G.F Smith Talk

Today we had a talk from G.F smith about paper types and book making. She bought in some really interesting example books and triggered a number of ideas for my own book. I also got advice from her on how I could improve my book binding skills based on a book I had made in the past which I showed her.

The books I saw encouraged not to think about my book in a generic way and I began thinking about how I could be more playful with designs and layout. Paper types is a huge part of the decision-making process. I decided that I wanted to experiment using some transparent paper types and work with layering this up. This technique would be representative of some of the work I produced within my studio projects using materials such as acrylic, acetate and tracing paper. I decided having a sleeve for my book would give a more finished and subtle effect to the way it looks.





Reporter: Laser Cutting

Today we had a laser cutting workshop. This was exciting for me because I never thought that I would get the opportunity to work In this kind of media.

The first stage of this process was through a tutorial with Ricardo in which he demonstrated how we prepare images for laser cutting. Using Adobe illustrator, he demonstrated how we changed the colours of the lines and arrange our images in order for the machine to recognise what actions it needs to take. We also had to take into consideration what the machine could physically do for us and how long it would take.

One of my stronger images from my derives is what I wanted to use. Seeing as this was just one work shop I wanted to get the most out of it by producing something that I could take further in my work. We were given a talk about what materials we could possibly use and shown some examples. I found the acrylic was the most visually appealing and looked more well finished. I also thought about other ways in which I could use my final laser cutting and thought about using it in a similar way to lino printing. Using acrylic would give me this opportunity as it could use ink on it and still be able to wash it off.

Preparing the image on illustrator wasn’t too difficult once I understood what to do. I first put the image through Photoshop and changed the levels to simplify the image. I then put it back into illustrator and because I was only etching I only needed one colour.

I chose the brightest and most vibrant colour acrylic to reflect my idea of bringing our surroundings to life through colour. The edge of the acrylic almost looked neon because it was so vibrant.

I was really pleased with the final outcome of my laser cutting and the way the light shone through it was beautiful. I would be really useful to take picture it in front of more historic architecture to create a contrast.



building laser cut

Pastiche 1560; way-finding workshop

In this workshop, we were asked to make a video in order to prepare us for our pastiche 1560 video outcome. The workshop asked of us to use pictures in a video format to direct someone from one area of the university to another. Seeing as we had recently moved into a new building, this was also a good way for us to also work our own way around our new environment. We were divided into groups and given different locations to direct our viewers to.  Through this workshop, we learnt the use of premier pro, we captured our journey as portrait photographs. We decided to focus on taking images of key turnings and signage. After capturing the images, we made them black and white to add to the eerie effect of the empty hallways. This encouraged us to think about how you can play around with premier pro and apply affects to a relevant theme or idea.Screen Shot 2017-05-11 at 7.58.59 PM

Maricor/Maricar , Mosaic Science

As my chosen practitioner, I felt that I should carry out some more research into the nature of their past projects.

I found one of their projects ‘mosaic science’ particularly interesting.

Mosaic science focuses on ovarian cancer. Maricor/Maricar created a Series of embroidered illustrations on Ovarian cancer and the preventative surgical choices for susceptible patients. The unravelled loose threads show the option of removing the fallopian tube while the second illustration depicts the removal of the ovary. The third illustration is an anatomical diagram of the female reproductive system:

  • 2) Cervix. 3) Uterus. 4) Fallopian tube. 5) Fimbriae. 6) Ovary.

They created a series of embroidered designs for an article about the available treatments available to patients.


“We wanted to explore cut aways and layering fabric to try to illustrate the surgical choices, women who are susceptible to ovarian cancer face. Whether to  remove the ovary completely or remove the  fallopian tubes as an alternative and therefore delay early menopause.”

I find this project really beautiful. It is also a way for women and patients to feel there are people talking about their illness and that there is help out there. The beauty in the designs is almost soothing.


You can find the article here.


Southampton visit

Upon a visit to south Hampton we had the opportunity to get a feel for it as a city and expand our knowledge.

We began by visiting the Solent studio at Southampton university and had a chance to get to know the students we would be collaborating with. We were given a really warm welcome and got a chance to see another studio space and how it works for them.

The Solent studio felt really motivated. Their space was full of colourful work and the walls were shrouded with inspiration.


Meeting the Solent students made the collaboration seem more realistic and gave us more of an incentive to share our work on the online shared document to work with.

After this meeting we ventured out to take a walk around the area to get a feel for the place that we would be studying. I began to notice the huge contrasts that were displayed between modern industrial buildings and historical architecture.

We took a historical walk through the city after lunch. I found it fascinating to discover that the city is full of underground wine vaults. as it is a town with a port it was used to export wine into the country. There was so much that they needed more space to store it. Hence the wine vaults were created. many people have no idea that they exist including people who are living above them .

southampton wine vault 

During the war the vaults became useful bomb shelters and have come in very useful in that way. We were lucky enough to visit on the these vaults and i found it interesting that they were one of the only historical sites in Southampton that Weren’t tainted by modern industrial builds.


Market Ready : idea generation

For the upcoming Christmas market, Sunday Up Market, we are on the path to creating our own product and brand. Its not easy to know where to start with a project like this so as a group we decided to come up with a product and brand ourselves around it.

