6 weeks of silence

Okay, I promised it wouldn’t happen again…and it did xD Can I be forgiven? I hope so!

It’s been a busy 6 weeks, in my defense. I’ve not only started a new part-time job as a ‘communications’ type person (it’s a general kind of role, covering social media, blog writing, website design, copywriting, designing visual assets, etc), I’ve also been really busy finishing the Kickstarter comics artwork and juggling several commissions. Oh, almost forgot – I started volunteering at the Leeds Museums too! As a blogger. Write and draw about all the cool items in their collection? How could I resist?

Sadly I’ve not done any new artwork in all this time either but I will try to fix that. Getting used to the new schedule might take a while but I’ll snatch some time for artwork wherever I can :) Excitingly, Microsoft have very kindly sent me a Surface 3 tablet to do more digital artwork on so I’m not tethered to my desk any more :D I’ve also recently started to use Clip Paint Studio, and have just invested in Anime Studio Pro.

Interesting times ahead!


Ooops, I did it again.

Don’t worry, I’m not about to break into a badly out of tune rendition of the Britney super-hit. I am about to curl up in to a ball of shame and embarrassment though. I missed not one, not two, but FOUR weeks of new work! After such a good start (with a single blip), I feel so bad.

Punishing yourself is sometimes necessary, but so is knowing when life just has to take precedence. And it did, in a good way!

Firstly, a few absorbing projects came my way, which is fab! <3 Secondly, I launched a Kickstarter! That was a trial by fire, let me tell you. Camera-shy, voice-shy, and absolutely NO experience whatsoever in making things look swish? Oh yeah, of course I knew what I was doing xD As of writing, it has successfully reached the funding target, so I couldn’t be happier! It’s been a great experience and now I just want to make sure everyone is happy with the work. I’m a bit nervous, I want to make two new comics that are as sweet, funny and quirky as the first. No pressure.

With things wrapping up in various ways and places, I should be able to get back to some normal practice soon. Need to keep expanding the portfolio, getting better, and discovering more about my own work :)


New Work – week 11


So after my lapse, I was determined to get something ready for the end of this week. They may not be much but they are part of continued efforts to explore vector work. If you can look at these and still say ‘Oh, Amy made those!’ then that’s even better <3

I talk (literally) more about these critters over here.


BEHOLD! I speak on a video for the FIRST TIME!

Just a teeny insight into geometric birds from Tiger Tea on Vimeo.

Ta-da! I’m no longer a faceless, voiceless entity that everyone hopes is a big cartoon tiger. Instead, I am simply a faceless entity that everyone hopes is a cartoon tiger xD

This video comes off the back of the super-sketcher post, which a lot of people seemed to enjoy. I’ve been meaning to do more ‘geometric animals’, and my ‘making of‘ post about the process didn’t show it from start to finish. So I thought I’d try another video.

I am famously camera shy and the same can be said for voice recording too. I’m not sure how I managed to do this in one go without flailing about, screaming ‘OH MY GOD I SOUND HORRIBLE.’ But I did it. It isn’t the whole process, as the puffin was proving awkward to wrangle into something I was happy with. It’s a nice little introduction though, a little insight in to how I work in vector, creating things from scratch.


New Work – what happened to weeks 9 and 10?

Oh no! Have I failed one of my year-long goals already? Well, yes and no I suppose. I did post this process video in week 10, and also wrote a lengthy post about planning my first attempt at making a visual novel game in the same week.

But I didn’t *actually* make any new work. I just wrote about stuff and filmed my doodling. So, it was a productive week, just not in the way I wanted it to be xD If I was a better person, I would have done the blog posts AND the new work. This is something I’m trying to improve. I should be a creative powerhouse but I stumble with confidence hurdles sometimes.

On top of that, not that this is an excuse, I spent a few days switching off. I visited family, had a day out, didn’t check social media very much, and even didn’t do much drawing. As I’ve been trying to get some chronic health problems under control, this time out was much needed.

