See also: Samuel Palmer: Vision and Landscape - review by Andrew Graham-Dixon in The Daily Telegraph, 13 November 2005.
See also: Samuel Palmer: Vision and Landscape - review by Andrew Graham-Dixon in The Daily Telegraph, 13 November 2005.
This birthday card for Isabel was inspired by my new hobby - catching snails munching holes in the plants in my parents' garden... and hurling them over the fence!
"Charlotte Blacker (Stompy the Bear) is back and made this little dreamy world for a little girl who LOVES mud to romp around in. I love that she has red hair just like Rachel Flotard who sings with me on this song. Enjoy and stay dirty kids!"
SONG OF THE DAY: BMX Bandits - Getting Dirty *
A group of Big Issue vendors have got together with ad agency M&C Saatchi and independent typographer Stephen Kenny of A Two Pipe Problem Letterpress to design and create their own adverts, using 19th century letterpress equipment.
The national print and outdoor campaign, #SupportLocalBusiness, aims to highlight the fact that Big Issue vendors are small businesses in their own right, earning their living rather than receiving charity. The video above documents the project and includes interviews with the vendor designers.
* SONG OF THE DAY: Towa Tei & Kylie Minogue - GBI (German Bold Italic) *
Cathy's favourite film is The Wizard of Oz, and she does seem a long way from her English home now she has a new one in Alberta, Canada - but there's still no-one like her.
* SONG OF THE DAY: Elvis Costello - Red Shoes *
This is my beautiful new brooch, handmade by Gabi Reith of Small Stories. I've been ogling her work for a while now, especially her limited edition, handpainted wooden brooches, which are inspired by fairy tales and nursery rhymes.
I promised myself that if I got some birthday money I would buy one! I did, so this 'The Bear Went Over The Mountain' brooch is all mine. It's gone on my new winter coat and it makes me happy every time I look at it.
* SONG OF THE DAY: The Shamen - Move Any Mountain *
This witty hand-drawn animation presents some seriously weird science in a way even I can understand! You can see more of Grace's illustration work on her website: www.gracehelmer.co.uk
* SONG OF THE DAY: Thomas Dolby - She Blinded Me With Science *
5th June 2013 - Edited to add: Grace's work The Fugitive has just won the V&A Museum's Student Illustrator of the Year!
This is a gift for Sean and Aileen on their first anniversary. Aileen loves sheep.
When she was getting married, Aileen sent me a swatch of the fabric of her dress, so I could match it with some satin flowers I was making for her (to be fashioned into a beautiful hairslide - see below - by our friend Cathy). I still had this little piece of material a year later, so I used it to back a heart cut-out on the reverse of this loveheart (but I seem to have forgotten to take a pic of this view before I put it in the post!).
* SONG OF THE DAY: The Housemartins - Sheep *
Sarah and Tim love travelling round Switzerland, so for Sarah's 30th birthday I thought I'd try and recreate a Swiss landscape for her in a diorama, with some Swiss-style road signs for her name and age. She loves it - hooray! (Or yodelay-hee-hoo!
* SONG OF THE DAY: Kate Bush - King of the Mountain *
'Stompy The Bear' is a joymaking collaboration between singer songwriter Caspar Babypants and knitting animator Charlotte Blacker (see my previous post about her short film 'Little Red Plane'.)
Thanks go to Charlotte's dad, Roy, for contacting me to tell me about it! (My dad is also called Roy... aww.) And now for some more bear-based fun with everyone's favourite quirky Quebecoises...
* SONG OF THE DAY: Tricot Machine - L'Ours *
Cathy and Tim moved to their new home in Canada last October while Cathy was pregnant, and they now have a baby boy, Harry. I made this for him. Harry and his mum are travelling to England this weekend so I hope to meet him soon!
* SONG OF THE DAY: Deniece Williams - Let's Hear It For The Boy *
I had to make something special for Rachel's 40th birthday, and once I'd remembered that her favourite film is Cabaret, and put a mood board together on Pinterest, I had the idea for this diorama, which puts Rae on stage at the Kit Kat club, complete with bowler hat.
It's cut from thin card and stitched with sequins, and folds flat for storage.
Design and images (c) Kristen Bailey 2012
* SONG OF THE DAY: Liza Minelli - Mein Herr (from 'Cabaret') *
The Little Red Plane is a gorgeous knitted animation by Charlotte Blacker, a stop motion/2D animator and compositor living both in London and Wakefield, West Yorkshire.
She graduated from The University of Central Lancashire in 2010 with a First in Animation and later went on to win a Royal Television Society Award for The Little Red Plane.
She's currently working on more film projects, hopefully involving knitting - so watch this space!
* SONG OF THE DAY: Suzy Bogguss & Tom Russell - Outbound Plane *
'The Martlets Tree' is a piece of public sculpture which stands in Queens Square in Crawley town centre. It's covered in metal cut-outs of birds (the mythical 'martlet') loosely held onto the branches so that they move and shimmer with the breeze. Last week I caught it looking at its best - in brilliant sunshine under a blue sky - casting wonderful shadows and bouncing bird-shaped light off the pavement in the shade.
