Monday, 28 November 2011

Lord Whitney- Cutlery Tent

Lord Whiteny set as a brief,  we had to make compound nouns. (put two words together to make one)

Myself and Lisa decided to use this brief to collaborate, we wanted two different words that you wouldn't usually put together, put we wanted pretty words, we decided we wanted a random selection, so we took turns to pick words out of a cup and put them together, we decided on 'cutlery tent'.

We researched some nice antique cutlery shapes for inspiration, then cut our cutlery out of paper. We ran around collage finding props we could use to make the tent, we decided we wanted to suspend the cutlery in the tent and create shadows. We aimed for a magical theme. We then assembled the lot in a photography room having everything carefully attached by wire and maskingtape suspended from poles.

Here is the setting up process:

Our tent:

 The final image:

Monday, 21 November 2011

Lord Whitney Visit

Today, I am very happy to say we had a talk from Lord Whitney!
Lord Whitney is collaboration between the very talented, Amy Lord and Rebekah Whitney, and if you haven’t heard of them you really need to check them out!!
They have creative talents in photography, set design and build life sized illustrations and installations.
Their talk today was really inspiring, even if 3d isn't your style, talking from their experience of studies, jobs and industry was really helpful. They spoke about their struggle to find a studio space (which I can relate to) and how they had to ‘make do’ sometimes with space and funds, which is a lesson for facing the industry, you have to be creative with what you have available and turn it into a positive. Lord Whitney turned their lack of funding into positive to recycle and find props that was already available to them, I think that emphasizes the work as they have had to be more creative.
You have to be passionate with what you do to pursue design as a career!

Lord Whitney was also keen to share their experience of past jobs, from window dresser to set artist, all sounding amazing to me but taught them a valuable lesson as to were they fit in the industry,  realising some jobs were suited to them more than others, some of the more top end markets involved the most people, therefore more opinions and rules but these experiences taught Lord Whitney that they liked going back to basics and playing around with their own ideas, even if it had to take place in their back garden, they weren't restricted by others. 

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Stoke Ceramics Biennial

Today I took a trip to Stoke-on-trent, for the ceramics biennial, I wanted to learn more about the craft of ceramics I thought this would be good for me, it was GREAT! ranging from delicate and simple teacups to exploring to use of ceramics and themes.

A lovely big space, an original Spode factory site.

Elizabeth Addyman

"The inspiration for this body of work comes from an insight into people collecting spoons, especially Welsh love spoons. lizabeth’s interpretation has been to make the spoons from materials that she had to hand, using skills she possess. 
These pieces have been hand crafted using porcelain, wire, textiles and various ephemera. Most are delicate in an attempt to mimic the original woodcarvings.

These spoons also carry an individualistic message. They are not meant to be read as part of a collection, nor intended to be functional. Just as the Welsh love spoons, they are simply to portray a personalized message to give to a loved one"

Caroline Tattersall

Angie Thirkell

"My work engages in a kind of domestic surrealism, somewhere between the Mad Hatter;s Tea Party and an Edwardian drawing room"

Thomas Weber

/\ Above, me trying to be part of the art! /\

 Sarah Callard

Sun Ae Kim
"I am interested in creating narrative, satirical contemporary stories in ceramics referring to the 18th and 19th century figurines in Europe."

Sunday, 6 November 2011

Craig Oldham Poster

This was my final Craig Oldham poster, the brief was just to design a poster that held all the relevant information and could be put up around college to inform others of his visit and talk.

This is my poster, showing Craig (interpretation) juggling design and illustration, design being the geek glasses ( that seem to be ever designers must have accessory), illustrations being the pencils and the question mark for the info and guidance during the talk. Craig Oldhams the name and website have been incorporated as part of the figure, and the heart referring to his talk being from past experiences, speaks true and from the heart.

I am happy with it. I like my figure, I found I enjoyed create him, which is a change for me as that usually figures are my weak point, so a lot of improvement there with quick design process. I usually have fun with my text but because this poster is supposed to house so much text, I struggled with fitting it all on and designing for most of the poster to be taken up by text, I wanted the text to look like an image, to interact with the figure and to flow well.

Here, Sasha Barr uses text and space very well. Looking like a poster to advertising a boxing event, the text has been thought out clearly from type to positioning. The text is also small but readable, whereas I usually assume bigger is better and take up too much space. Think I need to take leaf out of Sasha Barr's book!

