Unsuccessful yoghurt cake and some more successful doodles

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My first bake of 2014, not a great start. I had some yoghurt I wanted to use up and despite knowing full well I had several tried and tested cake recipes using yoghurt on my bookshelf, I couldn’t remember which books they were in, so I googled instead, used the first recipe I found and well, this happened. As you can see from the photo, it’s not cooked properly at the bottom, despite leaving it in an extra 10 minutes, after my initial cake test showed it hadn’t cooked through yet. The second cake test suggested it had, turns out not. At least the top of the cake is edible but even then, hmmm, it’s too sweet and reminds me uncomfortably of the sort of cake you’d make if you used one of those packet cake mixes. I now feel like I’ve not (as I thought I had) thriftily used up some yoghurt that would have otherwise been thrown out, instead I feel like I’ve wasted some good flour, sugar and eggs instead….

At least my doodling was a bit more successful today, I have a copy of Craft-a-Doodle: 75 Creative Exercises from 18 Artists, put together by Jenny Doh. I’m going to attempt to work my way through the book, well at least work my way through the exercises I like.

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Part of my ‘new me’ 2014 is to be more organised with my creative supplies, so I was cursing myself a bit when gathering up my tools to sit down and do a spot of doodling, that I couldn’t find any of my black drawing pens, so I ended up using a sharpie, not ideal, but it was either that or tidy my desk in an attempt to find them, again. The above four doodles are based on exercises from Cori Dantini. The doodles below are based on exercises from Flora Chang.IMG_2257

The doodles were a great creative warm up, with the first few doodles I was following pretty much the exact instructions in the book (although as well as having to use a sharpie, I was also using watercolour pencils but that’s because I wanted to). But by the time I got to Flora Chang’s exercises, I was much more doing my own thing. I particularly enjoyed the negative space exercise (the last doodle).

The book itself is great. I love how most of the exercises are in a black and red colour scheme, it gives the book a unified feel and the text does encourage you to use different colours if you want to. There’s lots of artists in the book where I’m already familiar with their work, whether by name, such as Gemma Correll and Aimee Ray (yes, there’s embroidery in there, in fact, a lot of the designs in the book, not just Aimee’s could be used for embroidery inspiration) or because I recognise their style but didn’t know their name (Flora Chang).

There are lots of different styles in the book, although some of the subjects of the exercises are repeated over; there’s more than one owl exercise for example but there’s nothing wrong with owls, so that’s ok.

Material wise I sort of improvised with what I had / what I wanted to use and I think you could probably follow that principle for most of the exercises, however there are some more unusual (to me anyway) materials also featured and I think they make a good encouragement to go try something new.

Now where are my drawing pens …………?

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