All images (c) Kristen Bailey 2011
* SONG OF THE DAY: Elbow - The Birds *
A lovely charity shop find - this time in the Relate shop in Broadfield, Crawley - the December 1963 edition of Patons 'Stitchcraft' magazine for 10p! I going to buy it anyway so the pattern for a felt applique of Royal Pavilion in Brighton (my 'home' town) was a bonus!
I love seen the Pav rendered in stitches - most recently a knitted version by Peter from Temptation cafe in the North Laine. Well done sir!
* SONG OF THE DAY: The Lemonheads - Big Gay Heart *
This post is part of Magpie Monday - your chance to share your second-hand treasures.
This diorama was based on three of my sister's favourite pop songs. 'Walk On' is by U2 - she has these words tattooed on her ankle! 'Learn To Fly' is by Foo Fighters and she loves the video especially (any excuse for Dave Grohl and chums to dress up!). And that little bird sitting on the fence is a reference to 'Blackbird', her favourite Beatles song.
* SONG OF THE DAY: Juliana Hatfield - My Sister *
Look what I made - it's a foldable pop-up diorama! I went to a workshop (in December - yes, am crap at getting posts finished!) at Hove Museum run by lovely local artist Lizzie Thomas, who is part of the Unravelled group of craft-based artists (also lovely - the ones I've met anyway!).
Lizzie showed us several samples she'd made using the same basic principles, and although they looked scarily complex, she explained everything so clearly we all came away after two hours with complete and fairly fancypants versions of our own! All just from some pieces of card and careful scalpel work.
Mine is a secret garden. (I must re-read 'The Secret Garden'...)
A great tip from Lizzie was to cut all or part of the back of the diorama away and cover the aperture with artists' tracing paper. Then you get a lovely effect with diffused light shining through. You even place in in front of a candle if you were VERY careful. Maybe one of those fake LED candles would be better!
Since I did this I've made a few more, mainly as birthday cards, so I'll post some photos of them shortly. This is a fascinating craft, I really want to explore it further!
* SONG OF THE DAY: Dawn Penn - The First Cut Is The Deepest *
Storm in a Royal Delft Teacup, by John Lumbus (c) Laikingland
I would LOVE this teacup automata - turn the handle and and the golden boat rides the mechanical waves, while above the stormy clouds reveal a shining bolt of lightning.
It's by artist John Lumbus, who has worked with the Cabaret Mechanical Theatre in Covent Garden. Why don't you put the kettle on, wet the tea, and while it brews, watch this video of a earlier version in motion?
* SONG OF THE DAY: The Fortunes - Storm In A Teacup *
Just complete a simple registration, then upload your own image (I've used my 'Duck House' design here), and the site will reproduce it as a patchwork pattern in your choice of 5, 10 15 or 20 colours, either in basic squares (either 10x15 or 20x30) or in squares and triangles (24x36), in a downloadable PDF which includes your individual colour key and tips on how to create your quilt.
You could also use your pattern as a cross stitch chart. I might try making my pattern up as a paper collage using colour torn from magazines. Thank you V&A!
The Klencke Atlas, 1660 © 2010 The British Library Board.
A tasty Culture24 Picture Special: Magnificent Maps: Power, Propaganda and Art at the British Library
My very dear friend Joe, who is like the big brother I never had, has reached 40! He is not very impressed by this. I wanted to make a special card for him, and it took a long time to come up with the idea, but I'm pleased with how it came out.
Photo: PAUL GROVER
Via The Telegraph: When he was twelve, Andy Holden was taken to the Great Pyramid of Giza. While he was there he broke off a piece of the stone and took it back home with him. When his parents found out, they were furious.
As an adult, he was still consumed with guilt, and in 2008 he went back to the Great Pyramid and returned the stone to its original place. He then spent a year creating this 10ft high knitted replica of the stolen stone.His show, Art Now: Andy Holden is on at Tate Britain till April 10th, and includes video footage of his him returning the stone to the Great Pyramid.
Back in Crawley to see my folks a few weeks ago, I went to a 'Japanese Cultural Event' at Crawley's lovely new library. I have more enthusiasm for, than knowledge of, Japanese culture. Mainly the tradional stuff - geisha, kimono, graphic prints - but also modern phenomenon such as cosplay, especially the sort of outfits worn by the 'Harajuku kids' made famous by street fashion magazine FRUiTS. So it was great to get a good introduction from a Japanese person who lives in Britain.
Akemi Solloway is a lecturer and consultant on Japanese culture, and leads study visits to Japan. She started by explaining that she wears kimono all the time - she had her train ticket tucked in her obi! What really surprised me was that everything else she needed - purse, keys, etc - she kept in the long 'pockets' of her kimono sleeves. She also explained that while the fan she had on her was wooden, she sometimes carried a metal fan which could be used for self-defence if walking alone at night!
Akemi dressed a volunteer in a summerweight cotton kimono known as a yukata, and tied an obi round her waist which she finished with a big bow. The lady said it was likely wearing a corset - rather tight but good for your posture!