We began by thinking about the target audience. Seeing as it will be a Christmas market we decided to think about what people are going to be looking for. we settled on items that could be bought as gifts such as prints and cards. They are also likely to be tourists, given that the Brick lane area is extremely popular among tourists.


As illustration students we decided this would be a brilliant way to get our own work out into the public domain. we first discussed the key ways of working that we enjoy within our creative field. screen printing was common ground for many of us. As a result of this we thought about creating prints. Being realistic we decided to think about an un-costly way to produce products ton sell. Screen printing is a cost effective way of creating something that we enjoy using facilities that we can make the most of. It also broadens our horizons as we are able to create bags as well as posters and cards. We are all fans of block colour and discussed that we fine line drawings really appealing. The bold colours will bring these drawings to life.

once we had decided what we are about we thought it be time to come up with a name and a unique selling point. We through around many ideas for names based on the screen printing process. We thought a squidgy would be a really suitable and clear symbol of us as a team. We thought about using the name squidgy as our company name, however thought this might be unoriginal and didn’t feel quite catchy enough. We began researching names for some of the processes  that actually take place in the screen printing process.

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screen grab screen printing glossary

We came across many technincal terms but the term ‘cured ink’ stood out to us. It is the ink once it has been cured through the chemical process that bonds the ink to fabric. The term is relevant if we would be making tote bags and almost sounds poetic. The work ink is included which also gives us a clear message about the kind of work we would create.

Dialogue: Using mixed media


It was really interesting approaching a variety of different techniques in one day. After the process of collecting images we continued on to look at some practitioners and collage artists to get some inspiration. We looked at the work of

George Douglas,

Image result for george douglas collage
George Douglas. Collage and illustration

I particularly took inspiration from his use of ripped paper and confident approach. The us of block color against black and white works beautifully and is incredibly easy on the eye.

We also looked at the work of Hannah Hock:

Image result for hannah hoch faces
Hannah Hock. Collage Portraiture

I have in fact been interested of Hannah Hock’s collage work in the past within other projects as her style automatically appeals to me. The use of surrealism works really well in her pieces.

Ladislav sutnar:

Ladislav’s work is far more minimalist, however this works really well. His use of white space adds so much to the mixed media pieces. This is a new dimension of collage that i had not thought about before.

I did feel motivated and inspired by their techniques, especially from those mentioned above.Their  use of colour and their confident approach towards a page is what captured my attention the most. I took from this that i shouldn’t hesitate and need to change my attitude towards collage and creating large quantities of tests to see what works best.

Setting up a studio space


Creating your own studio can be an exciting yet daunting task. You know that you want it to feel just right and getting there can be difficult when you are working with equipment and space. However, there aren’t too many people in our studio so we found it easy to work together and come to conclusions. The space is extremely light and airy and it was exciting to be given such a blank white space to work with. We were lucky enough to have three large peg boards, two bookshelves and a plinth. There is also plenty of desk space between the 20 or so students that will be working there. We kept the space quite simple and airy with plenty of space for us to build up wall displays and surround ourselves with inspiration.

We began to think about the ethos of our studio and looked at manifestos created by the likes of Sister Corita Kent, ken Garland and El Lissitsky. They all created a manifesto for working spaces and creative students. I found the Immaculate hearts college art department rules created by Sister Corita Kent were really appealing as they weren’t displayed as a set of harsh rules, but were very human and natural.

Sister Corita Kent, Immaculate hearts College Rules

We then went on to create our own manifesto to create an ideal working studio environment for us and we thought about what that meant. We kept our own manifesto simple as we didn’t want to put too much restraint on each others way of working. Ultimately we discussed keeping our displays fresh and not leaving work up for a whole year. We also discussed that no one should feel afraid to share and give opinions.



Four Corners Books, a studio visit

Four Corners Books website photograph

Four Corners Books was establishing in 2004 and is run by Richard Embray and Elinor Jansz. When visiting their studio, I learnt something about the way in which they work and work as a team. Their studio is within a grade A listed room from the 18th century that maintains all its historical features. As a result of this they are unable to make many changes to the room such as sticking things on the walls. This may have made it difficult for them to create their own creative space to work in, however the room is incredibly beautiful and has a great sense of calm due to its neutral colours and tidy appearance.

own photograph
18th century ceiling

This could be seen as features that enhance a calm working environment. They have been in this studio space for 6 years which appears to have worked well for them. Un-like some practitioners, Richard and Elinor do find that they don’t gain much of their ideas and inspiration from being within their studio space, instead they tend to find getting outdoors and visiting different places, and seeing what’s out there is their main source of encouragement and they then take back all this ideas and research to their studio space and use it as a place to tie everything together. Ultimately a light, spacious and neutral studio space will cater to this.

Their website runs with this theme of clear and simplistic and you should find it is easy to navigate. Visit their website Here.

They began working on one book together at art college about adventure playgrounds and how they exist as inner city spaces and their partnership built up from there. All their books take on a different style but they all push the boundary of what is common in some way or another. For example, their edition of ‘A picture of Dorian Grey ‘ does not even display the title or author on the front cover.

‘a picture of dorian grey’ edition