Sunday, 23 December 2012

Market Stall

Spitalfields Market Stall

My mate Brenda is an up coming artist and recently created some greeting cards with features of her detailed drawing style. She wanted to test the waters and get feedback on her greeting cards, so she hired a stall in Spitalfields market, last Monday. She asked me to help her out with the prep and on the actual day. Bouncing ideas off each other I quickly rustled up a mood board which inspired the look and feel of the stall; the idea was to create a rustic/vintage look. The hats are handmade from our friend's, mother's line.

We created mini feedback sheets and gave free 'thank you' lollipops for those who filled them in. It was definitely an insightful day and would love to do it again. 

Things we learned and Tips:
Coming soon

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Design Goods: Haul

Back in October I was at my university's freshers fayre, London Graphic Centre were there giving out free goody bags and boy was I happy to get one...comon who doesn't like free DESIGN stuff hahaha. Here is what was inside:

A. Winsor & Newton, Heavy Weight Case Bound Sketch Book. A6 (48 sheets). Heavy paper, good for pencil, pen & ink and water colours.
B. Animal Clips: 6 Page Markers
C. Classicolour: 2 colour pencils
D. Winsor & Newton, Heavy Weight Wire-o Sketch Book. 12"x 12" (50 sheets) Heavy paper, good for pencil, pen & ink and water colours.

Peace =)

Saturday, 8 December 2012

Design Goods: Wishlist

Who needs a re-stock or expansion of design tools? I do!
1. Book: Tangible: High Touch Visuals
2. Book: Copywriting: Successful Writing for Design, Advertising and Marketing
3. Book: Fundamentals of Fashion Design
4. Uni Pin: Assorted Tips, Fine Line drawing pens
5. Art & Craft's Knife
6. Technical Pencil
7. Muji Acrylic Desk Top Storage Unit
8. Good Old Brown Craft Paper
9. A3 Size Cutting Mat

Saturday, 24 November 2012


1 Thessalonians 5:18 - in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

On Thursday it was thanksgiving in the USA, and though I've never celebrated it before as I live in the UK, a group of friends and I from church got together and decided to celebrate it over here along with some of our American friends. It was a lovely night and great way to take some time and think over our blessings, no matter how 'big' or 'small'. What are you thankful for??

I'm thankful for...
2. My Family, friends & peers
3. The endurance and strength God has given me over the last year to overcome all the craziness and many obstacles I have had to face lately.
4. Creativity

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Red Velvet Cupcake Themed Gift

This is my running cupcake themed, birthday gift which you can easily re-create for the cupcake lovers in your life! As a birthday gift my friend Jen wanted me to bake her Red Velvet Cupcakes. Thing is, I knew what they were and had heard about all their glory, but we didn't know what they tasted of until the summer when we visited a small, pretty bakery shop down in Brighton by the seaside. Man were they good, we had been missing out; they tasted divine! Consequently they were Jen's choice of gift, you know, something more personal and not material.

Having no clue on how to make these, I hunted down a recipe and decided to go with the London famous HummingBird bakery's recipe. It makes 12 standard sized cupcakes.

I used a piping bag to make the frosting on top fancy, then decorated them with edible silver balls and crumbled extra red velvet on top for contrast. As this was a gift, I really wanted to present them nicely, so to finish it off, I placed them in a cupcake box which holds 4. I purchased the box from my local supermarket, Sainsbury's. Lastly to add that extra personal touch I created a mini note/card and placed it on top once the frosting had set. It kind of felt like I had my own mini bakery going on. My friend loved them; definitely making for a tasty personal gift.

Friday, 16 November 2012

Roast Garlic and Rosemary Marinated English Leg of Lamb with Mint Sauce

The past weekend was pretty busy and filled with birthday celebrations. My friend Jennifer who makes the other half of Shannifer (our composite name), made a table reservation for herself and I to have dinner on the Thames at this restaurant, which is aboard a moored Yacht. We headed there straight after church. The view was nice as it looked out onto some of London's landmarks. The three course meal wasn't amazing but it was somewhat enjoyable; the starter was delicious and the main was a 6.7 out of 10, though dessert was disappointing. The overall dining experience would have been better if most of the yacht wasn't closed off, e.g the bar and the top deck, otherwise it was a great night with lovely company. As a birthday gift, Jennifer requested for me to bake her Red Velvet Cupcakes; detailed here. What are your plans for this weekend?

