Blog birthday vol. 3 – A week in the life of a blogger

Blog birthday vol. 3 - A week in the life of a blogger

3 years ago today I published the first post on the blog Imelda Green’s. Of course not under this domain and not in the same form as these days, but I am still very proud to say that I’ve been posting more or less consistently ever since.

I had originally intended this blog to motivate me to create art regularly – just like some challenge. During those first months of planning however, I had no idea that I would meet blogger buddies who would later become friends or that I’d learn so much about social media marketing, but I knew from the first moment on that maintaining a quality blog beside a day-job would mean lot of extra work.

I attended a blogger event in Budapest this October, where one of the guests asked: how is it actually possible to create high-end material while doing a day-job, if it takes so much effort (as it was enphasized how much work it takes to create good quality content).

So today I’m celebrating my blog’s 3rd birthday by giving you a little insight into how a week looks like in the life of a blogger (& illustrator). October was a rather busy month round here, so I chose to describe the last week of that month, as it gives you a fairly good idea of how these busy periods look like. You’ll see that I’m the type of blogger who likes to plan everything at least a month in advance (preferably more), so no unexpected event can interfere with my posting schedule.

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Behind the scenes #7 – What happened this October?

What happened this October - a month in the life of an illustrator

There’s no point in pretending things to be more glamorous than they are: October was a complete amuck. Not only because of the excessive amount of work that I’ve been doing – even though that aspect was also present – but also because I’ve been doing so many different things that I haven’t had time to process all my new (and lovely) experiences. This is partly why I decided to write this post, on a slightly therapeutic note.

I’ll become a graphic designer – officially

Some might know that I’m not exactly a fan of institutional design classes but it’s been annoying me for a while that even though I do graphic work all the time, I cannot ‘officially’ call myself a graphic designer. By last spring it had been annoying me so much that I decided to start yearly course in graphic design (while maintaining my day job). After some research my decision fell on Corvin Art School (Budapest), so since the end of September, I spend every Wednesday and Friday evening at their graphic design classes. Even though I’m planning to write a longer post on my experiences, I can already say that the heavy workload gives me both a hard and very enjoyable time. The extreme amount of work has a very good impact on my creativity, and it is out of the question that a day could pass by without actually drawing – or at least thinking about how to execute a certain design. At the moment it is fairly hard to grasp that this pace of life will continue until next June, but I sincerely hope that I will get used to it at some point.

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November calendars

November is one of the year’s least popular months – perhaps this is the reason why I started to feel sorry for it and learned to like it. This liking went so far that at some point this rainy, foggy, dark month became my favourite. Since then it is not that popular with me either, but I still like to curl up in an armchair with a cup of cocoa or tea and plan Christmas ahead – well before the madness of December.

This month’s watercolour splash conveys the rainy mood pretty well I think, with its purples and blues. Along with the monthly calendar, you can bring a perfect seasonal atmosphere right onto your screen. ;)

hand-painted calendar for download 2017 November

I have made this calendar in several sizes so you can use it from different sized screens as well as a smart phone. I hope you enjoy this free download :)

Sizes: 1024×768 | 1280×720 | 1440×900 | 1920×1080 (latter for smart phone)

Feeling the fear…

Feeling the fear - how to get over fear as an artist

I’m looking at my to-do list: I should paint, try new techniques so I have things to write blog posts about and take pictures of. But I should also cook, clean my apartment, and I haven’t met my best friend in ages. Plus my cat can’t wait for me to play with him a bit.

This is more or less what my inner monologues sound like when I procrastinate. There’s an endless number of excuses why I can’t sit down to my desk and draw the first line, but of course it’s not these – indeed important but not crucial – tasks that stop me from painting. What stops me is fear.

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That magical inspiration

The magical inspiration - how and how not to get inspired

I have been asked several times before: what are the things that inspire me during my painting process? If I were very honest and straightforward, I would say „the works of other illustrators and designers”, but of course, no artist says anything like this in case they are accused of stealing. It is just as well, since inspiration is something slightly more complicated than that, so today I’m going to ramble a bit about this subject.

According to definition Inspiration (from the Latin inspirare, meaning “to breathe into”) refers to an unconscious burst of creativity in a literary, musical, or other artistic endeavour. (Source)

Now that the academic approach has been cleared, we can admit that the word ‘inspiration’ is one of today’s favourite and most over-used expressions. It is the kind of cliché, which makes my mind switch off at the first mention of it. Under the pre-text of ‘inspiration’ anything can be sold: a kitchy photo, a perfectly banal quote or even a collection of images. Needless to say, I have also jumped the band-wagon, I create inspirational posters, and what’s more, I titled an entire category on this blog ‘inspiration’ – but I’ll tell you a secret: my paintings are hardly ever inspired by such things.

