Tuesday, 18 October 2011

SO vintage!

It seems Vintage is the thing, the way forward (kind of) at the moment. Everyone is knitting vintage, baking vintage, selling vintage and people love it, don't they? I mean, I do!

I am dying to knit a jumper now that I've finished all the knitted hearts (4 days to go until the big day - crazy!) So, of course, I started browsing the net for yummy designs. That's when I stumbled upon Stone Hill Collections. If you want vintage you need this site.

You name it, they got it: buttons, knitting patterns, lace, jewellery...everything from bits to bobs!

And...I found my jumper pattern there too. Do you like? So the colours are a little 'off', but that's the joy of knitting, right? Knitting patterns, your way. Ask me in a year and I might be able to show you the finished article.

For now I'm working on my not-so-vintage scarf, but more on that as it progresses...

Get creative. Get vintage!

Thursday, 6 October 2011

Stickman.com

Whatever you're doing, STOP!

Check out drawastickman.com. All you need is a mouse/touch pad and a few minutes and there you have it, a creative, fun treat for you to enjoy.

Anyone can enjoy this, however creative you think you are.

Good old fashioned drawing...with computers!


For some reason, mine's a bit grumpy. It's just how he came out. There's a character waiting to be created...are you up for the challenge?

Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Caravan for sale on ebay...apparently

I love the way life can inspire stories...if you pay attention.

Yesterday I had two missed calls on my phone with answer phone messages, so naturally I listened to them. Both of them were from a northern man asking me about my caravan, you know, the one I put on ebay.

Hang on...ebay? Caravan?

Then a lady called me too, asking about my alleged caravan. What the heck was going on?

Firstly I've never been on ebay and secondly, I have definitely never owned a caravan.

But what if I did and I've lost all memory of it...

What if I told them I did and had a big bartering war with them, running off with all the money...

What if someone set me up with a stolen caravan...

What if I met real owner and he turned out to be a killer who lures people in through ebay...

Life is the biggest inspiration. All we gotta do is pay attention. What happened to you today?

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Owen Davey

So, I'm doing an intern at Bath Festivals at the moment and today I was putting together some info sheets about some authors who are visiting schools as part of the Kids Lit Fest. I was going from website to website and this one blew me away...

Check out Owen Davey. He's an illustrator and he's produced this beautiful picture book, Foxley's Feast and is soon to release a second. I think his drawings are brilliantly stylistic. I want one!

His talents don't stop at stories. He's produced work for the likes of Orange, The Times, Jamie Oliver and the BBC! An inspiration to all us budding creative types.

Take a look at his wrapping paper too. It's the coolest. Now whose birthday's coming up...?

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Bouquets with a difference

Isn't this just the coolest thing you've ever seen in your LIFE!



They are made by a Princess Lasertron and it is how she makes her living. I want to be her!

Check out her amazingly creative blog here.

Sunday, 17 July 2011

Ralph Allen Writes presents Rebecca Tucker

Unfortunately Ralph Allen Writes 2011 competition is now totally come to an end. Winners have been announced. Prizes have been given. Anthologies have gone on sale. I certainly have learnt a lot from it and I think the pupils involved have learnt a lot too. Being creative is not easy, you know. It takes a lot of work but all the pupils who entered the competition are now published writers, which is amazing!

There was one girl, however, that missed out on the opportunity to be published. I'm putting it down to some computer malfunction. So here for your pleasure is a story that's definitely worth a Creative Thinkers post. Rebecca Tucker's chilling tale, Trapped Forever:



“Beware of the ring! Do not put it on your finger or you will be trapped forever!” The fortune teller’s voice was cruel and emotionless. As Harry walked out of the tent his face was as white and blank as an icy lake. He felt quite taken aback! Didn’t fortune tellers normally say what you wanted to hear?

            Over time, Harry’s family moved house, into an extremely beautiful Tudor building. After the family had settled in, Harry discovered an archaic basement. Feeling curious, he decided to explore the dusty rooms. Harry found a small box and, feeling inquisitive, chose to look. Harry opened the lid of the tiny container and found a ring with a grinning skull. Feeling rather disappointed that it was just an old ring; he put it on his finger. After all it was pretty cool!

            Suddenly, Harry found himself falling through the clouds and realised that the ground was getting closer. Harry hit the floor with a thud. He looked round the room, flooded with light. It was as empty as an abandoned cave. Without warning the light in the room got blindingly bright and it filled with fire, closing in on Harry like a hungry tiger…

            Harry woke up. Thankfully it was just a dream! Rubbing his eyes he noticed someone standing at the end of his bed.
            “Happy birthday!” his mum exclaimed. “I brought you breakfast, it’s your favourite!” She held out an enormous pile of pancakes.
            “But my birthday’s a week away!” Harry answered.
            “Don’t be daft Harry!” his mum said, handing him the pile.
Harry stopped arguing and ate his breakfast. He had to admit, it was lovely!

            At school that day everyone was unusually nice to Harry: Mrs Turner had given him chocolates for winning a maths quiz, his mum had made him a special birthday lunch, Mr Wood had given him a cake with pink icing and a candle and his class had sung happy birthday to him!
           
Walking home, a sudden noise made Harry wake up from his daydream and, as he looked up, he realised that he had no idea where he was. The sky was filled with beautiful stars and Harry felt himself turning as he tried to see them all. The stars became a blur as Harry turned faster and in their place were terrifying ruby eyes.  As he watched, unable to move, Harry saw several monsters’ heads appearing out the darkness, then their bodies and, last of all, their hideous red tails. He heard a murmuring growl that grew into a furious roar of victory. Harry shut his eyes and covered his ears, hoping desperately that they would go!

            Without warning everything changed. The dreadful scarlet creatures were replaced by a flaming ring of fire, out of which emerged terrifying, headless zombies, dripping with blood.  Suddenly, Harry remembered something someone had said to him years ago. “I am trapped forever in my dream…” Harry realised as the Zombies closed around him, ready to kill.

To order a copy of the Ralph Allen Writes Anthology please email me. They are only £5 each with proceeds split between Ralph Allen School funds and Cancer Research.

Sunday, 26 June 2011

Bertie and Jack in Bath

As promised, here are some pictures of Bertie and Jack's stall in Bath, England. It looks like something you'd find in Europe rather than rainy England! If their work is not worthy of a Creative Thinkers entry, I don't know what is.

All their pictures are one-offs. If you hang these babies on the wall, you'll be the only one that has one exactly like that. Truly unique. And now I work for them!

Check them out on Facebook: Bertie and Jack.