Thursday, 15 November 2012

London is ready for Christmas

Last Monday night, the famous Christmas lights on Oxford Street were switched on by Robbie Williams. I wasn't there on the actual night, but I was there on Thursday night and noticed that the brand Marmite (you know the product that you either love or hate) have become part of this years Christmas lights. As an interactive installation, shoppers can submit a photo of their 'love it or hate it' facial expressions, and their face will appear at a designated time on the high street. It's definitely a smart and fun campaign.

Friday, 9 November 2012

Oh Mr Lewis

Oooh Mr Lewis, or should I say the creative minds behind most John Lewis Adverts, sure do know how to tug at people's emotions. The ad below sets out to convey the message that although time may change and frivolous trends may change but the age old experience of love is a timeless and universal experience that every generation can relate to and its importance never changes. I posted previously about the creative use of split screen which is also used here; cleverly conveying three love stories and the brands message.

Christmas is quickly approaching so Mr Lewis just recently pumped out this new heartfelt Christmas ad (below). I was waiting and waiting, trying to figure out what the final reveal would be, and though only a small gesture, the small gesture speaks volumes, making the anticipation worth it. See for yourselves....I was all like 'n'awwwwww'...

...and I promise I'm not a romantic!

Technology & Fashion

With most things converging in our visual culture, digital and information age, it's interesting to see what type of developments arise as different fields combine together. Cultural Studies writer Pamela Church Gibson, finds that in order for us to gain a better understanding of our time, it is necessary for scholars and theorists alike to take on a ‘sideways’ view on cultural phenomena.

In this case pop star Nicole Scherzinger, was rocking this LED dress, aka 'twitter dress' last week, at EE's 4G mobile network launch in London; how relevant. I suspected that it may have been a new Hussein Chalayn piece, as he is renowned for incorporating technology in his designs (see this post), but the dress was actually made by fashion design company Cute Circuit. The dress is eight meters of French silk chiffon, infused with Swarovski crystals and over 2000 LED lights. When people tweet with the relevant hash tag, the LED lights on the dress display the tweeted message; pretty cool huh?

I doubt people are going to start walking around in LED dresses and suits (or will they? o_O ), but it does make me wonder how future developments and innovations like this could potentially change and open up more ways to communicate. I can definitely see something like this working in an advertising/PR campaign, well is this not one. What are your general thoughts?

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Design Goodies Haul

Friday night I met up with a couple of mates at Zizzi; just because! To my surprise, Brenda (also a creative) presented me with goodies 1 & 2, which she said were (very) belated birthday gifts. It was a very nice gesture =) . They're on my design book list, so you can only guess how excited I was, and I can't wait to get into them. Goodie 3 was also a gift I received at the actual time of my birthday from another friend. Read on to know my initial thoughts and where to buy them.

1. Lettering & Type: Creating Letters and Designing Typefaces by Willen, B & Strals, N (2009)
How-to, meets visual typeface candy, with relevant design history, theory and short sporadic exercises.

2. Typography Sketchbooks by Heller, S & Talarico, L (2012)
This book is a visual feast of all types (pun not intended) of typography and a look into sketchbooks from a broad range of graphic designers and type artists. If you're looking for type-spiration, then this book ticks that box.

3. Fifty Dresses That Changed The World by Design Museum (2009)
Starting from the 1915 Delphos pleated dress, ending at Hussein Chalayan's 2007 LED Dress, this book looks back at design history's most signature dresses. It showcases each dress and gives us a short summary on what made them so iconic. It's almost an A to Z of well known dresses & styles.
Will hopefully do another one of these more often!

Thursday, 1 November 2012

American Pancakes Recipe

I love pancakes; especially American pancakes, and don't get to make them often enough. During the summer I came across this recipe, but tweaked it a little to my taste. Wondering how to make these bad boys? Well here are some of the items and ingredients you will need:

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Swan Lake

Credit: Sian Trenberth

I had always wanted to see a ballet production and took interest long before the success of the film Black Swan made it somewhat, commercially appealing. So seeing that there were a few shows on during the summer and that they were showing around my birthday, I took the opportunity to buy tickets for the opening night of Derek Deane's production of Swan Lake at the London Coliseum, performed by the English National Ballet.

