I had always sketched, never really taking it seriously. I took Art in college until my art teacher took the paintbrush out of my hand and painted over parts of my work telling me it would look better her way. I disagreed and dropped out, not having confidence in my own ability.
I stopped drawing for ten years – and then came the sad spark that ignited my lost passion for the pencil. The pauses are bad and I dread them, but these times can be awesomely inspiring.
Mum passed away when she was 49, in 1999. I was 24 years old. And it was hard. I moved state, wanting to get away from every single reminder. Leaving my remaining family and life behind. Eventually, though, in 2008, I moved back "home" to be with my soul mate (and husband since April 2015 !!!).
So, now I live happily with my husband, Tom, and my furry girl Daisy, a kitten who loves to steal my pencils and warm my lap when I'm deep in thought. She inspires some of the characters I create and you will see her every now and then.
Long story short, I got terribly sick in 2013 and was unable to get up and around without help for 4 months. One night, I dreamt of mum and she was looking at one of my drawings. The next day, I searched the origin of her name, and "Little Raven" was born.
Fast forward two years and again I became sick. Laid up this time for 5 months. After a tough time in ICU, fighting for my life, after months of finding my feet and strength, I knew I had to find a way to work through everything that had happened.
Little Raven Design had grown so wonderfully, with such supportive followers, and it helped me get through so many moments of despair and anger and sadness.
In July 2017, I felt that I needed to give Little Raven an edgier and less of a mouthful name. Mums nickname was SOOTY, so in keeping with the reason for doing what I do, we transitioned, and "SOOTY." came to life.
I will never have children of my own. I have a husband who loves me despite our yearning for them. I suppose this little whimsy world I create brings me some childlike joy.
When I draw, I like to be alone, lost in my thoughts. I can go into a drawing with a really vague idea, but it tends evolves on its own. I am strongly guided by how I'm feeling at the time, or what's going on in life around me. I even think I have based the characters on parts of myself.
My characters have large eyes...set wide apart...just like me.
I have no artistic training, and I'm happy about that. I think of an idea and just start. Starting IS painful, but the piece is finished when I start thinking ‘maybe I should add…’
Little Raven started out as a way to escape. Over time, it has become an integral part of me, and I cannot imagine ever wanting to do anything else. I dream that I will be able to do this all day, everyday. But for now, I will take things as they come and keep learning how to be better. And until then, I'll watch proudly as people hang my pieces in their private spaces.
Thank you for your support. It means the world.