Saturday, 25 June 2011

Bertie and Jack in Bath

So my life has turned super busy and it may look like I've forgotten all about creativity, but I just wanted to let you all know that it's just not the case. In fact, you'll be happy to know that I have a new job (yay!) working on a little art stall in Bath called Bertie and Jack. They sell cute pictures of elephants, penguins and doves made of patterned paper. Perfect for wedding presents, birthdays, moving in presents ...basically there's one for everyone. The designs are so simple, yet really affective. They are perfect.

Check them out on Facebook: Bertie and Jack.

I LOVE working on the stall with Emma and Rebecca. I'll take some pictures today for you all to see.

Watch this space...

Saturday, 11 June 2011

Wednesday, 8 June 2011

New Beginnings...

So, I just can't not write a blog entry today, even though I don't technically have to do it. It's kind of habit now. I have to let myself down slowly, you know?

Anyway, as you might have noticed the old blog's got a new page, dedicated to the competition I ran at Ralph Allen School in Bath. Thanks a bunch to all the cool kids who entered the competition. Your work is now in a book for the world to read! Winners will be announced shortly...very exciting!

The anthology is nearly ready to go on sale so watch this space for more info...

As for me, well, I think I'll go do a spot of knitting with my free afternoon...What creative endeavours will you get stuck into today...?

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

DAY 365!!! Be a Creative Thinker too...

Wow people! I have successfully reached the end of my blog challenge completing 365 posts to inspire creativity! I hope your have been motivated to get creative through at least one of the posts I have created over the last year. It's been great fun and I've learnt a lot about writing and about what creative opportunities going on all over the place, ready and waiting for us to get involved...

This is by no means the end for Creative Thinkers. Watch this space for more inspiration, but please don't be cross if I miss the odd day or two. So, as I sign off from my year of blogging, I leave you this challenge:

What do you to be creative? Write, bake, knit, dance, paint...whatever it is, try doing a little bit each day for a year and see what you can achieve. Take up my challenge and become a creative thinker for the world to see...

Be inspired. Be creative.

Monday, 6 June 2011

Day 364: Knitted Wedding Hearts

So, as it's the penaltimate day of my blog-in-a-year challenge, I thought it was about time that I told the world (through my blog) that I am getting married! What a perfect opportunity to get creative!

As is tradition at wedding, the Bride (that's me!) and Groom give their guests a gift, commonly named 'the favours'. Well, of course I was going to get my knitting needles out for this one! Since January, I have been spending my creative time knitting little hearts...
I'd love to say that I designed the pattern myself, but I borrowed it from a knitting blog. I did put my own creative stamp on them though, by adding the ribbons at the top.

If you're into knitting, have a go yourself, but put your own mark on it and make them your own. That's how creativity moves forward.

Sunday, 5 June 2011

Day 363: A view to...anywhere


This is the sight out my window this morning. Pretty dull. It's raining and it's wet. There was some kind of commotion a minute ago with reversing cars and horns. That's about as exciting as it gets. Sometimes there's people walking past on there way to the park, but not on a day like today.

Wouldn't it be cool if every time you opened your curtains there was a different scene there. One day it could be a city-scape in lights, the next it could be misty mountains. Maybe you would see a volcano explode one morning. That would wake you up! Or you could be next you a raging river or the savannah in Africa. A giraffe could meet you on that morning!

It would certainly beat my window scene.

What would you want to see out of your window? Take your imagination on holiday with this one...

Saturday, 4 June 2011

Day 362: The gift of the gab...

Since a very young age I've been pretty chatty, especially on a one-to-one basis. Meeting up for coffee with a friend is one of my favourite things to do.

So why am I telling you this? Well, chatting away to people is pretty handy for a creative person.

Over the summer I'm going to be working with Bath Festivals who organise two literature festivals and a music festival each year, as well as going into schools and inspiring creativity through drama and writing. It all started when I got chatting to Karl at a book event I went to over a year ago now.

Yesterday I got chatting to this women on an art stall in Bath. As I bought a piece of her art, I was chatting about finishing Uni and doing my internship with Bath Festivals...then she asked if I wanted to come a work with them on the stall!

What area do your creative talents lie? Drama, dance, music, writing, textiles...? Wherever it is, talking to people in your field seems like the way forward. Just see what happens. Sometimes we fall into these things, but more often that not, it's not what you know, but who you know!

Friday, 3 June 2011

Day 361: Embracing Randomness

Today's challenge is to search for inspiration, but in a way that might lead you anywhere...

1) Think of two random words, the first that come into your head will do. For example, mine were 'life' and 'pogo'.

2) Go to Google Images, type in words and see what comes up!

Here's some of the cool/hilarious pictures that came up on my random search:




So, there you have it, 'Life Pogo' a slightly confused (rather frightening) dog, a plant-boy and some sort of knitted sheep?

What will you find...

When you find that little piece of inspiration you've been looking for, jot it down and see what becomes of the randomness...

Thursday, 2 June 2011

Day 360: Bake off

Yesterday my sister, Becca came to Bath with two friends and the four of us decided to have a bake off. One team against another. Rules were simple; bake something we hadn't made before. Whoever's tasted best, won.

So we flicks through cookery books until we settled on ONE recipe each and popped down to Sainsburys. Once all the ingredients was bought, we were off. The baking began.

Grated carrot, roasted nuts, melted chocolate. You name it, we pretty much covered the kitchen with it before we were done.

But at the end, we had these to show for it...

A carrot cake made by me and Alice. Peanut fudge-centred muffins made by Becca and Grania.

Who won? Well, let me first explain that we didn't leave our cake in the oven for long enough, so it just kinda tasted of raw carrot really. Not quite what we were going for. Which means Becca and Grania won this bake off....

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Day 359: Do you have a Creative Buddy?

I don't mean just any old friend, I mean a conscience.

Now that I've pretty much finished my Uni Degree I know I'm going to find it hard to carry on with Holly's story. I don't have that weekly deadline any more where I go into class and get comments on my work. If I don't write, who will know? It doesn't matter if I miss a week, right?

WRONG, I'll never get it finished if that's my attitude!

When I spoke to my teacher about it she suggested a writing buddy. I have to email them each week and tell them how many words I've written. If I don't do it, they send me an angry email back, telling me off. It's best if I'm a bit scared of the person too, so best not to be a friend! Keep it professional. Writing buddies works both ways. I become their conscience too and shout at them if they're not keep up their creative work. Fun, huh!

a lack of creative drive can be found in all creative folk at some point. We all need a kick up the bum sometimes to get moving, so why not find your own creative buddy? Someone to be YOUR conscience. You owe it to the world to share your unique creativity with it, so keep up the good work. Get a buddy.

Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Day 358: Flip by Martyn Bedford (part 2)

Often when I read books they will present me with ideas that inspire me, that spark my imagination. I get lost in my own thoughts and forget I'm even reading a book. Does that ever happen to you?

