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29.11.09

Perfectly buttered breakfast.

Instrucional Message: If you would like to have the perfectly buttered breakfast you so very much deserve after a hard nights sleep, then simply use the back of a teaspoon to spread butter oh so elegantly over your toast or crumpets. It is so much easier than using a knife and considerably easier than using a fork. Allow the teaspoon to glide over the bread and see the heat from the freshly warmed tasty treat melt the prefered butter and fully coat your breakfast.



DOWN WITH KNIVES: UP WITH TEASPOONS The future of condiment spreading.
These are a few monsters I made from paper at Ashlee's whilst watching TV. I have never really experimented with paper sculptures or anything but I had the work of Jean Jullien in mind when I did these and just plucked them out of the depths of my mind. I think they only took me a couple of minutes each to illustrate and then photograph. Overall i'm really happy with how they turned out.



The one above was a drawing i've done a couple of times before and never really been totally satisfied with. I think it works much better with a new 3-D element to it. The next step would be to give it some colour and maybe even hang a speech bubble next to it as a kind of mini installation. "AAAARRRRGGGHHHHHHHHH" something along those lines.



This one was done with a old rizzla packet. Started with the pumpkin scary man and then I thought of it scaring a child, which I have drawn escaping through the slit in the paper. I really like this one. I will do some more paper sculptures in future experiments I think.

Sheffield Sunshine from Eccy.



This photo was not planned and not meant to be anything special. I just really like it. Taken at 288A Eccy Road, in between bursts of torrential rain.
1/4000 f:5.6

London Burning

This is the finished article. It's taken about 2 months, pretty much since I got back to Uni.
This is my love and hate of London. I think in the current cultural status that London has been warped into a certain degree of falsity that hides the darker undertone. Being the capital it stands for so much and I feel it relies too much on bringing in an external flood of people and business. Growing up just outside London there was always a draw to go there but I feel this has died out since living in Sheffield. It's ugly and dark with only a few rays of light keeping up what London should be seen as. Considering the violence, security risks, drug culture and general uncleanliness I created this piece as the personal battle in my mind about London's facade.

I used a large number of techniques including collage, paint, wax stick, pen, pencil, spray paint and sealing wax to represent a multi layered aesthetic to London.



Close up on the top part of the piece. I tried to show a "smog" in colour, rather than just a murky grey to show a certain amount of confusion and clash of ideals. This is the fight in my mind between good and bad. Small things like a hot air balloon can represent freedom but coupled with the copy I have written makes it contradictory. The colours were also vital. The red is a strong signifier for violence and danger. I've tried to lighten it, but not totally block it out, by using a really light pressure on my white spray.



This is a close up of the "sewers". I've tried to present a very dark underground system here, representing a very dark undercurrent to the city. The sealing wax i've used was incredibly good for creating a slime that would be found in the sewage system. My copy again is a record of my thoughts

"I think the rats are better off. So much rubbish to thrive on. So much crap. So much violence. I'm surprised there are no vultures feeding on the bloodshed"



Method photo of the application of the sealing wax. It's a really versatile tool and one that I will contintue to use.

26.11.09

TOO FUNNY

Literally the funniest clip i've ever seen. Thank you Rude Tube.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHA

24.11.09

"Cousins"



HEY
Whilst procrastinating from wrestling with an octopus and watching the motion graphics briefing (generally having a snoop - sure i've had a look at the hand made - and what? competition innit)... I youtubed a bit and found the new vampire weekend song. It's BRILLIANT - makes me very happy and makes me also feel that I can conquer the octopus. Overall: good session of procrastinating.

Good video too. Watch it here

Creatures came out

I like to think that these are simply just men in suits. I'd really like a suit like this actually. It'd freak people out really bad. I'm not totally sure why I have drawn this, as with most things. MONSTERS MONSTERS EVERYWHERE!

[note to self : draw more monsters]

Pand(again)

In keeping with my panda craze. This was one of the first.
I used a permanent marker, Acrylic paint and an old tipex squidgy pen that I found in an old pencil case. Waste not, want not.

This is quite a rough drawing. I like it though. Panda's aren't perfect.

AnglesObstuseAcute

Another little doodle from a while ago.

