Live illustration specialist Ali Hansen

Ali Hansen at live event in London


Back in March I attended the Mothers Day brunch for Mums and Daughters at The Ivy in London. This was a private event for bloggers, journalists and influencers and their mothers. The event was thrown by Marks and Spencers to celebrate Mothers Day with some beautiful petal portraits. Some of the mums were journalists and writers too, so it was great to see the creative baton being passed from mother to daughter. The event began with drinks and a bit of a mingle with all of the influencers. All of the M and S marketing team were there too and it was so interesting to talk to them all. I had already drawn 38 of the bloggers before the event. Normally I provide live illustration at the event itself but this time M and S had asked me to create line drawings beforehand that everyone could then decorate with beautiful dried petals.

live illustration event at The Ivy London

The impressive frontage of The Ivy

live illustration event at The Ivy

The beautiful place setting for the event, complete with portraits

Decorating the petal portraits

After drinks and a bit of mingling, I was asked to give a talk about the line drawings at each place setting and explain how we were going to decorate the drawings with the colourful dried flowers. Normally as a live illustrator I would draw at the event so it was quite nice for a change to manage a workshop where I could help people decorate existing line art. I think everyone found it very therapeutic and relaxing and it was actually quite a nice bonding experience for mums and daughters. Here are some examples of the petal portraits in progress.

live illustration portraits for m and s

One of many line drawings I created for M and S

live illustration portrait

I created 38 line portraits for this event, all ready to be decorated

live portraits with petals

Almost finished, just need to add a few more dried flowers

live illustration event with flower portraits

I love the red lips on this portrait

live illustration petal portraits

I loved this portrait in sunny yellows

live illustration with dried flowers

I love this flower arrangement in her hair

Afternoon Tea followed the petal portraits

After we had all completed the petal portraits above, a beautiful afternoon tea was served. Then we were all treated to an interesting talk by M and S skincare experts who had created all of the amazing skincare products we received in the mothers day goody bags at the end. The petal portraits were then framed and included in the goody bags. I thought they all turned out beautifully!

live portraits in petals m and s

The portraits looked beautiful framed

Are you interested in a live illustration event?

Live illustration can really add excitement to any corporate event. Increasingly I am being asked to serve as a live illustrator at private corporate blogger and influencer events. It’s a great feature to have at an event and lots of the images then get shared on social media which of course is great for brand awareness. Have a look at what I offer in terms of live illustration here. Please also have a look at my instagram feed, @alihansenart and please do drop me a line if you are interested in hiring a live illustrator for your event. My e mail is


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