Friday, October 18, 2013

Creative block, or not?

A friend just sent me a link to this lovely article, about overcoming creative block and getting inspired! It's a good read...

How to break through your creative block...

I especially like these thoughts:

Alexi Murdoch:
"...At the risk of going off brief here, can I just ask: What’s wrong with creative block? Might it not just be that periods — even extended ones — of productive hiatus are essential mechanisms of gestation designed to help us attain higher standards in our pursuit of creative excellence?"

Douglas Rushkoff: 
"...Real creativity transcends time. If you are not producing work, then chances are you have fallen into the infinite space between the ticks of the clock where reality is created. Don’t let some capitalist taskmaster tell you otherwise — even if he happens to be in your own head".

James Lidell:
"...Some days the genius will be in you, and you will sail. Other days the lead will line the slippers, and you’ll be staring into the void of your so-called creative mind, feeling like a fraud. It’s all part of the big ole cycle of creativity, and it’s a healthy cycle at that.

Jessica Hagy:
"...How can you defeat the snarling goblins of creative block? With books, of course. Just grab one. It doesn’t matter what sort: science fiction, science fact, pornography (soft, hard, or merely squishy), comic books, textbooks, diaries (of people known or unknown), novels, telephone directories, religious texts — anything and everything will work.
Now, open it to a random page. Stare at a random sentence.
Every book holds the seed of a thousand stories. Every sentence can trigger an avalanche of ideas. Mix ideas across books: one thought from Aesop and one line from Chomsky, or a fragment from the IKEA catalog melded with a scrap of dialog from Kerouac".
I find it very reassuring that feelings of creative block is universal and curable!

Friday, October 04, 2013

Gromit Unleashed Auction

Wow! What a night! After 10 weeks of the public art trail, the auction of all 81 Gromits took place last night, raising money for The Grand Appeal to support sick children and their families at Bristol Children's Hospital.
I'm astounded by the generous bidders, who raised a total of £2,357,000.00! And I'm so very proud to say that my Gromit, Bunty, raised £31,000. I'm so pleased to have been a part of this.
I also said at the beginning of the trail, if people send me their photos of Bunty, then I will choose my favourite and send them a small prize. It's not too late, so send me your photos by 18th October, and I'll announce the winner on 21st October! The winner will get a signed copy of my latest book What Goes Up and a signed print from the book. 

Find out more about the auction at the BBC Here

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Artwork for sale!

Ooh, I have re-listed some of my original artwork for sale on my Etsy shop! Check it out!

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Thursday, August 22, 2013

The Next Big Thing! - A global blog tour.

I've been tagged by Jamie Michalak to take part in 'The Next big Thing' blog tour of children's books, which began in Australia. You can see Jamie's post here.

I will be writing about my latest book 'What Goes Up' published by Tiger Tales earlier this year.

Where did the idea for this book come from?
Martin the Dragon just seemed to appear out of nowhere in my sketchbook a few years ago. I don't know where he came from! But I liked him. And he made me laugh when I stuck him on a tricycle, and started to imagine his story from there. His name came from a friend of a friend who visited during a party and felt it suited him.

What genre does your book fall under?
Picture Books.

Which actors would star in a move rendition of your book?
My book has only once main character really - Martin the Dragon. He is a gentle, giant, rotund dragon who's not very smart, he always tries really hard but things don't always go the way he expected. He perseveres and finally gets the results he dreams of with some helps from his friends. 

I'm drawn between Nick Frost, Brian Blessed and Robbie Coltrane. But, I think Nick is a little on the short side, Brian is a bit too loud (Martin is a quiet fellow) so, I think I would cast Robbie Coltrane to play Martin! Especially as he naturally has some giant/dragon magic about him too ;-)

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
Martin the Dragon believes 'what goes up must come down', but luckily, the village's children know how to teach Martin to go up, and stay up.

Who published your book?
Tiger Tales

How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?
I'm really not sure! It was quite a slow process, something I dipped in and out of over a couple of years. But I really sat down and wrote the full story over a couple of weeks once Tiger Tales commissioned it.

What other books would you compare this story to within your own genre?
I've never compared my books to others before, but I suppose it's about determination and help from friends. So perhaps, if readers like this theme, they could check out Catherine Rayner's 'Ernest' or maybe Farmyard Flyers by Mike Bostock.

Who or what inspired you to write this book?
Martin the Dragon appeared out of nowhere in my sketchbook, I'm not sure what inspired me to draw him! But my agent suggested trying him out on a tricycle and it made me laugh so the story developed from there. I guess the story could be inspired by my own attempts to succeed at certain challenges, and how much I value my own supportive friendships.