Back to a normal schedule and hopefully lots of new goodies for you this week! :D Thanks for sticking with me <3


Super-sketcher specialist

Drawing process – doodles from Tiger Tea on Vimeo.

As I grew up with a tendency to sketch on whatever I could get my hands on, I always found it fascinating that other people were so captivated by the drawing process as much as the final outcome. Are they hoping to glean some kind of technique or secret from watching it happen? Or is it like stage magic, watching something enchanting and wondering how it is possible?

Here is basically a digital version of me sitting in a coffee shop, sketching the other patrons or just generally sketching. Wouldn’t it be great if a woolly rhino and a bear walked in to a coffee shop…sounds like the set up for a joke…


Making of…a visual novel part 1

You’d be forgiven if you immediately thought a ‘visual novel’ was akin to a graphic novel, something lavishly illustrated accompanied by some text perhaps. I would have thought the same until a few years ago when I started to play more computer games. Yes, it’s a type of computer game.

Visual novels are an interesting part of the computer game family. They’re quite accessible for players, as they often require minimal gameplay, and quite accessible to create, offering those with little programming knowledge an easy way in to creating games. That’s why I’m here.

Via Twitter, I saw a fabulous game artist (@bitmOO) post about NaNoRenO, a game jam focusing on visual novels. After shelving many wonderful plans I had for my ACE application, I plucked out the folklore idea and thought I could turn it in to a visual novel style game. A chance for me to start dabbling in making games. I’m realistic about it all, I doubt I’ll get a whole game finished but I’m aiming to get something working.

So here I am, taking you with me on my game-making mess adventure :)


New Work – week 8

Week 8 already! Out of 52. A sixth of the way through the year. Am I dwelling on stuff? Of course not! Not me, nope. I’d never do that…

This week’s new work is not polished. They are, however, more refined than my usual Twitter doodles. They are grouped together by theme, as I’m a bit obsessed with local folklore at the moment. It formed a big part in my attempted ACE project but, sadly, that won’t happen now. So I’m doing my best to plough on and get something made anyway :)

The first is based on ‘Jenny Greenteeth’ and myriad other malevolent water spirits, mostly women, who lured people to a watery death. The second is based on the vast number of ‘white lady’ ghost stories in Yorkshire but also includes the unique tale of a ghost mouse. And the third is a concept image for a visual novel game I want to make, about a ‘black dog’ terrorising a village.


New Work – week 6/7

So, this group of work belongs to the same project that this post refers to, and had that same sense of being way out of my usual comfort zone.

I’ve never done any ‘live-drawing’ but always been curious about it. Some folk make a career or a business out of it. Sciberia instantly come to mind. Nevertheless, I put my boots on and my lucky scarf and I dived in, armed with a pad of marker paper and my lovely ageing Promarkers.


Stepping out of comfort zone (Week 4)

So it’s the fourth week in to the year (wow, it’s going pretty fast already!). This weeks new piece of work gets a post dedicated to it because it involved stepping outside of my comfort zone.

My work is bright, bouncy, usually quite organic with some real-media brushes thrown in. I don’t enjoy maths and grids and being restrained. So, what did I choose to do when I was approached with a commission based on a data city?



Making of…a small comic

So, I thought I’d share a few process pics of how I made There’s a Tiger on the Bus. It’s only a small adventure in comic/book-making but it’s a nice first step for me, I had oodles of fun with it, and I’d love to do some more :D I even got a few copies professionally printed and the colours just blew my mind! When I can afford it, I think a pro printer would be a wise investment.

Firstly, I had nothing of this idea written down (which is naughty, I know). It literally came together in my head and I drew it and amended it on the fly. I would not recommend working like this all the time or for bigger projects xD

I started with a really rough sketch. Because I knew I wanted to make a physical version that folded in to a booklet, I laid out guidelines for where the artwork could go. I also wanted nice white borders – fewer problems when it comes to printing. Originally, the little boy was going to narrate the whole encounter, so I made scribbles for text placement.



