Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Garden Grow music video

I recently did some work on another music video, this time a Broken Pixel production for Bella Union band Our Broken Garden.

As well as providing a tiny bit of concept art, I lent a hand decorating the set and painted the thorn bushes & foliage you can see in the background.

Watch the video here.

Ashley & Kevin Roper (along with assistance from Ash's parents), did an amazing job of building the set and creating the wonderful props and creatures which inhabit it. The shooting of the video saw the arrival of comrades Danny North & Tim Blackwell, whose experience behind the cameras helped bring the whole thing to life.

I was lucky enough to spend a few hours on set and watch a handful of shots unfold - see some of the 'making of' photos on Flickr.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Poster design for 'Carrot Cake Soup' a short film by the Folkman Brothers.

Carrot Cake Soup is adapted from a short story by Jerry Holkins of Penny Arcade fame and will be appearing as part of the forthcoming LA Comedy Festival.  You can watch the film online here.

I'm very pleased to have done further work for these guys - not only are they a talented pair, but they're a pleasure to work with and I'm sure their hard work and positive approach will continue to lead them onto ever cooler successes. Good work lads.


Thursday, October 14, 2010

The Currency of Opportunity & Exposure

Here is an email I received today. It being my birthday, typically a day associated with the giving of gifts, I decided I would furnish the sender with a generous reply. (Pesonal information has been removed.)

My name is __________, I am from midlands band _________. We recently won the surface unsigned competition at the london indigo O2 where we beat 12000 bands to first prize. All three judges gave our band 16/16 in the judging criteria.
we have won a pr deal, a full days photoshoot, a single release, a press release to 55000, online banner deal, radio backing and a slot at the sziget festival in Budapest to 390,000 people plus more.

The one thing we did not win was a design package. we are currentley looking for sponosorship from a designer/design company to help us design everything from tshirts/flyers/posters/website/myspace/cd artwork/press pack. anything at all, obviousley on each part we can make sure you are well advertised. we will also being doing a press release early next year to 55,000 so we can make sure the sponsorship is advertised there also. This is a great opportunity for anyone involved.

we are extremeley proud of our band, we are working as hard as possible to take it all the way to the top

We will be releasing a single and video with believe digital and zimbalam and we will begin our PR campaign and send out our press release in march 2011.

kerrang radio have featured us as there unsigned band of the week, radio presenter for kerrangs unsigned show Alex Baker has already championed us on his show “they are up there in one of the best live bands I have ever seen” and he will also be backing us with our release.

BBC introducing midlands (The Beat) have Agreed to back us, they will receive first play of the single and we will be doing a live video in there studio to coincide with the single release which will go up on there website.

Idol magazine, London, will get first play of the video on there online magazine, there have an impressive 200,000 online readers every month.

We already have a hardcore fan base with a 900 fans on face book, rising everyday and 2000+ fans on Myspace, over the next few months we will be taking our show nationwide to help raise awareness of the band and the forth coming single. We plan to do a tour just after the release in march.

If you feel you want to help us in anyway please contact me.

Thanks for your time

call me on: ___________

Sent from my iPhone

Hello _______,

Thank you for the summary of your band's achievements. I agree, it is a real shame that a full design package was not included in your impressive list of prizes.

Sadly, I'm afraid I am not in a position to provide my services to you for free.

Unfortunately, I have discovered, quite shockingly, that opportunities and exposure don't really get me very far in fiscal, real world terms, although let me assure you it's not for want of trying:

I was quite convinced I was onto a winner when I approached my Mortgage Provider and proposed that they buy me a shiny new house in return for me proudly stencilling their logo onto the external brickwork of my new abode, making sure that every passerby knew who was generously sponsoring me with the provision of shelter and lodging.

"I know loads of people," I explained, "I will definitely put in some really positive words about you when we have friends round for dinner or if someone delivers a parcel. I'll even hand out business cards or flyers. Think of the exposure!"

Keen to expand on my initial idea, I also planned to approach my local supermarket and ask for free food and provisions -- my wife is a great cook, so I expected them to jump at the chance to have their ingredients associated with some truly delicious meals.

With all the money I would be saving thanks to my generous food and shelter sponsorships, I realised I probably wouldn't have to work anymore and so decided I would like to take some time off to go travelling around the world. Think of all the people and places I would see! Think of the exposure potential! It seemed only fair to share this kind of monumental marketing opportunity with as many businesses as possible.

My next goal, of course, would be to find not only a clothing company excited to reap the rewards of providing me with all my travelling essentials, but also travel companies, hotels, restaurants, bars, shopping centres, safari parks, luxury retreats, and basically every type of commercial service imaginable, all ready and willing to lend a hand.

Just as I had come to the conclusion that it would, in fact, actually be quite rude of me to exclude anyone at all from what was clearly an entirely win-win situation, my dreams were promptly shattered.

BEHOLD! An unrelenting deluge of replies from my would-be sponsors, all seemingly colluding together in their unified and resounding choruses of: no, negative, nada, absolutely not.


Do you see? Despite all the magnificence of my planning, I had neglected to consider one, simple thing: respect.

I had forgotten that to truly appreciate the value of a thing, one has to show respect to the passion, craft, blood, sweat, tears, and above all time that goes into it's creation. When one genuinely values and respects something, they understand the importance of not asking someone to give that thing away for free.

On that day, despite my glorious plan having burgeoned, bulged, and burst into sad little ribbons, like the gastric band of some greedy obese man, I had at the very least learned a valuable lesson.

And so here we find ourselves.

