It’s been rough.

Over the last 10 weeks, I’ve had barely any time for anything or anyone, other than my new little bundle of joy. 

Matilda is already growing up so fast, trying to stand up, skipping out crawling completely. Teething, or the beginnings of, by drooling everywhere and being a lot more fussy than usual, and her gums getting the little teeth beds ready. 

In all this, someone said something to me the other day that, at first, i took offence to, but now I realise his good intentions… “You can’t drop everything you’re doing for your baby all the time”.

Now as I said, I took offence to this at first. Isn’t that what you’re meant to do as a parent? Drop everything for them? Well, I guess not, as when it comes to work/schooling, you need time to do it. Yes, that might mean relying on someone else to watch the baby while you work, but that doesn’t all of a sudden make you a bad parent 9as I was lead to think).

The first few weeks of Matilda’s life, I was incredibly sick. Not just with physical problems, but mental also, being told it’s “quite possible” I have post-natal depression from a few doctors I saw. Though as I had depression and anxiety before I was pregnant, I guess I should’ve seen that coming. Everyone tells you that once you have your baby put in your arms, you change and fall in love, and you’ll just “get it”, but what they don’t tell you is, that doesn’t always happen. That terrified me, that I just felt like I’d given birth, but she wasn’t mine, and holding her, I was babysitting someone else’s baby. I couldn’t breastfeed, so that just alienated me from her even more. I do have issues with it, but I’m trying to battle through, and find some balance. 

That’s easier said than done without depression, let alone on the days when you don’t want to be out of bed, or can’t stand to hold your baby in fear of hurting them, or even because you don’t think you’ll actually do anything to help. For this, my parents have been complete saviours. To think of being a single mother, in a flat in the middle of a city, on my own, I would not have coped. My parents have not only saved me, but her too, for being torn apart. She’s fully looked after and got everyone she meets wrapped around her tiny fingers.

I love my daughter with all my heart, and hope I can be the Mother she needs not just now, but in the future. Getting the balance right between looking after her, and getting back on track with university and work on the other hand has been a very big challenge. 

I’m fighting to get through UCAS applications to change university, as the one I was at is a bit far away from home, making it impossible to commute, and moving that far away from my family, for obvious reasons, is just not an option. Online courses don’t support the ‘Fine Art’ route I want to take, and well, the application deadlines are running away from me. 

However, in all of this, there are good days. Days where I dance around the living room with my daughter, us both smiling and laughing, gurgling funny noises at each other. Days where if I put her down, I feel like large empty space that I just want to fill with her for more cudddles. I don’t know who is more anxious of being separated some days, me or her. Sometimes I’m convinced she’ll start calling her Nana, Mommy, and I’ll be forgotten in the background somewhere. 

Even with all those thoughts, doubts, self-loathing, and procrastination, I’m somehow determined. I’ll show her that not only can I get through this, but so can she. I can get the job I’ve always wanted, and still be the good mother I hope to be. It might take me a bit longer to get there than some mothers, but I will. For her, as she deserves the best I can offer, no less. 

Hoping to get back to making art as soon as possible, but first things first, I need a good long sleep. Fingers crossed for a full night 🙂


She’s here!

I’ve been away for a while, I know that and I do apologise to everyone for that. There is, however, I really good reason. 

Some of you may know that I was very much struggling with illnesses and infections close to the end of my pregnancy – being in and out of hospital made making art for my other blog, and writing for here, rather difficult. 

Well, my pregnancy is over! My beautiful baby girl was born on the 27th November 2016 and was a happy, healthy baby. 13 hours of labour, and no painkillers (how I managed that I do not know!), she arrived, 7.8 ounces and 50 cm long, and a full head of hair! 

I’ve had difficulty bonding at first, as it just felt like I was babysitting someone else’s baby. Making the connection from the kicks in my stomach to the crying baby now in my arms has been quite hard for my heart to comprehend, but I’m slowly getting there. 

When you have a baby, everyone tells you that you’ll instantly full in love with them the minute they’re in your arms, but it’s not always like that. After birth, you’re still in shock, pain, and dealing with bodily functions that the last 13 hours your body hasn’t been able to do. After my mom cut the cord, and I watch led my dad and brother cry at the sight of her, I did feel a connection. The protective instinct. I wouldn’t let anyone walk around with her, they had to be sat down, or looking over the crib, but I wouldn’t say I was in love yet. 