Tree Roots

I drew this in the very first lecture of my first year of degree.
I'm quite pleased I found this really. Also, I forgot that I used to draw like this.
I will try and draw more stuff like this. I like Trees

The World Is Full Of Bricks



I did this a while back. A play on words. I feel it's pretty true. Even the people who you hold most dear can be the least respectful and completely change your opinion of them. It's a shame, but it happens. I wish it didn't, but really, why would anyone let themselves get walked all over? Certainly not me anymore.

Octopusface



I drew this because I wanted to draw an octopus. I am pretty pleased with it.
I'm currently wrestling with photoshop to do what I want. I'll repost when I win.

21.11.09

Hot Feet




Check these out.

Wondefully arranged, hip swaying and hair standing folk. Bizarrely, I met Marianne, vocalist, at Owl Parliament in London in February this year. After mentioning her band name and me forgetting so hopelessly, I then bumped into her at Glastonbury. Hot Feet had played in the Healing Fields. Once again, forgetting the band name (this time through pure drunkeness) I decided to do a bit of stalking to find their band. I'm so very glad I did. From an unsigned band, never have I heard so much maturity, timing, intelligence, exuberence and fun within their music. I will be following this band much more closely over the future. I hope you like them.

Click HERE of their myspace page.

19.11.09

Aneurysm

Today we had a lecture with Jason Arber from Wyld Stallyons. An insightful lecture into just how versatile we can be as designers.

It is now apparent to me that having the ability to create, is definitely something that is inherited. I know full well that my Dad is an excellent artist and I owe him a great debt for passing that certain gene onto myself. However, a skill is something different. A skill is learned. I now feel that I can apply my ability in any area/discipline that I choose to use. Be it, Illustration (my chosen pathway), or Motion Graphics/Structural Graphics/Identity/Hand made Craft/Typography. I know that if I really set my mind to it, I would be able to respond creatively and intelligently to produce a design within these disciplines and being able to learn the skills to be able to communicate my creative ideas.

Jason talked about his cycle of Design. Moving from a degree in motion graphics and moving onto pretty much all the disciplines covered in my course. I thought this was a true testament to his ability and his personal journey. His drive to create.

ONE THING did bother me though.

Aneurysm.

Technically is was brilliant, I loved the definition, created by a camera that he really wanted to experiment with. And the nature of how this came about was also really cool. A kind of mini social network was created to get like minded people involved.

However. I really didn't like it. I thought it was unnecessarily masochistic. The women used didn't need to be topless. It didn't need to have blood dribbling from the noses of the people. I respect that it was a narrative less and that it was merely an experiment with a camera that had a new feature but I feel it was unnecessary. As if it were trying to generate an audience not for showing the new features of a camera, but for the sake of getting people to watch it.

If I had been given the same opportunity, I would've thought to have done a number of different things.

1) Used nature as a subject - Nature is wonderful. Always growing, and never the same. Time Lapse videos of the sky have always excited me. I am not saying I would've simply recorded the sky and condensed the film, I am just using this as an example as to the pure beauty and randomness of the world we live in.
- Use forests (early morning). Misty mornings are very easy to come by. The condensation of the leaves could have been documented very easily. It is free. The forest is the studio. Some of the techniques, like a film rewind (the blood dripping from the actresses nose was actually reversed at one point, seeming to show time running backwards). This could have been easily recreated in this manner.

- As it was a high definition camera pattern can be very easily defined. Patterns are everywhere, especially in the natural world. Think of a spiders web. No two are the same. Methodically, yes, but not symmetrically. Together with the morning due would produce a beautiful spectrum of colour and light refraction.
- Water droplets. (I found out that a water droplet does not fall as a perfect sphere) I would love to have my own record of this.

2) Elemental work. By this I mean the conflicts between different elements. The most obvious to me would be that of fire over water.

- An ice cube is a good starting point, again free to produce and is on small scale, so no studio is required. This ice cube would be put by a flame (so that the flame was in shot) and we could see the flame dance aggressively behind/through the ice. The Ice melting would be a piece of condensed film.
- The flame is then extinguished. Water can be spatter on, either from a spray nozzle (like that of a shower head) The flame could not be extinguished immediately, it would flicker, fighting to stay alight, and then eventually just be the place where smoke begins to pour from.
- This could be staged in such a way that the camera needs to be focussed. For instance. The ice cube in the foreground, the flame just behind and then finally, where the camera rests at the end of shot, on the spray of water, filming the leaking water dripping from the nozzle, slowly and elegantly.

