Art Journal

Have you ever had one of those times when life is incredibly busy and stressful and yet for some crazy reason you decide to take on one more thing? 2017 was a rollercoaster year and I don’t know where I found the time, but every day for the month of September I made a small image in my sketchbook. Somehow I carved out the space amidst the chaos to do this one small thing, and it became a daily practice to look forward to. It brought some colour and imagination and humour to a difficult phase, and the act of creativity seemed to give me more energy for other things. I’m so happy that I made the effort. So never say, you don’t have time. There is always time if you can just allow it…

Labyrinths and Spirals

These are images from a series of cut paper collages I made a few years ago while suffering from Labyrinthitis. For weeks on end I was too dizzy to leave the house. Labyrinthitis is a virus of the inner ear and I started thinking about the ancient patterns of the labyrinth and the spiral. Cutting circles out of scraps of coloured paper and arranging them in sweeping spiral curves was repetitive, obsessive, but strangely soothing and healing.

 

Cats

Cat or dog? I love both but ultimately I’m a cat person and they are so much easier to draw. They feature in quite a lot of my work, although the model is not always willing. In which case, it’s down to the imagination.

Lesfruitsdemel Cat Drawing Illustration Collage Melanie Pearson
Our Bob
Moggy Moloko
lesfruitsdemel Cat Melanie Pearson
Window Gazing 2019

 

 

 

 

Booklets and Comics

Paper has always been my favourite medium – it’s the first thing most of us use for scribbling and painting as children – and I’ve been making little books and comics and scrapbooks since forever. The more lo-fi the better. Here are some recent ones:

Lesfruitsdemel Catzine Melanie Pearson
LOVECATS: A romantic adventure on the mythical island of vegan cats! Hand cut and illustrated in full colour, imagining the love affair between a feral street moggy and a sophisticated French fashion cat.
A LITTLE BOOK OF LOVE AND LOSS: for when you lose someone precious.
Grief takes mysterious forms and can seem so unbearable that you’ll do anything to try to stop the pain. I began this after my brother died, when the world seemed very topsy turvy indeed. It felt soothing to make these images and remember that grief is the B side of love. I hope it will bring you some comfort if you too have lost someone.

A COLOURING BOOK FOR CARERS: Meditations and colouring pages for people looking after someone.
I made this little book as an artist’s response to the many hours spent waiting…in waiting rooms for health appointments and on the phone trying to contact various organisations on my brother’s behalf. Carers spend an awful lot of time in this way.
It started off with templates for colouring in and decorating, but gradually turned into a reminder to be positive and connect with the things that help us keep going.
KING OF THE CATS
KING OF THE CATS: A hand-drawn zine with a modern take on an old traditional fairy story. Because who knows what your cat gets up to in their “real” life when your back is turned?

Fantastic Beasts and Mythical Creatures

Cupid and Psyche

I’ve always been inspired and intrigued by fairy stories and tales of magical creatures. These are some of the ones peeking out of my sketchbook…

 

Starry Night. Cut paper and biro. Remembering the breathtaking sight of a barn owl in a sky full of stars in Northumberland – near Kielder Forset, where dark skies are cherished and shielded from city light pollution.

Faces

Faces are easy to draw when I want to make something but can’t think where to start. So a lot of these are variations on a theme but quite often they end up taking on a life of their own…

Original art by Sheffield artist and illustrator -Melanie Pearson
Collage and mixed media with Indian beads and hand painted paper. The green Moroccan print on the right is the wrapper from a bar of cardamom chocolate given by a dear friend, so this always reminds me of her.
Collage art by Melanie Pearson
The eye is Shakespeare’s, from a found exhibition flyer, for some reason that and the red lips reminded me of Miranda Richardson playing Elizabeth I in Blackadder. Do you see the likeness or is it just me?!
Goddess. Playing with a stained glass window effect; I was so keen to see how this worked that you can see the pencil markings that I was too carried away to rub out! Now they are part of the piece.