New Work – week 2

I was having so much fun with Dapper Dogs that I just had to make another design! :) Another two ticks towards my resolution-goals. The only problem is, by the time I finish a design, I think of loads more dogs I could do! There’s still British and American Bulldogs, Rough Collie, Border Collie, Boxer, French Bulldog, Rottweiler, Chow Chow…


New Work – week 1

So here we are, end of the first week of the year. Here’s a few snippets of the first brand new piece of work for the year (the full design can be seen on my portfolio).

It also ticks another resolution box – working on my Redbubble shop or overall merchandise selection. These would make fabulous buttons or stickers.

As an aside,  the visual style of these are slightly different to the rest of my Redbubble shop. I’ve still sketched out a design and then blocked everything in using vectors but instead of also using vector to create details, I took the design in to Photoshop to finish off. Both techniques have advantages and disadvantages. I’m going to see how the dog design pans out and take it from there :)

Screen shot 2016-01-08 at 15.45.05


New Year – Plan B

Plan B? What happened to Plan A? I turned it into a paper plane, lost it out of a window, and it’s now happily touring the globe :)

In all seriousness, 2015 has not treated me well. It has thrown some sticks and stones, and has broken some bones. I won’t dwell on the bad stuff, it’s already had a jolly old time dancing on my brain. All that matters is that I have a plan in place to make 2016 much much better :)

This is kind of a new-year-resolution post but mostly something to measure against throughout the year. It can be hard realising and then admitting that you don’t do enough work or you don’t paint enough or you are lacking some skills. Time to fix that, pronto!


Animation – giraffe animatic

Animatic – ‘gentle giraffe’ from Tiger Tea on Vimeo.

Okay, so this is a very basic animatic for a more ambitious project than making some ready-made illustrations move across this screen. This is going to be a full animated short (final length to be determined, it’s currently only about 1 min in length but I still need to factor in the speech). Characters will be designed, made to move and (hopefully) speak. It’s a basic concept but I’m not aiming to challenge the animators of legend just yet.

Anyways, this proved so invaluable in getting the timing right. It may even change again once I’ve got voices to the animals but it’s still a great building block. I’ll write a bit more about the storyboarding and character creation process in another post. Until then, enjoy! :D


Animation – ‘gentle giraffe’

Photo 03-08-2015 18 52 17

Here we are! Technically, the first post on the shiny new home for all my (mis)adventures in my illustration and animation practice :D This post is all about an ambitious little project that popped in to my head almost as soon as I started learning After Effects. I probably should go through a crash-course in motion graphics first but…well, I’m impatient.

Meet ‘gentle giraffe.’


Animation – turtle

So, I’ve just started using Studio12 in Leeds Central Library (if you’re under 30, seriously go there – really friendly, really helpful, and you can learn to use all sorts of good stuff).

I’m hoping to learn more about using After Effects for animation (it is apparently a bit more intuitive to use than the likes of Flash). So I thought I’d document some of my process and progress. My first session at Studio12 was an introduction to some basics but I hadn’t brought any prepared artwork or assets, so I was a bit limited.

On my second session, I brought SEA CREATURES! I’m not aiming for dizzying heights of animation here, I’m just aiming to get to grips with After Effects basics to then improve from there.


Memory Palace – V&A Museum

All photos;

Installation image of Sky Arts Ignition: Memory Palace at the V&A
© Victoria and Albert Museum, London

I’ll start with an admission that I am perhaps biased in favour of this exhibition concept – I love storytelling, I love exhibition design, and I love anything that transports you in to another world. I want to be immersed in something. Memory Palace offered just that – a walk-in book. A chance to be enveloped by a story, read it, feel it, see it.


Campfire on Wildcat Island

SAB Gallery, Leeds Met University
15 September 2012
I am not ashamed to say it – I am a geek for maps. Well, not entirely…I don’t get giddy over elevations or delirious over grids or anything. I just enjoy looking at, and interpreting, maps. They have a huge history all of their own (which this workshop has inspired me to delve in to at some point) and provide relief to ramblers all across the Yorkshire Dales every day. This workshop’s main focus was fictional maps, although to be honest it covered a broad smattering of other (some very) surreal ideas as well.