Monday, 16 August 2010

Guest Post by Chris Fothergill - On the Back of an Envelope

I'm sure many of our readers will be able to identify with today's guest post by Chris Fothergill - I certainly can and frequently bemoan the fact that my finished designs seem to have lost something of their liveliness when my scrap paper scribblings are transferred to the watercolour paper! Chris has been a professional artist for more than 20 years and he has recently opened stores at Greeting Card Universe and Zazzle, helped by his wife, Gill.

On the Back of an Envelope - by Chris Fothergill

I love discarded envelopes. You know the ones – window envelopes from mindless officialdom that look too boring to even open. And yet they have lovely big blank areas all over that beg to be written, doodled or drawn on.

 My drawing board can be a scary place. I look around the corner at it from the doorway in the morning, and then go and put the kettle on and sit at the kitchen table, putting off the moment of commitment. The drawing board seems to demand professionalism, competency and success. The back of an envelope on the kitchen table makes no demands whatever, but invites me to pick up a pencil or biro, and muck about. Its going to be thrown away whatever, so it doesn’t matter.

In the picture shown here, I received some post from Venice (it was only an invoice!) but the post label seemed to invite some elaboration which gave me a fun coffee break and the envelope has been stuck on my studio wall since.

It reminds me how to have fun with paper and a pen.


You can read more of Chris's writings and enjoy his paintings and illustrations on his blog, Travels with my Art



Jean said...

I don't really relate but did enjoy the post.:)

Country Mouse Studio said...

awe, you have to make a similar envelope on Zazzle! Love your art

JudyAdamsonArtandDesign said...

Chris, you've got me started on envelope doodling! I usually doodle on the back of paper that's been typed on (of which I've got stacks!) but an envelope with something already on it can fire the imagination! I'm busy with my Christmas cards at the moment but I'll try to find a moment to scan my 'front of the envelope while watching the news' doodle and post it.

Chris Fothergill said...

I suppose it's the freedom of expression I like that comes from drawing on scraps of throwaway paper - one has no inhibitions! It's keeping the freshness translating into finished artwork that's the challenge. Keep up the good work Judy!

JudyAdamsonArtandDesign said...

I couldn't agree more about the challenge of keeping the 'freshness' in the finished work. Quenting Blake mentions it in the video on his website but he always seems to succeed admirably!