Thursday, September 3, 2015

Ready for civilization..

We came to Lundsätter in March. It was cold and dark. Very dark out here in the forest. Quiet and fresh and I feel safe but sometimes little scared of the dark and the quietness. It got brighter and brighter by each week. By Midsummer it was more or less daylight around the clock. During the summer it feels right to be here in the nature even though of course hard not having Loren around all the time. Now it is darker and dark again. I can feel the autumn freshness in the air. And I feel it is time to move back to civilization. Tonight it hit me hard that I want to live with street lights and people around now when the summer has been and gone. Also missing being all together a lot making and enjoying dinners together, discuss the day, watch series or simply just share a boring Thursday together. 

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Insta Illustration Challenge

Last week I went all in in an illustration challenge on Instagram. The account is called @enkreativgrej2015 #enkreativgrejomdagen2015 and is inspiring creative souls with different topics or themes for each day. It was such fun small statements to create something from last week of August that I just couldn't resist to participate.

24/8 #SomeoneCouldGettItInTheEye
25/8 # What AboutMe!?
26/8 #SurelyThatIsOverdrawing!?
27/8 #NowYouAreJustMakingThingsUp
28/8 #WhatIfEverybody!
29/8 #CanYouImagineWhatPeopleThrowAway
30/8 #WeAlwaysHave...
31/8 #DontYouHaveAnythingMoreImportantToDo?!

Come on and follow me on Instagram @ccillustrator

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

IF: People

This weeks theme on Illustration Friday is PEOPLE
This illustration I made while sitting waiting for Mila & Loren at Skansen in Stockholm. It was a pretty nice day (only a few showers but considering Swedish summer been pretty poor that doesn't really count as bad anymore) I was sat close to a playground with a big wooden squirrel. Kids where climbing up and down. Kids are pretty fun to watch and very hard to illustrate because they are high and low and the noise level is hard to draw.. Kids are also people, right?!

Country girl

Mila is born in Prague and spend her baby time in parks, cafées and restaurants socializing with other city kids. So when we moved here to the deep Swedish forest this spring she was far from impressed with living close to nature. Not that she was scared or anything but simply just didn't know what to do. Me born in this forest tried to convince her that there is plenty of cool things to play without fancy playground toys. But she continue to long for the city life. At one point she very loud complained every time coming here that she wanted to be in Prague, Moscow, Stockholm or anywhere but here. Heart breaking. We have now been here for over 5 months and slowly but surely this city chick has turned into a real country girl. The other day I asked her " Do you want to go in to town and play in a park or go out in the forest to pick blueberries?" and as fast as she could she put on her rubber boots and said "picking blueberries!"

Friday, August 21, 2015

Birthday greetings

I am working in a few Happy birthday illustrations that I started a while ago and they are still waiting to be finalized. I had my birthday last week. A nice sunny August day. My dad was here and my granddad came out with a nice walnut cake. A neighbor and my uncle Nosse & Ulli also came for coffee. As a present from my parents I got a new cool sewing machine that can make overlock, my God this machine is taking my sewing to new hights!! Happy birthday to me and to my new sewing projects!

Monday, August 17, 2015

Tapee in the house

Lately you find them everywhere.. In family living interior design magazines, creative blogs and on Pintrest. Super cute tapee's for kids in different trendy colors and patterns where the kids can play, hide or read. I have been thinking for a while how I best create one for Mila as I think it is pretty cool to have a little hideaway tent or maybe I just think they look pretty sweet and simply got inspired by all the glossy magazines and pictures.
The benefit with living in the forest is that the resources of good material for the tapee body is huge. Even more so this year as the farmer has cute down quiet a lot smaller birch around us and just left it. So one day I went out with my big secateurs and cut what I needed. I also involved my dad in the project to get help with the fastening the wood together and to make sure it wont collapse. A cute flower pattern cloth in pink, orange and green tones got used as a canvas. A little lamp installed and some cushions ( although I still need to work more on the base with more pillows or maybe a mattress) Mila's interest is not too impressed and not really playing in it but another family member loves it... Cat Levis loves to sleep in it ! 

