Having studied Art & Design in college and working in a creative but vastly different business I always wanted to have a nice enjoyable outlet, I wanted to be one of those people with an ongoing sketchpad filled with doodles and drawings. At 31 I had never settled on anything creative I liked to do and didn't want to have paints or tools to go with my sketchpad within reach of little hands.
In October 2016 I went to an Art Supper Club run by Beechmount Art Studio, at which we all created a Zentangle style fish drawing. I had never heard of Zentangle but loved it! The next night was a tough one with my then 18 month old son, who is a very poor sleeper, I was feeling crap and as if him still being breastfed was to blame. (It isn't, we later discovered he had underlying medical issues causing sleep apnea).
So I sat up late waiting for him to wake and started doodling, or Zendoodling to be exact. I decided on a theme that would cheer me up, breastfeeding! The joy of it, the connection, the things I'm good at as a parent, the happy times with my beautiful boy rather than the screaming toddler meltdowns where I felt I could do no right. A way to depict the range of emotions that go with becoming a mother in an honest but beautiful way, it helped me and so I continued to draw.
I shared my work on an online breastfeeding support group hoping for a few likes and nice comments to cheer me up but something completely unexpected happened. Along with the nice comments and likes I received requests for prints, tattoo designs, a business logo for a lactation consultant and personalised original drawings. It was an amazing reaction and after my usual visit to self doubt island, Mama's Drawing Room was born. I hoped this was just the beginning of something lovely, sharing with other parents (not just mums, not just breastfeeding!) the love and devotion we feel even when exhausted to our cores, through my little heartfelt drawings. Now a few years later I am delighted that they are often purchased as gifts between friends, couples, mothers and their antenatal/postnatal care providers, as reminders and celebrations of the early years of parenting, birthdays and breastfeeding milestones.