Creative Challenge: Illo Advent

I've always liked drawing but was very self-conscious about it which stopped me from scribbling. I worried about every line and my pen hovered over the page nervously, not daring to make a mark. Then last summer while waiting for a delayed train one day, I started to doodle. I was just passing the time but by taking the pressure off myself I suddenly found myself totally absorbed.

I realised it was something I could do creatively when my mind was too full of my day job to be able to write. I became less and less worried about what my drawings looked like and just began to enjoy it. I found it relaxing, almost meditative and I decided to share my pictures on my personal Facebook page, just for fun. My friends were kind and encouraging. So when I noticed a little Christmas drawing challenge on Twitter (#illo_advent), started by fellow Twitterer Penny Neville-Lee. I took a deep breath and with some trepidation, decided to take part.

It was brilliant, habit-forming, social and just really good fun. It made me practice and try different techniques. I loved learning from the brilliant illustrators taking part and being part of a new community which felt a bit like a secret club.

Here's a little selection of the drawings I did through the challenge, in no particular order. Some better than others!