Each year @joannehawker shares some prompts for the #MarchMeetTheMaker Instagram challenge. I decided to take part in its third year, in the hope that I would find some exciting makers to follow, as well as keep my Instagram updated.
Just like Inktober March Meet the Maker involves posting everyday. I enjoy challenges like this as it stops me from being lazy and neglecting Instagram, and even when it is over I feel encouraged to keep posting as it helps gain interest in my business. This month I am taking part in #AdventureApril so stay tuned for some exciting posts over on my instagram! ^^
Now on to the fun bit…the posts…
Day One- You! For this one I posted a boomerang of me dancing around the Museum Gardens in York on a sunny day…unfortunately I can’t add the boomerang though so here’s a VERY smiley pic from the same day…
“ME!…I suppose I should put a bit about me too…I’m Laura (obviously) and I’m a twenty-something masters student from Durham, but I currently live in York! I love living in York, even if it is snowing it is still beautiful ☃️☃️☃️ but it’s safe to say I can’t wait for it to be warm enough to crack out my dungarees again!🏖
I started Eve’s Forest around this time last year and have had my etsy shop for around 9ish months…I’ve recently been really enjoying doing medieval style script and have been a busy bee preparing for Thirsk Mini-con (which happens in ten days time woohoo)…🍃🍃🍃”
Day Two- Where? I live in York if you haven’t heard already…I mean I do go on about it a lot 😂 I moved here for university and I just can’t leave! I’ve fallen in love with this history soaked city and I’m trying to stay here for as long as I can ^^ I currently live in a tiiinny flat but I can’t wait to move somewhere bigger and finally get my dream of an ART ROOM 🖌🖌🖌… I’m originally from Durham which isn’t too far away so it’s always easy to pop home and visit my family and old school friends 🚂
Day Three- How you started?
“…doodling! Ever since I was a child I remember I had such a vivid imagination and always wanted to draw or paint or make something, or I’d just fidget and not sit still 🖌 🎨✏
As I grew up I found being creative helped a lot, especially when suffering from stress and on bad days…my parents knew just what to do when I was feeling miserable and as if everyone hated me…my dad would set me loose on a box of meccano and my mam would encourage me to sew something 🤹♀️🤹♀️🤹♀️
…this creativity disappeared a bit when I reached university and as a result I found myself feeling very *blaarrgh*…I literally had a migraine everyday and didn’t want to leave my house…suddenly I had a realisation that I needed to start looking after myself a bit better and taking some time for Me! And there *ta-dah* Eve’s Forest was born after a lot of encouragement from my friends and family! 🥀 I’m so glad I started this little venture…it’s my way of looking after myself 💖 it’s important to take time to do things you love! … this (below) is a little doodle I made today using a lost earring as inspiration hehe 🍃🍃🍃🍃”
Day Four- Favourite to make?…I really enjoy making pins and I am currently working on a special collection that I will be releasing soon 🍃 pictured (above left) is a set of pins that I made for one of my closest friends, it was so fun to design these especially for her and then make them…I would love to do some commission sets when I have more time! I think it would be great to do some bridal/bachelor party themed ones 👰🤵 …the Tallulah pin has been the most popular item on my etsy store and I’m going to be doing a restock of them very soon too 🦇🦇🦇 what would your dream pin be?
Day Five- photography
“…it’s probably pretty obvious by now that my favourite backdrop for any photo is the red brick wall in my yard…I often venture out in my pjs and bunny slippers to take photos! My hands usually shake a lot so it takes quite a while to get the perfect shot! 👋👋👋 but I always love to get my hands in the shot…or feet…or at least a pen to make it look a bit more human and so you know there’s a person behind all this! 👩🏻🎨👩🏻🎨👩🏻🎨 when not using this wall I tend to use my bedding or patterned dresses if it doesn’t draw too much attention away from whatever I’m photographing 👚👗🛏 to take my photos I just use my phone camera (I have a Samsung something or other) and edit the photos using apps such as @afterlight and @acolorstory to make them look kind of professional 📱📱📱…this print will be available on etsy when I do the restock in a few weeks time 📣📣📣”
Day Six- workspace…my workspace (above right) is usually where ever I can be the coziest! Today it is bed 🛏 I usually always have music on (especially after buying some new wireless headphones ^^) and I’m normally wearing my cosy slippers…I do have a desk but it is ~covered~ in uni work 💓 today I also have my laptop since I’m currently writing an assignment on medieval zombies 🤢🤢🤢 spooky…but when I need a break I’ve been working on this piece for Thirsk Mini-con! And giving my new pencils from @minigeekboutique a test drive 10/10…definitely needed some with a rubber on the end! ✏✏✏ I can’t wait to have a really nice relaxing workspace one day…✒✒✒
Day Seven- routine
