Tuesday, 31 May 2011


Nice bit of music to get us all in the mood for summer after tomorrow's hand in :)

Monday, 30 May 2011

The Final Pieces

Final magazine cover for the American project. The painting consumes the left third of the cover which is where most magazine covers place objects to attract attention and make use of the remaining space. I used my lino prints for the title although I cleaned up all the lino print marks but I made sure I removed nothing attached to the letters themselves so that it still looked authentic. If you zoom in you may be able to see what I mean! I decided to break up the remaining images by placing them at an angle. I was originally going to have them in picture frames as if the background was a wall but this looked too much like an actual composition. I followed the angles to place the date, price and edition.
Kestrel monoprint for Friday's project. This one didn't mount too well because the paper was much too thin although this was the only paper I could get a good result from in terms of monoprinting. I coloured it in with watercolour after adding the woodblock prints of the clubs and monoprinting the number 2.
Monoprint of the Jackdaw. This one really did not mount well at all, but hopefully it will go with the messy aesthetic of the print process..?! Woodblock spade and monoprinted letter J.
Lino of the Kingfisher. I am most pleased with the outcome of this one, although I think this is mainly down to nature rather than my illustration. Kingfishers are so cute!! I like the colours in this one. The design/lino itself feels like quite a tight design, although again the Kingfisher is petite anyway. Again, woodblock diamond, monoprint K and coloured in with watercolour.
Lino of the Budgie. I saw the opportunity for having the budgie on a perch within the spade as if it was a small bird cage. I made the most of the black spade by cutting out the lines rather than cutting around them. It was a bit confusing colouring this in in terms of positive/negative. Woodblock spade, monoprint letter A.
Drypoint of the Mockingbird. This took a while to draw to get it right (I had to sleep on it after doing about 4 illustrations in one night) but I like it in drypoint. As the Joker card is neither diamond, spade, heart nor club, and neither is it either black or red, I decided to offset the word 'Joker' in both black and red (monoprinted)
This is my favourite design in terms of the concept. I think this is because it was my first sketch/idea for the bird theme and it made me persue the route of illustrating birds for my playing cards. The heart slightly overlaps the beak which I didn't want it to originally, but I like the effect of having a colour printed over black. The little lines around the Hummingbird aren't really meant to be there; I think I scratched them onto the plastic to retain the mess I made when painting the original sketch. These now just look like motion lines which is rather effective, although I also still like the thought of the bird being captured in a split second motion.

The Processes

A quick woodcut I made for the American project. If I had more time, this would have perhaps looked better reversed with the text and image as relief instead of being cut into the wood.
4 wood cut symbols I made for the illustration with printmaking project. The symbols are to go on playing card designs so I made the 4 suits, 2 for printing in black and 2 for printing in red. I didn't use the best wood (pine) but I'm glad I chose to create these in wood so it added another print process that was not on the brief, but that I wanted to try. They could have been better, but I like the roughness of them. I didn't wish to edit my designs on Photoshop, so I welcomed any imperfections. Perfection ain't my business.
My lino prints I made for the illustration with printmaking projects. The lion was from an initial quick sketch I made while the other 2 are for my final prints. Looking at these now, I could have made more relief prints using this technique but I was happy with the results and made several prints for my development. I also did lots of monoprinting, mainly at home, which are in my sketchbook if not on my blog! I really enjoyed using the lino and it's something I want to continue doing over the summer and hopefully into next year as well.
Lino cuts I made for the American project. I made the words 'American Illustration' for the title of my magazine cover. I was looking forward to using lino to create text as I had come across a few artists in my research who use lino to make text and it looked really fun and effective.
A drypoint I made for Friday's module from a quick initial sketch. It is a shame the squirrel is missing his foot!! And also that he is grey. I will have to draw a red one next time! (Y)
Drypoint for my final print of a Mockingbird for the Joker card. I was pleased that I managed to get from a painting I made with matchsticks to plastic prints.
Drypoint of my Hummingbird for the Ace of hearts card. This was the first bird drypoint I made. I started to scratch the heart into this as well, then I realised I wanted to print the heart in woodcut so I had to trim the top bit of plastic off. This shows on the final print because of where the plastic was pressed, but I don't mind it looking a bit rough as I'm sure I have said already!