What a sad state of affairs things are nowadays, with our celebrity-obsessed culture of handouts and get-fame-fast schemes; of manufactured Saturday Night entertainment wrapped up in the guise of talent contests; of overnight online success stories, publicity stunts and marketing virals; of double rainbows, and the coming apocalypse, and the 'cats-and-dogs-sleeping-together' mass hysteria of it all.

What a shame when one man suggests to another man, without the faintest hint of sarcasm, that he might feed, shelter and clothe himself and his family with the suggested currency of opportunity and exposure.

Sorry I can't help you on this occasion _______, but I wish you all the best with the band - and I do genuinely mean that. The music biz is a tough old game these days when you're looking to be appropriately rewarded for all your hard work.

Yours sincerely,

Graham D. Pilling

Sunday, October 03, 2010

Flatstock EU 5

This year might have been my favourite Flatstock so far. Thanks to everyone who bought prints & posters, supplied beer, fun and good times, or was involved in the organisation of this fine event in any way, shape or form.

See you next time.

Myself, Luke, and Jeremy (whose photo I stole).

Exhibition Stuff

Artcrank London - I was absolutely blown away by the attendance to the show's opening night. Not only was it busy with people drinking and socialising but people were actually taking a real interest in the art and actually purchasing prints to take home seemed to be highly encouraged.  Fantastic stuff and a big thank you to Artcrank and Look Mum, No hands for all their fine work.

You can see photos from the opening night here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/cyouel/

The editions of my print which I supplied for the show are actually very close to sold out, so you can also now purchase from my Online Store.

Rockers' Original - Some of my original pen and ink drawings appeared in this exhibition taking place recently at the Feinkunst Kruger Gallery, in Hamburg.

The exhibition featured the original art from gigposters and had an impressive list of contributing artists: Tara McPherson, Diana Sudyka, Jay Ryan, Mara Piccione, Senor Burns, Justin Santora, Lars P. Krause, Mark Pedini, Guy Burwell, Luke Drozd, Casey Burns, Graham Pilling, Michael Hacker (Atzgerei), John Howard, Gary Houston, Fritte, Bongout, Michael Michael Motorcycle, Dan Grzeca, Tim Lotz, Nicks Rhodes and Derek Hess.

Thanks to everyone who came along to view and buy the work (both my pieces sold) and special thanks to Ralf for putting the whole thing together.


In just under a fortnight's time a rather grand musical event will be taking place at the Brudenell Social Club in Leeds.

RUMPFEST is an allday beer and music festival brought to you by the fine WYSAS (Ents. Div.) folks and features an absolutely great lineup of bands and artists. Just feast your meaty eyes on these:

For more information, including band descriptions and ticket bleat, visit the WYSAS Blog or the handy Facebook event page.

See you there!

Out of the Woods shirt design

I was asked by the lovely folks at Out of the Woods cafe in Leeds to design a t-shirt to commemorate their soon-to-be-opened new shop.

They often get referred to as simply a 'Juice Bar' when they actually also do really amazing sandwiches, soups, sushi, coffee and other good stuff so I wanted to make sure this came across clearly in the design.

The men's shirt is is a 2 colour front print and also features a logo on the back left-hand-side. I'm really pleased with how these came out!

I imagine they will have these for sale at some point soon - definitely swing by if you're in the Holbeck/Water Lane area of Leeds. (Secret Super Insider Tip: try the Breakfast Smoothie with Blueberries).


Squeegee! - Die Siebdruck Bewegung

Another very pleasant surprise at this year's Flatstock occurred when the delightful German gent Senor Burns swung by the booth of Luke and I and presented us with copies of a book he has produced: Squeegee! - The Silkscreen Movement.

I had actually sent Berny my content thinking it was merely going to be used as part of an exhibition he was putting on and completely unaware that it was going to be published in such a great looking (and smelling) tome. I was blown away by the quality of the book.  Senor Burns, I salute thee!

The book is full colour and features around 28 artists from around the globe, but with a particular focus on the Europeans.  The text is in a mix of English and German (educational!) but the main focus of course is the lovely, lovely work on show.

I don't currently have any of these for sale but if you happen to be interested, drop me a line and I'll procure some. I know it would look pretty sweet on your bookshelf, coffee table or prison cell bunk.

Cool story, bro...

It is something of a tradition for Flatstock artists to create a poster for the actual Flatstock event itself, as sort of a souvenir and something which can be traded with other artists.  The great thing about Flatstock posters is that they can often be a great vehicle for poster-nerd in-jokes or other absurdness which wouldn't usually fit on an actual band poster.

With a mixture of pride, humility, and a not unpleasant tingling strangeness I present Dan Macadam / Crosshair's recent Flatstock Europe 5 poster, featuring the 3D Glasses-wearing face of yours truly. Interestingly, that is Chris '3D Glasses' White with his arm around me while my mortal enemy Luke Drozd looks on, like a jealous sod.  Honored indeed!

Dan is a very skilled screenprinter and also a genuinely very nice chap - you should absolutely go look at his amazing work here: www.crosshairchicago.com

Flatstock Europe 5

Flatstock Europe is once again upon us.  Taking place in the Reeperbahn district of Hamburg, Germany, as part of the annual Reeperbahn Festival, FS-EU is a choice poster-artist retail and exhibition exposition, which the public at large and general 'crazies on the street' are most certainly encouraged to come along to.

There will be drinking.

See you there.

ArtCrank Ahoy!

Just another reminder that the Artcrank London exhibition is kicking off this Friday -- I'm looking forward to hanging out with some of my London friends as well as meeting a few new people.

Hope to see you there.