Simply Neutrals #55 - taking a break

mixed media illustration by Wen Sylvestre

Hello dear friends,

Believe it or not, it's the first Tuesday of the month again, so it's Simply Neutrals time!

So, I've been busy with creating illustratrions for some months now, but I felt there was something I was missing in my work... And now I know! I was missing playing with mixed media and fiber stuff and pressed flowers and leaves and such!

I've been thinking about how I could incorperate my love for mixing all kinds of media into my world of illustration. So I'm experimenting a lot! I shared one of the first of these experiments in an earlier post, which you can find here. I liked it so much that I wanted to do more with these kind of things. And today I'm sharing another one of these experiments.

Let me explain how I created this piece.

The floor I created with a gelli plate print that I made with acrylic paints, bubble wrap, and a lace fabric. The girl and doggie are done with watercolour paints, neocolor 2 watersoluble crayons, coloured pencils, and derwernt inktense pencils. Then there are the crochet flower and tatted flower on the left, and the pressed flowers and leaf on the right. Oh, and the birds are done in gouache. And everything mixed together and edited digitally in photoshop. Lol.

And you know what? I love it! And it's so me!



Then there is something else I have been thinking about.

I think it's time we take a break from Simply Neutrals. I need a break anyway, because there are very busy months at art school ahead of me, and I don't want to spread myself too thin.

I'm very sorry, the gatherings at Simply Neutrals are very dear to me, and I know I'm not alone in this. I know how much the gatherings mean to us. So I'm not taking this lightly. Nevertheless, I know very well that from May onward there are a couple of very busy months for me, so I have to take care of myself and take a step back here. If anyone wants to carry on with the party on their own blog, please let me know!

So let's go on with this month's party, which is the last one before taking the break. There will not be a new party in the coming couple of months. I'll let you know when we will start again!


You all know I love birds very much. And textures too! Oh, and everything French :) So it's no small wonder I chose this beautiful collage by Dorthe of DenLilleLade as the feature of last month.

mixed media collage with bird by Dorthe of Den Lillle Lade

I'm always amazed by the beautiful textures Dorthe creates!

Dear Dorthe, here is your feature blog button if you like:

On to this month's party!


I think you already noticed, but things changed with the linkup tool. The look is different, but they added ad-links too now. After every 5th link. I hope you don't mind, I can't delete those unfortunately.

To join the party, please keep the following things in mind:

1) Please link only to the blogpost that contains the photo(s) you want to share, and not to your blog's homepage.

2) Kindly link back to AppleApricot by putting a link to my blog in your blogpost.

Of course you're most welcome to use the blog button of Simply Neutrals Tuesday as well
(which can be found in the sidebar of my blog)

3) Link ups to both new and older blog posts are welcome.

4) You can link up from your blog, but if you do not have a blog but would love to link up from your instagram or other social media account, that's perfectly fine too.

Beware though, that may be not everyone can come visit and/or leave you a comment there.

5) Please take time to visit some of the other link ups and send them some love.

Time for the link up!

xx Wen

Simply Neutrals Tuesday linky party at AppleApricot

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!
Click here to enter


  1. My dear sweet Wen, first thank you for showing my make, for your March post , here- I`m always overwhelmed when seeing my creation on your blog.
    I love your own adorable , beautiful creation, using all kind of techniques , your sweet drawing, the dried flowers and the crochet ones too- everything so gorgeous together .
    I truly understand your need of making a break, - we should not over work ourself , and blogging should be fun , so take care , and enjoy your busy time to come, with your art, and art school .
    Sending you loving hugs, Wen- xoxoxo

  2. This is such a fun creation. I love everything about it. What fun it is to experiment and learn and express ourselves through it all. Mixed media is my favorite type of creating. And I am always so inspired by Dorthe's lovely creations. So much beautiful detail! Thank you for hosting the party.

    Have a wonderful day!
    Tamara Xo

  3. Wen your mixed media piece is delightful and something you really should do more often as it refreshes the soul allowing our creativity to breath and reinvent itself. Beautiful work it's as if she is poised ready to release the balloon. We will miss your monthly posts but it's important to take care of you and concentrate on things of importance at this time.
    I'm so happy to see Dorthe's delightful piece featured today. A work of beauty and created from the heart as always.
    Take good care of yourself and we all hope to see you very soon. Hugs Tracey xx

  4. Your illustration is so sweet, I love the look of texture you brought to it, so many beautiful elements, love the flowers. How fun you are bringing so many loves of art together.