With three tiers above the stalls, the interior of the Coliseum is very beautiful and majestic. My seats were right at the very top, on the balcony tier. Though it wasn't a bad view, I have to say that the seats on that tier weren't very comfortable.

The performance itself was an atmospheric spectacle; thanks to the set production, minimalist effects and the wonderful live orchestra who played very well; im kind of a sucker for Tchaikovsky. The dancers also held their own, the formation and precision of the corps dancing in the lake was beautifully done. Some of my favourite performances were when principle dancer, Erina Takahashi performed her solo as the Black Swan and when the four swans performed the well executed and much loved 'dance of the little swans/cygnes'. My only disappointment was that the last few moments leading up to the finale could have been built up a little more.

Eventually I would like to see The Nutcracker and an Opera production. What has been your favourite ballet, opera or theater production?

Monday, 4 June 2012

Diamond Jubilee

Credit: Taken by Ham at londondailyphoto

It is the Diamond Jubilee weekend and parties and celebrations are in full swing here all over in London and the UK. The Union Jack, in its red, white and blue glory has saturated every major and minor brand, store front and high street. It's a souvenir and merchandise galore on steroids. I think its now safe to say that we have seen the Union Jack fit every possible form, shape and size known to man; haha.

So I was down in Oxford Street on Saturday and keeping to the theme and occasion, I came across this awesome wall mural outside Selfridges side entrance by Graffiti Artist Paul Don Smith.

paul don smith jubliee

With all eyes on the UK this year as the Olympics also draw near, no doubt we will see (and have already been seeing) fashion, music, art and design being heavily influenced and inspired by the UK and its culture.

And on that note, hope everyone is enjoying their Jubilee weekend / holiday! :)

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

There are two types of people...

...according to the new blackberry ad, people that are 'content to go with the flow'/'people that don't' and people who 'grab life with both hands'/'people that do'; which are you? (is the concept).

Although not totally unique, the use of the spilt screen to juxtapose two similar looking scenarios but very different outcomes, makes this ad engaging and effective. I have also seen this technique used in the movie '500 days of Summer' (see below) which was also used effectively.

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Spaces: Colour Starburst

So this is the Saguaro Palm Springs Hotel; this place sure does look like the ultimate location 'pick-me-up'. Well they do say architecture and interior design have emotional impact. It also seems to have a 1950's feel that im digging but with a modern-starburst-of-colour sorta twist.

Have you been here before? What was it like?

Monday, 7 May 2012

Tactile Typo

Stumbled upon Dominique Falla's typography work. All I will say is that the concepts and craftsmanship behind her work is intricate! Now that most things are digitally created, it definitely is nice to see a bit of tactile graphic design; which is not so often. At the very bottom is a stop motion of her journey.


Wednesday, 21 March 2012

In review + work in progress

These days I find myself always thinking and asking 'Where has the time gone?'. The last 4-5 months have been so busy and hectic with life matters, church activities, a dissertation, and minor to major deadlines that have had to be met. So far 2012 has been one big blur. I have not had the time to process recent events, which I guess is where good ol' blogging comes in useful. :P

Work in progress

I'm currently working on four final major projects. One of them is one of the YCN student awards, live creative briefs. The brief is to promote the currently unknown soft drinks company 'Feel Good Drinks Co', and their brand of drinks.
Their tone of voice is friendly, cheerful and cheeky (wanting to put a smile on peoples faces); aimed at a young market, 16-35 year olds. My approach for this project is to steer away from the cutesy innocent drinks style and tone of voice (excluding the smiling sample cups below) because its been over done and I have chosen to focus on students and young professionals as my main market. So at uni I conducted an interactive survey, in which I got students to have a sample of the drink and then draw or write in response to my research question 'what makes you smile?'.
Here are some of the results that I have now plastered on one of my walls for easier analysis and viewing...

Overall I can conclude that students are pretty much a social bunch, who love free stuff, being with their friends and other happy people.

What makes you smile? :)

Saturday, 17 March 2012

And Again... Lurpark Advert

It has been a long while since I have posted; two years to be exact; apologies to any avid readers. Well I'm back - please excuse me while I fix, adjust and kick my blog back into some sort of shape!

Loving the pacing, and overall editing of the new Lurpak advert.