It was extremely strange being back in Thomas Parker house again, although quite pleasant as well. It felt a little bit like I’d never left. I did cheat and take the lift up though as I wasn’t prepared to handle the stairs (I’m a wimp, I know!) Upon entry the space for bright and welcoming and very open- more so than it was last year.
The show had been split into separate projects and each piece had the name of the designer who had created it nearby, so matching the work up was so much easier than it was for us (proof that experiments don’t always work). The first project we was was one about promoting the rain in Britain and there were some lovely and very varied pieces that had been created.
I think these two by Rob Woods and Oli Phillips were my favourite of the bunch, both quite cheerful and playful.
These little flip books on compulsions by Lucy Goodwin were so quirky and fun to look at, although I feel it’s a shame that they weren’t a little better presented (or at least were all on one table- that’s my OCD kicking in there!)
This series of posters by Daniel Waterhouse were very eye catching in their prominent position of around the doorway. There was a Spiderman one that I particularly liked but unfortunately because it was black print on a red background it was very hard to see and photograph.
These large scale vinyl graphics by Paul Wormleighton brought a smile to my face- they certainly ring quite true to me.
I found the Channel 4 branding work to be some of the most polished looking but also some of the least interesting. It looked very corporate and similar to what’s already about (although that’s not always a bad thing, especially once you’re out of uni).
These posters promoting the use of analogue cameras by Dan Ridgway look great- although I can’t help but be hugely bugged that the bottom one looks like it says ‘Yens’ rather than ‘Years’. The use of the film itself to create typography and the tactile feel of the pieces is wonderful.
Well I liked the light hearted nature of these lomography posters by Rachel Savoury I felt taking away any form of photography also managed to take away some of the joy and beauty of lomography itself. They also reminded me a lot of Ben Neale’s simple illustrations.
These were my favourite of the lomography pieces on display- the photography is gorgeous and the hand drawn type flows with them so well. The booklet itself was a little clunky but the posters were just stunning. I couldn’t find out whether the designer had created the photos themselves or used stock images however.
This project by Alice Hines reminded me far too much of working on the Metamorphosis- probably one of my least favourite projects while I was at uni. Each of the four books was destroyed in a different way and they all had an eerie sort of beauty to them- but I feel I would have understood the project better if I knew more about the back story.
A rather unusual format here from Melissa Edwards but the use of tissues suited the theme of OCD down to the ground. Some of the reasoning on these tissues sounded like it was written by Sheldon from The Big Bang Theory!
Finbar Moss’s Mini poster reminds me a lot of the technical drawings within car manuals or instructions for DIY furniture. Very precise and clean.
A very tactile piece here from Hannah Cobbe. I did have a strong urge to poke it but thankfully managed to resist.
An ISTD piece here from Robyn Duncan, love letters is cute, quirky and typographic. The details that have gone into the presentation are lovely.
Google were a very prominent image at the show and it’s hardly surprising seeing as a lot of this years YCN awards were won in the google category.
A look at space in typography here from Kate Johanson.
These inserts for Typographic Circle from David Morris remind me a lot of work for D&AD.
Distressed and chaotic type also seemed to feature quite heavily this year. While I can appreciate the beauty of these pieces and the amount of time and effort they must take to complete the random nature of them always puts me off a lot. But they seem to be quite popular at the moment.
I quite like fashion (probably quite obvious from the illustrations I work on!) and found this scarf from Jack Slater to be very curious. But unfortunately there was nothing to accompany it that explained what it was for!
The second years had a wall in the show this year with some quite impressive work. I do disagree with their work being included however- space is tight in Thomas Parker house anyway and for students who are coming to the end of three years at university to lose out on having a piece of their work being displayed to someone who will have their own degree show the year after anyway seems wrong to me.
Sunjay Morar’s piece shows just how much adding a frame to a piece of work can really enhance the look and feel of it. Foam board, pins and bull dog clips can only really do so much.
Dan Ridgway’s project categorising everything that he consumed made for interesting viewing and he has great choice of reading material as I’m reading the same book at the moment.
This Daft Punk based vinyl wall graphic looked fantastic. I would love to know what each of the circles and rectangles represents but even without that knowledge it makes a great piece of abstract design. Reminds me a lot of the D&AD Diesel work that my own Mathew McGinlay produced last year and I know how much pain and repeat listenings of songs went on to produce that. (Also, apologies to Mat for including a rather derpy picture of him here!)
There were a few examples of vintage almost Victorian looking packaging from Harry Winfield, David Morris and Caroline Handford, all of which looked very elegant and professional. I have quite a love for packaging in this style so they went down a storm with me.
This poster from Matthew Taylor is simply breathtaking and the type has been so well considered that it enhances the image rather than detracting from it. It really is a stunning image of space as well, I could stare at it for hours.
I didn’t catch the name of whoever created this exhibition piece of eerie painted white instruments but they have my sympathy after I painted a load of stuff white for a piece in my third year.
If anyone has any idea what happened to be stunning white granny armchair that would be great, I’d love to know where it ended up!
A curious piece from Karlijn Burn here- a day calendar which you can eat, thus causing every day to be a new beginning and the past to be consumed. I was rather disappointed that I wasn’t allowed to touch this though as I wanted to see what the inside offered! I’m also not sure on the grammatical correctness of the title which is a shame when it’s one of the only parts of this project that was visible to the public.
To stick with the food theme here is a project based around a designer’s fear of eating red sweets. The use of real sweets on the posters was a nice addition although I was extremely dubious of eating any of the skittles on offer (germs, so many germs!)
These bright and bold packaging designs from Matthew Taylor remind me a lot of the dock icons for the Adobe Creative suite. They’re certainly eye catching.
This video piece from Rachael Sivewright was really nicely done (if someone could find me a link to the actual video that would be great as the stills don’t do it justice). Some of the digitally added type could have been handled a little better as it seemed to float quite obviously but the hand rendered aspects were lovely.
A very curious packaging design here, the origami like feel to it made me think that it could almost have come packaged with a piece of Japanese technology.
The book rails that we installed last year have been put to good use again this year but rather than publications that have been specially designed for the degree show they instead contained a selection of some of the best work created throughout the three years of university. I didn’t get chance to have a look in all of the publications on offer but have included the ones that I did look and and enjoyed.
I will admit, when I first saw this book I cringed. “Not another bloody keep calm pastiche!” I groaned. But upon opening ‘A New England’ I was greeted with a very light hearted view of modern day English culture, none of that horrible Keep Calm rubbish.
This book by Caroline Hansford was so nice to hold. It’s called ‘What’s it Worth?’ and looked at what certain amounts of money would get you including strange things such as certain email addresses. I don’t know what it was about this book but I wanted to put it in my bag and take it home!
I loved the binding on this publication by Meryl van Ood. It’s both intricate to look at and very restrictive in the way it allows you to open and view the pages.
“Svalbard’ by Luke Turner is a gorgeous publication and wouldn’t look at all out of place on your coffee table. The photography within is stunning.
As well as the publications on display there was a huge selection of vinyl covers. These covered a huge range of different genres and artists and I wish I knew how they were picked- did the designers themselves choose or were they assigned by the lecturers?
Once again I haven’t included all of them- there would be another 50ish images if I had, but there are the ones I liked the best.
There was one cover that bothered me though, although for a rather unusual reason.
Holes! >< For people who don’t know me all that well I find clusters of random sized holes really repulsive, particularly when they are in skin or something that I can associate with my skin. This vinyl cover made me shudder because of this fact and I couldn’t feel anything other than revulsion (apologies to whoever designed it!)
The decoration and signage this year was quite minimal compared to the orange pillars and signs that we had last year but as the work was mixed it wasn’t that much of a bother.
This was one of my few bug bears with the degree show this year. I fought hard not to have wall mounted portfolios last year- they look tacky, they’re horrible to flick through and overall aren’t very friendly. I didn’t even bother to look through these this year, the idea of an entire wall of arm ache and neck ache just put me off. The higher line was too tall for me to have managed properly anyway. I much prefer to see portfolios on plinths or available as books to view.
Another disappointment was a lack of business cards. I came a few days into the show and the only ones that I spotted didn’t even belong to one of the members of the course but seemed to be for a photographer. If I hadn’t had a camera with me to document the work then I would have had no way of keeping track of the people who had been part of the show. I’m sure that there was a reason for the lack of cards but it seemed a little odd to me. Business cards have always been one of my favourite parts of the art and design shows, especially on years where people have been given free reign on them (which sadly we weren’t, and I HATED my business card especially as it wasn’t handled properly and was pixelated).
As an illustration lover I would have liked to have seen more illustration in the show, it was very photography and typography heavy, but overall it was a very enjoyable view and I wish everyone involved the best of luck with their futures.
If anyone would like their website links adding then please send me a message/tweet/comment and I’ll add it. As I already spent hours taking the photos, sorting them, editing and writing this I don’t really have the time or patience left to hunt out everyone.]]>
This is my messy bookcase. Its mainly full of artbooks, but it also holds a variety of other random objects that don’t have their own homes, such as a long armed stapler, a purple monkey and a hamster named Alan (or is it Steve?)
