I Give You The Sketch – The Last 31 Days

Hello December! 

Good morning Summer! 

Who knew that when I decided hundreds and hundreds and HUNDREDS of days ago that I wanted to draw every day in 2016, that I’d actually do it? Not me, that’s for sure. 

Yesterday was day 335 of my #IGYTsketch adventure, and with 31 sketches left to create, I’m pleased as punch (why not Judy?) that I’ve continued to put pen or brush to paper for 11 months straight. Well, almost… I have missed days, and played catch up – which is silly, because actually there are no creativity police out there! 

The point is, I’ve kept going, not because I have to, but because creating has become part of my life. It makes me happy, relaxes and challenges me and puts me in touch with something bigger than myself. Art opens me up. 

I have had great ideas that I couldn’t quite pull off, and drawn more leaves than you could poke a stick at in a deciduous wood. I’ve drawn by the beach, at work, at home, in bed, in cafes, anywhere I’ve found myself. 

It’s all very Jack Dawson a la Titanic – I have air in my lungs, a pencil, a scrap of paper and now I’m here with you fine folks! 

Let’s take a little screenshot trip down memory lane, shall we? I posted all my sketches on Instagram, using the natty hashie #IGYTsketch, which I modified to include the month. 







To kick the year off, I sketched along with one of my now favourite artists and illustrators, Lisa Congdon. 

Lisa taught a month long class online through CreativeBug, and it was a great way to find my feet with the daily habit of creating. Love, love, loved watching her videos and seeing how my brain and hand translated what she drew. 

I think the absolute BEST thing about drawing 335 pictures (so far) and posting them online this year has been the way that’s connected me with other artists. I have met so many sensationally talented, lovely people through creating, it’s really helped me feel like part of something bigger, even though I’ve spent most of this year at home by myself. 

I bang on about people’s generosity and kindness a lot on this blog – I know – but it’s because that’s my experience of life online and off. Whether I’m writing or sharing art, people are overwhelmingly kind and encouraging. That’s RAD. 

Thank you so much people of the interweb. I have needed you this year and you’ve been here for me. 

I hope I’ve returned the kindnesses I’ve received, in some small way. 

Let’s continue our screenshot tour through the past five months, shall we? 






When I look through these snapshots of each month, I remember lots of the days I drew these things – flowers and abstracts, huts and shells and things from the IKEA catalogue, and SO many leaves, and I feel so damn grateful that I signed up for that little online creativity course Inspiration Information, I think back in July 2014. 

I had NO IDEA where that one decision could lead me. No idea whatsoever. I believed wholeheartedly that I could not draw when I started that course. I was wrong! 

Hmmm, seems to me that I need that reminder right now, and maybe you do too. 

We don’t know what’s ahead of us. No matter how much we plan or make New Year’s resolutions or how secure we feel in the world, we just don’t know what’s next. And the limits we put on ourselves, sometimes they’re total bullshit. 

That one decision, to sign up to a course that I think cost me $50, has altered my life. I was going to write, altered my creative life, but I don’t think it’s right to rope it off, to put one aspect of who I am over there, sectioned off from the other parts of me. 

With 31 days left of 2016, I plan to keep giving you the sketch. I hope you’ll see something that makes you smile or triggers a memory or brightens your day. 

I have made myself happy on crap days by picking up a pen and sketch book. I’ve looked up more than I ever have and seen more than I ever knew was around me, and within me this year, thanks to drawing and painting. 

Not bad for a girl who spent 40+ years thinking she wasn’t artistic. 

I wonder what you’re wrong about as far as your talents and capabilities. I know this, you’ll never know until you have a crack. 

Got air in your lungs? Got a pencil and a scrap of paper? 

You know what to do next.  

As Jack said, make it count. 

Much love to you, 

Annette xx 


Here’s my favourite sketch of the year, little me, drawn from one of my first memories. 



Hey, Good Looking

Good morning.

I have a little challenge for you today, well, really it’s more of a treat than a challenge, so let’s get to it.

Whatever you’re doing, wherever you’re off to today, I want you to be Good Looking.

Now I know you’re thinking, what the what now, this girl has gone bonkers… let me explain.

You’re cute, that’s a given, you’ve got style and even if you’re a bit harried and rush-y today, I think you have really pretty eyes.

What I mean by Good Looking, is that you can see today in a couple of ways.

You can focus on the rushing, the bloody-kids-will-you-SHUT-UP moments, the ‘ugh, my boss is a crazed loon’ eye rolls you may share with a co-worker and you can see only those things today.

When you fall into bed, today can look batshit busy, stressful and blergh. (Some days are like that, they just kick your arse, and I really hope you don’t have a day like that.)

OR you can see the stuff that goes on in between the shouty, eye rolling, will this traffic ever get moving moments.

When you’re sitting at the level crossing and the stupid trains seem to be taking forever to cross, look up at the sky. Are there clouds skittering across it? Is it grey or blue? Whatever it’s doing, it’s pretty amazing isn’t it?

While the kids are playing at the park, look at the treetops.

2014-09-18 15.43.53

Treetops are really something.

The way the branches reach out and the shapes the leaves make. Maybe I’m a simpleton, but trees make me exceedingly happy.

That’s Good Looking.

After you wrangle your tired toddler into the car or pram, and they fall asleep, study that now cherubic little face.

That’s Good Looking.

When you are waiting for your latte in the coffee shop, or sitting on a tram, or even wheeling your shopping trolley around in the 8.4 minutes you’ve got to buy ALL THE THINGS, there are Good Looking opportunities right there – the way the tram lines criss cross the sky overhead, how the light hits the coffee machine… it’s about looking for something to appreciate.

Good Looking isn’t necessarily about ah-mazing sunsets or cliffside vistas, though those things are fab.

Good Looking is about seeking out and drinking in the little beauties of every day we get to spend on this blue ball spinning in space.


So, my friends, that’s how you can be Good Looking today.

I hope you embrace it. I’d love to hear about what you see and how it makes you feel.

Later, good looking.

Annette x