Illustrations, London, Mummy stuff, Play

Back to school

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So what do you do when you feel stuck in your routine, a million ideas buzzing around your head but you are unable to channel your creativity into something productive? Exactly, you grab a batch of clay, form an innocent rabbit and prong it onto a chopstick. Under professional supervision, of course.

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Saint Martins School of Design offers a wide range of short courses during the Easter break, and I have the pleasure to take part in the four-day-long Children’s Book Illustration course this week. Held by the lovely April Wilson, every day is packed with lots of helpful advice, new ideas and a lot of inspiration.

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Although she is a successful and published children’s book illustrator and author, April is not the least bit patronising. There is no right or wrong, no good or bad. When she was at the very beginning of her career, she had two little children to look after and knows about the challenges this situation brings with it. I am trying to get as much advice from her on how to plan my projects and set goals as realistically as possible. She is an inspiration in herself and unbelievably generous when it comes to sharing all the little tricks and tips.

Big M has taken the week off to look after little L, who did not only turn one this week, but also fell terribly ill AND is teething AND is letting us have a little preview on what is to come next year. Terrible twos starting at one? Oh yes!

Do I miss my little darling during the day? Yes and no. It feels so good just to be myself again, work on my projects and being able to concentrate on one thing for more than three minutes without interruption – it almost makes me feel guilty. Almost.


  1. HAPPY BIRTHDAY to little L….and good for you…a step closer to your dream! You got to go for it girl!

  2. Wow! What a fantastic sounding course. Hope you came away with lots of ideas. Have you been to art school? Or are you self-taught?
    Happy birthday to your little one.

  3. Sounds great. I get one weekend off every year (choir retreat) and I love it. And why not? Enjoy the rest of it!

  4. Don’t feel guilty. You’ll be a better mother all round for indulging yourself a little. Heck, what am I saying? It’s not indulging. It’s just looking after yourself, and making sure you’re a rounded person. You’ll certainly be more creative!

  5. the course sounds completely wonderful- I had a similar experience with a 2 day perfume course- it just re- awoke the belief that I could achieve things- problem is I need a course about once a month!

    But really hope you enjoyed it and am sure Big M and little L enjoyed having some quality time too so everyone wins

  6. Its great ! I know the feeling but its so good fell that we are capable to do different things as it was before motherhood.

  7. Nice bunny! Although the chopstick looks a bit painful…
    Don’t worry about being away from your little one to do your work. I always felt that I was a better mother BECAUSE I worked when my children were little. I was more patient with them and appreciative of the time we spent together.

  8. Hi MM – Good for you to be taking time out. Its something about motherhood that you have to eventually give yourself ‘permission’ to enjoy it, as its away from your baby. But the guilt will lessen; it will always be there abit but it does become less and then you can focus even more!

  9. kepp up the good work! I want to be the first one to order your book! Happy b-day Little L! Congrats to you both for having such a lovely little one. Can’t wait to see you guys tomorrow, hope she feels better by then! x LZ

  10. What a great class! Good for you for getting your creative juices flowing. I, too, struggle with the guilt thing time to time. But, always remember that a happy mommy means happy kids. 🙂

  11. Happy Birthday L. 🙂 Glad to hear you are finding your own voice (he he)
    That course sounds fab, must say I’ve been really tempted by some of their courses in the past and wondered if they would be worth it- seems so by the sounds of things.
    Love the rabbit

  12. happy birthday to your little one and good on you for doing something that you want to do. xxxxx

  13. Good for you, sounds like an excellent class.
    Even mommies need a break every once in awhile.
    Hope little L feels better soon, sending lots of warm birthday wishes for little L’s first!

  14. That sounds like an excellent way to spend a few days. And what a great rabbit. Very apt for Easter. So glad your dreams are coming true.

  15. Happy birthday little lady! You are one! Wow.
    And well done MM for doing something for you. The course sounds wonderful. As does the child free time. Guilt is a wasted emotion, so don’t spend a minute of your time on it! I felt guilty for a whole 18 months while I was at work three days a week. Now my 6 year old doesn’t remember a second of it! All that time I spent crying in the toilets…!

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