I have a huge pile of used postcards that I bought from the local market. The guy has thousands of them and I’ve spent many an hour browsing them to find the ones that appeal to me. The messages on the back are always quite interesting- when the handwriting is legible!
I have quite a variety of different books, there are fashion illustration ones, graphic design ones, comic books, HTML help books, teach yourself Japanese books etc etc.
I love art books. A lot of my normal books are on my Kindle now but nothing beats the different sizes, shapes and textures of art books. There’s also a few on here which are left over from my dissertation- books on Japanese street fashion.
I have a bit of a love-hate relationship with magazines at the moment. I sort of wish I didn’t get a Creative Review subscription. In all honesty I don’t understand the hype with it. Its extremely expensive for a magazine that has so many adverts in it that double page spreads seem to be an increasing rarity. And as for Computer Arts magazine, half of the issues pictured arrived 6 months late after I pestered and pestered and pestered to have them redelivered. They’re the only parcels I’ve ever had that have gone walkies so many times! I now have to get them delivered to my parents address.
Apologies for the blurry photo but this is the top of my second bookcase. This bookcase satisfies my OCDs. All the books and the games are the same height. They’re also doubled up (there’s a whole extra level behind the ones you can see) because the bookcase is so deep. The fiction books here are all ones that I either don’t have as an ebook version or that I love so much that I can’t imagine not having the paperback.
If asked I could tell you where I bought pretty much every one of my books. I have a bit of a strange love for them.]]>
Fears. We all have them. Some of them logical and some not so. My biggest fear has always been wasps. I’m terrified of them. Even looking at pictures of them makes me twitchy. I start to wonder if perhaps there is one in the room with me already. If I’ve spotted one I tend to have a staring competition with it until its deemed too far away to hurt me. If it comes towards me I squeak and run away. It causes people great amusement (usually everyone BUT me, I’m too busy being scared and then embarrassed). I hugely dislike people telling me that I’m being silly and that the wasp won’t hurt me, one because thats not always true and two because I KNOW I’m over reacting, they don’t need to tell me. I’m trying to get better with this by working on my garden, we’re planting flower seeds soon.
Stairs cause me a bit of worry sometimes too. Stairs and escalators. Not all of them, most I’m fine with, but every now and then I’ll encounter a staircase that makes me feel very very anxious as I’m climbing it. I’m terrified I’m gonna slip and fall down it. There is a staircase in town which I really struggle to walk up because I spend the whole time thinking I’m about to die. With escalators it tends to more be a fear if I can’t hold on to the side that I’m gonna fall and because of the constant upwards motion I’ll keep falling. If I can hold on then I’m fine, but occasionally I have too much shopping to do this. I have no idea how people manage to run on the escalators in London Underground- maybe once you’re THAT desperate to shave a few seconds off your commute time you don’t notice.
I also have a rather stranger fear, although fear is not the right word for it, more a disgust and it’s called trypophobia. It’s a phobia of holes, more specifically random holes close together, usually in organic matter. I’m not scared of them as such, I won’t run screaming if I see them but I get huge feelings of disgust. Certain images (which I won’t divulge, you can go and look for yourself) make me feel really nauseous. My skin crawls, I feel hot and cold and I can’t help but picture the holes in my skin. It’s usually in my arms. One image made me feel so bad that I couldn’t get it out of my head for days. I really can’t explain WHAT causes me to find them so repulsive or WHY I instantly picture them as having been eaten into me but I do, as do a surprisingly large amount of other people it seems.
This last one is a bit more jokey- I think I have a fear of not having enough to do when I’m out of the house. Yes, it’s not really a fear but I ALWAYS seem to have at least two things in my bag to do, even though half the time I don’t use them! The worst was when I was a teenager and going on a trip to the seaside- I would pack books, music, drawing stuff, games, all sorts for the journey and then not use any of it because I always got travel sick (which still happens now :< )
What about the rest of you? Any weird fears and phobias you’d like to share? Are you a fellow hole sufferer? Or do you think I’m possibly crazy? Comment to let me know]]>
As some of you may or may not know, some of my illustration work is available to buy on Icon Nemesis as iPhone cases. I can’t seem to find an option on their site to filter to just my cases (guys- if you’re reading and that’s possible please let me know and I’ll edit it in) but here is a link to one of the cases there. You should check them out, they make gorgeous quality cases.
