13 Jan 2011

Evolution of the boob doodles

French Lady

For those that don't know, last October I set up another blog called 'Self Exam Doodles' . If you read this 'About' page you should be a little more informed on how this project came to life.

The 'Self Exam Doodles' site has been an awesome way to teach myself how to doodle better, although it definitely can be a frustrating process at times!

Doodle Process:
Sketching out original ideas, working out arm/hand positions (tricky!), what paper to use, what pens to use, what colours to use when you start painting, scanning the images, fixing bits in editing (I use Picnik), adding words, uploading to flickr and then finally sharing with the world.

I still predominately call my stuff doodles, even though I suppose they are not, what with the painting an all? I like the term doodle though and most, if not all, of my doodles are sketched straight from brain to paper to painted. 

From the diagram below you can see how the doodles have evolved over the years, from using crayons and my left foot to .. Okay not really. In 2008 I was just using what ever crappy paper I had lying round (printer paper) and ordinary colouring pencils. The next incarnation was from last October, these were created using proper watercolour paper(from TJ) and a mixture of watercolour pencils and watercolours. The most recent versions were again created using proper watercolour paper and this time just water colours. I am rather chuffed at the improvement, but it's not happened overnight and I still have a lot to learn!

Evolution of boob doodles

Whilst you are all here and paying attention, I shall take this opportunity to welcome TJ Lubrano to team 'Self Exam Doodles' /round of applause. Please check out her blog 'A look in a creative mind' and gaze at all her beautiful illustrations.

Check out the latest news on the "Self Exam Doodles" site, The French Connection and Breast Self Exam- Francais . Which tells you all about the new French versions of the Breast Self Exams and the collaborative work I am doing with TJ. There is also a facebook thing, please click it/like it/love it! Because I nearly punched the computer in the process of setting it up.

Slideshow time for those that don't hop over to the site:

I wont be using the term 'Doodle for the cure', although I was tempted to start after reading this article on Huffington Post. Ever wonder why people are SO turned off donating to big charities? Read that post for just one of the many reasons why you hear chants of "Pink stinks". Self Exam Doodles is about fun, doodles and raising awareness. It is not going to save any lives, but hopefully it gives you a smile and you at least think about giving your boobage a feel.

Coming Soon: For once I have a shit load of stuff to blog about, so I might actually be blogging more than once in a blue hairy moon. Next few posts will contain dragons, sheep, unicorns, trolls, castles, boats and Grumpuses! Check back often and bring all your friends.

PS: I would REALLY appreciate peoples input on this project, as in the Breast Self Exam Doodles ^, as I would like to know whether its something people enjoy/get something out of. I am feeling sorry myself, waahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh (whinge alert) and I really do enjoy any comments I receive, all suggestions are always banked for further use and ponderation. It is not about patting me on the back and saying the doodles are wonderful, although that's nice.

Also check out my wiffling on Twitter, Naked Ladies on Self Exam Doodles and favourite musical listening on Other Bits and Pieces.


  1. Take a piece of paper and try these techniques using watercolours. First put some rubber cement on the paper and paint over the cement and remove it. (a resist technique).

    Take a colour and make it bright and watery and throw salt on it. See the dimension/shading the salt gives the colour (perfect for water/waves)

    Then do a colour and drop some rubbing alcohol on it. See how that works.

    I learned these three techniques in high school. Loved them.

    If anything, it's worth the fun to play...

  2. Claire, me friend, you are evolving quite nicely! I bought some art stuff today and can't wait to play!

  3. I think it's great, Claire, that you're getting more involved in the drawing process, experiencing more and newer ways to create and express yourself. Art is doing, that's how one learns.

  4. I usually figure out half-way in the process that I have started my artwork on the (totally) wrong paper. Doodles are so much fun and breast exams is important stuff. You encourage women and men to check themselves, yet you do it with such aplomb.