Monday, August 10, 2015

Berga kulturkapell

During our stay here in Vingåker, Sweden, we have found this great hideaway that we come back to over and over. Not far from our house is an old chapel which has been transformed into a beautiful cafe and art gallery. Here you can get great coffee and a home-baked cakes Different artists are exhibiting their work in this beautiful room. Also different events are held here such as yoga, Argentinian tango courses and concerts. The chapel was originally built in 1873 and not only used for for religious services but also a local meeting point for the people in the area for over hundred years.

I am so impressed of the people who saw the potential in this old building and was brave enough to create this cultural cafe far out in the Swedish countryside. We have been here quiet a few times this summer and it is always a lot of people. It is so great to have this close by when we feel like having a coffee and getting inspired by all the great art and the atmosphere.

Check it out: Berga Kulturkapell

This illustration is from the last time when we were there. Pappa Loren enjoying coffee with sleeping baby on the table while Mila having fun i the very cute play-corner.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Sverige i vårt hjärta// Swedishness

Sometime ago I made some illustrations based on comments from a Facebook post about how we Swedes living aboard see Sweden and Swedishness when we come "home". This was published in the latest issue of a web-based magazine called SMUL ( svenska som modersmål utomlands) a magazine for parents living aboard with kids having Swedish as a mother tongue. Very nicely put together don't you think.

I also updated my webpage with all the orginal illustrations check it out here

IF: Grow

This weeks topic on Illustration Friday is GROW
My contribution is flowers growing at my mother's summer house. A couple of weeks ago I was watching Mila picking and eating wild strawberries and throwing stones in the lake and at the same time drawing flowers from the garden. 

Sunday, August 2, 2015

New hats

Finally I had chance to create a few baby hats of a very cute pattern i bought last week. Unfortunatly hats is very much needed this summer.. 

Friday, July 31, 2015

Stockholm weekend

As I am approaching Stockholm and city traffic I realize that I havnt left my village  in 5 months.. 5 months of only 1 traffic light and free parking spaces everywhere, easy life. Easy but pretty boring so se are ready for a city energy injektion this weekend. We are staying at my dads creative house in Nacka. Here is some of my colorful paintings on the walls.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Rain rain go away part 2

I am recycling an illustration I made back in 2013 to illustrate mid July summer weather 2015... It is pretty grey and miserable weather. Lets put it this way I still have heating on inside... Come on now please rain rain go away!

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Rain rain go away!

We keep singing rain rain go away.. But it seems to have no effect here in Sweden. After a record cold, rainy and windy May and June I guess we were all hoping for some nice warm sunny weather. We northern people need to charge our batteries with some nice weather before the dark comes again. I can already notice that the dark is falling at night after some weeks of light nights around Midsummer. I guess still some time to hope for this amazing Swedish summer days though, don't think I have given up on you! So I continue singing rain rain go away!

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Back to 1994

Sommartider hej hej sommartider!
Sometimes but only sometimes I wish it was 1994 again, I made a couple of illustrations on this topic sometime ago.
It was a warm and sunny summer
Me and my best friend was playing cards on the beach all day
Sweden playing good football and ending up third in the world cup and we were all signing "Digging for gold in the USA" and dreaming about football players

I was laying in the grass with my best friend dreaming about the future and making rather weird foretelling lists ( hundreds of them) and then in the evening we were doing the same but inside a small playhouse where we slept all summer

In the field I had a bunch of grass fat ponies to enjoy an evening canter with in the lush nature

Going to riding camp with other horse crazy girls is their anything better then that?

All good memories although I am not sure that I would want to be 14 for more then for one or two days again.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Second floor welcome to the family!

And so finally the building project came to an end!
One morning while me and Mila were having breakfast she looked at me and asked "mamma WHERE is the builders?" Yes I have to admit it was kind of nice to have them around making the quietness out here in the forest a little less too quiet. BUT my god it is also very very nice to finally be done!