I have two cases to give away to two lucky people. They retail at £24.99 each so this really is a treat. Each winner will also receive 2 A5 art prints each (pictures to come). I will also be picking three runners up who will win an A5 and an A6 art print each.
So I guess you guys want to know how you can win, right? (or at least I hope you do- a competition with no entries is rather boring!) There are a variety of ways to enter depending on what social media tools you use.
1) Comment on this blog post. Make sure to leave an email address/some form of contact so I can let you know if you win.
2) Like my Facebook page and leave me a wall post to say you’d like to enter. You get an extra entry if you share my page with your friends.
3) Follow me on Twitter and tweet this message: “Want to win an iPhone case from @curlycuh? RT and follow to enter! http://bit.ly/icurlyc”
4) Follow me on Tumblr and reblog (not like!) the competition post on there.
5) Buy something from my shop (this will get you 5 entries instead of one!). Just send me a screenshot of your order confirmation to be entered this way.
So that’s 5 different entries through social media and an unlimited amount through my shop. The competition is open to everybody no matter where you live (unless its the moon, postage is ASTRONOMICAL to the moon!). Winners will be asked to choose their favourite of the two cases and in the case of them both wanting the same case I’ll flip a coin to decide who gets what.
Competition will be ended when I hit 800 followers on Twitter so get entering! After all, what have you got to lose?
Created this gif last year. It’s a self portrait. I think I may be due a new one now!]]>
The images on your website are so fascinating and so vivacious, looking at each piece of work i can easily see that you added so much dedication in making each work come out to life unfortunately i lost the website where i first saw your work but i was able to save your email address.I am writing you because i need your assistant to get back to your website so as to be able to retrieve the details of your work that interest men or send me images of some of your new works.
Luckily I’d seen warnings of scammers targeting artists going around beforehand so I was wary but replied with a link to my website while I googled to find out who this guy was.
My googling bought me to this website which made it clear to me that the whole thing was a con. I’ve just come home from work to someone from Nigeria spending 20 minutes on my website and a list of ‘paintings’ that he would like to buy. At least bother to get the medium right, I don’t use paint for anything!
I’ve sent him a quite an unpleasant email as a reply letting him know I’m on to him and to not contact again. He emailed me through the address Larry Douez email@example.com but the same scam is going round from a variety of names.
Remember fellow artists. Keep safe and use caution!]]>
For a recent essay analyzing a brand I chose to look at Barbie and very quickly became rather intrigued as to what it had taken to make the little doll the big star that she is today. Barbie was the brainchild of Ruth Handler, the woman who helped to create Mattel, one of the most well known toy companies in the world now.
Over the years Barbie has been called a whore, gotten bigger breasts, smaller breasts, been criticized for her weight, run into all sorts of controversy regarding her friends, worn every fashion imaginable, and even been involved in a very publicized embezzlement court case. That little doll is lucky to be where she is now!
I got to find some very interesting things out about Barbie whilst working on my essay, some of them quite sweet and funny and some not so nice. Mattel actually had an entire street in the US painted Barbie pink for a special event, something which must have been very strange to see! The most inspiring thing to me however was how her founder Ruth kept going throughout the years, even though she was in such a male driven world, faced prison, bankruptcy, being forced out of her own home and the horrors of breast cancer. She certainly seemed a very strong and inspiring woman.]]>
If anyone is interested the website is here- COLORS Charity Artbook. They’ve closed orders for now, but they should be back soon enough.
On my walk into Thomas Parker House the other day I spotted a flyer for a photography competition- the only condition being that the photograph entered had to be taken in one of Lincoln’s nature parks. Feeling up for a challenge myself and Mat boarded a bus after our meeting with the external moderators this morning and made our way to Whisby Nature Reserve. It was actually the first time I’d used the bus service at all in Lincoln despite having lived here for almost three years now!
One of the first things that struck me when we started our walk was the amount of damsel and dragon flies that there were! Before I moved to Lincoln I’d never even seen one, but suddenly there were dozens of then around me! They’re quite beautiful, especially to see rising and falling all around you, even if they dislike staying still enough to be photographed. I think my choice of purple tights didn’t help either as insects are drawn away from blue colours (just one random fact I’ve picked up during my time at uni!)
We tried to walk as far around all the walks as we could, but they were pretty confusing! Half of the turnings didn’t seem to have signs and the marked trials didn’t all meet up so we couldn’t just do one large one. There were so many lovely long winding paths though, and with the sun shining down on them it just made all that walking seem so much easier! We did manage at least 5-6 miles though, and I have a lovely sunburn to go with that.
