The Whiff of Britain and other things

Ta da! You can now see the illustrations I have created for Space NK's new fragrance line - Beautannia.
This has been one of my favourite commissions, and it was a pleasure to work with the lovely lovely Jenny Dyson and her team at Pencil HQ. The idea of the brief was to immerse my eyes in British fashion and culture, using the names of the new fragrances as starting points - Bloomsbury, Brideshead and Balfour. Having just read a Bloomsbury-ites biography and been thrilled at the stories, and then beginning to acquaint myself with Nancy Mitford and Evelyn Waugh's letters to each other, I was naturally overjoyed at the images I could draw from, oh the clothes! oh the facial hair! oh oh oh! After collapsing in a taffeta overload and quickly reminded that we didn't live in the 20s anymore, my sketches evolved to looking at modern fashion designers and the shapes and references that were being used on this seasons catwalks. Subtle lifestyle pointers were added to enhance the characters stories and suggest the type of person that embodies the new quintessential British fragrances. I thoroughly enjoyed the process of creating the fictional couples, who had to feel like more than a drawing and reflect the product, I felt like a cross between a stylist with an un-ending closet and a mini-god - most gratifying!
Also my website has been updated with the projects I have been working on since May...maybe you would like to have a look?


Turner Monet Twombly

I'm back now at last after 2 months on and off in Stockholm. I had the very good luck to catch the opening of the Turner Monet Twombly show at Moderna Museet. It was quite remarkable to see their work arranged side by side... the similarities and evolution were really striking. I also had the luck of coming just after a big guided tour moved on from Twombly's The Four Seasons, and I could spend a good old time with them. They're so powerful all together and with a bit of space around. I wish I could have them in a big ol room all to myself. There's so much in there.


Jesper Waldersten

Hej there, I just had a look at Jesper Walderstens one drawing a day for 365 days project and I thought many of them looked pretty damn good, what do you think? Otherwise I am preparing for the big trip to Paris, it's only really a week, but I have a list of museums and libraries that I hope to visit for this project I'm working on, I'm heading there on Sunday and it should be a lot of fun



Now I am relatively un-busy I have been trying to keep in a routine, right now I am in bed but I am sorting out admin and collecting things to blog about. Does that count as a good working practice? Anyway I found this and I loved it, specially since I have had to be part of the Londoners commute for a month or so. It was exciting at first and I strode purposefully through stragglers and tourists, Carly Simon's 'Let the River Run' giving meaning to my mornings. Then I realised I was becoming someone else, someone I didn't particularly like, who was impatient, rude and had no time for other travellers. Technically I didn't, because my time keeping is not impeccable, but still I remember that before I would treasure my little knowledge of the big city and feel genuinely chuffed when someone did ask me. Living in London, I thought, was like when you learn the traffic light system of the Glasgow Charring Cross motorway crossing - when you figure it out, for a moment you are master of the city. 
I began to wonder why I was so cross and grouchy, making snide comments to people who were lost or stood in MY way! Shocking! I like to think it is a combination of the unbearable heat on the underground and the people in suits, who cram themselves into the carriages - folding themselves up before adding themselves to the mass of grey and ties, edging towards opening doors and jockeying for the front position. Their mindset is infectious, you start to hear what they can hear in their heads - 'surely I am the most important person, with important things to do and no time for dilly-dallying, not for one second.' This is when it struck me. I am a Londoner now.


ah, bonaparte

I think right now Bonaparte is perfect, for this sunday night.
for example here
and these lyrics seem like the ideas to keep in mind whilst working.
ah or here
so, I just thought I'd share that.

exhibitions, school and stuff in general

I went to see two exhibitions last week, Taryn Simon at Neue Nationalgalerie and then the Prize for young artists from the Nationalgallery at Hamburger Bahnhof, a prize of 50 000 Euros..which I think, is a rather good prize sum to get..They were preparing for the prize cermony when we were there and now it made me happy to read that French artist Cyprien Gaillard had won it from the four nominees, I could have watched his film "Artefacts" filmed in Iraq over and over again for quite some time, with it's slow movements, colors, scenaries and the music set to it it had a kind of hypnotic feeling that at least worked very well on me. The film will be on until 8th of January so if in Berlin don't miss out on it. For samples of his other work have a look here or here for information about the exhibition. One of the number of the interview magazin mono kultur was also about him recently so have a look at that. I guess he is everywhere right now, good on him, the film is great!
Then the Taryn Simon exhibition, so beautifully presented, perfected and designed that one almost wish someone would draw on the boxes with charcoal or spraypaint them golden or something because it is perfection almost at the limit, a friend called it "An American Blockbuster of an exhibition". So be it but the topic, the immense amount of research, the travels, the questions raised through this exhibition are all very interesting and well, very professionally presented and actually breathtaking. I also really enjoyed her work at the Venice Biennale and think her combination of art, politics and documentary are bringing shadowy topics into light in a way that maybe is best done through such clear, objective presentation and texts. I missed her talk in Berlin on Thursday, which is a shame but instead I went to Leipzig to see the Meisterschüler presentations of students at the HGB Leipzig where I am studying for my Meistershüler too, I kind off wanted to see what I could expect of this procedure where the students prepare an exhibition, hang it and stand infront of their work talking/defending it for a group of professors and fellow students since I will be doing just that next year at this time if all goes well. I really liked the work of Sebastian Speckmann, image above, have a little look here for his stunning linocuts, I must admit that my knowledge about linocuts is about zero but what he creates with his dimly lit interiors and shady greys I think is pretty amazing.
Now Im back in Berlin and have a week of work infront of me which feels very good, but first it's sunday night and doing nothing time.

Hitchcock and Design

A couple of weeks ago I had a days studio work at It's Nice That, it was great to get to work in a lovely studio and a lunchtime picnic was involved. So I was very happy. The reason for this was to create spot illustrations for their publication for London Design Festival. (I realise I am a bit late with these). The image above is a sculpture of Hitchcock that resides in Islington where he used to have studios but is now a private garden, I had NO IDEA this existed but it looks AMAZING. Who wants to go with me to see it for real?