I am not saying I would be able to produce this video any better than the team at Wyld Stallyons, I am merely expressing my dislike for the subject matter of the piece. It is still to me a great motion graphics design agency, and I have the upmost respect for the work they do. If I didn't dislike things occasionally, I would have no inspiration to be different and try and set myself apart.

See what you think here...

Nicholas Saunders

This here is one of my favourite illustrators. Influencing me greatly and being my main inspiration to become an illustrator myself. He is influence by the old screen printed rock posters of America as a part of the reaction to the increasingly digital world. There is something just purely fantastic about his work. In essence, it embodies a wonderful reconnection with a process that was very much relied on before the boom in digital design. Even the textures he applies to his digital work shows a maturity and refined decision making skill the reflects this screen printed aesthetic brilliantly. I feel so greatly privileged to have worked with Nick. As I said before, he is one of my biggest influences and being able to have a work placement on Harry Potter, I have a greater appreciation for the work that goes into individuals design in industry. To have a unique style, yet perform highly to a brief and fit the aesthetic of something so unique as HP is a very difficult task.

One of the designs for the set of "Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince"



A screen printed book based on the poems of Edward Lears.




This was a 50 print run of "Thomas Midgley Jr" an American inventor and chemist, said to have had more impact on the environment than that of any other organism in history ever.

He's not bad for a snot nosed little gobshite is he!

PERSONAL MANIFESTO

Illustration. I want to be an Illustrator. I draw continuously. From my Fine Art background, i love creating drawings and characters to release my imagination and show a reflection of my mind and of my character. I will draw on myself, on other people, on things that aren't mine. When there is no pen present, i will use my camera, to record and document. Or i will use an edge, to carve into a surface, simply to make sure my imagination is not overlooked. This is extremely important to me. I have said in my action plan, that i will keep my sketchbook/notebook/camera with me at all times. I will always try and draw whenever i can. Whenever a thought enters my head.

I need to create.
I need to respond to the world i live in.
Illustrating is my tool.
My method of communication.
For Life.

Jean Jullien

A brilliant young French Designer. He uses playful sketches, turned into paper cutouts and photographs them to create his posters and artworks. I adore the simplicity, the control and the overall layout. The composition is perfect and highly intelligent. He is a true craftsmen and a master of his own artwork. It is amazing how he stays ahead of the curve. His art form, process and work I consider timeless. I could never get bored of seeing them. A child like playfulness but a truly wonderful style compliment his imagination to great effect.


I love the human element in this piece. It is different and works so very well.



18.11.09

ACTION PLAN

In order to focus myself even further throughout my course of study (Illustration) I am going to conceive an action plan, hoping to generate more ideas and start myself on an intensive work ethic that will prepare me for a professional design job.

1) Produce a thought book (each month, or project) - I struggle greatly with my thoughts. I lucid dream, and often completely phase out and lose myself for extended amounts of time. This isn't a problem as such, I often generate massive amounts of ideas but I just don't ever get them down quick enough. I dislike this about myself very much. I have let so many good ideas go because I've not had any method of recording them. This is why it is number 1 on my action plan. I will collect thoughts, illustrations, things I've found, memories and conversations throughout the next year and compile them in small books that I will bind myself. I will be able to refer to this at any time, to keep my focus on illustration and keep my focus...well, focused.

2) Illustrate every day. I will produce at least two finished pages of my sketchbook everyday. This will be a good measure of my strength as an illustrator and my ability to generate designs to a self set deadline.

3) Camera/Sketchbook. Take everywhere. If there is one thing I do not do enough, is actually taking the things I need to use the most, wherever I go. This must be a principal of my attitude from now on. Reflecting on this, I feel that I should have been doing this for a long time.

4) More Reflection. I feel a lot of that time that I just produce a lot of imagery, with no real explanation. I understand, that a lot of the time, my drawings are pulled from nothing - an image I've thought up, or something I've seen a couple of weeks prior to actually drawing it. I need to get myself into the habit of reflection to benefit futures design, so that I can link in drawings from a long time ago and use them in new designs more effectively because I know exactly where the initial ones are derived from and what connection they have with a current project.