I read this in Flip by Martyn Bedford and was taken far away:

'Imagine radio and TV signals 
were visual - the sky would be
 full of them, a blizzard of sound
and image swirling through the air.'

That's exactly what I did. I imagined it. A world full of signals. You wouldn't be able to see anything but distorted images whizzing around. What if it happened to phone signals too? Nothing could be secret! As you walked along the road you would hear snippets of conversation rushing down the wires above you. What would you want to over-hear?

What cool ideas! I mean, there's potential for a Sci-fi movie/book right there.

Are you inspired yet??

Monday, 30 May 2011

Day 357: 'Flip' by Martyn Bedford

I first saw this book in Mr B's Bookshop in Bath and was captured by it's tagline:


Even wake up in someone else's body?

Sold. It sounded really exciting. A boy wakes up someone else's room, with someone else's family and has to go to someone else's school as Philip, or Flip to his friends.

But I really struggled to get into it. Is it because I find it hard to identify with a 15 year old teenage boy? I mean, I've never been one and never will be. I managed to get into the character of Lucas in Finding Violet Park and the character of Martyn in Martyn Pig, so it can't be that...

The blurb describes it as a phycological thriller, but to be honest, it's just not that thrilling. Apart from the fact Alex is living in Flip's body, nothing particularly out of the ordinary really happens. There's a lot of theory about what's happened to him and description of how he feels about it and...that's it. It kind of just went on in a loop of emotion and reaction, emotion and reaction.

Until the end. I finally got into Alex's story about two thirds of the way through and wanted to know how he was going to figure this all out. Is two third' too late?

Like I said, I'm not a teenage boy, so give it a go. It's always best to make up your own mind about books and film or any creative media for that matter.

Check out the trailer too...

Sunday, 29 May 2011

Day 356: My Creative Adventure

As I haven't done it for a while, I thought I'd spend a few lines telling you how my novel is going. Sadly, I had my last lesson on Friday with my 'writing for young people' class, so now I am on my own with it. I've left the nest!

BUT, I am going to finish Holly's story. I thought by announcing this to the world might make me more determined...

An outline, for those of you who need it:

Holly is 16. Her best friend, Penny has left for another town. He big brother's a pain and her mum's virtually a drunk. After another argument over who can use the computer, Holly storms out the house and finds herself in a posh neighbourhood. There she steals a laptop from an open window. That's how she'll keep in touch with Penny. Back home she finds she's stolen a diary in the bag too. The girl who owned it was called Jenna but it's Holly's now.
Back at school, Holly has the task of showing the new girl round, none other than Jenna Hampton!
Against it all, they become friends, good friends, but how do you keep your best friend when you know all their secrets?

So there you have it. That's Holly's story.

I'm roughly 19,000 words through my first draft and it's going pretty well. The trouble is, I've now got to the part where I'm jut joining up the dots. I have ideas for events in their story, but it's getting there from where I am now...

It's fun doing something creative you've never done before. There isn't a right way to be creative, you just have to get on with it and see what happens...will you join me?

Saturday, 28 May 2011

Day 355: Finding inspiration in a busy day

Today I am working from 1:30 until 10:30 and the same tomorrow, so how could I possibly fit creativity into that day?

What do you do when there is no room for creativity in your day?

Is there such a day?

Inspiration can come from anywhere or anyone and if we are creative by nature then surely any situation can bring about an idea which will inspire creativity.

Today's challenge is to inspire creativity. Find something in your day that will spark creativity, even if the creative activity does not actually occur today. That's the challenge.

Find inspiration...Go.

Friday, 27 May 2011

Day 354: Vegan with a Vengeance

In order to get all my big assessments completed for final Degree hand-ins, I have found it best to treat myself to a spot of creativity AFTER I've done some work. That way, I have something to look forward to as I slog away.

So yesterday, for example I decided to make some 'Big Crunchy Peanut Butter - Oatmeal Cookies' from my new Vegan cookbook. I am not actually a vegan, but my boyfriends is, so if I can make something that will please his tummy, I'm up for it!

The thing with baking is, well, it's a bit of a trail and error game really. The cookies tasted great, but the first tray spread into each other and they came out looking more like slices of granary bread than cookies! The second batch I made smaller and left them in for longer, but then I couldn't get them off the tray which resulted in some bloody fingers come the end!

But, I had fun (apart from the cut fingers) and now have some pretty tasty cookies to eat for the next essay writing session. All the things I've learnt NOT to do, I've written on a sticky note and put on the page.

Next time I might add chocolate chips too. If you can't fit chocolate into it, it's often not worth eating as far as I'm concerned! But first I MUST do some more essay writing...

How will you treat your creative side on the final slog?

Thursday, 26 May 2011

Day 353: Olympics 2012 Designer!


12 year old Hannah Clegg from Wiltshire has had her design chosen for the Olympic Park 'Landmark Garden' which will be created especially for the 2012 Games. 88 designs were submitted, but Hannah's beat them all and will be combined with the winning adult design submitted by Rachel Read.

What an exciting competition to win! Can you imagine walking around the Olympic garden knowing you designed it! Just think how many millions of people from all over the world will walk through it!

Because of Hannah's creative talents, the world will see her designs in action.

How could you get invovled in London 2012? Hosting the Olympics is an amazing opportunity that may never happen again in our life time, so we gotta jump on it and get involved, just like Hannah. Let's take inspiration from her amazing achievement and step up for 2012. See what you could do. The Olympics needs your creative talent!

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Day 352: My Guerilla Knitting Experience

For those of you who don't know what guerilla knitting is, it's basically anonymous knitting left in public spaces. So, people will do a bunch of knitted patches and then cover a tree or a lamp post in it.

Being into knitting I thought it was about time I got involved in a bit of knitting graffiti, so when the opportunity came up on campus, obviously I jumped at the chance.

This particular guerilla knitting is in aid of the 'Red Thread' exhibition going on at Bath Spa campus this Saturday, 28th May 2011.

Here's me preparing next to the lake on campus. Oh, the concentration...



Then I headed over to the site where guerilla knitting would commence and off we went. Now I have to tell you that it was guerilla knitting, but we weaved them into the installation with bits of fabric and wool and pom-poms...




The red knitted bit in the middle is my handy work!



Check out some more guerilla knitting on Google. It's amazing! How could you use your skills to have some fun and help a good cause...?

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Day 351: Miniature Knitting

Check out these tiny knitted items. They're so cute! Makes my 'little' mice I knitted look massive in comparison. The detail is incredible. The dolly that owns this better wear it with pride. Isn't it amazing what you can do with a little bit of creativity (and a magnifying glass!)







Monday, 23 May 2011

Day 350: What if...