What else about this book might pique the reader’s interest?
Hmm, I just had a flick through the book, and remembered when I was drawing the page with Martin laying on his back, watching the clouds shaped like dragons in the sky.  A song came on the radio at that time - 'You're gonna make me lonesome when you go' by Bob Dylan. There's a lyric that stood out to me - 'Dragon clouds so high above'. It made me smile! And it's a good song!

And what is next after The Next Big Thing?
I'm currently working on my next book with Tiger Tales, USA, called 'Messy Jesse', about a scruffy dog who hates tidying up! 

I'm also working on my first book with Bloomsbury childrens' books in the UK, it's top secret, but I'm very excited about it!

Both are due to be published in 2014.

Next up, I'm tagging two talented Hannahs in Bristol! Hannah Cumming and Hannah Broadway.

Check out their blogs on 6th Sept!

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Send me your photos of Bunty!

The Gromits have been getting a lot of attention since being unleashed.. and I would absolutely love to see peoples photos of my Gromit 'Bunty' with all his new friends! So if you have taken photos of him, could you send me your pictures? And I will create an album on my Facebook page with them all in! My favourite photo will win a small prize at the end of the summer :)

Wednesday, July 03, 2013

The Gromits have been Unleashed!

The Gromits have been officially 'unleashed' on Bristol! There are so many beautiful ones, I can't wai to go on the trail and find them all. We had a lovely afternoon last Friday, at the Gromit 'launch' party, 10 Gromits were brought in on a steam train, driven by Nick Park, one of which was mine! He is called 'Bunty', as he is wrapped in bunting. Here's a pic of me sitting on the back of the carriage with Bunty:

Myself and some of the other talented Gromit artists outside with Nick Park:
Dave Bain Amy Timms Carys Tait Emily Golden Lindsay McBirnie Katy Christianson 

Bunty is now out in Bristol, outside St Mary's Church in Redcliffe. I've been to see him a couple of times now, and he seems to be settling in well! He looks worried, but I think he's secretly loving all the attention:

And not only have I been Gromit spotting outside, I've spotted my Bunty in a few printed pieces around Bristol too! The first is on the front page of The Bristol Post 3 weeks ago:

The second is inside the weekend magazine of the Bristol Post 2 weeks ago:

And last weekend, I spotted him in The Bristol Magazine this weekend! He sure gets about, the clever pooch:

And finally, here I am with my sponsor, Unum, everyone seems quite pleased with the colourful chap! It also happened to be my 30th Birthday, so it turned in to quite a memorable occassion!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Artist of the Month!

Yay! I'm 'Artist of the Month' at Hamilton House, Bristol
My bikes are on the front cover of the July programme of events, and I have work exhibited for sale in the The Canteen from the 1st July for 4 weeks. You can read the programme here

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Exhibition at The Southville Centre Cafe

Myself and the marvelous Jenny McKendrick are exhibiting artwork (prints and originals) all for sale at The Southville Centre between mid June to mid July.
We're very pleased with how it's pulled together, and it's such a sweet bright and airy cafe!

Friday, June 07, 2013

'A Grand Tail' - coming soon!

Here's a trailer for 'A Grand Tail'! The Gromit's will be unleashed on 1st July!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Well done! We did it!

Gromit is all finished! In the words of Wallace "Surprising what a lick of paint'll do isn't it?"

Celebrating with cheese and crackers and a glass of something yummy!

Friday, May 10, 2013

Play time!

It's been play time in the studio this week, I'm sketching charleston and swing dancers for a new poster.. love it! Sketch dancers by day, and then go dancing by night. Perfect.

Wednesday, May 08, 2013

Gromit Unleashed update

He's nearly finished! Just a few more details to add. I've grown quite fond of Gromit, we've developed a nice bond :)

Thursday, May 02, 2013

What Goes Up

Look what arrived in the post! What goes Up. My second book with Tiger Tales (USA) published in March 2013 (Written and illustrated by me :)

  • What Goes Up
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Tiger Tales (Mar 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1589251199
  • ISBN-13: 978-1589251199

Monday, April 29, 2013

Gromit Unleashed

My Gromit is starting to take shape. Here's a sneaky peek so far! One giant leg...
My Gromit is being sponsored by Unum

Part of the Gromit Unleashed exhibition raising money for the Wallace and Gromit Grand Appeal, the Bristol Children's Hospital Charity.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Well, hello Lad!

I've been getting to know my Gromit this week! He's a lovely chap. I feel we've bonded quite well, though I think my pencils and paint brush tickles him. He's been very well behaved, and stands very still and patiently while I work on him.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Bologna Children's Book Fair 2013

Here's wishing my Little Owl lots of luck on his visit to the Bologna Children's Book Fair, 2013! He has winged his way to Italy with my agent, Plum Pudding illustration. He's part of a new story of mine, hot off the press, I hope he makes lots of new friends at the fair :-)

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Gromit Unleashed!