This plan, I hope, will help me develop as a designer, readying myself for a professional career. It will develop my skills, attitude and output, and also, hopefully have an effect on my responsibility within design and to myself as an Illustrator

Summer Reflection

A busy summer allowed me a short amount of time to focus on doing my own work. I used my camera to generate an image bank, for my own use (further design) and to make up for my lack of pen to paper activity. The work i produced as a result of going to Amsterdam i felt was a really good effort from myself. I tend to somewhat lose the ability to draw (i have noticed this recently since the finish of the Consumer brief). To an extent i forget how i actually put pen to paper when creating illustrations, though i am never actually conscious of it to begin with. I like this detatchment i have from my drawing. Though with a clear image in mind, I tend to just let the drawings fall out of my mind, and out of my pen. This way, i really like how i don't get pulled or swayed by anything, certainly my own mind.

In reflection, i really felt my drawings could've been stronger, but i like the double page spreads, which i don't tend to attempt when drawing. I get put off by the ring binded, and folds in a regular stitched sketchbook. From this, i feel i need to take myself out of my comfort zone more often, as i got really excited by the things i produced.

GENERAL REFLECTION : Positive and Focussed.

Mind Map



This is a little mind map, explaining how I feel about illustration. click to enlarge

Illustration

DUHHHHHHH. I have been set on doing illustration even before I started my first year at University. Yet, in the past two days, I have been drastically confused.

HAND MADE - I've had a huge history of fine art based creation, coming from Art at GCSE and Alevel, and producing 3-D work for product design. Also, a lot of my personal work was painting and sculpture based. I love make things. I love learning skills. I learnt how to knit, just because i think the process is fascinating, that a scarf that could be up to 2 meters long, is actually one continuous piece of wool

ILLUSTRATION - I love drawing. I have great passion for it. From drawing on things that aren't mine with a pen i found during the day, to carving things into tables with spoons because I can't find pen or paper, just so that i don't forget what i'm thinking about it, and so that my imagination and response to something is not overlooked.

When i do graduate, when i do choose a specific illustration within discipline i can see myself becoming a screen printer, but also i would be interested in illustration for children's books as i have two young nephews (and that i think some of the books they have are utter crap).
I obviously would love to have my own studio, but that would be further down the line. I would love to continue a bit more within film graphics, like that of my involvement with the Harry Potter graphics department.
More than anything i would love to go to Prague and work, purely based on recommendations made from family and friends.

OUTCOME

I have never had trouble deciding what I wanted to do. Not this much trouble anyway.
So it went to a coin toss, refereed by Sean Gee.
Heads = Illustration
Tails = Hand Made

Illustration win.
(normally I would go to a best of three - I didn't want to tempt fate any further)

Panda Addict

I inadvertently made a panda seem like it was a drug addict. Going through a bit of a phase with the panda drawings...Panda-moneum I call it.

Want to print these onto Canvas Tote bags (when they bloody arrive [i hate ebay])

will be £5 when finished. Suh-WEEEEET

Sophie Calle - Whitechapel Gallery

I went to Whitechapel Gallery in London over the weekend, to see the free Sophie Calle exhibition (always one for a bargian me) Sophie Calle was one of the photographers, along with Henri Cartier-Bresson and Annie Liebowitz. Greatly influential on my style, as well as my respect for the capabilities of photography, it was amazing to see Calle's work in place and arranged.



One piece in particular was of a camera Calle had set up at a cash point, simply taking photos of them as they assessed their financial state. Normally a very private experience, Calle was able to capture emotions not widely displayed. Obviously this was not a record of exactly how much money the people possessed, but it showed emotions such as anger, sadness, happiness, rage, joy, elation and surprise. It was the intimacy of the portraits that shocked me. That Calle could be so close and observe each detail of the persons face, with poor quality security camera stills, and speak to fluently about the actions and emotions displayed. I have always thought that human emotion is the hardest thing to capture, because it is not something that is displayed over minutes or hours, but in split seconds, and to truly identify that in a single photograph is a skill that i desire very much. Truly an amazing exhibition and a wonderful photographer.








16.11.09

Astor College Balcony

Also, whilst in London, I happened upon a balcony that I wasn't meant to be on. Astor College is a Halls of Residence of UCL. A horrible day and a cloudy, smog filled sky gave a deep orange glow that seemed to frame the dully lit buildings very nicely. I experimented with a few different ISO's and Shutter speeds. This is what came out.

London St.Pancras International

Whilst in London this weekend, and killing time after my parents leaving me to digest the most enormous steak I've ever eaten (Angus Steak House - BIG RESPECT), I found myself sitting in one of the most architecturally beautiful train stations I've ever seen in the UK, with nothing more than free time and a camera. This is what happened.