Today's challenge is to think of a 'what if' scenario and then create a story from it. Like,

'What if all the planes stopped working tomorrow and everyone had to turn their gardens into vegetable patches?'

'What if Elvis Presley walked into your school/collage and announced his death was a hoax?'

'What if an elephant started talking to you when you went to the zoo?'

'What if you won a life time supply of chocolate from Cadbury's?'

Use one of these or come up with your own 'what if' to play with...see what you can create.

Sunday, 22 May 2011

Day 349: Holburne Museum, Bath

Bath has loads of museums and galleries but for the whole time I've been here, the Holburne Museum has been shut. They've been refurbishing it for three years to make it double the size of it's former self.

Bath buildings are unique from any other place in the country and a lot of them are protected from any changes people want to make. When the sun hits them just right they look beautiful. There's no where quite like Bath in the sunshine. So, when the Holburne Museum said they were going to add a modern structure to the back of the museum to make it double its size, loads of people were mortified.

But, I think it looks amazing, don't you? It can hold way more exhibits now and more people will visit to see what all the fuss is about! The pillars running down the building are all mottled and change in the light as you move around them.


Change is refreshing. I think us creative thinkers follow in the Holburne's footsteps. Sometimes we need to take the leap to get that reaction, that encouragement, that inspiration we've been searching for.

What will you do?

Saturday, 21 May 2011

Day 348: Pixie Play

Isn't this just the coolest hut you've ever seen? I found it in a little connecting garden in Bath near the newly renovated Holborne Museum.

It's amazing what you can make from a few reeds and some patterned material. Who do you think made it and what for? I sat in it for a while and you can see through the material. I felt like some kind of pixie or something...

What could you make today?


Friday, 20 May 2011

Day 347: Anima Circus and company...

Tonight I have been to a charity concert at Uni and it was brilliant. It's funny, you spend three whole years studying at a place and have no idea what kind of talent is in a couple of buildings down. There were choirs, performances on french horn, saxophone and even a bassoon. They were fantastic. Then to add to the classical flavour, there was a few tracks from a jazz/scar band called Anima Cricus who were AMAZING! I mean, these people have been right under my nose with so much talent and creativity! I didn't even know.

I had a great evening, but there's a part of me that came away sad. Sad that I'm leaving that creative place in a month and sad that I didn't go to more concerts, plays and events that could have given so much inspiration. It's good to share in other people's creativity.

So what I'm saying is, don't miss out. What's going on at your school/college/town? Be inspired by what's under your nose, before it's too late...

Thursday, 19 May 2011

Day 346: Creative Revelation!

This is actually last Thursdays post, but like I said the goo monster!

That's right folks, today I have had a creative revelation! It's one of those things that I knew really, but never spent time thinking about how amazing it is. I find revelations usually are like that.

Anyway, at school this morning the little Saltford primary kids and I were learning all about fossils; how they are compressed over thousands of years, but have to be in the right kind of earth to form...All very interesting, but then we made a poem based on fossils. We read through a famous old poem by Alexander Pope and picked out the images he'd used to describe a grotto filled with fossils.

That's when it dawned on me; creativity can come from anywhere and can combine anything. Today we were learning a bit of chemistry, science, history, english, but took elements of all those things and created out of them. We made a poem.

What do you love? What do you find interesting? Use it to inspire your creative side. If anything and everything can inspire creativity, then surely everyone can be creative! Amazing, huh?!

So get creative with the things that inspire you!

Day 345: Problems with the Goo Monster

Ok, so something weird has been happening on my Blogger page. For some reason, a post I'm pretty sure I put up last Thursday has suddenly come up as a mere draft! This means that technically I'm a day behind on the old daily blog challenge thingy, but as it's not really my fault (I don't think) I'm not really counting it. I will however put two posts up today to rectify the situation.

Why do things have to be so confusing!

Anyway, as a creative person I like to think that a massive goo monster has somehow wormed his way into the system and left these disgusting, messy slime trails all over my blog and that's why it's not functioning properly. There's no way to deal with it. You just have to let it go on sliming things up and pick up the pieces in it's wake.

I like to think of it with big warts that puss and fizz as it rolls along, slowly decaying the bits of computer software is creeps over. It doesn't have any legs, kind of like a big fat, green slug thing. With no regard for anyone or anything in it's way, it ruthlessly wrecks apart everything we try to achieve.

And that's what's causing all this confusion. Fact.

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Day 344: Bournemouth's Knitting Library

Check out what's been going on in Bournemouth Library...

This isn't any ordinary rose bush, it's a knitted rosebush!

Bournemouth have turned a home of books into a garden of woollen flowers, birds, pots and vegetables. Isn't it amazing what a bit of imagination can create?

Check out this link to see more inspirational creations.

What will inspire your imagination today?

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Day 343: McVitie's Hobnob Medley



Now this is what I call creative advertising. It makes me want to rush out in my dressing gown, slippers and wet hair to buy some right now!

I won't.

But the principle is there.

Monday, 16 May 2011

Day 342: Tessa Wolfe-Murray: the purpose of art...

Today I thought I'd start up a bit of a debate because I'm in that kind of mood. It starts with a question;

When does art stop and necessity take over?

Take this vases for example. They have been crafted by Tessa Wolfe-Murray and are really beautiful. I love the deep blue with it's mottled tones. I like to imagine they've been found at the bottom of the ocean from a sunken ship...It's obvious that a lot of skill and time has gone into making them. But, what are they for? Should we use them as vases to put flowers in or should they just sit and be looked at?

Vases were used by the Romans to carry water or store food in like salt or grain, safe from rats. But we've got bottle and fridges for that, right? So should be just put these on the side and look at them? Is that what art is for? Can art be useful? can we use it for stuff or is it just for the pleasure of out eyes?

I wonder what you think...



'Deep Sea and Shallows' 

Sunday, 15 May 2011

Day 341: Doctor What

This is what I'm talking about people. Using what you like as inspiration for creativity. I know I alllllways go on about Charlie, but I just think he's so cool. Check this his video below and be inspired!

Saturday, 14 May 2011

Day 340: Annoying things parents say...

Yesterday me and my housemate, Beth were reminiscing about our childhoods. We soon got onto the subject of being unjustly told off by our parents. You know the times when you feel you don't quite deserve to be told off for what happened?

I was sharing a time when I copied my older cousin, Nicola by walking on the hoover tube which was curling around on their living room floor. My dad came in and told me off for walking on another person's hoover cord and spouting off stuff about being disrespectful. But, hello! What about Nicola? She did exactly the same thing. Did she get told off? No! When I protested, I got this:

Emma, if Nicola jumped off a cliff, would you?


What an absolutely RiDICulous thing to say! Parents ALWAYS say it though, don't they? Quite clearly I wouldn't jump off a cliff and nor would Nicola for that matter. If I was her I think I would be offended at such a suggestion.

