Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Studio to Street wk 5: A little sightseeing

I´ve been here for more than a month already, can you believe it. In a little over two weeks we will go on our outreach. We will visit four cities in Europe and do arts and evangelism there.

Sunday and monday are our days off, and on monday I took a walk (2,5 hours) through the parks to do a little sightseeing in the city centre.

Gotta do a selfie at some point here in London,
so why not at the Peter Pan-statue.

In London there is a statue for almost everyone who died in a war,
and some statues for people that conquered land for the empire.
But no statues for artist, thinkers or religious people …

I visited the House Cavalry Museum on the weekend trip.
The museum was kind of small, but it was nice.

I took a chance at visiting the Cavalry museum because the paintings that I am working on have to do with horses and people. In another post I will tell you of what the paintings are going to be about. The work is not yet done, and I kind of don´t want to share too much yet.
The other people in the internship are really excited about the progress of the paintings.

A photo from when I just had begun to do the ink-lines for the third picture.

Just yesterday the zipper of my old bag broke, so I got a nice new one. It was a bit expensive, but since I carry this bag with me everywhere, it´s worth the investment:

The new man-bag, with everything that that goes into it.
This bag is all that I will be taking with me on four weeks of outreach.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Studio to Street wk 4: Quick update

Last week in Camden, we met Faizal who made this Poetry/Quote for the team.
Photo: Johanne Liste Vargas 

While Faizal made the poem for us,
I drew a quick sketch of him for him.
He liked it.
Photo: Johanne Liste Vargas

Over the weekend, I´ve been sitting at the kitchen table.
For YWAM Norway, I had to help out with getting the magazine finished.

I bought these for one pound at a second hand store in town.
I like children´s magazines.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Studio to Street wk 3: Love Harlesden

I was one of five people facepainting the Harlesden girls and boys.
Photo: Deborah Stevenson

Love Harlesden

London is a big place, that is made up of many many small places. The small place that we live is called Willesden, the small place south of our small place is Harlesden.
Harlesden has a big Caribbean community and is unofficially called the Reggae Capitol of London.
Last week on valentine´s day the people of Harlesden celebrated that they had finished fixing the roads in the centre of their community. At the same time the old clock in the middle of the square got repainted.
The city council had asked YWAM to organise the «entertainment» for the day. So, we did free facepainting, music and dancing:


and a photo-frame thingy:

The «Love Harlesden»-thing,
for the facebook-page.

The second of three paintings I´m working on,
the working title is: «Goodness».

The third of the paintings,
working title: «Fearless».

This week, we also got to know which places we will be going for our outreach-trip:

Planes, trains and automobiles, the travel-route for our outreach:
London - Berlin - Prague - Vienna - Milan - (and back to London)

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Studio to Street: Week two

I´m quickly going to show you the three areas in London where we work. London is a big place, and to get from the one place to the other we do a lot of walking. Somewhere between one and two hours every day.

A map of where in London we live and work

in Soho
Photo: Deborah Stevenson


One night in the week, we are in the Soho-district. This is the Red Light-district of London. Here we work together with people of «The City Gates»-church, who have a café/venue there. When we are out on streets at night we offer free coffee and tea, and invite them to come to church-services if they want.
We literally meet people from everywhere in the world. In the picture above I´m talking with a man from Greece.

A lot of artist meet each other in café´s and pubs in the Soho district.

At the Stables Market of Camden
Photo: Deborah Stevenson


This is another area in London where artists work and get together. One afternoon in the week, we visit the place to meet the people who live and work there. This is the area that the people of the «Arts House» I work with are wan

Notting Hill Community Church

Notting Hill

The other big creative community of London, Notting Hill is at walking distance (40 minutes) from where we live. This is the most high-brow of the three creative communities that we are involved in.
I am on the «Visual Arts» track together with Victoria, and together with a few other artists, we are preparing for an exhibition that we are organising for the month of march. Either right before, or right after we go on outreach to the continent.