Honestly I just wake up and either go to work or uni…after getting dressed of course! But today it’s a con prep day…I have the day off so I just woke up without an alarm, made myself a cuppa, put my sing-a-long playlist on and wrote a to do list in bed with my she-hulk cushion (honestly the best back support ever! Also sooo squishy) and the giraffe mama bear crocheted me ^^✏✏✏…speaking of mama bear, she usually texts me on a morning to check I’m okay (mother duties…the difficulty of your youngest living in a different city I guess 😂)it’s nice and comfortable here and I’m looking forward to a nice productive day! 🎨🎨🎨
Day Eight- Flatlay
I always struggle with flatlays but I don’t think this is too bad…it includes some of my new pins I’m getting ready to paint🎨🎨🎨…these will be available at Thirsk Mini-Con on Saturday and the etsy shop after that 🤹♀️🤹♀️🤹♀️
Day Ten- Time to Relax…I posted this after attending Thirsk Mini Con…
“it is definitely time to relax now though after a busy day 🍃🍃🍃my sister and I are having a delicious meal and a well earned sit down and chill…I’m so happy with all of the new products I have made so keep an eye out for the etsy shop restock 👀👀👀”
Day Eleven- Branding! I like to keep things cute with a hand painted watercolour backing card for my pins! I enjoyed sticking my logo stickers (made by @lemonslovelyloot) over everything yesterday at the con 🍃🍃🍃 I just have simple business cards for now but want to update them soon with my logo ^^ …the pins featured here (above right) will be available on my etsy shop tomorrow if it’s nice enough to take some good photos!!! 🌱🌱🌱
Day Twelve- Postage and Packaging.
“Unlike my artwork my packaging is very bright and colourful! I chose these metallic envelopes so that they would protect my pins but also to make it look like a special delivery ^^ …I wrap my pins in small bags, pop in a business card and a thank you note and off it goes (once I’ve written the address of course) 🍃🍃🍃 my prints and cards aren’t as exciting because they just go in cardboard envelopes but I make sure to pop in a personal thank you note with the item 💖💖💖”
Day Thirteen- Work clothes…my wardrobe is FULL and I mean FUUUULLLL of vintage dresses and skirts and woolly jumpers…here I am sporting a typical day at home doing Eve’s Forest stuff look, a vintage dress with a woolly jumper on top, my bunny slippers and my nanna cardigan thrown over it…I often get told I rock the “granny chic” look what do you think??? 👵👵👵 also I love how the sun came out in that second picture hehe it’s “brightened”my day 😉
Day Fourteen- Dreams and plans
“Let’s start small term shall we? I have a Latin exam and a palaeography exam today and tomorrow so to pass those would be nice 😃 …as for the future one of my biggest dreams is to write and illustrate a comic book and get to sit in artists corner or the comic village at a big comic con 😍 …I would also love to collaborate with an artist on something…so if anyone wants medieval lettering or something hit me up!!! …I’m re-reading Saga this morning and eating marmite on toast to relax before having to go to the exam…the struggles of making marmite “aesthetic” 🍃🍃🍃”
Day Fifteen- Boomerang…yeah one of those again, I made my baby Groot pin dance …Click the link to see!!! They will be coming to the etsy shop very soon.
Day Sixteen- Helper
“An ode to my big sister!! Amy a.k.a @thefrogspyjamas has helped me a lot since starting Eve’s Forest 🌱 she showed me how etsy worked, helped out with crafty bits and bobs and we did the con together! She is even going to help me out at York Unleashed and dress up with me 😄 what are big sister’s for eh?…her helping skills don’t stop there though…she gives me advice and encouragement when I need it, and does everything a big sister should!…including at times being a bad influence hehe…Thanks for always being there for me Amz! 🦄🦄🦄the final picture is of when we took part in Total Warrior because we’re tough not just arty farty 😉😉😉”
Day Eighteen- Inspiration! My inspiration comes from a lot of things such as comics, films, nature and the world round me…but as a medievalist I am always (and I mean always)looking at medieval manuscripts! I think it’s obvious that history is a big inspiration for a lot of my hand lettering and I LOVE to make sure things are historically accurate!!! 📚the image (below left) is a page from the Luttrell Psalter one of the most decorated manuscripts that survives! 💖 it’s so luxurious, rich in colour and illuminations…and has a lot of creatures hiding throughout including mermaids, Griffin, unicorns and hybrid animals alongside scenes of everyday life and psalms….if you’re ever bored it’s digitised in the British library online…It’s well worth a look!!! 👀 It dates to the 14th century and was commissioned by Geoffrey Luttrell- British Library Additional 42130 f.204v
Day Twenty- Tools and Materials
“the tools I use the most are definitely these! My various sized liners and my calligraphy pens ✒🖋 also if you’re wondering my pencil of choice is a trusty 2B ✏ …I’ve only missed a couple of days but I’ve been in a play the last few days so I suppose I have an excuse 🙃 I’ll catch up on my missing days soon!”