There must be a story in this. My blog challenge for today is to cast your minds back to remember an annoying parent phrase which really grates on you and use it to create a great story. It could be a funny one to exaggerate the absurdity of parents! Or why not turn it around and create a story where the parents are the ones getting a telling off.

Using memories as inspirations for genius is always a winner. See what you can create...

Friday, 13 May 2011

Day 339: Stumble Upon

My friend Beth told me about this website. You can go on it and search for anything you want (ie, wooden sculpture or knitting pattern) and it will lead you to a website about that thing. It's a great way to find websites you wouldn't normally find.

Check out this video to find out more...



...and then get going. What inspiration will you stumble upon?

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Day 338: Ryan Woodward

Here is a Animation by Ryan Woodward. Just watch it and follow it's emotive story.



Music, dance, animation, art, all in one video.

What does it inspire you to create?

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Day 337: Show me the Monet

The BBC have just started showing their new arts programme, Show me the Monet which is basically the x of the art world. People who have been making art quietly in their garage, as well as professional artists have come from all over the country to get in on the change of having their work on view at an exhibition at the Royal Collage of Art in London. Those artists will try and prove to a panel of judges their work is the one.

Could you do it? Would you be brave enough?

Follow the real talent of the British art world by watching the first episode on iplayer. Real people, taking their creativity seriously.

Will you be inspired?

Monday, 9 May 2011

Day 336: Mr Men Google doodles...

It's been one of those days where I've visited Google a lot to get this and that for my assessments I'm finishing. A pretty boring job to be honest, but Mr Roger Hargreaves has cheered up each visit. Everytime I go to the google homepage, there is a different on of these:


Mr Men have taken over Google for the day! These three are my favourite, I think (although it's hard to choose). When I was a kid I remember going round my grandparents and choosing which one I wanted them to read to me. Little Miss Tiny was my favourite.

It must be cool to think you affected so many lives of children through your wonderful stories and illustrations. Thank you Mr Hargreaves.

Take a look on the Google homepage and see which one is your favourite...

Sunday, 8 May 2011

Day 335: Picture this: London Town

You'll be please to hear that I successful achieved my blog challenge from yesterday.



London Town in pictures for all to see. Recognise any of them?

What did place in you capture in pictures?

Saturday, 7 May 2011

Day 334: London Town

Today, I am walking the streets of London, and I'm setting myself a personal challange to spell out 'London Town' in photos. Reckon I'm up for it? Come back tomorrow and see!

Where are you on this fine Saturday? What creative challenge could YOU set yourself?

Get active. Get creative.

Friday, 6 May 2011

Day 333: Three is a magic number!

Today is day 333, so the challenge is to do three of everything! Eat three times (which isn't too much of a challenge), make three things, paint three things, knit three things...

You get the picture picture picture.

I am going on a merry trip to London today, so my person challenge is to go to three galleries. I'm also going to see Wicked in the West End too, but I can't afford to go three times!

So, by tomorrow, 3 creative things must be achieved. They don't have to be the same, so maybe think of three different creative things. Get your imaginations rolling...Another job for us creative thinkers!

Thursday, 5 May 2011

Day 332: Nature in the Urban Jungle

As spring gets ever more vibrant, I've started to notice lots of strange things. This morning when I was waiting for a lift at the side of the road, a blue tit caught my eye as it flew and landed in the road. Next to it on the road was a big spider, obviously injured. My guess was the blue tit saw the chance of a tasty snack, but before it could eat it a car came and the bird shot out of the way. It didn't return for the rest of the time I stood there. I watched the spider struggle, round in circles. Car tyres missed it by inches each time. No one notices a little spider in the urban jungle.

I find it bazaar when nature interacts with city life. Yesterday, I saw a hedgehog scamper across the empty road at midnight as I walked home from work. It's the second one I've seen wandering the street of Bath this spring. Where are they going? Have they just woken up from hibernation and looking for food? Come to think of it, I don't even know what hedgehogs eat. Isn't it crazy the thing we don't know about animals that live all around us?

This morning when I went into Saltford Primary School we were talking all about animals, which I thought was weird with all the interaction I've have had with them lately. We wrote poems based on Mandy Coe's poem, Invitation from a mole. Can you guess what animal I am writing about?

Invitation from a ...
Roll in the dirt
and    take   time
feeling
as you ripple along.
Bits get stuck but
no bother.
What was dry
becomes moist as you
                                   edge
                                        closer
to the sweet, crunchy, succulent
leaf.
It's worth the                    wait.

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Day 331: Sharing Harry Potter

I was flicking through the channels on the TV as I eating my lunch and finally settled on a show about book clubs. The programme went from a studio of presenters to an idyllic country house where 8 people were sitting around discussing a book they'd all read. They shared ideas and opinions on the book and looked like they were having a pretty good time.

There's something about sharing the experience of reading a book. When Harry Potter: The Deathly Hallows came out, I remember my sister and I read it together. Sometimes we would read it aloud to each other and sometimes we'd read independently at the same time. It was really nice being able to finish a chapter and then talk about it with someone else.

Making reading into a social activity seems like a really good idea to me and watching this programme made me want to join a book club. Everyone who reads a book takes slightly different meanings from it, based on their own experiences of the subject matter and where they're at in their life, so sharing reading gives you a bigger picture of what that book is about.

I've made the decision. After Uni (everything is after uni at the moment!) I am going to set up a book club. Are you with me? Why not set one up yourself with your friends, at your school/collage or at work? Try teenreads to start you off on your way or contact your local library to see what's already going on in your area.

Reading doesn't have to be done alone...

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Day 230: Livewriting by MCM

Imagine writing a 52,000 work book. Now imagine writing it in 45 hours. And finally, imagine writing it in front of an audience of thousands, who give you answers you HAVE to fit into the next stage of you story.

Impossible?

Well not for MCM. In March he wrote a book called The Archivists whilst 300,000 people watched online! Isn't that incredible? I mean, talk about inspiring. Makes my 17,000 over 7 months look a bit pathetic! I guess it shows how new media is the way forward for us creative thinkers. MCM is using all that new technology has to offer to make books and stories a success. Now that's what I call creative thinking.

Keep an eye on the website. Apparently the next live write will be taking place in 6 months...

Interactive writing. It's the future!

Monday, 2 May 2011

Day 329: Sewing, here we come...

On Saturday, I put up a picture of my unopened presents, which is pretty and all, but it's a bit mean if I don't share what's actually under the wrapping paper. There were a few creative gems in there, one being the massive one at the back (scroll down to take a look). My lovely Mum, Step Dad Mark and grandparents gave me a sewing machine!