A sketch for one of my three big big paintings.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Studio to Street: Week one

This has been the week that I´ve landed and gotten settled in the YWAM base in London. This post is a bit of shambles, I hope you enjoy the pictures. You can go to Naomi´s site for more pictures of our internship.

The eight interns, from left to right: Joel (Argentina), Donia (Switzerland), me, Mary Alice (US),
Aaron (US), Nadia (Switzerland), Victoria (Canada) and Noami (also Canada).

One of the landmarks we visited was the Big Ben,
here we also prayed for the government of England.

YWAM in the UK and Wales have in the last weeks gone through a tough time where they were in danger of losing the visa´s for 350 of the 600 volunteers that work with YWAM here. The UK government has been tightening their immigration laws.
But through God´s grace YWAM was allowed to keep their status that allows them to invite foreign-workers into the country. Praise God for that.

The «Art House», where we sleep and eat.
(It´s only the left half of the blue building)

God´s welcome card to London

If I have the chance, I love to go everywhere on foot, or by bike, but London´s just too big. So we spend much time on busses and trains, which gives me a lot of time to do sketching. Unfortunately, the sketchbooks I brought from Norway are a bit too big to take along on the buss. Luckily, at a church service at Hillsong Bermondsey, they had put out notebooks on the chairs for everyone. I took two.
These books are the perfect pocket-size for the «on the go» pace of this city.

Nice surprise: a free new pocket-size sketchbook.


Since we are all crammed into one house, my personal «time alone with God» has in the evenings been moved outdoors, where I walk the moonlit streets of the suburbs. Another thing I´d have to get used to is not having a whole deluxe basement studio for myself. In the house I´m doing drawing, inking and colouring in a couch in our livingroom.
The place we work on our projects is a big church-building, here we have lots of space. We will be here mondays, wednesdays and fridays, and work on our projects.

I have seen lots of old churches in London, but this is the first one I´ve seen from the inside.
Our team is allowed to use this church in Notting Hill to make our art and practice music and dance.
Sitting at the table drawing is Victoria, she is on the «Visual Arts» track with me.

On thursdays and on saturdays we are going into to the city centre to hang out in areas of Camden and Soho, which are the artistic- and entertainment-areas of London.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Studio to Street: To England on the morrow

Tomorrow I fly off to England, and will be there for three months. Tonight we are having a little goodbye-party for me at the place I live. 

Bearing myself right

The thought of living at a new place and working with new people has been on my mind a lot. Not so much about who they will be, but mostly who I am going to be for them. Tomorrow at the terminal, I can choose who I am going to be for the people I meet at the other side of the plane-ride.
I am taking the plane to from Oslo to Heathrow. Time spent at the airports usually presses on me the feeling that I am «inbetween» two cultures. As I have gone through customs I have left one country behind, but I am still waiting to arrive in the next. This happens often when I travel between Norway and the Netherlands. Even though I am the same person, people relate to me differently. For example: Norway is the country where I work, and the Netherlands is the country where I spend time with family and friends. But all of London has not met me yet. 

Whoever I am going to be when I come out of the subway station at Willesden Green, I know I will not be able to be a good one without God´s grace to guide and carry me.

A sketcht hat I didn´t get to turn into a proper drawing. I know that God is not a woman, and neither am I.
But I am imagining that He is just as fascinated by the process of making creation, as he is in guiding the creative.

A little video of what previous internships at YWAM London have looked like.

Since I almost filled up my current sketchbook,
I got a new one for the England-trip.
The first page is already christened, to check the paper-quality.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Folkesang: A lullabye-song

At the beginning of the summer, my friend Åsne asked me if I wanted to do illustrations for a Norwegian folksong-website that she wanted to start up. Besides being a mother, Åsne is a professional singer who sings traditional Norwegian folksongs.
The website is still under construction, but three of the video-episodes have already been put on Youtube by the TV-producer.

