This weekend has been an extremely busy one, not least because I’ve had confirmation of a really exciting commission!

I don’t want to say too much about what it’s for until I’ve made a bit more progress, but I’ve been asked to produce an illustrated map of the River Thames.

Now, I have ALWAYS wanted to draw maps. When I was at school I wanted to be a cartographer. The fact that maps can be both attractive and functional interests me and the detail really appeals to my love of intricacy.

So, when I got asked to submit a small sample for consideration, I jumped at the chance.

This is just an example of a tiny section of the map and it’s going to be changed slightly, but you get the idea.

Thames illustrated map

I decided to use watercolours because I love the way they highlight the texture of the paper (and they’re so fun to paint with)!

Thames illustrated map

I had a go at painting Windsor Castle, using some of the same techniques as I use in my doodles.

watercolour painting of Windsor Castle

I can’t tell you how much I’ve enjoyed doing these paintings and I’m so excited about getting stuck into this project.

It’s the first time in a while that my drawing board has actually looked like there’s some drawing going on! Today I’ve been sketching out the curves of the river, which is definitely easier said than done.

drawing board

I’ve invested in some new Winsor & Newton watercolours as I used my old school set for these paintings and thought it was about time I get a ‘grown up’ set! I felt like a child in a sweet shop buying these!

winsor and newton watercolours

Back to the drawing board now!

If you’d like to follow this project as it progresses, please follow my blog using one of the buttons on the right and pop over to my Facebook page where I’ll be posting regular updates.

I’m sharing this post on the following blogs:  Handmade Harbour and Paint Party Friday.


Well done Clare, congratulations, i am so pleased for you. To be able to do something that you have wanted to do and get paid to boot is fantastic. Will look forward to seeing how things progress, love what you have done so far xxx

Oh my goodness, your illustrations are just gorgeous and so precise! Whoever gave you this commission made the perfect choice picking you for the job, i really look forward to getting more glimpses of the project as it develops 🙂 x

Oh my, honestly, could your work be any more lovely? I have family who live about a mile from the long walk leading to Windsor Castle so we visit regularly, your picture is amazing.

Congratulations! That is such wonderful news. Your artwork is lovely, too. It fills my eyes, which is the greatest compliment I can give. Such detail–I want to look–and to keep on looking.

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