Saturday, 8 August 2015

Fashion Study

Last weekend I saw the highly acclaimed exhibition, 'Savage Beauty' at the V&A by Alexander McQueen  (R.I.P). It was fantastic and I'm really glad to have seen it just before it ended. My partner treated me to a Samsung Galaxy Note Pro a while back and I've been using it for sketching (which is fab, btw), but I was struggling to adjust to painting with it. Here's a study based on a photo from the McQueen book I bought after seeing the exhibition. Hopefully, with more practice I'll be able to paint quickly and freely with this device!


P.S. A lot has happened over the past few months.....I'll  write a proper post about it another time. Although if you follow me on social media then you'll  already know of NAOHOA!

Monday, 13 April 2015

Tattoo Times #02

Hey guys,

If you follow me on Instagram/Twitter/Facebook then you'll have seen the stuff I've been working on lately. If not, then I've compiled it all here anyway with some commentary.  Hope you like. :)

Going Solo

Due to unfortunate circumstances, I'm essentially learning to tattoo by myself. It's been working out fine so far and I bought machinery, ink etc. to practice at home.

It had been a while since I last used a machine before this move, so I used a pomelo* to begin with:

Thought I'd start off with some freehand script.
After disliking the wobbliness of the first one, I decided to
take it a little more seriously and made a stencil.
Stereotypical stuff, just for practice.
Started to get the hang of it. :)
None of the stencils would stick so
I had to freehand all of the script in the end.

Hello Kitty is deceptively tricky to get right.
More often than not, the simpler the shape,
the harder it is to reproduce effectively.
I figured she would be a good subject to practice such things.
Everyone seems to get Chinese characters done at some point, so here is 'love'.
I'm not bilingual, so I had to rely on Google for this translation. :P

* pomelos are like a giant grapefruit that is milder in flavour. They're really tasty; I recommend it!

Back on the Arm

It didn't take too long to feel comfortable with using the tattoo machine, so I went back to the A Pound of Flesh arm to finish up the Buddha and complete some other pieces:

My first tattoo design! Still need to finish the lotus petals.
My second attempt at tattooing something realistic.
I simply had to ink a lion after seeing this gem.

Roses are another popular item, so I crammed in five.
Also added some more script, which isn't very good. Must improve.
Switched to something more Maori-inspired to see how I faired with line work.
All original designs.

I wanna squeeze in a portrait or two if possible....and saving the white highlights for when the whole arm is finished.

Japanese Sleeve: 'Four Seasons'

After focusing on realistic, black&white designs, I wanted to do something that was the complete opposite. Japanese tattoos are hugely popular, despite their dark roots in the Yakuza. To stem away from this, I focused on making it look like a woodblock print. This is reminiscent to my work on Fall of the Samurai, which was pretty fun.

Here are sneaky previews of my progress so far.....I don't want to post the whole design until after it's done. :)
Matsumoto Castle and The Great Wave.
This was lifted from Hasui Kawase's Autumn print.
Normally, I wouldn't agree to using other artists' work without their permission,
but Hasui's work is well out of copyright law.
A snippet of The Great Wave by Hokusai.
To those of you who are wondering, I'm using a rotary machine by Wayne Taylor and ink by Kuro Sumi.

If you're interested in getting a tattoo from me (I'm based in Wales, UK), contact me at info [at]

Thanks for visiting!
Naomi xxx

Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Total War: Shogun 2, Fall Of The Samurai

Recently, The Creative Assembly published an art book, containing loads of concept art and illustrations from the games to date. Some of the work I did is featured but unfortunately, they didn't credit me. :( So if anyone's curious, here are photos of some of the illustrations I produced during my three months there:

* Link to Amazon *

Top left image was animated for the opening sequence.
Bottom image was animated for the opening sequence.
Top right image by Roland MacDonald.
Top right image by Roland MacDonald.

.....I'd completely forgotten about so many of these! I worked in-house during my contract and blitzed through quite a few illos to meet the deadline. The brief was to create Japanese block-printing-style images with a modern twist and the AD was really pleased with the results (phew~).

I had a blast working there and was pretty sad to leave, but I'd been offered a permanent job at NaturalMotion Games Ltd. a month before my contract ended, so I left (2011). Breaking into the industry was super tough, but I couldn't have asked for a cooler first job. :) Many thanks to Kevin McDowell for giving me that chance, and to all the staff at the time for being so lovely.

Monday, 9 February 2015

Stay Calm & Be Chic

Queeny in my brand colours.
I drew this glam, stylised version of the queen recently for a postcard design (it features in the spot where you place the stamp):

The details side of my postcard design.

 ....after seeing the Chinese New Year cards sell well on eBay, I thought it would be nice to get some of these printed and sell too. However, I'm not sure what text style to go for, or what backdrop colours would be worth getting printed.

So! If you wouldn't mind sparing a few seconds, please pick your preferred text style and colour variation(s) and I'll get the most popular ones printed and ready to sell on eBay. :)

Please vote by March 16th 2015!
What Text Style Do You Prefer?
Please vote by March 16th 2015!
What Colour Variations Do You Prefer? 

Thanks! I'm giving this 'til March 16th so they can be printed and on sale from April onwards.

Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Lady Gaga: The Natural Musician

I thought it would be a good idea to start developing my own style of painting portraits in preparation for my future career in tattooing. Given that I'm a massive's a portrait of Lady Gaga I started last night:

As you can see from the original photo, I punched up the contrast and stylised the hair so it would work better as a tattoo. Can you spot the nod to music in this piece?

* I'm not completely sure if it's okay to sell on Society6, so if it isn't and Gaga/her people would rather I take it down, I will immediately.

Sunday, 18 January 2015

Chinese New Year 2015

From 19th February it will be the Year of the Goat! Each year has an element assigned to it as well as an animal, and 2015's element is wood. As such, I've combined these factors along with this particular zodiac's flowers.

Finished pieces would typically go on my website but I'm having trouble accessing the webspace atm, so I'll be posting it here first:

I'm currently contacting independent stores to see if they'd be interested in stocking them as gift cards/postcards and will post their locations here if they accept. If you run a business and are interested, or know of anyone who might be, please email me at: info [at]

Animated WIPs.....because they're fun to look at. :)


Thursday, 11 December 2014

Tattoo Times #01


Long story short: I'm now training to be a tattoo artist under the guidance of Daniel Grimes at Rock&Roller Tattoos (he did my tattoo earlier this year).

It took a while to get started 'cause I had to wait for silicone arms to come back in stock, but I had my first go at using the tattoo machine today.

The design I drew a few weeks ago.
It's available to buy on my Society6 store.
Dan adjusted the design to make it more effective. I like it. :)
Stencil applied~
Me getting mah ink on.
The silicone arm is by Pound of Flesh.
My first go at using a tattoo machine! ~1.5 hrs.
Naturally, I was a bit wobbly to start off with but got the hang of it after about 40-50 mins. Looking forward to doing more. :)


Second crack at using a tattoo machine, 22/12/2014.
I used a coil machine that time to see what it was's defo not as comfortable as rotary, but it's good to know for myself. I've actually ordered a rotary machine so I can practice more because the guy I'm learning from is crazy busy atm and doesn't always have a spare machine, so this is literally as far as I've gotten so far. :(