Tag Archives: Happiness Is

Changing seasons

And so autumn has arrived, with more of a damp plop than a dramatic fanfare…

I love a bit of autumn, with it’s crunchy leaves and the perfect excuse to wrap up in a snuggly scarf, but I am not so keen on it rolling in with endless rain and drizzle in August. We should have had until September at least to enjoy the last of the sunshine!

Being back in the office has made me realise that time passes in a very strange way working from home, each day draws out for an eternity, but weeks pass by in a flash! It feels like so long ago that I was stretched out on a blanket on the lawn sketching, reading and taking endless photos of the cats, when in reality, it was maybe a few weeks ago at most.

Lounging at home with the cats I remembered the happiness illustrations I did last year and I decided on another one to add to the list:

lazy daysI cannot wait for the sunshine to come back and the day when I have a garden big enough for a tree and a hammock to enjoy it in – the luxury!

Weeks ago when it was still summer, I was making the most of the sunshine, raspberry picking with my Mum, where I was determined to hone my camera skills.

IMG_0267This lovely little bee seemed quite happy to pose for me in the flowers while I tried to find the right camera setting. I have a feeling it may have been a distraction technique while the surrounding wasps targeted all the raspberries we’d gathered and did their best to terrorise Mum.

We also stopped off at Happisburgh (that’s pronounces hays-bruh, for any non-Norfolk-folk) lighthouse on the way back

IMG_0270It was an amazing day with miles of blue skies and a gentle breeze coming off the sea and yet another opportunity to whip out the camera for a few more photos. I’m determined to improve my photo taking now that I have a fancy camera. I think the main obstacle is going to be lugging it around, it’s so cumbersome!

Of course no North-ish Norfolk jaunt is worth it’s weight in salt without stopping by my favourite riverside house.

rainbows end

Not that you can actually see the river from this view! I am determined to keep painting this house until I can finally get across the warmth, happiness and homeliness that I associate with it. Painting this house is becoming my white whale!

On a slightly less frustrating note, whilst thinking about rivers I came across an image of a woodland river with a beautiful stone bridge running through that felt perfect the front page of my newest sketchbook.


The scene felt like it was straight from a fairytale, a story of good versus evil and the discovery of magical creatures. Anyone that knows me knows that I am a sucker for a good fairytale!

So I guess that’s the last of summer for another year, it was short but sweet and I am so happy that I got to spend so much of it outside enjoying the sunshine. Now we’re on to autumn and I’ve got a new scarf to wrap up in and I’m on the hunt for some new boots to keep my feet dry. I hope you made the most of the sunshine while it lasted and you have a reliable brolly ready for the next season!


Happiness is… pt 6

I was glad that this happiness was quite a late addition to the list as it has been one of the most difficult to illustrate!

It’s been a challenge to decide how best to illustrate this happiness, as I wanted the girls to be recognisable but still relatable to other people too, so I’m really pleased with how it turned out!

Hopefully my sister will recognise her happiness from the illustration rather than just from the words:

Happiness girls

I think this may be one of my fav happiness illustrations so far, and I can’t believe I only have one more to do! If there are any more happiness requests, please let me know, as I’ll be quite sad to see the end of this little series.

I hope you’ve been out enjoying the sunshine this weekend, I managed to burn my shoulders walking into town, so don’t make the same mistake I did and make sure to top up your sun cream!


Happiness is… pt 5

This happiness is one I think we all share; being snuggled with a loved one!

Trying to decide how best to illustrate this was hard – I couldn’t choose which loved one I enjoy snuggling with most. That would not encourage happiness at all (especially if I ended up choosing a grumbly little kitten)!

So I only saw one solution, try to find the perfect moment that embodies the content, safe, warm and fuzzy feeling you get when snuggling, and I think I found it…

sea otters

Sea otters!

The snuggly-ist, most adorable things out there! With their hand holding to stop them from floating away, their lounging on their backs with their little ones snuggled in, their cute little noses and fluffy flippery feeties!

They are snuggle happiness personified!

As you can tell, I’ve been experimenting with inks recently so I wanted to try something different for this happiness is, but unfortunately I’m not so sure it was a success! Oh well, you live and learn and I’m sure they would forgive me!

This is the fifth in my happiness is series, to view the previous ones visit here, here, here and here!



Happiness is… pt 4

Today I’m sharing my fourth happiness is… illustration, and I think it may be my favourite yet!

I was really looking forward to illustrating this one, and I had so many ideas for what I could do: a woman curled up in a deep and squishy armchair with her head down engrossed in the final pages of her favourite book; a teenage girl laying on her front soaking up the sunshine in the garden, casually flicking through a new story; a little girl sat on a stack of books so high her feet swing above the ground as she turns the page of a fairytale.

Every time my pencil touched the paper, yet another idea flew into my head, but still nothing was on the page!

Having time to read, to discover the new stories out there and relive the ones I love is so important to me, it’s my escape when it’s stressful, my favourite way to pass sunny days and not to mention, the best way to pass 4 hours of daily commuting. So I realised the only way to really capture the happiness you can get with a really good book was to show the worlds you can find between its pages.

happiness is reading copy

Stories are so important at shaping how we see the world, and everyone that loves reading has that one book or author who ignited that reading spark in them. I devoured the Roald Dahl books when I was growing up and still I enjoy books with a little bit of magic – Harry Potter will always be one of my favourites (I’m rereading book 6 again at the moment!)!

I would love to hear your favourites, be them books or authors, and maybe I can branch out into another series, so please share here or on the facebook page!

Finally, thank you Kathryn for adding this happiness to my list, what a good call!


Happiness is… Pt 2

This illustration is inspired by my cousin’s response to one of my posts last week.

For her, happiness is the sound of her son laughing, so I wanted to draw something that represented her and her son and the close bond between a mother and child.

son laughing

I’m really enjoying doing this happiness collection and am looking forward to illustrating the other responses I had to my original post. Please share what you believe happiness is, either in the comments below or on my facebook page and I look forward to adding it to the collection!


Happiness is…

This post is inspired by a photo I took of my lovely sister-in-law and adorable nephew last weekend.

Laura and OwenWe had some bubble pots left over from our boat trip on Easter Weekend, so we were making the most of the sunny weather.

I love bubbles, it just isn’t a celebration until there is bubbles!

So for me…

happiness bubblesI really enjoyed making this, so please share what happiness is for you and I will illustrate them up to share on here!