13 days later, I still find it difficult, but the more I look at her, the more I want to hold and kiss her. I just want to do right by her. 

So, if you could all join me in welcoming to the world…. Matilda Nyree Elizabeth Williams. 

SkillShare – And other sites. — Jupiter Art Online

As a practicing Artist, I’ve found quite difficult, like a fish out of water, to work without the guidance of my tutor/lecturers all of a sudden.Even though I’m only taking a a break whilst I’m pregnant, I wanted to keep my hand in, as it were, in my art. However, what do I do? What […]

via SkillShare – And other sites. — Jupiter Art Online

A few apps I find useful with my art practice, if you know anymore, don’t be afraid to comment!

Sketchbooks — Jupiter Art Online

Looking at my own personal sketchbooks, especially my recent ones, I’ve found they’re very plain. I need a serious upgrade in my recording skills to feel like I’m getting the best out of the projects I do. How does one improve a sketchbook? Since they’re such a personal object, a form of recording likened to […]

via Sketchbooks — Jupiter Art Online

I’m personally trying to develop my sketchbook skills, feeling like I’m struggling with how I record my work and ideas. Calling out to other artists that can give me any ideas or pointers on how the best I move forward. Any comments would be appreciated!

“Blank Page Syndrome”

Every artist suffers with it at one point. Either in brand new sketch books, a fresh canvas, a lovely notebook, or on any medium you use.

I often find books I’ve never used, because they’re just “too pretty”, the paper is just “too good” to do my pathetic little doodles. The books just feel so clean and new, and exciting, they do inspire you to do work, but then you open the book… and stare at the page.

You just helplessly stare. Unable to begin, you pen shaking in your hand, then you slam the book shut, put it in a door and give up. This might not be forever, might only be a few minutes, but it can also be YEARS. I’ve found books I’ve brought in high school, I’m now taking a year from university for my pregnancy. That’s ridiculous!

Even with books I’ve brought recently, I’m still doing the same thing. Sometimes just the cover is daunting, still all wrapped in plastic. Still all shiny and new, and I can’t bring myself to get into the pages and really do some work.

This is a problem I’ve found other people struggle with, and have different tactics to get around it. One artist that visited my university one day said he scribbled or splashed paint aimlessly on his canvas’, swirling in swear words, genitalia, anything to make the page not blank anymore. Then he’d thickly cover the canvas in whatever he really wanted to paint to hide the profanity so he could get some work done. I wish I could remember his name, as he was a very amusing person, just seemed to generally laugh at life. But I do remember one comment he made, saying “If anyone did one of those layer scans on my canvas’, they’d have a good giggle at my penis’ with hats underneath a very serious art piece”, and I happen to agree, they would have a good giggle.

I did try this technique, and with paint, yes, it does work (not watercolour, more acrylic or oil), but when you work in pencil or pen, it doesn’t always…. And you’re left with something you didn’t really want to make.

So how would you deal with it? What would you suggest? Do you deal with this problem, or does working on blank surfaces come rather naturally to you?

Honor Your Process — Carve & Draw

I found this more than true for myself also. We all need to value our artistic process and understand that it’s all apart of the progress we’ll make over the years. It’s a good read, and something I might be keeping as a sense of motivation when I feel ‘stuck’.

Ever caught yourself repeatedly doing something but never really knowing why or lacking in some sort of verbal framework to explain it? I have. Earlier today I had a moment where I questioned something I find myself repeatedly doing without understanding exactly why I keep doing it. As I’m nearing the finish of my current […]

via Honor Your Process — Carve & Draw

Finding Yourself V.S Creating Yourself — Jay Colby

Colby’s interesting view on this subject has actually been very clarifying for me. It’s difficult when you feel lost and confused with life, where you’re going, and how the hell you’re going to get there. Do you find yourself,or create yourself? A mixture of both?
It’s all up to you, and your opinion really. It’s certainly an interesting concept to talk about.

For many years the concept of finding yourself versus creating yourself has been a topic of discussion. This concept comes from a famous quote by author George Bernard Shaw “Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating you”. Finding Yourself Many times when the topic of finding yourself is usually referenced to a “young […]

via Finding Yourself V.S Creating Yourself — Jay Colby