Tuesday, 22 February 2011

BLAST

I have been looking at this in relation to my current collaboration with Alice Smith and The Idler, as well my Beat Generation project.
BLAST was the short-lived literary magazine of the Vorticist movement in Britain. There were two editions published the on 2 July 1914 and the second a year later on 15 July 1915. Written primarily by Wyndham Lewis, with bright pink cover art referred to by Ezra Pound as the "great MAGENTA cover'd opusculus", the magazine is emblematic of the modern art movement in England, and is recognised as a seminal text of 20th-century modernism. I love the typography style, it is so bold brash and can't help but seem opinionated, even before you read the content there appears something confrontational and anarchic about it. The endless resource that is the reserve stock of MMU library brought me to frail papery goodness of this beautiful relic.

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Vaughan Oliver 17/02/11


Hugely anticipated lecture with renowned graphic designer, Vaughan Oliver. Vaughan showed us an extensive range of work spanning the length of his career. I am very familiar with Vaughan's work as he has been a massive influence to me and I find myself using him as a contextual reference often.
Vaughan's approach is fantastically appropriate to whatever it is applied to. His most famous works are for independent record label 4.A.D and more prominently, The Pixies, it is clear to see that Vaughan's long standing relationship and connection to the band and their music has informed his work. Vaughan manages to absolutely immerse the viewer with his visuals and really give a sense of the attitude, feeling and qualities of the band, transceding his own immersion in the music.
I found it interesting to hear how Vaughan creates these moods through collaboration, hand picking photographers for appropriate projects showing that he as a graphic designer must act as a magician in fusing each element together to create a coherent piece of design. Vaughan spoke passionatly about his work and this was inspriring that so many years on, his work is a labour of love. The highlight was a show reel of Vaughan's work played to David Sylvian's Orpheus, seeing the work to music aptly portrayed a mood and atmosphere of the work, iconic, to the point of being emotional.
Below is a link to my recording of the lecture

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

The Beat Tests

I have been experimenting with imagery for my current project based around 'The Beat Generation,' here are some examples... I am unsure what they will become yet or how I am going to develop them, still experimenting, but somewhere in between art directed and accidental...

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Sir Eduardo Paolozzi; General Dynamic F.U.N

Sir Eduardo Paolozzi
General Dynamic F.U.N
Holden Gallery, Manchester.
A New Exhibition at The Holden Gallery, Manchester features 50 photolithographs and screenprints from renowned artist and sculptor, Eduardo Paolozzi. Paolozzi places disparate images next to each other and finds a connection between the two, however tenuous this may be, the treatment and composition of his prints are striking and a social comment on the world of benevolent technology.
"Thermo-nuclear weapons systems and soft drinks commercials co-exist in an overlit realm ruled by advertising and pseudo-events, science and pornography"
I found the prints intriguing and incredibly contemporary, it is clear to see that Paolozzi (b. 1924) has been a great influence to other artist working on the topic of mass media advertising and consumerism or dealing with the diversity of the image. I find that some of the attitudes expressed in his prints are reflective of those discussed in the documentaries of Adam Curtis, a sinister undertone juxtaposed with a certain 'squeaky clean-ness' are present within Paolozzi's prints and Curtis' documentaries.
After the recently attending a lecture by Vaughan Oliver, I find the exhibition especially relevant, regarding Oliver's discussion of the importance and impact of placing two seemingly disparate images together within a graphic design context. The unexpected connection can create a sense of joy, fear, horror, beauty....or a combination of jarring emotions.
I definitely recommend this exhibition to anyone interested in the semiotics of the image and the potential subversion of that.

Never Let Me Go

I have just watched 'Never Let Me Go,' people without choices is always heartbreaking.

Lucy May Schofield

I was vaguely familiar with Lucy May Schofield's work before this lecture and I am fascinated by the intricate art of bookbinding, as I myself probably don't have the patience to be an absolute perfectionist, which seems to be a trait of bookmakers. Lucy showed us a range of beautiful books, but what was most interesting was the story behind her journey. It seems that her work, life and play are synonymous, she lives and breathes her work and her personal experiences are what fuels the content for her books. Her creative inspiration is her self and her interaction with others and the links and emotions floating in between.
I always like to hear how people get to where they are, as it is reassuring to find that it is okay (and probably a good thing) to not have a complete idea of what you want to do. Lucy is a great example of someone staying true to what they love doing despite difficulties and obstacles in terms of production and mass distribution. In fact it is all in the charm of a handmade book, that there are only a few and owning one of these few knowing each is hand finished is a very precious thought. Lucy's next venture is her 'School of Life' inspired, roaming, cathartic library this sounds fascinating and I admire her freedom to explore.
Lucy's Website (by Hilary Judd)
beautiful ready-made love note books, especially apt and inspiring near Valentine's Day

Friday, 11 February 2011

Grafik Feature

A while back, I was set the brief to Re-Brand 'God' by TDR, Creative Director, Ian Anderson. Myself and a group of designers from my course were asked to communicate our concept for a poster design, which had the possibility of being featured in the re-launch of Grafik Magazine. Grafik magazine re-launched on 10th February and I was absolutely ecstatic to find out that my poster had been featured along with Sophie Pickup, Danny Grogan, John McPartland, Rebecca Dudgon.

Johnny Hardstaff

I have just completed a two day workshop along with half of my course with inspirational designer/director/person, Johnny Hardstaff. Johnny has worked with some very impressive clients including Sony, Orange and Toyota and its no surprise because I get the impression that Johnny could sell an idea to anyone, not that he is short of them either, he has sketchbooks overflowing with unexplored ideas and it is clear that he lives and breathes his practice.
For the workshop we had to try to make the 'feeling of intoxication' appealing to a consumer, forgetting the negative stigma of alcohol and presenting it in a contemporary, innovative and fresh way. The client was Smirnoff. There were some amazing concepts and ideas flying around the room and over the course of the two days I felt utterly empowered by the enthusiasm and passion that Johnny has. I felt that I got to explore a large range of concepts in a short time. A great idea can be thought up in a moment, and what you do with that idea is when the magic happens. It was a privilege to get to work with someone like johnny and hopefully I will get to again in the future.

OWT Exhibition

Every month OWT creative produce their own zine, based around a single word. Northern creatives are invited to submit work based around the word. Four zines have been created so far; Beginnings, Reflections, Reality and Direction.
The work from zines 1-4 has recently been carefully curated into an exhibition, which is currently showing at Cord Bar, Manchester. The opening was held last Thursday, 10th, February. Each piece of work was beautifully framed and is available to purchase. The night was a huge success and upon arriving I couldn't believe the amazing turn out, clearly an immense amount of planning and organisation had gone into the exhibition and it certainly paid off. There were so many great pieces of work to be seen as well as a projected 'zine,' which combined slides brought by guests at the event. The atmosphere was incredible, I had a really great night, so well done to everyone involved and especially the OWT team, also big thanks for featuring my work, can't wait for the next zine, which is incidentally based around the word 'Atmosphere'
You can submit work for the next zine by sending submissions to submit@owtcreative.com
visit the the OWT website here
My submission for OWT 4
Projected zine
Amy Minto
my favourite piece, by Ben Kither

Friday, 4 February 2011

Gadget

Just found this whilst looking for stock imagery in a mini replica household magazine, apparently its and electronic trouser press.