I am so excited. My creative enthusiasm hasn't been let loose on one of those since I made a Mickey Mouse Apron in Year 8 (which was awesome, of course.) I can use the Meet me at Mikes Book (see Day ...) I got for Christmas to sew toys, coasters, skirts...pretty much anything really. What would you make?

I have banned myself from even getting it out of the box until after Uni. Final slog now. Knitting is destracting enough without a new creative toy to play with.

If you know any good sewing websites/blogs, leave a comment below. Best to help each other out with all this creative stuff, right?

Sunday, 1 May 2011

Day 328: Boating with Jamie Cullum


Okay, so I didn't actually go boating with Jamie Cullum, but I did see him and go boating on the same day. Not just any day, my birthday.

Here are the creative highlights of my 24th birthday. Firstly, I took a turn at rowing down the Avon River. I have to say, I wasn't too bad at it, (although I'm rubbish at steering. I kept getting distracted by cute duckings swimming beside us!) but it took me a while to get the hang of rowing, so I made up a little song to help me keep rhythm. The lyrics are the following:





Up and along and down and through x3
Through the river we glide.

Up and along, down and through x3
Through the river we glide.

To be honest, the lyrics don't do it justice, but it shows purposeful creativity nonetheless!

Second highlight is the Silver Ring Choir. We went to see them in concert, celebrating their 60th Anniversary. They were stunning. Apparently they've toured the whole world, Paris, Canada, New Zealand...all over! The best song (in my opinion) was their rendition of, 'Sing a song of sixpence'. It made me cry a little bit, it was so incredibly creative and melodic.



The main highlight has to of course be Jamie Cullum, who played after the choir.

Believe it or not, this picture is actually Jamie. Can I get away with calling it creative exposure??

He.
Is.
Incredible.

I mean, I can't even do him justice through these words. He has so much energy, I don't know how else it could be released but through creativity itself (shown brilliantly by my amateur photography skills). At one point he was playing the piano, drumming on it's top, singing and beat boxing all at the same time. I was literally gob-smacked! He sang, 'What a difference a day makes' too and I was transported to another place, it was so peaceful and calm. Amazing.

A brilliant birthday. I wish every day we like that!

Saturday, 30 April 2011

Day 327: Happy Birthday!

...to me! Yep, today is my birthday.


As you can see, I've got a busy day ahead of me! Plus, I am going boating, having a picnic by the river and then...


Yep, that's right, my lovely fiance bought me tickets to see the one and only Jamie Cullum. SOOOO excited. Tell you all about it tomorrow.

Do us a favour, as it's my birthday, try and do something creative so we can all celebrate together :)

Happy Unbirthday to youuu!!

Friday, 29 April 2011

Day 326: Royal Wedding Creative Competition Winner!

With true creative style, we are celebrating the wedding of the future King of England, Prince William and the beautiful Kate Middleton.



Rebecca Fowler is the winner of the Royal Wedding Creative Competition. She's made this cake for a street party she's attending. Fit for a king, I think!

Thursday, 28 April 2011

Day 325: Be an Olympic Storyteller

Listen up all you Creative Thinkers! BT are giving people like you and me the opportunity to tell the story of the 2012 Olympics. If you've a blogger, creative writer, a graphic designer or an artist, why not get invovled and share your experiences of the Olympics. However you are creative, BT want YOU to get involved.

What do the Olympics mean to you? What's going on in your area to prepare or celebrate? How could you use your creative talents to get in on the action...?

Sign up here and find out all the details.

Get Creative. Get involved.

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Day 324: Writers' Block

What do you do when you run out of ideas, when nothing inspires you to be creative?

Sometimes I get like this, especially when it's sunny. All I want to do is go outside and have fun in the sun, rather than sit in front of my laptop and write.

So what can we do when we don't want to get creative? How can we find inspiration?

Well, I've decided that I need to be proactive about it. If I wanna be out in the sun, then I need to find a creative way to do it. Sometimes I read or knit in the garden, which I love, so I think it's time I took my writing into the garden too.

Who needs a laptop when you've got pen and paper, eh? I think it'll help to write in different places. Maybe I could try writing in the park or at the beach, on a bench in town or even in my sister's tree house.

Right, that's it, I gotta try it. It's my next project, writing in different places. Wanna join me? We can be like Richard Long, whose art is walking and finding different ways of documenting it. New, exciting, experimental...

Just by writing this blog entry today, I've managed to find inspiration to get back on it.

What will you try...?

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Day 323: Once in a lifetime...

Yesterday I spent six hours in the car traveling from Devon to Essex. I don't usually travel by car and although it was a long and pretty boring journey, I saw loads of amazing things, creative and inspiring in their own way. But, like an idiot, I didn't take any pictures.

It got me thinking about all the things I do, which I'll only do once. I mean, I will do that journey again, but it won't be the same. There will be different cars filled with different people, doing different things at a different time. The weather won't be the same. The people I travel with won't be the same. The traffic will stop and start and different places. I'll see different birds, different houses, different pedestrians.

It's like when you go to  gig. That collection of people will never be in the same place sharing the same experience ever again.

Most things we do, we will never do it again. If you think about it, everything is once in a lifetime. So, how do you capture them? How do you capture the creativity, the inspiration that you get...?

Something to think about...

Monday, 25 April 2011

Day 322: Ray Charles

Today's post is dedicated to a musical legend. Not just any musical legend, a jazz legend. Let your ears sail along with Ray Charles...

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Day 321: Happy Easter!

Today is Easter Sunday! A day of eating chocolate, spending time with your families and, if you're a Christian, remembering Jesus' sacrifice and return to life.

I just listened to a little talk on the BBC website by the Archbishop of Canterbury all about Jesus' death. He claimed Jesus' life, death and resurrection was like an elaborate piece of art, ''He makes something new out of the raw materials of humanity.''

That's why we all eat chocolate eggs today. They symbolise new life. Christians believe Jesus died, but also rose again.

Just think about all the creativity that has been inspired by Jesus, whether it be his life, death or resurrection. Art, songs, music, drama, sculpture, animation.

How could you be inspired this Easter Sunday?

Saturday, 23 April 2011

Day 320: Burning up the sun...

Today has been one of those beautiful days where the sun's been shining all day long. So the best thing to do on a bank holiday is to get out in the sunshine.


We are about to head down to the beach and have a BBQ. Now as I'm writing a creative blog, I'm going to pose this question, is making a fire on the beach classed as creative? I mean, all we're going to do is destroy it, so can it be called creative?

Well, either way, when the weather's like this if you can claim anything outside is creative, then do it. The sun might go in tomorrow, so best make the most of it, eh?

Enjoy the sunshine!

Friday, 22 April 2011

Day 319: Royal Wedding Creative Competition!