Day Twenty-two- sketchbook and lists! Here are my sketchbooks 📚 I am in desperate need of a new one because two of these three are full ^^…the small black one on top (which I accidentally dropped screen block on) hardly has anything in…so next month I’m tempted to do a drawing a day…also in an attempt to make my feed brighter I used my “exciting” blanket 🦄 *UPDATE* I am currently taking part in #AdventureApril over on instagram to fill up blank sketchbooks ^^
“…this is a design I have planned for a series (hopefully) of prints and possibly tees…I’m planning on reclaiming words used in Medieval Middle English Romances to describe women and making them into something empowering!…because you know being “wicked”is pretty cool in this day and age eh? 🤔”
Day Twenty-four- Achievements!
This is a photo from last year…I felt that 2017 was one of the most amazing years of my life so far and I hope continue to grow and become the best version of myself! ☄last year I graduated which is probably one of the biggest achievements of my life to date…until I graduate again in January 😉…I also set up Eve’s Forest on etsy, did my first craft fair and made it through inktober! 🖋🖋🖋 I moved out to live on my own, started a Masters degree and completed Total Warrior!!! 💪…so far this year is following suit and I have reached 200 followers on Instagram, attended the mini con and have lots in store ready to reveal in the next few months! So keep your eyes peeled! 👀 I’m so excited and I can’t wait to show you all! 🍃🍃🍃
Day Twenty-Five- being a maker means…
“…to me being a maker means being happy! 😃 it’s my form of self care and has done wonders for my mental health! 💆♀️ it’s important to look after that good old brain box!…creating gives me the same feeling as when the sun comes out and warms your bones, or when someone strokes my hair, or when I get snuggled into bed after a long day with nice fresh sheets of course! 🍃🍃🍃honestly I am so glad that I have Eve’s Forest to keep me going and help me stay afloat, especially with mountains of uni work…it helps me to take my mind off things! 😁”
Day Twenty- six- Books, blogs and podcasts! I read a LOT but pretty much everything on my bookshelf is nonfiction! Including these two (above left) what I’d describe as fun books pictured first 📖📚 my sister bought me these for Christmas and I haven’t yet read them but I’m planning on taking them on holiday 🌞🌞🌞 the second image (above right) shows a few books that have shaped me as a medievalist…that I have read a countless number of times…I will live and die on the hill fighting to give medieval children a voice in the narrative of the late Medieval period! I hope one day to have my own book added to this interesting (to me 😂) field of history…💻as far as blogs go I don’t keep up with many except @missvictoryviolet ‘s because I am a vintage fiend, she’s also got the prettiest hair and I’d love to have a wardrobe like hers!!!…🎧the only podcast I listen to is “the adventure zone” I was recommended it by a friend, it’s all about d&d and it’s very very funny! …I’m looking forward to stalking the tag to find some new recommendations ^^ 🍃🍃🍃 Books included are…
‘A history of Britain in 21 women’ by Jenni Murray, ‘Goodnight stories for rebel girls’ by Elena Favilli and Francesca Cavallo, ‘Of good and ill repute: Gender and social control in medieval england’ by Barbara A. Hanawalt, ‘Medieval Children’ by Nicolas Orme, ‘A history of childhood’ by Colin Heywood, ‘Youth in the middle ages’ edited by P.J.P Goldberg and Felicity Riddy and ‘The ties that bound: peasant families in medieval england’ by Barbara A. Hanawalt 📚
Day Twenty-eight- Organised!
“Hahaha I’m not very organised to be quite honest…I am however a serial list maker which kind of keeps me organised but only if I stick to them 🖋🖋🖋 I tend to make them so they cover a month rather than a day…that way I don’t feel as pressured when I have a lazy day or when I’m at work 🗒…I’ve managed to do a few of the things on this list already so I’m quite pleased with myself!…I sometimes feel the need to buy a nice planner to keep myself organised but they always get forgotten about…and I especially envy those people that can successfully keep a bullet journal! 📖 also here you get a sneak peek at my Easter cards I’m making for my friends and family 🐣🐇🌻”
Day Thirty- Top tip/Advice! Mine is just go for it! Do what makes you happy and have a little faith in it! 🌱 a piece of advice I need to start taking is to not be so hard on myself when I don’t create something I’m 100% happy with or don’t post regularly 🦄
…And there we have it! My month of posts for #MarchMeetTheMaker…So I did miss a few days, but March has probably been one of the busiest months of the year so far for me. I’ve had exams, a comic convention, a dissertation proposal to hand in and two essays to keep me busy, all while trying to complete the challenge. If this month has taught me anything it is that I can work reasonably well under pressure, and I enjoy being busy. However I have definitely realised that I am often a little too hard on myself on days I don’t manage to get everything done! I need to stop doing this and try not to feel as guilty if I miss a day of posting or just need a self-care day.
I am definitely going to be taking part in this challenge next year! I really enjoyed following the tags each day and finding new creators to follow.