to put something down on paper.
I thought with being here in Scotland, I'd tip my cap to Scottish Blend and create a Hug in a Mug design.
I hope you like it.

MUG 2.jpg

I painted the design in watercolours and then tried to use Photoshop once again to create the shadow, background, title and signature. 
Oh boy... I have such a lot to learn.
To say I'm on a steep learning curve is a slight understatement... but I'm determined to keep working in Photoshop, so that it will become second nature and not like flying an A380!
If you have any tips or helpful advice I'd be interested in hearing from you.

I hope you are having a fun weekend with plenty of tea drinking!
Thanks for visiting :D