Hindsight exhibition 2011

Come and see the work of Year zeros, 1st years and 2nd  years from Colchester's BA Graphic Media - the show opens on 22nd June with the opening reception on Friday 24th June 2011.

Missed this band!!

I have not listened to this song/album in oh so long!! I don't think this is the official video, but it's actually rather cool. It has elements of Beautiful Losers in it, such as Shepard Fairey, drawing on trains, skating, and even a skating policeman?!

Friday, 27 May 2011

New York time lapse

The most impressive time lapse video I have seen. Definitely worth a watch! The music goes with it beautifully and actually makes me feel quite emotional. I love all the cars, people and aeroplanes. The American project might be over soon, but I cannot wait to go there one day.

Things to do

Better get crackin' like!!

Thursday, 26 May 2011


Round the back of the London Graphic Centre is this rather spectacular lettering depicting lines from 'Oranges and Lemons'. It caught my eye because it is so large and continuous and colourful. Another passer by also stopped to take a photo, resulting in the acknowledgement of a shared moment :)
A giant plug socket in the Carnaby Quarter!
Walking along Southbank, I noticed this building under construction which I haven't seen before. If anyone knows what it is let me know!!

Printmaking project

Final dry point design for my ace of hearts, minus a few details and it needs trimming down
Final dry point for my joker card
Lino for my King card - the final version is currently drying as I added the woodcut diamonds to it today
How I want my final ace of spades to turn out! I need to print another one tomorrow that has the same consistency of ink all over using the correct pressure on the press

Playing with the photocopier making my bird prints similar to the images used in The Courteeners' album art
Final monoprint for my Jack card. I need to add the spades!
Final monoprint for my 2 of clubs card, minus the clubs at present...

Coming to... an end of the American project

Sketchbook page playing with type, celebrating American illustration
Playing with the idea of plastic as advertised by many illustrations.
First of a few self portraits. I wanted to have a person on the magazine cover for my final piece and I was the most readily available subject and I knew what I wanted.
People are always portrayed as being happy in more classic American illustrations, whether this is due to the painting being within an advertisement or just whether it aims to show people living a happy American way of life
Lino cut for the title of the magazine. I wanted it hand rendered and I have wanted to try cutting type into lino since finding other examples in my research
Left: the painting to be used for the cover. I decided the use of a face is too common in Western society and it was very confrontatational. I didn't want to place emphasis away from the topic either.
Right: I realised after photocopying the painting that it looked better in a flat, printed format which eradicated my thoughts of hand making/printing/painting the cover. I scanned my painting and lino into Photoshop and created the layout for the magazine. I came across the issue of not having a barcode, but I didn't want it to look too much like something just there to be bought. If magazine covers are exhibited and shown, the barcode would not be shown.


Here are some pages from my PDP journals that were handed in last week. I actually quite enjoyed the freedom involved in putting the journals together. I have a lot of personal thoughts and opinions on various subjects and things I see, so it was a good place for 'everything else'

Monday, 9 May 2011

Wax is wack

A few months ago in my desk calendar was a wonderful illustration of a man making a shoe. Now I'm researching illustration for the American project I have come across the artist. Seounghyon Cho creates black and white images on location and later adds colour digitally.
This is the example I first saw and now I've seen his colour version of the image I've decided that I prefer this black and white location version.
The marks look slightly painted, slightly engraved. In fact, he uses encaustic wax - from what I understand, this involves using heated wax which is malleable while it is still hot. This can be made into an image and objects/materials can be added to the wax before it dries to create a collage.
An example of a wax image that has colour added to it. It looks like a silkscreen now.
When I looked up other images made by encaustic wax, it made me realise that I have used this technique before. While I was at primary school there was a Christmas fete at my brother's secondary school (which I would later attend) which had a stand with somebody with an iron and some wax sticks. You can see from the image above where the wax has been melted onto the iron then applied to the page. When the iron is removed it often leaves behind a veiny, leaf-like texture.