A lovely hidden bridge I spotted around the walk. It just looks beautiful hidden within the huge amount of green around it.
This tree stump was interesting enough already, it became even more interesting as I approached it though as the cut out section looks just like a butterfly. It’s like nature has made it’s own sculptures.
On the subject of nature’s own sculptures, this tree fascinated me. At the end of spring/start of summer it was completely bare and stood out quite a bit against all the green that was around it. I took quite a few snaps of this as I’d like to use it to practice drawing trees in the future, they’re something that I have always struggled with and I’d like to improve.
Walking through all of these trees was great, it just helped me to get away from the hustle and bustle of living in a city, we hardly saw anybody all day except for a few families and a couple who appeared to be rather drugged up. Unfortunately I made the mistake of stopping when they started to talk to us (I’m far too polite and fear for my camera only kicked in afterwards). It was worth it though as we were rewarded with a rather slurred anecdote (complete with mime act) of how a bull had escaped and the guy had pushed him back into his field. We did spot a bull hidden behind a few ‘DANGER: BULL’ signs later on, but there was a bridge and a railway track between that field and the drugged up couple, so unless he was an extremely smart bull I’m a little dubious about the story!
I was quite intrigued when I first spotted these overhead cables, I thought that they were filled with birds. On closer inspection they appear to be bird shaped pieces of metal, but since they fooled me I guess they’ll fool the birds as well. They were only along this one stretch of cable however, which was quite confusing.
This nice calming walk hadn’t taken away my sense of playfulness and fun, and I had a good giggle to myself when I spotted this rather sad looking tree man reaching into the ditch below him I couldn’t help but giggle.
I’m pretty terrified of bees and wasps and Mat was in stitches half of the day as I twitched, jumped, lept, squeaked, squealed and ran away from anything that buzzed near me. I did manage to get some great close up shots of one among some large daisies however, and I didn’t squeak once!
So what about my original intention then, did I manage to get the photograph that I had set out for? Well here are a few of the ones that I had to pick from out of the 200+ that I shot over the day.
The two I eventually went for (one for myself to enter, and one for Mat to enter as he’s spent the day traipsing around being the lens swapping man) were the following.
Now I just need to get some frames and get them printed and to the competition for Sunday! They’ll be exhibited next week (I need to find out where, I would guess at Whisby itself) and then judged for a chance to be used for a nature calendar for the area next year. I really hope that I get a place but if not I’m just happy I managed to have an awesome day out in the sun, completely stress free, and managed to snap so many great photographs.]]>
I feel really bad for having neglected my blog for so long, but so much has been happening that I just haven’t found the time to do any blogging past the 140 characters of microblogging that Twitter offers.
University is now almost at an end now, third year did go just as fast as Barrie said it would and its almost terrifying to think that for now at least I’m pretty much done with education.
I won’t waste peoples time by posting loads of entries about all the work that I’ve done in the past year, as you can view my website for that curlyc.co.uk in case you’ve not yet visited, but I will be using this blog now as a way of keeping people up to date with general life, and work that I am doing right now.
Anyway, on with current life and we’ve spent the last month getting work ready for hand in and putting together our degree show. This has proved to be a challenging but hugely rewarding task which has kept a fair few of us in the studio all day painting, hanging work and even picking blutack off all the walls of a room (that was a fairly tedious task!)
The theme of the show for this year has been sounds, as we may be quite a small year group but we sure as hell make a lot of noise (both physically and with the way we create our work). To fit with this theme we all had to choose a sound effect that we felt reflected ourselves in some way and create a design based around that sound. I chose kiri-kiri which is a Japanese sound effect used for the sound of pens scratching on paper, something that I felt reflected quite a lot on the way that I work while doing my illustrations.
Show Elleven is going to be a much more open plan and area focused show than has been created in Lincoln before. Gone are the days of everyone having their own board to do what they want to with and instead everyone had to submit their two favourite pieces of work to a committee to be vetted for the show. I managed to get both of the pieces of work that I submitted in, the first being my ISTD Flatland book and the second being some large format illustration.
The work featured within Show Elleven is hugely varied and these photos don’t do it justice (especially as we’d yet to hoover up at this point). I’d urge everyone who’s gonna be near Lincoln between the 6th and the 17th of June to pop in and have a browse, you won’t be disappointed. Check out the Show Elleven website for more details.
Here’s a sneak peak of the illustration that I have featured. Again, the images don’t do it justice and the large image of the geisha’s is the original and is a tactile piece. Having not worked that large since my college life drawing lessons it was a nice change.