Thursday, 2 May 2013

Logo for hairdresser 'Holly The Hair Fairy'

I was recently approached to do a logo design for a hair dresser. I have only done very little logo design since finishing the graphic design course I did in college, so I was wary as of to whether I would be able to pull it off. However she said she was after an image of scissors and also a nice type, I thought this was a great opportunity to not only challenge myself, but also to work on drawing objects and hand drawn type (things I love to illustrate!).

I started by drawing lots of different ideas and deciding which layouts worked best. I kept her updated throughout, as I thought it was really important that if this was to be her branding, she was entirely happy each step of the way. The next step was deciding on whether I would illustrate it girly, or a little bit more edgy. Holly had shown me ideas which featured floral patterning but also a more edgy tattoo inspired pattern too. I decided to attempt to draw out the scissors first and then work into the image and altering what I felt I needed to as I went along.

I finally illustrated scissors I was happy with, I didn't want to just add the floral-esque patterning on the outsides of the scissors, so made sure they were part of the actual shape. I thought this work really well, and decided to work on type.

It came down to the two ideas. I like how the first one looked better (below, left), however felt that the second (below, right) read better (before I added the connection between the words). It was really challenging to find a way in which the type would be read in the correct way. I eventually decided I would attempt to connect the text in some way subtly, so that people would subconsciously see the correct order through the connection.

Once I added the lines between the words, I asked around 20 people how they read the text, and luckily they all read it in the correct way. I thought that worked best and in that layout would fit better into a square for use on websites, business cards etc, so scanned it in, edited the levels, evened out the illustration, and added a slight texture. Heres the final outcome:

I'm really happy with how it turned out, and so is Holly The Hair Fairy!

'Nonsense' Brief set by Lord Whitney

Creatives Lord Whitney came into our studio recently to set us a brief. They came and spoke to each of us about the brief but also about our work and the things that inspire us and how we create our illustration work. They were really enthusiastic and helped me get excited about my own work. They also suggested some people to look at which was extremely helpful as they suggested I look at photographer Helmut Newton. I was very familiar with his work, however was never sure of who the photographs were by, so it was great to finally know where some of my favourite imagery actually came from!

The brief was to create a response to a nonsense poem by Edgar Lair. They encouraged us to use this brief to experiment or maybe try out a new way of working or a process we were interested in. I chose the poem:

"There was a Young Lady whose bonnet,
Came untied when the birds sate upon it;
But she said: 'I don't care!
All the birds in the air
Are welcome to sit on my bonnet!"

I just wanted to move away from digital work so much, because when I do it, it just sucks any form of passion I have for the subject out of me. I decided this would be the start of where I would do so. So as Lord Whitney suggested, I took elements from my chosen limerick and illustrated them. I then screen printed these images. I've never really done the screen printing process on my own for a quick illustration in that was so it was good for me to practice. This was my outcome:

I wasn't particularly happy with the actual drawing, although I was happy with how the prints turned out. The drawing that I put on a screen was sketchy so the actual prints ended up looking almost like chalk which was interesting. So after this I then decided to do another drawing. Here was my final piece:

I know it needs more work but as a short brief I was happy with the outcome.

Hopes, Fears and Opportunities


When I last wrote my 'hopes' for the my future both on my degree, and generally in the world of illustration, my main hope was that I personally was happy with my work, and that I felt that after 3 years of my degree I finally knew how I personally as an illustrator, illustrate. I believe that if you are happy with your own work and it really truly reflects you as an image maker, you are more confident in showing people your work and making contacts within the industry (this is most certainly the case for me anyway!).
Before I started my final major project, there was very little work of mine in terms of finished pieces that I could show in a portfolio and be truly confident in. However, since working on my final major project and working with subjects that I found interesting, my work really started to become more connected to me, and as I was working with subjects I cared about, I also cared more about how they looked and worked as a piece. I also began to think “How will I work once I leave?” (without the input of tutors or peers) so I spent a lot of time pretending I was already at that stage, this really helped me define my way of working!
I hoped that my website, portfolio, business cards etc. would all fit together, through doing my final major project I feel this has began to happen. So now, I am at a stage, where I have a portfolio I am finally happy with, which clearly shows the kind of work I would like to be commissioned for, and business cards and a website which represent me in a way of which I am happy with. I am hoping I can use these tools and the confidence having these things has helped me gain, to get out there, show my work to potential clients and make the contacts, and take the steps forward I need to, to move on and get where I want to be!


When I last wrote about my fears, I stated “I guess my main fear is just that at the end of all this I'm not happy with my work.”, I'm pleased with the work I have produced recently and this really has made me more optimistic about moving forward. The main reason I decided to do an illustration degree was to find out how I draw, I needed those three years to find myself as an illustrator and although I may not be 100% there, its certainly starting to feel a lot like it. So this fear has since gone! However, as mentioned in my last “Hopes, Fears and Oppurtunites” although I like my work, I obviously still fear that no-one else will, that I won't get work, but I guess this is a fear everybody has, and I can't let this kind of fear get in the way of me moving forward. One thing however which is quite scary to me is the business side of things, I tend to find dealing with money and official rules confusing or stressful, so thats something I need to look into (So although it is a fear of mine, it is something I can educate myself on). Another fear of mine is that other life commitments will get in the way, I have to make money and trying to become a successful artist isn't the easiest way to do this, I am scared that I may not be able to move forward, I don't want to lose the momentum the past couple of weeks has built up, so I need to constantly find ways to make sure I am inspired and continue to create work.


For my whole life I have been saying “When I leave University I want to...” (and reeling off a list of all the life plans I have made!). Although it is extremely scary to be moving on into the 'real' world, its really exciting too. So along with the fears, comes a lot of potential opportunities! I have really enjoyed working on my final major project, I have created imagery for posters, postcards, books covers. I have also created patterns which is something I have wanted to have the opportunity to do for a long time. Over the past few years I have been lucky enough to work with some really talented people as an both an illustrator and a photographer. I hope in the future I continue to be lucky enough to involved in their projects as I always receive great feedback and it is really encouraging to know people who are extremely talented themselves in their own creative fields value my work. I really hope I get the opportunity to work for clients in the future who I am excited about. I certainly work best when I care about what I am illustrating so working with more interesting people would be great. I really would like to create my own products and begin to sell them, this is something I have wanted to do for as long as I can remember, so I really hope I can find the opportunity to make my products successful! I am just hoping that I am able to sustain confidence in my won work, as I think if you are confident in yourself you really can make things happen for yourself, I just need to get out there and do it!

Animated gifs!

For a requirement of our course we had to make an animation, as I had been in hospital on the days we were learning the animating skills on after effects, I had to work a way around this! Luckily a few years ago I worked out how to use photoshop to make animated gifs, so I thought I would use this way of working to animate some of my work.

My final major project revolves around female sexuality and is inspired greatly by the imagery used for strip clubs, sex shops etc. I wanted this to be a quick process because I feel my drawings are more connected to me when they have not been changed and over laboured. I quickly Made some sketches:

I then added colour to these, and animated them to make them look as through they were flashing neon signs! Heres some of them:

I am really really happy with how they turned out, I even made myself a HMJ flashing sign!