    Sorry it took me until now to respond as I have been out of your country. :D

    Hugs to Your Mum,


  5. I was beginning to wonder if/when you were going to stop referring to your drawings as doodles and refer to them as what they properly are - works of art! To me a doodle is more of a nonsensical bit of fiddling around on a piece of paper with a pencil or pen which for me, usually ends up being endless amounts of three-dimensional boxes and not much else. I suspect that a good psychologist could tell me why I double those sorts of things but I don't think I'm going to spend any of my hard-earned cash going to one to try to find out! Perhaps you can give me a free "diagnosis" based on your psychology learnings!

    Anyway, all that said, you have definitely come leaps and bounds since your first doodlings and I think it's great that you're out to try to raise awareness while having some fun at the same time.

    Speaking of fun, some of those things that Jean suggested definitely sound like fun - perhaps I'll suggest them to the resident artist while she's still home on college break and driving me totally nuts!

  6. At your request, my comments on "boob doodles"...


    Do keep up the good work.

  7. I sent a link to your site to my 3 daughters. I send them stuff all the time so they don't always respond. They responded to this one. So I'm glad about that. I never got a chance to meet my wife's mother, as she died of cancer before we met. As a result, my daughters also missed out on getting to know one of their grandmothers. Anything that contributes to encouraging early detection is wonderful. And I agree with a previous poster - you are creating some wonderful art while spreading a necessary message.

  8. I like your artwork. I consider it to be very effective when it comes to promoting Breast Self Examination. Keep it up Claire.

  9. @Lois, I have spent a substantial time looking at these techniques online
    thanks to your ideas. I have found some great sites on it, so will definitely be giving it a whirl! Thanks for the ideas :) I had heard of the salt one and had it on my long to do list, but the other two where new to me.

    When was the last time you did it?

    @AmazingGracie, Hey dude, Thank you! What stuff did you get?

    @Nothing Profound: Hey Mr NP, you are so right, I have learnt so much by constantly
    sketching and doodling and experiencing, than just thinking about it. Thanks for popping in as always :)

    @Theresa: I still pick the wrong paper all the time and try to salvage it, not always
    successfully! Really glad that you think that the doodles are fun and important! No apologies are necessary, you always leave such thoughtful responses and it is appreciated. Will
    pass on the hug :)

    @Linda: Not sure I will ever be able to stop calling them doodles, maybe a compromise? and call them 'Doodle Art' :) I think nonsensical still applies to me and I kind of like that approach. Hmm boxes! I do have an answer for that
    some of that was kind of interesting /strokes beard.

    I like that you have followed me on this doodle journey over the years and can see the progress, whilst encouraging me as I go :)

    Would love to see Amanda's attempts at those techniques, that would be cool.

    @Bill: Your comment, well moment of speechlessness is much appreciated, as is the encouragement :)

    @Photodiction: I wish you could know how much I love this comment, it means a lot that you took the time to send it to your daughters and that they responded to it. It is feedback
    like that, which is absolute music to my doodling ears! I think I just started to doubt whether the message was getting lost because of my sense of humour and whether people doubted my sincerity about the matter. Thanks ever so much for this comment, it made my day.

    @Timethief: As always I truly appreciate your comments and encouragements :) :)

  10. Hi Claire,
    I love the fact that you are bringing awareness to people about breast cancer with your "doodles". I think sometimes people shy away from serious talk about disease, and especially the word cancer. So if your art gets us to take a look at ourselves and brings awareness about a serious concern --more power to you! And dont forget your artwork is wonderful =)

  11. Hey dude, you raise yet another excellent point, as you did on BC. Something that I shall definitely take into consideration when I next write about these breast self exam doodles of mine. You never know who I am frightening off with the mere mention of boobs and/or cancer, definite food for thought.

    Much obliged for the compliments too :)

  12. Hi Claire, what I meant was your drawings were a lighter way of getting people to think about a frightening subject...but take it your way if you think it will help, however you get their attention =)

  13. I am very fond of the fox in the picture at the top - he/she seems to have a good attitude to life.

  14. You know I thought you meant that, but my mind ran off with other thoughts! So the comment was actually doubly great :)

    @David: Hello :) Thanks for spotting him, I really get a kick out of people spotting the little details I added :)