When I started a couple of months ago with our building project the second floor of the house was a skeleton. A wooden skeleton very drafty and far far away from being called a room. Both short-sides of the facade of the second floor was still to be closed to stop wind, rain and birds from coming in. This is where we started and then continued to divide this humongous second floor with a wall to start to utilize one part as a good beginning. This room nearly 70 square meter got isolated and plaster walls put up and finally the big rounded wooden ceiling created of wood panels that has been laying there for ages. The wooden floor was already there although very dirty and a bit miss-colored from the rain that has come in over the years. The electricity was a mess and a big job of making it secure and safe as well as making the new installation has been done. First I was planning to paint and put up wallpapers by myself, but got help from family to point out that I have my hands full as it is with two kids and to run everything else (also that it will never be as well done as when professionals are doing it) that I don't need the stress of all the paint job.

And so finally came the day when we could move up! It is a great big open space room with big windows letting in great light and I also had great lamps installed in the ceiling to help create an even better light in the whole room. The room will be utilized for bedroom and work-space to start with.  I am still playing with what should be where so this will be contentiously changing to feel in the room and to set it up in the best way. My granddad is helping to make a better railing for the stairs ( I created a if you ask me pretty nice and creative railing but maybe not the safest...) apart from that I consider mission complete and feel very happy with the this transformation.

This is how it looks at the moment..

Bedroom corner, drawers for clothes & my old kids table in the middle ( yes I know I need to repaint it when I have chance) The door leads to the rest of the second floor which is still just a skeleton 

Stripy wallpapers from Borås to make the walls look taller here my beloved armchair and very temporary side table facing the big windows. 

Big work table on one side of the room. Cat Levis has taken a part of the table for his bed I guess he also likes the view

The two big windows creating great light

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Midsummer update & illustration

First of all I do miss my scanner! The illustrations doesn't really come up that well with the camera on the phone and I also don't really have the time at the moment to work on them in the computer. However here is the annual Midsummer illustration. Great memory to capture this very Swedish celebration in an illustration.

As the previous three years Team Nikolovski celebrated at Lugnet, my mother and her husband's very nice summer house by the lake. The traditional herring & snaps lunch was planned to start at two o clock and the we got order to be there well in advanced. To follow this order we decided to get ready and leave the house straight away after breakfast (late breakfast but not that late...) My God it takes time to get a two and a half year old ( refused to change from pj to something more decent), a small baby (little cranky because of some tummy issue specially for this day) and a husband ready to go. To pack for this crew only to stay for a couple of days is a whole operation alone. Finally all set in the car, we didn't get very far before we had to make our first stop because of a upset little boy. All in all I think we stopped 4-5 times for feeding & diaper change, which doesn't normally happen typical it would happen when we had a scheduled celebration to attend. Eventually we got there well after two o'clock though.

Nice to meet the midsummer gang, family from both my mothers side and her husbands side. The youngsters had dropped off from last year I guess hanging with their mum & dad and small kids is not really a teenage dream for midsummer. The lunch was great. The rain was hanging in the air as it should on a traditional Swedish Midsummer. It was pretty cold ( read f**cking freezing..) but a must for Midsummer is to sit outside so everyone was kitted with blankets, woolen shirts & the infrared + the gasol warmer was on full speed. The annual competition kicked off after lunch and a lot of passion was put into talking about who would win this year & detail measuring. Mr Nikolovski was in the end the proud winner this year again!! BBQ dinner and a lot of nice discussions for the rest if the evening and night. I managed to put my team members to sleep and stayed up waaay too late.

Thanks all for great Midsummer again this year!