The way it doesn’t work

Inspiration actually means something different for all of us: something might be inspiring for me, which is not inspiring for you. Therefore it follows logically, that what I’m saying here may not apply to you.

However, we all have that feeling in common when we are just uninspired, so we have to accept the painful fact that inspiration is not always at reach whenever we need it. So don’t expect magic to happen if you fill a tub with foamy hot water and recite ‘I’m getting inspired now’ (even though it sometimes helps).

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5 illustubers to follow

A couple of months ago Youtube has sucked me in so deeply that I was watching the screen day and night. Not that I hadn’t used this amazing platform before, but the time had finally come when I wasn’t looking for videos according to topic, but according to creators.

This is how I met the expression ‘illustuber’, which is quite simply an illustrator, who runs a youtube channel. These fantastic artists share their experiences, tell about both the bright and dark sides of their profession, show their favourite art supplies, or just chat about their pets. No surprise, I became quite addicted for a while. It is interesting that in many cases I am not drawn to the artist’s style so much as his/her professional knowledge, and I’m ever so grateful for the amount of information I learned from these guys.

I’m still in the process of exploring new faces but there are a few favourites, whose videos I always watch when they upload something. They are the ones I’m going to introduce today.

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October calendars

I won’t reveal a great secret in saying that autumn is my favourite season. There is nothing more wonderful than taking long walks among the flaming colours of nature – which I’m going to do the next couple of weeks so you might see a little less activity round the blog. However, if you are not that lucky, there’s still no reason to feel bad: I’ve painted a little October onto your screen in this month’s calendar. If you’d like to see this calendar in print, just sign up to the newsletter below, I’ll send you the printable version of these calendars at the beginning of every month.

hand-painted calendar for download 2017 October

I have made this calendar in several sizes so you can use it from different sized screens as well as a smart phone. I hope you enjoy this free download :)

Sizes: 1024×768 | 1280×720 | 1440×900 | 1920×1080 (latter for smart phone)

Natural paints – tea and coffee

Natural paints - tea and coffee

Those of you who have knocked over wine glasses or have dropped cherries on your white shirts will know from experience that nature has provided us with plenty of pigments. To put it more commonly, these things leave ugly marks on textile. And on paper…

I have long been toying with the idea of trying the different natural pigments that painters of the past used, or to learn what is the biology behind the Milk Maid, for example, but I haven’t had the opportunity to delve into this complicated subject yet. So for the moment, I stayed on safe grounds and decided to experiment with a cup of tea and coffee.

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Back to school – downloadable garden-themed planner

A day in the garden - downloadable planner pages

For stationery-geeks like me, the beginning of September is definitely cause for celebration: ‘back to school means’ that all shops are full of beautiful notebooks and planners. However, if you are so keen on stationery like me, you might be inclined to criticise each and every product: nothing is exactly the way you’d want it to be.

Obviously, the Filofax and bullet journal craze has not left me untouched, but in the end I decided I needed my time and creativity in other fields than decorating my planner. Nevertheless, I still love a beautiful planner, so I (too), have made my own.

Blogging, illustrating, even going to school can be tough while you do a full-time job, and it needs a lot of organization to avoid being overwhelmed. It often happens that I get last minute tasks or comissions, so I have to be flexible, while I don’t want to neglect priorities like this blog either.

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Book review – Nature Notes of an Edwardian Lady

Book review - Nature notes of an Edwardian Lady

Edith Holden’s notes about nature have already come up last year as side-notes to my downloadable calendars. However, I thought that Nature Notes of an Edwardian Lady deserves an entire blogpost.

Apparently, it is a habit of mine to bump into beautiful works of British illustrators somewhere abroad (like I did with In and out of the garden). I came across this book in Sweden, more precisely, on the bookshelf of a friend I was visiting – and she was generous enough to give it to me (Thank you so much! <3).

Edith Holden documents her observations of 1906, and adds seasonal quotes and poems by well-known (and less well-known) poets as well as her own beautiful illustrations of birds, plants and forest animals. (Obviously I was drawn to this book, as I am rather responsive to literature as well as art…).

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