  5. Hello Dear Wen~
    I am so loving your mixed media art! She, and her dog too, :) are so enchanting and full of life and adventure; everything here makes me smile! from the flowers, to that sweet little dog's fur!, (as he patiently awaits the balloon launch) and all the textures of the flowers and even the earth below them. Soo clever, so brilliant Wen~
    Thank you for sharing this with us.
    Dorth's offering is beautiful isn't it~ Her natural work with it's textures and vintage authenticity - pulls me in, keeping my heart and mind happily engaged! : ) <3
    Wishing you a nice break time while SNT takes a rest~ Hugs my friend and do stop in when you can, and I will too! karen o

  6. Your art should be on greeting cards! I'm sure you could easily sell them. Reading all the different elements/techniques you used reminds me of crazy quilting! I'm sure you need the break away from the Simply Neutrals commitment and I know everyone will understand.

  7. Congratulations to Dorthe - I agree, her work is always so textural and beautiful. And I'm in love with your gorgeous illustration with the pressed flowers. The little girl is absolutely charming, and it looks as though she's walking in an enchanted garden. The fabric texture is also wonderful, as is the rugged fur of the dog.

    I just adore the inclusion of the natural elements. It reminds me of one of my favourite creations from last year where I did some Gelli printing with flowers and stems, and then the used flowers ended up on the cover. Come to think of it, it was pretty neutral in colour terms, so I might link that too, inspired by you.

    I completely understand about taking a break. I'm just glad I got back from work in New York in time to join in with this last party before the pause! I hope all goes beautifully with your illustration work in the meantime, and I look forward to gathering again as and when time allows.
    Alison x

  8. Dear Wen,
    Your latest creation is simply adorable. I'm so in love with this new approach using more texture with your drawing. She's gorgeous and I love that you have used the crochet flowers, the pressed flowers - so delicate and the leaf not to mention the solid ground she is standing on. It's just fantastic!
    So too is dearest Dorthe's collage with her sweet bird incorporating the beautiful textured papers and the dyed lace. So beautiful!
    Yes rest time is nigh again to nurture ourselves as I have been trying to do lately over my sad loss. Still reigning in my mojo once again to help me over this hurdle.
    Sending love and hugs and hope it won't be long before we see you back here once again.
    Much love for now and always,
    Suzy xoxox

  9. Hello Wen, My computer is fixed after more than a month being repaired. At last!
    Your collaged picture is beautiful, so querky, sweet and original. It reminds me off some children's book illustrations I've seen. I'll send you some links soon - I had prepared this comment and lost it all, and now I must get to bed.

    Dorthe's bird picture is an inspiration with its crackle and textured layers, all put together so cleverly. I love the stitches and lace peeking through.

    Have a wonderful creative week, and I'll email you soon.
    Jesse XXX

  10. My dear, sweet Wen, I'll not pretend that my bottom lip didn't go into pout mode when I read that Simply Neutrals is taking a break. A selfish reaction, I admit; I realize the utter importance of rest and taking time to fill your creative well. Above all, your undivided attention to your lessons and achieving your utmost in art school is at the top of my wish list for you. You fill and feel my soul in more ways than I could hope to explain, I'm better and more thoughtful from reading your blog and exchanging a few emails with you. Best of luck dear friend, I look forward to your next soulful post.

  11. Oh my goodness, Wen, I left without telling you how much I adore your creation this week! The colors and textures fit like a fine glove into the Simply Neutral category,but just like you, the darling little girl in her pretty red dress,red boots, clinging to her precious red balloon add such a whimsical surprise to your creation! It IS you, exactly!

  12. Your creation is just beautiful and I am thrilled to learn how you created it- I love that you married the different medias! How fun!
    Taking a break is good Wen, it helps keep us centered. I look forward to your return, and who knows, I may still be on hiatus, as I still can not locate my blog! LOL
    sending lots of love,Jackie


Thank you so much for leaving me a sweet message, I love reading your comments. Hugs and happy day to you! xx Wen