It is great fun to work with Åsne, and find good illustrations for the different songs. The goal with the website is to pass the folksongs on to a new generation of Norwegian. The text of the songs, and the way the songs are sung, have not been changed. But through a simple presentation and the freshness of the illustrations, we hope to give these old songs a new place in the Norway of today.

The lullabye

The motif for this illustration was taken from Christian Krohg´s painting: «Sleeping mother with child», with the difference that the mother is not sleeping, and that the father present too.
The last line int he song is about God´s angel keeping watch over the baby at night. We wanted to  show that in the picture in too, but without making it look like there was a ghost in the room. The angels ended up as paintings on the sides of the cradle.


Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Folkesang: The swing-song

I am super happy with this illustration I made for this song. It´s about a young girl who is supposed to watch the cows as the are up in the mountain-pasture. But she gets bored and starts to play on the swing instead. So taken by her own game, she loses them. Later she neither sees or hears them anywhere and starts to cry. Her family comes up to the pasture to comfort her and look for the cows, just when the whole herd comes walking back to them.

These sketches are from this summer. I had followed the most obvious thought in my head, that traditional norwegian folksongs should probably look like idyllic and picturesque landscape paintings. Like Erik Wereskiold´s paintings for example. But I scrapped the idea, the whole family would not fit nicely into the picture, and the illustration would not get the energy of sitting on a swing a warm summer day.

A new way for an old song

Later, I learned that traditional folksingers love their folksongs, but feel often restricted by the culture of folklore that exists around all folk traditions. Folklore knows only one way to express itself, it is the old way. It has the dark-toned colours of old farmhouses, and very few of today´s children go that way by themselves.
And that is why I like this illustration a lot, it tells the old story, but in a fresh and new way. It´s like you can feel the wind in the girl´s hair, and the rustling sound of the leaves overhead. And in the distance, her family is calling.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Freedom of speech is something we stand for together #CharlieHebdo

Freedom of speech is something we stand for together. #CharlieHebdo

It shook me when I heard of the brutal massacre in Paris yesterday. And the shook took extra long because I draw pictures too. Freedom of speech is a right to fight for, not fight against. And so is freedom of religion. It cannot be sold, nor negotiated.
There is a place for satire too, but Charlie has crossed more than one line in my book.

I hope and pray that someone will come that will teach us not to be afraid of each other, and teach us to stand together against the violations of all our freedoms.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

YWAM Norway Staff Conference: Three daily sketches

Happy new year everyone, I hope yo made it well into the new year.

Grimerud has been buzzing with people in the last week. First the New-years festival here with 80 teenagers, and then our annual staff conference with 400+ of our coworkers.
In previous posts, I´ve show you the sketches I make while I sit in with the corporate meetings.
And since I´m doodling in my book anyway, we (of YWAM´s communication team) thought It would be fun if I post one picture or page for every day of the conference.

These are «notes», and not finished images, so they look a bit messy.

Day one: a front row quick sketch of interviews they did from stage.

Day two: During the meetings, a mental picture of a northwind kept showing up.
 Meaning that a «north wind» would come blowing from Norway,
and awaken people´s desire to read the Bible and follow Jesus.
This northward is from George MacDonald´s novel «At the back of the North wind»

Day two: I was sitting at the front row again, but so was a three year old.
So, we drew three and a half tractor with wagons and lights,
and I took notes in-between the scribbles afterwards.

Day three: I had missed one meeting because I had been making lunch for all the 400+ people.
In the afternoon , there was a «marketplace» where all the YWAM schools and courses got presented.
I sat in the back, and drew some of the people that would stand and sit still enough, long enough,

The thing that I liked the best with the staff conference was that all the things were all relevant to the people that work with YWAM in Norway. There was an extensive bit about the Bible To All-project, where we evaluated and were looking forward to handing out bibles to all the houses in the rest of the  country. We are now going to prepare a few more things to go alongside the bible-distribution, things that will make people hungry for the bible.