White on Viridian Sea Monster swim hat

Springtime Sea Monsters!

Soon it will be spring and the water will warm up. Yes it will. And so it occurred to me that my snowflake / Swimflakes swimming hat will be right out of season. With this in mind I thought I would design a more spring-like hat. Something green, with growing things. That was the plan… but it’s funny how things come out sometimes. Somehow what the design turned into was Sea Monsters, frolicking with an overabundance of springlike joy, no doubt. I am going to get these hats printed, and, like the ‘Swimflakes’ ones (which are now sold out but…

Sally at Vobster, in watercolour, gouache and gold leaf

“Sally”

This is Sally, another painting in watercolour, gouache and gold leaf, a celebration of our lovely clear lake at Vobster Quay, where I swim once a week. The source material for this painting was an underwater photograph I took on our first swim of 2017. It was 2nd January. When the lake gets a bit warmer I hope to have a few more subjects not in wetsuits, but for the moment there are a hardcore few of us, though even we have mostly resorted to wearing gloves in these temperatures. The highlights of the water at the top are created…

Sara, close-up

‘Sara’, with palladium leaf

Second underwater swimmer picture in real paint. I though I wouold try keeping the metallic element but removing the gold colour, so this is palladium leaf. Palladium is very similar to Platinum, but without the latter’s pretensions, and so only costs about the same as gold leaf. This is Sara, also swimming at Vobster Quay.

Wendy & Ella

Wendy and Ella at Coniston

My first commission of the year! This is Wendy Figures and her daughter Ella, having been swimming in Coniston. I had good photos of both their faces to work from, but the photo of them at Coniston was a very flat grey day, so I used that aspect too, and created a soft sepia background with very little colour. Often Cumbria is like that and it’s still lovely. Digital drawing.

The Big Chill Swim

10th & 11th December 2016 I shall have a stand with artwork in the marquee this year! The Big Chill Swim is Chillswim’s fantastic winter swimming gala, held at Low Wood Bay, on Windermere, Cumbria. This year I shall have a stand with artwork – prints, cards, ‘Swimflakes’ wrapping paper – and I have also designed the event image that is printed on the t-shirts and event goody bags. If you’re attending the event, I shall also have commemorative postcards, free to everyone who comes and finds me to claim them. I’ll be in the marquee. I shall also be…

Swimflakes swimming hat

‘Swimflakes’ wrapping paper & cards for sale on Etsy

The wrapping paper, cards and tags have been printed, and, if it’s not too early to mention such festive supplies, I have them for sale in my Etsy shop here: https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/nancyfarmer?ref=hdr&section_id=5955662 I would also have told you that had swimming hats for sale, printed up with the same design on them… but I now know the meaning of ‘selling like hot cakes’. They sold out faster than I could find the time to post them on this blog, and there is not now enough time to re-order and go through the wrapping and posting again in good time before Christmas…

Chloe McCardel, mermaid

Sirène: Chloe McCardel

A digital drawing I did of a lady who must be at least part-mermaid. This is a fanciful portrait of Australian long distance swimmer extraordinaire, Chloë McCardel. This week, she swam the English Channel for the 21st time, Her 20th swim broke the Australian record, and she now holds the record for the number of solo crossings in one year with 8 done in 2016! She also coached 5 successful Australian solo swimmers and three successful relay teams in 2016. One of those relay swimmers was Dory Johns, who I had the pleasure of meeting a few weeks ago, and…

‘Swimflakes’ swimming hats

I do love it when a piece of work turns out to be multi-purpose! And I also love it when ideas come together that never would have, had it not been for a complex journey of other ideas. Devils drinking tea in Hell is one of those examples, and another one is my new ‘Swimflakes’ swimming hats. Sprung from ponderings on what sort of wrapping paper would appeal to swimmers at Christmas because, frankly, I know a lot of swimmers and that in itself comes from my love of swimming outside, even when it is freezing. The hats, when I…

Silver or Gold…?

I am nearly at a the point of asking a printing company to print the wrapping paper I’ve been working on for  while, but before I do it, I thought a bit of customer research might be in order. The choice is between silver and gold, and also between white swimflakes against a metallic background or the other way around. I may be able to print two options – I can almost certainly afford to print either both gold or both silver options, or I can go with what I wanted originally – white on gold, and silver on white,…

Synchro Snowflakes

Welcome to this year’s edition of “Quick & Simple Christmas Product Ideas Which Actually Take At Least 10 Times Longer Than I Anticipated” I am not complaining, I am having fun, and I am also finding Adobe Illustrator indispensable for this project (and getting to grips with limited parts of it), and that makes me happy, because some weeks ago I paid for the annual licence for the whole of the Adobe creative suite, which, while it doesn’t actually require you to sign away your soul and your firstborn child baby cats, it does at least come closer to that…