Thursday, May 26, 2011

BettaKultcha IX

BettaKultcha, which I will be henceforth refering to as Better Culture, is a night of presentations given by all kinds of different people on all sorts of different subjects - the interesting thing is that everyone gets 5 minutes to present 20 slides, each of which will be displayed for only 15 seconds.

I will be presenting at the next Leeds event which takes place on Tuesday 7th June from 7pm at Stylus, in Leeds University Union. Tickets are £5 and can be purchased here.

"What the hell will you be waffling about?!" you screech to the heavens.  Good question.  My presentation will be titled:

The ARMYofCATS Guide to Silkscreen Printing:
A Better Culture Public Service Presentation

For many readers, I'm sure you have had just about as much screenprinting/silkscreen coverage as you can possibly take. For people such
as yourself who already posses an all too keen understanding of the process, I will attempt to make the presentation mildly entertaining.

Wish me luck, and please come along if you're Leeds-based or nearby. You can see some videos of past presentations here:

Vintage Mail Van

The process went like this:

Watching David Fincher's Zodiak, I spot a great little vintage mail van.

Pause DVD.

Quick sketch in my sketchbook.

Take photo of sketch using iPad.

Upload photo to Dropbox.

Drag into Photoshop.

Create final illustration.



Monday, May 23, 2011

Screenadelica 2011 pt2

A huge thank you to everyone who got involved with Screenadelica, especially Gary for his organisings and a varied cast of other helpers, who will sadly remain un-sung heroes (for now).

I have to say, it was an absolute pleasure to meet so many people genuinely enthused by the work on show, and willing to splash out on a few prints here and there too. As a gigposter artist, in an environment where tastes and trends ebb and flow, it's often easy to feel a little burned out by investing so much time into something where you don't always get what you might feel is a fair return on the work you put it.  For many artists and designers, producing gigposters isn't a wholly commercial venture and is done out of a love for music and the bands they work for. Coming away from an event like this one, however, you are reminded that there is real value in the shared affinity you get when people not only support what you do, but also understand and share the reasons why you do it.

An Australian fella I spoke to shared a simple but quite poignant thought with me. He said that in 20 years time he will very likely not be still wearing a band shirt he purchased at a gig; but he may well still be displaying a framed gigposter on a wall, or at the very least have that poster stored away as part of a larger collection, something perhaps that he may even pass onto his kids someday. This observation is so simple, it's never actually occurred to me before but it makes a lot of sense and provides real encouragement in continuing to design and be involved in the work that I, and other, artists do.

Sincere thanks, Liverpool, you've been a lovely place to visit. See you next time.


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Screenadelica 2011

Fellows! I will be in attendance to this here exhibition-slash-selling event which takes place in Liverpool as part of the Liverpool Sound City festival.

19th, 20th, and 21st May from 3pm daily at 34 Slater Street (former International/Art Organisation Gallery) (see map here!).


Here is some Official Screenadelica Blurb:

"Screenadelica is a gig poster exhibition, celebrating the art of the screen printed gig poster, held during Liverpool Sound City festival. Playing host to both UK and international artists, Liverpool shall see a wide variety of styles promoting the bands the artists love, inspired by the music they hear. With digital download taking over the music scene, the desire to still own something physical makes the screen printed poster all the more important, driving artists to create pieces of art for each show which encapsulates the music in their eyes. This then means that rather than one artist representing the bands sound, they get a whole range of interpretations of their music thru the screen printed gig poster."

Other artists in attendance include: Luke Drozd, We Three Club, Nick Rhodes, Tiny Little Horse, Michael Cowell, Horse, Paul Rafferty, Craig Robson, & John Biddle.

The gallery space will also have a bar with a specially curated line up of bands and visuals featuring from 8pm each evening, and there will also be live t-shirt printing taking place where you can take away a shirt-based souvenir of the event.

Bonus event!

This happens to be going on at the same time: Ghosts of Birds Gone - "Raising a creative army for conservation through a series of multimedia exhibitions that breathe artistic life back into extinct bird species, celebrating their diversity thru paintings & sculpture, talks & poetry, installations & live music."

More info here: (apologies that's a FB link, I know some people are loathe to have an account...)
As a fan of birds, I also sometimes like to look at pictures of birds, even extinct ones, so I'll probably check this out.

See you in Liverpool then, yeah?

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Forgetters poster process

My WYSAS friends and I were pretty excited about putting on the Forgetters from Brooklyn, NY being that it's the new musical outlet for Blake Schwarzenbach of Jawbreaker fame. I decided to whip up a very small run of posters to commemorate the gig.

I was inspired by the opening track from their 7", Vampire Lessons, which contains the line, "I need a companion to stalk the night," which brought to my mind the image of a cloaked figure stalking the night. Blake's lyrics are well known for their dark-but-tender leanings, so the idea that this cloaked, devil-like figure might actually be a lonely soul is something I wanted to convey with him protectively cradling a heart.

I wanted to keep things simple and work quickly on this one, so went with a silhouette and floral texture background. Here's the end result:


The printing session went well - I actually think I spent the most time on mixing the inks to get the exact shades I wanted. With simple designs such as this, colour is hugely important. If the blue had been too bright or saturated I think it would have spoiled the mood of the piece.

Here's some snaps of the printing process:

I also put together a flyer/poster to advertise the gig, which obviously has a different purpose and needs to contain more information than a poster designed as a memento, but fortunately I was able to tie the two designs together:


The gig itself was great, I enjoyed it a lot. Thanks to everyone who attended, the other bands who played, and the soundman for doing a spot on job of making it all sound sweet.

As mentioned, this is a super-limited run and they are now available in the shop:

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Behold Behance

I've started to upload select projects to my Behance Profile, beginning with the work I did on FLOOD. 

I've gone into a little more detail behind some of the decisions with the logo and type choices, and you can have a look here: