Friday, 27 November 2015

More Than Money: Investing In Your Creative Future

As we prepare to enter the last month of the year I find myself taking stock; looking back on what I've done so far and how I got to this point. I think by often maintaining firm focus on the future - pushing ahead to the next step necessary to further the next idea - how exactly we achieved what we've already achieved can easily pass us by.

After a turbulent few months with plenty of R&R (restructuring & redundancies) at the arts centre in which I work, I've been forced to really look at everything I've done as an independent practitioner and re-assert what I have to offer to whom. This process has been very rewarding, and has led me to a new realisation with regards to my current trajectory. Previously considering the last few years as an organic journey made up of a series of things that happened to me, upon reflection I understand that I also helped get myself here, through investment.

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

The Art of Social Media

This piece is for the lovely Forge mag team to accompany a written piece about the internet (specifically social media) empowering young creatives to get their work out into the wider world. After a few days half-heartedly trying to make an overly complex illustration, I took some time away from it and a simpler concept started to emerge.

Monday, 21 September 2015

(B:) Future FORUM

Yesterday I shared the spoils of my Kano challenge at mac birmingham as part of their Future FORUM, the final component of this year's Future C U R I O U S festival. As detailed in my earlier post about my approach to the TINKER process, the result was a series of images inspired by colour mode RGB made using pencil, a scanner and various techniques of image manipulation on the raspberry pi using free software / Kano OS.

Friday, 18 September 2015

(G:) Byng@Kano ~ $

As one of the artists tasked with creatively utilising a Kano kit as part of the Future C U R I O U S TINKER commission, I have been working my way around the functioning of the raspberry pi and considering its potential in relation to my drawing practice. My initial response was that I would need to find out how to make work by drawing with code and that the raspberry pi was a potential competitor with regards to creating illustrations in the future instead of a tool I could utilise, but that thought process has changed a lot in the last few weeks.

Thursday, 17 September 2015


When I saw Rope Press were running summer school workshops as an introduction to risograph printing, I leapt at the chance to get down there in order to try the process and find out how to get the most out of it. Arriving at the studio building I was met by the friendly Reece and shown up to the unit, which was every contemporary image makers dream. Rope Press are both an artist-led printing press and publishing house, so there was some srsly tasty books lining the walls, along with lots of example prints they have produced, through both orders and workshops.

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

(R:) Kano Unboxing

As part of Future C U R I O U S festival I was given a new toy, and challenged to use it within my creative practice. Yahtzee! This new toy was a KANO kit, a computer that you build and code yourself. Inside the box lay a Raspberry Pi 2, some charming illustrated manuals, a DIY speaker, fabulously orange keyboard, SD card, various colourful cables, a WiFi dongle, case and stickers (because what self-respecting future explorer wants their computer to look like everyone else's?) *NB: bananas not included.

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Contemporary Other

When asked to contribute something to Contemporary Other's second issue 'FEMINISM IS', my first thought was YES! *punches air* and the second thought was Harnaam Kaur. I'd been wanting to draw her for a while, blown away by her power, grace and femininity in the face of shallow questions from TV hosts about how she would find love as a heterosexual female with a beard. She wasn’t constructing her identity to be attractive to others and that must have scared the shit out of them. To see more from this superstar role model visit @harnaamkaur, and check out the forthcoming volume of CO for feminist dialogue that dismisses the majority and favours the other.

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Jamie & Eliza

I can now reveal the surprise wedding commission I completed earlier this month. It was a big challenge for me to do an original drawing at A2 size - after so long riding the crest of A4 & A3 works it suddenly felt a long way to the centre of the page - but this also made it a hugely satisfying project to complete. Congratulations Jamie and Eliza!

Tuesday, 18 August 2015

Best Of The Biennale

Picture the biggest exhibition you've ever seen and times it by 3. Then imagine there's two of them. Now throw in 89 pavilions representing an entire country each, and 44 collateral events across different locations, and there you have La Biennale di Venezia; a wonderful and colossal serpent of art let loose for the summer in the floating city of Venice. This summer saw my first visit to the International Art Exhibition, now at its 56th imagining, and I was totally bowled over by how much there was to see, as well as the effect that engaging with that much artwork had on my 'digestion' of it - a fascinating insight into what I look for in art and how my experience of it can be altered.

Of course it would have been wholly inconceivable to get around it all during a 5 day stay, but here is a run down of the top ten tasty artefacts and experiences I consumed during my visit:

#10 Dutch Pavilion. to be all ways to be, Herman de Vries.

Tuesday, 11 August 2015

Snapshots of Venezia

Last month me and Laurie flew to Venice to explore the La Biennale di Venezia - 56th International Art Exhibition. We stayed in a beautiful apartment in Sant' Elena - dubbed 'the greenest district in Venice' - surrounded by local folks, tiny businesses and a shady park. Our adventures led us from this charming neighbourhood right up to the tourist throng of San Marco and back again through tiny walkways, piazzas and waterways; via cafes, gelateries, markets, marbled paper shops and even a Hard Rock Cafe. Here are some snapshots of our visit.