 Here, Ashley Lequere has a clear understanding of the relationship with text and imagery and how they can compliment each other well, this is what I need to grasp and aim to improve on.

Thursday, 3 November 2011

Surface Design Portfolio Visit

Today I had meeting with Hazel Hewitt, from Surface Design at Stockport. I asked her to go over my portfolio and my 3d pieces to see if she had any advice for me entering into the surface design market.  
Helen looked over my work and reassured me that I could do well in surface design, and because I already have talent in drawing I could have an edge on some surface designers.
Helen seemed pleased with my set of 3 mugs from my zine project and suggested my surface design market is more aimed at reproduction, which is true, I aspire to see my work sold in John Lewis, Paperchase and at gallery shops over the UK in mass.  
I was encouraged me to look closely at my materials I use, take time to find out where they come from, processes and to think about using natural materials. She directed my attention to the notice board for the surface design students, which is filled with posters, magazines, newspapers with current surface design ideas and events. Helen also shows me some books that have have that relates to my work.  
I think I still want to be classed as an ‘Illustrator’ but I want to see my illustrations on surfaces and combined with crafts. I don’t think my crafts are expressionist, artistic one off pieces but designs for domestic use, I want to be able to picture them in a home of today.
I felt the meeting went well, I now feel confident I can find a place between illustration and surface design.

Craig Oldham Talk

Today we had a visit from Craig Oldham from Music. He gave a talk from his experiences with illustrators in the industry and gave some advice, comparing his view as a designer to our jobs as illustrations and the relationship between the two.

He mentioned, as all our visiting speakers have, about producing the right email to agencies. Spelling being the number 1 factor, correct addressing and to research the company and make them feel you have a connection with them, not just a generic email. "Write and email as you would wish to receive".

Craig also advised against agents, which I thought was a very confident thing to say. A notice a lot of illustrators are unsure about working with and agent or go it alone but Craig said that "speaking direct gets you a lot more out of it".

He raised some very impacting advice:
"enthusiasm is key, you can teach everything else"
"you can teach monkeys to work Photoshop but you cant teach thinking of an idea"
"get the idea right and the rest will follow" 
"put new things in if nothings coming out, have a life, watch films, meet people" 
"find idea/inspiration in life not internet"
"an idea is best when it has legs, can turn into multiple things, not just flat"
"believe and stick by your style"

A technique Craig swears by (literally as Craig has a very adult vocabulary) is the mum test, if you can explain an idea to your mum, and shes understands it, its a winner!

Things Craig has learnt about Illustrators are:
  1. extremely talented people
  2. business smart
  3. passion plays a big part in commissions 
  4. are not as flexible as they would like you to believe
  5. are harder to work with than photographers, but easier than writers
  6. prefer a voice of opinion
and Craig also stated how hard it can be to find illustrators sometimes, that we need to be market better, in new ways and more often.

  1. they always change everything, including their minds
  2. not good at explaining what they want
  3. majority of the time they just say "i like that, can we have this?"
  4. prefer a lot of scans, quick and often rather than more worked on images
  5. and don't hate them if they cant get you the money, they are always restricted by someone else

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Personal Project

For my personal project I decided to stick with producing poems- as I have a wider imagination for poems for some reason that to pluck random images from my head and I also stuck with the surface design route- because it helps me see my images come to life and a final stage.

I wrote a short poem about 'miss Peggy' , as you guessed it she is a common house peg who is a very sweet lady.

I tested my new sewing skills and whipped up a canvas peg bag, with the poem and image on one side, 'miss Peggy' and my name on the other then 3 peg ladies to complete my set.

I am really pleased with it. Quick turn around from idea to production and I like to have an object to make as I enjoy gathering required materials and find I good use for all my beads, bits and bob that I squirrel away.

I am actually a little tempted to make a scene from my Peggy's, maybe an animation. see how that goes!

Great find on Flickr

I was in a Flickr mood the other day and during my scrolling I came across these, from Pilaz.

What a lovely mustache!!

and he also sets up narrative scenes with this adorable guy!

Clare Moynihan

Clare Moynihan is a textile artist from Hertfordshire, she hand embroiders British insects onto felt balls and displays them similar to the impressive collection that I saw in Manchester museum.