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Happy Midsummer

Happy Midsummer !!
Team Nikolovski has had a great midsummer celebration at Lugnet as previous years
Illustration and details from this years midsummer's celebration is coming shortly, for now enjoy this cake and a little collage of Team Nikolovski.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Building project coming to an end

The building project we decided to start this spring is slowly but surely coming to an end. The second floor on our house has been a project for the future an empty sheet to create a light and spacious area on. I never thought I would mange to get it done by this year but it seems like we can move up in a few weeks. It has as always taken longer then expected but it will be well worth it when I see the result, it will be great. We are super excited and I am spending a lot of time thinking how I best can use the space. It is one big open space room of 70 square meters. We want to have bedroom at the back of the room and sofa & big work space close to the window. Also need to get wardrobes up. I will keep making drawings and plans and when Loren comes this weekend we will start to play with furniture's to see how it will look in real life.  I will keep you posted how it will look. For now here is some pictures of the development. 

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Illustration Friday - Airborne

This weeks topic on the illustration site "Illustration Friday" is airborne
Here is my contribution
Me and Mila last year when we traveled a lot here and there

Monday, June 8, 2015

The faces of motherhood

To be a mother brings out a wide range of emotions. So much love & proudness in over load. The most fulfilling role you can have.  At the same time it is hard at times. A feeling of not being enough and add a spice of tiredness on top if it at and your mood has been better.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Small feet memories

It is so hard to remember how small babies are. When Filip arrived and I got him in my arms I was chocked just how tiny a newborn really is. And it is even more chocking how fast babies and kids grow and grow up ( a statement which I didn't believe when Mila was just born but proven to be right..) Filip has already grown 3 cm & like 0,5 kg. Like I did with Mila I have now made prints of his small little cute feet. Instead of adding color to the feet I put oil on and then use watercolor over the oily print to make the footprint to show up. Great memory indeed.

Here he is enjoying mormor Mi's view from their summerhouse

Me and Mila also likes to make prints of our hands and fingers. Here is a bunch of cute finger figures in different moods. We make little stories about them as we go along. 

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Summary of May with an illustration

If I don't get a chance to draw, paint, sew or illustrate I will become crazy. But I am mean like crazy crazy and not very nice crazy.  So I am happy and the rest of my team probably even more happy that even our newest little member gives me some time ( not a lot but at least a little time here and there) 
Here is a memory of May illustration I have made lately
The illustration started like this  

And with some more color like this..
I will go through the memories

1 ) Mila started sometime ago to ask me like a billion times a day about all sorts of objects " What does this sound like?" Not a problem when she ask about sounds of cat, dog, horse, car etc even though sometimes she doesn't agree of the sound that I make ( she is asking me even though she knows and will correct me like she is checking me on my sound intelligence...) The problem is that she also ask about noises of very quiet objects like a sandwich, a cucumber, a leaf, a tree etc. Sometimes I am creative and make up sounds for these very quiet objects but most times (like 150 000 times a day) I say "no it doesn't make a sound!" or "I don't know" and if I ask what she thinks it sounds like she looks at me like I am stupid saying "hey hey" Strange I have never had a apple, cucumber or flower saying hey hey to me but what do I know.. 

2) End of April beginning of May was a lot of pre-thoughts about the coming baby and new family member. I had hard to picture how it would be to have another baby in the team and so I can imagine Mila had even harder to picture it. She has been very aware of that the growing bump was containing a baby and because she loves babies she was looking forward but of course very abstract to take in what it will be like to have a baby at home without right to return or exchange. She was trying hard to negotiate that instead of baby Filip (a boy..) she wanted baby Sarah (her friend Lisas little-baby-sister ) She was really persistent and I was getting pretty nervous that she really would want to trade her coming brother for another baby.

3) BUT when her little brother baby Filip finally arrived she was very proud and told (read screamed) to everyone in the hospital "don't touch, that is My baby!!" and she is nothing but sweet to her little brother and wants to help to hold and change diaper. I am happy that she no longer wants to exchange him but I am sure it will come when he wants to play with her toys...

4) Here is an updated family portrait of Team Nikolovski (yes maybe slightly slimmer then IRL..)
Baby Filip joined us on the 6th of May at 22.36,  50 cm & 3,7 kg with lots of dark hair and just perfect.
Welcome to the team little man!!