As it gets closer and closer to the Royal Wedding the whole country seems to be getting in the patriotic spirit. Everyone's flying their Union Jack to show their support for Will and his wife-to-be, Kate.

This got me thinking about our flag and how it's used all over the place. You can get posters, t-shirts, mugs, cushions, I've even seen a sofa covered with it! Sometimes its in different colours or using textures. Sometimes there's flowers added or that worn leather look...It's been used over and over again, but the all the creative ways in which its changed astounds me. For a flag, it's a pretty elaborate anyway, so to use that as a base it a difficult one I reckon.

What would you do with it? How would you change it to make it unique? Have a think and a play, then send me your creative flag pictures and your name to emma.fowler@bathspa.org by 28th April 2011. I'll put the best one on my blog on the day of the Royal Wedding to celebrate. Have a go at getting creative and share it with the whole world at the wedding!

Thursday, 21 April 2011

Day 318: Working with Windmills

Here is a story all about a windmill. This windmill:

But this story starts partway through, as I, the story-teller can only retell the second chapter of it's life. It was found, broken and discarded outside a house. Its sails had fallen off, its paint chipped and old. The windmill had been forgotten, in a state of disrepair, or was it?

The lady who found it decided it wasn't the end for this windmill and took it home. With a bit of glue and a few coats of paint, the battered windmill was restored to it's former glory and sits in a sunny garden for all to admire.

And now it's found its way onto a creative blog! What a wonderful example of using forgotten things to make beautiful creations. You know what they say, one man's rubbish is another man's treasure. So keep your eyes pealed. You never know what could be waiting for you to restore. It's a great way to get creative and use your talents...

What will you create?

As for the first chapter of this windmills story, well, I'll leave that up to your creative imagination to discover...

Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Day 317: The Story of Stuff

I have to tell you, I'm pretty into green stuff. You know, caring for the planet and all that. I think it's a pretty important thing to do, but when you tell people that they just switch off like I'm some sort of hippy or something.

Yesterday I got sent this video about the production of stuff we buy (sound boring I know). When I saw it was 21 minutes long I thought, there's no way I'm watching all of that, but after a few minutes, I was hooked.  Annie Leonard uses this cool animation thing to visualise what she's talking about and I think everyone should watch it.

It's amazing what a bit of creativity can do when you want people to listen, eh? (ps, sorry about the little music video at the beginning...creativity's everywhere!)

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Day 316: David Gatward

So, I've written an article about David Gatward, the horror writer who is judging my competition at Ralph Allen Secondary School. It's on this website called blogcritics. Check it out if you want to know what being a published writer is really all about...

Monday, 18 April 2011

Day 315: Break Dancing Mickey

First off, I'd like to ask, who is NOT inspired by Mickey Mouse? I mean, come on, a giant mouse, who can talk and has single handedly (with the help of Walt) revolutionised animation!

But how is he on the dance floor? Look no further, people. Mickey's got the moves here!

Could you beat Mickey in a dance-off? I don't think I'd dare challenge him! Pretty inspiring stuff though, right? It's made me look at Mickey Mouse in an entirely different (creative) light.

Sunday, 17 April 2011

Day 314: the London Marathon

When I was a kid, my grandparents used to take us on the train to watch the thousands of people running through the streets of London for the marathon. Nanny would lead us to the side of the road, where we'd park up for 20 minutes to watch the fastest runners check their watches and quicken their pace. Then she'd march us off through the side streets to catch another flow of runners.

My grandad who cheer, 'Come on John,' but whenever I asked him who he was cheering for he'd say anyone and everyone. There were people holding up big banners and hunches of balloons. Some had shakers. There was even a steel-tinned drumming band one year.

The best bit was the fun runners. People dressed up as rhinos, clowns and soldiers. Anything goes with the fun runners.

Eventually, we'd get to the finish line and watch hundred of people run past Buckingham Palace and across the finish line. Beyond it, there were fields of silver sheets, keeping the runners warm as their hearts slow back to the pace of the rest of us.

By the end of the day, we would squeeze onto the crowded Underground, back to Liverpool Street. Occasionally, someone would get up and let a runner sit down in their place, Becca and I would gorp at their medallion in awe. They'd just run for 26 miles!

That's my memory of the marathon. Do you have one?

Saturday, 16 April 2011

Day 313: Ouch!

This is about as much creativity as I can muster today.



Warning: don't cut aubergine with a serrated knife.

Friday, 15 April 2011

Day 312: Good old British Afternoon Tea

Today my Mum, sister Becca and I have eaten our weight in cake. It's not something we normally do, I have to add, but Becca and Mum have come across to Bath to visit. What better way to celebrate than with cake?

We went to this really posh Hotel thingy and had afternoon tea as a belated birthday present for my sister (thanks Nanny), which made us feel a bit snobby, but man, the cakes were good.



As you can see, there was a lot of them. I'm pretty sure they were locally made which made them taste better somehow. None of this shop bought nonsense! It was someones job to experiment, make and display those cakes we enjoyed. What a cool job! I'm going to look into such a career I think...

We're now all sitting here looking a bit full and feeling a bit sick, but it was worth it for that scone with cream and jam. Mmm...

Thursday, 14 April 2011

Day 311: The Hobbit!

I am SOOOOO excited. I just watched the first video blog about the making of the long awaited Hobbit film. For all you Lord of the Rings fans out there, check it out RIGHT NOW. They have rebuilt Bag End, Rivendell and they look beautiful. Peter Jackson gives you the rounded tour and it's so exciting!

This clip is not just for LOTR/Hobbit fans. Creative people listen up. This clip is full of weapon making, Costume design/making, Choreographing fights/action scenes, set building, shooting...you name it, it's there.

I am so siked about this film and we've still got to wait two years, but you know it's going to be worth it! Peter Jackson is amazing. An inspiration to creative folk everywhere!

Ps, if you haven't read The Hobbit, DO IT!!

pps, Is it just me or do you have a massive urge to watch Lord of the Rings RIGHT NOW???

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Day 310: BP Portrait Award 2011


Today this year's shortlist was announced for the BP Portrait Award held at the National Portrait Gallery in London. The finalists are:

Ian Cumberland
Wim Heldens
Sertan Salten
Louis Smith

They're all from different countries and all came to art in different ways. I think it's inspiring to see how wide creativity really is. It part of everyone in some way, even those people who claim to be without a creative bone in their body (whatever that means!)

Take a look at their entries.  My favourite is Heldens. I want to know what he's looking at. It's like a snapshot stuck in time. Why is he holding a pencil? Is he an architect? The intriguing title, Distracted makes my imagination fly; distracted from what, from who? What or who distracted him...? I'm pretty much ready to make a story inspired by it...