I'm very flattered and excited to be one of 70 artists chosen to illustrate a giant 5 foot Gromit as part of Bristol's 'Gromit Unleashed'!

More than 500 artists from across the globe submitted designs, and i will be exhibiting alongside Raymond Briggs, the man behind The Snowman, and Axel Scheffler, who drew children's favourite The Gruffalo.

Each sculpture will be individually designed and created by the invited artists, creating a trail of seventy unique pieces of art and will form an art exhibition for ten weeks over the summer of 2013.

At the end of the public art exhibition, the sculptures will be auctioned to raise funds for Wallace & Gromit's Grand Appeal, the Bristol Children's Hospital Charity.

More info in The Post article HERE


Free shipping!

There's a special offer at my society6 store: free shipping until March 17, 2013 at Midnight Pacific Time. Offer excludes Framed Art Prints.

Click on this Link

Tuesday, March 05, 2013

Original artwork for sale!

Role up, role up! Original watercolour illustrations made by my own fair hands, are all for sale and happy to walk/cycle/drive/train/fly to new homes. Please contact me at

They are all viewable on my Facebook page, and are listed here below.

I also accept commissions, painting baby names for your child's bedroom or nursery walls, Size 210mm wide x 297 mm high (A4) £50 unframed, £60 framed. For example:
Just email me for requests.

Original work for sale:
Icecream Sundae
Original Artwork
Signed, dated and framed.
Paula Bowles

Original Artwork
Signed, dated and framed.
Paula Bowles

Mint Choc-Chip
Original Artwork
Signed, dated and framed.
Paula Bowles
A Mice Cup of Tea
Original Artwork
Signed, dated and framed.
Paula Bowles

Strawberry Milkshake
Original Artwork
Signed, dated and framed.
Paula Bowles

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Brillustration at The Southville Centre

I am exhibiting originals and prints at an exhibition in The Southville Centre, with 'Brillustration'. It runs between 1 - 29th March, and coincides with the centre's two special events in partnership with The Bristol Festival of Literature. Artwork is individually priced for sale.

Monday, February 18, 2013

The Scared is scared...

...of all the things you like.
the Scared is scared from Bianca Giaever on Vimeo.

Love this! Good advice from a 6 year old :)

Sunday, February 10, 2013


I'm trying out 'Society6' to sell some of my art prints, check it out here:

I've also added a link to my store on the right hand side of my blog.

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Icecream sundae

My latest creation.. icecream sundae! Perhaps a birthday card design? I wanted to try for a 'rockabilly' icecream look... so I thought polka dots would lend themselves well to the design! (I'm quite partial to a polka dot too :)

Sunday, February 03, 2013

Caught on camera!

I was caught on camera at one of the story telling events I did at Christmas time recently! This was at a charity event at 'The College Project' to support families affected by the government cuts. A jolly good fun day was had by all I think!

Here's the video... I'm at 3mins18. And there's a very nice review at 5mins in!
Topped only by the bouncy castle!

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Something for Valentine's Day...

I thoroughly enjoyed making this tree! 'Love is Blossoming' perhaps ?

Sunday, January 27, 2013

More bicycles!

I'm continuing working on more designs in the new style, seem to be in a 'bicycle phase' at the moment, which isn't a bad thing!

For him...

And a bicycle made for two...

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Love this..

'In the Rowans' by Balmorhea

Enjoying the 'tappity-tap-tap-tappings' whilst writing new stories :)

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Happy Snow Day!

As Britain becomes engulfed in snow, look who I found, sitting at a table outside a cafe in Bristol last weekend! Busy working away at his laptop, swigging a bottle of wine... what are the chances!? We chatted for a while, but he was a bit quiet and frosty, and he gave me the cold shoulder.. I think he was just shy about his large carrot nose.. Has any one else made/found any nice snowmen/ladies/animals/creatures recently?

Saturday, January 12, 2013

New Beginnings

Happy New Year folks! I hope everyone had relaxing/enjoyable/inspiring festive breaks. Any New Year parties? I celebrated the new year with the Bristol Swing Dancers, and we danced (lindy hop) all night until 5am :) A most enjoyable time, with champagne at midnight of course :)

I have lots of plans for 2013, including trying out a new style aimed towards editorial, greetings cards and stationary industries. Check out my new portfolio on this blog, up the top there, 'Digital Portfolio' :) Here's a taster:

I'm also busy working on my 3rd book with Tiger Tales, it's called Messy Jesse, and it's about a very, very, messy dog.. it won't be published until 2014, but in the meantime my 2nd book 'What Goes Up' is due out on the 1st March!

I'm working on my first book with Bloomsbury this year too, it's a picture book I've written and am illustrating too :) Currently working with the editor on the manuscript and storyboarding thumbnail sketches. Top secret at the moment though, so no sneak peeks!

Happy January!