Which one do you think should win?

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Day 309: Art and Poetry Collaborations

Today in class we were talking about combining art and poetry and how it could work. Generally, people that write poetry aren't that great at visuals, but people who are good with visuals (painting, sculpture, graphic design etc) aren't that great at poetry. Usually people have one specific creative gift they lean towards, but I find that create things I'm no good at (like dance) really inspire me to get creative with words. It's good to work with people of different creative disaplines so we can learn from each other, don't you think?

So how do we make visuals and poetry come together? Which do you enjoy? Do you know anyone who's good at the other? Why not have a chat and see where it goes...?

When I did some digging I found all sorts of collaborations going on. This video was created by James Wray, using typography to animate Robert Frost's 'Mending Wall' poem.



> This poetry sculpture was produced by poet, Linda France and blacksmith, William Pym.



What could you do...?

Monday, 11 April 2011

Day 308: Zombie poetry...

So, today, I thought I'd post up a little poem I wrote the last time I went in and helped the Year Fives at Saltford Primary. I am by no means a poet, but it's fun just to play around with words and ideas, not to make anything important out of it, but just to get your creative juices flowing, you know?

In class Cliff Yates, the poet (see Day) asked the class to write down a thing (like a fish or a tennis ball) and then briefly describe it. I wrote 'A Piano: melodies played on black and white keys.'

Then we jumbled them all up so the things were in one pile and the descriptions were in another. Cliff read them out in a random order and then we wrote a poem with one word and one description. This is what I wrote:

TV is the walking Dead

It sits, still
unchanged by its endless dribble
that leaks from its front in
cyan, magenta, yellow and black.

Its eye shines,
lighting up the living room
with flickers and flashes at night.
Watching, unblinking, alive but not living.

It moves unbalanced from sports fields
to deserts. From dog rescue centres
 to streets of shoppers.
Unaware, unchanged, not caring one bit.

You sit, still
in front of it now, transfixed
by its stare, without thought or care.
Its drawing you in, beware.

Try it yourself and see what you can come up with. Here's some other ideas we put together to start you off:
- A piano that snorts and stinks.
- Frost is something you write with.
- A flame thrower jumps from tree to tree.
- A pen is someone that looks out for you and helps you when you're stuck.

Could any of these inspire your creative work today?

Sunday, 10 April 2011

Day 307: Free your imagination with the BBC

The BBC have got a new season of programs on TV and Radio all about books.

It's focusing on old-school literature like DH Lawrence and Micheal Faber. They've recreated their stories through dramas which will all be on iPlayer for you to enjoy at your leisure. What do you fancy? Documentaries, debates, events, films? Well, they got it all, so have a peek and get involved.

Check out their website for loads more exciting recreations! You can even get email updates of what's going on. Don't miss out on this opportunity to get into books and their inspiring ideas...

Saturday, 9 April 2011

Day 306: My annotated bibliography

On Monday I have to give in 5000 words of my novel, which really isn't that much considering how long a novel is. A small one is 40,000 words and I've written in total about 17,000, so not even half way!

Anyway, I also have to give in an annotated bibliography, which means I have to explain how each book I've read has helped me with my story. Don't worry, I'm not going to bore you with everything I've 'learnt', I'm just going to star one thing from Adele Geras' Ithaka. (See Day 265 for more on that.)

In her story Geras tells Homer’s well known tale, The Odyssey from the point of view of those left behind in Ithaka’s palace. Geras’s uses loads of characters’ which means you get a really rounded view of palace life, as well as what each character wants/feels about the situation they're all in. In other words, each character has a little story of their own within the bigger story, which was really realistic.

Think of your family. The chances are most of you have pretty different days (at school, work, collage), even though you all live in the same house. You all have different things you want (a new car, a girlfriend, a cat) so when you all sit around at the dinner table, you're still a family, but also individuals. When you ask your mum/dad a question, they don't always give you the answer you want 'cause they have their own thing going on too. 

Well, this is what I was lacking in my story. In one scene, Holly is having dinner with her Mum and older brother, Tom, but Tom didn't even mention the fact that he was getting suspicious of Holly's behaviour, (she's being all secretive because of the laptop she stole, as you'd probably expect!) By Tom not mentioning it made him two dimensional, like only Holly's situation existed within the family, which is totally unrealistic.

BUT, when I read Ithaka, I saw how each character had their own thing going on and I was like, hang on, my story doesn't have that. It really made me want to write more convincing character. Cool, huh! That's why it's so great to read. The more you read, the more you understand writing. If you want to become a truly brilliant writer, you need to become obsessed with reading. That's how all the greats (like Stephen King and Jacqueline Wilson) got to the top.

Here's a list of some other great reads from my bibliography, just in case you want to read them too. I think I've written about most of them before, so search them out if you want:
Ithaka, Adele Geras
Finding Violet Park, Jenny Valentine
Breathing Underwater, Julia Green
Martyn Pig, Kevin Brooks
13 Reasons Why, Jay Asher
Life on the Refrigerator Door, Alice Kuipers
Holes, Louis Sachar
My Name is Mina, David Almond

Friday, 8 April 2011

Day 305: California Gurls by Katy Perry

Because it's real sunny at the moment, every morning I wake up, head up to the bathroom and the hall is filled with sunshine, which just makes me feel great! Everyone loves the sunshine.

Immediately Katy Perry kicks into my head with, 'California gurls, we're unforgettable...' It's such a sunny song which has been stuck in my head since the beginning of spring. I sing it in the shower, brushing my hair, preparing my breakfast...sunshine does strange and wonderful things to a person.

So, as I sat down to my computer in my summer dress, ready to write, guess what was going round my head? It was like it wanted to be written about today. BUT, when I watched the video, I was gutted. I mean, why wasn't it the same as the one I play in my head when I sing it? Doesn't Katy Perry know the version that runs in my head? Her one isn't even about California. At least in my version there are sun-filled beaches with girls roaming around on roller skates, eating ice cream, But, no! In Katy Perry's it's all about candy and clouds and nakedness! What has that got to do with anything??

As you can probably tell, I was a little disappointed with what I found. Her creative ideas are clearly different from mine, which is fine, I guess. If we were all the same, then life would be pretty boring.

I hope I'm not the only one that does this: come up with their own version of music videos in their heads. My brain is obviously on creativity overload!

Thursday, 7 April 2011

Day 304: Derek the Dinosaur

Yes! I am pleased to tell you, with a pretty smug smile on my face, I have finally finished the dinosaur I said I'd make back in January, Day 213.

How's your own creative challenge/mission going? I don't mean to rush you, but it's nearly Easter, so you better get a move on!

Here's some pictures of Derek for you. He's enjoying the sunshine.






Get your own dinosaur patterns here.