Then Akemi took us through part of the tea ceremony. Along the way she told us loads about Japanese history and modern Japanese culture, and told us about the two-day Japanese Art Festival she runs in Richmond every year, which includes art, music and food. This year it's 27-28 February, and it's FREE! I really hope I can get there.
Via CraftStylish: This is a beautiful stop-motion animation, made for the New Zealand Book Council by Anderson M Studio. It's been created from the pages of a book ('Going West' by Maurice Gee) - goodness knows how long it must have taken!
It reminds me of Su Blackwell's work, especially the ad she did for Beringer wine (below). I love stop-motion animation but am in awe of the animators - I just don't think I'd have the patience (or skill!) required to produce it myself!
Johanna is a fashion knitwear designer from the Faroe Islands – a small group of islands in the North Atlantic Sea, famous for having twice as many sheep as people and a strong tradition for knitting. Her garments are made by women from the Faroes and the Ukraine, where knitting is also an important part of the heritage.
Just look at the unihibted use of colour and pattern - great styling on this shoot, too. It makes me want to go and raid my cupboards for an outfit full of clashing colours and textures - or maybe chop up three patterned jumpers from the charity shop to make myself a new sweater dress... mmmmmmm!!!
All images (c) Steinum.net
I've just discovered 'bad craft' site Regretsy, and I haven't laughed so much in ages! Regretsy (tagline 'Handmade? It looks like you made it with your feet.') trawls Etsy for examples of truly excruciating handiwork and takes the p*** mercilessly.
They're currently mining a particularly rich seam of Twilight fan art. Other enticing categories include Dead Things, Pet Humiliation and Spelling Issues. It's a guilty pleasure, in the same vein as red carpet fashion site Go Fug Yourself. For more bad craft, there's also Craftastrophe and Glitter Gone Bad.
* SONG OF THE DAY: McAlmont and Butler - What's The Excuse This Time? *
There's a chap reading a newspaper, seated next to a lady with a flask of tea...
... and a kissing couple!
I love automata. I enjoyed making the sheep automata for my mum, and I'd like to learn how to design one myself. I'm not a woodworker so I'd like to see if I could make a fabric one - over an armature of some sort I guess.
Rob Ives' Paper Engineering and Pop-ups for Dummies looks like it might be a good starting point.
* SONG OF THE DAY: The Rolling Stones - Start Me Up *
Spotted this ad for the Mental Health Foundation's Tea & Talk campaign, at Victoria Station (London) last week. I thought it was lovely - both the graphic and the sentiment. I've suffered from depression at several points in my life, and during those times I always found meeting with a friend to talk (sometimes about what was troubling me, sometimes about anything but!) was good medicine.
It takes you out of yourself, stimulates your brain and refreshes your perspective on life. Conversation: to be taken several times a week, either in person, over the phone or online.
I spent a few days in Kent last week seeing my old schoolfriend Sharry. The trip was mainly to do with my forthcoming bridesmaidly duties, but Sharry was lovely enough to give me my fix of charity shops, in Maidstone. The very last one we went in - and nearly didn't because at first - it seemed to be a furniture-only shop - turned up this gem of a book, Seeing London, written and illustrated by Dale Maxey, printed in 1966.
I always look at the kids' books in charity shops to see if there are any by my favourite illustrators (Janet and Allan Ahlberg, Jill Barklem's Brambly Hedge books) or that just catch my eye. This was only 50p, AND has a sort-of bus on the front cover, so I just grabbed it without much flicking through it! But when we got home, and I starting looking at it properly, I got more and more excited...
It's a children's guide to London, with wonderful illustrations, hand-drawn maps and lovely writing, describing six different excursions you could take from Trafalgar Square on a big red doubledecker bus, to museums, galleries and landmarks where you don't need to be with an adult to get in (you can tell it's 40 years old!). Maxey says that London's buses remind him of elephants, "lumbering along through the mist that often seems to shroud the city", and this theme runs through the illustrations.
The covers and endpapers are in full colour but most of the illustrations are in just black and white, sometimes with red accents. There are two full colour maps of London (click on them for larger versions)...
... and several monochrome ones, labelled with the various places visited in each excursion:
The pictures are bursting with life and good humour. Just look at this one, enticing you to take a dip in the Serpentine Lido. I love the girl holding her nose as she goes under the water - especially the way her hair and the skirt on her swimming costume are flying up!
I couldn't find a biog of Dale Maxey online, but he seems to have concentrated on children's books, including illustrations for an edition of Edward Lear's The Owl & The Pussycat.
You can find Dale Maxey images on Google. I'll carry on scanning in this book and put my images in a Dale Maxey set on Flickr, and set up a Dale Maxey group, see if anyone bites. Ateeeeeeeeeeen'shun!!!
19.03.2014 - edited to add: For more info on the work of Dale and Betty Maxey, read this lovely post on the Fishink blog: http://fishinkblog.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/dale-maxey-illustrator-from-the-1950s
Housing and homelessness charity Shelter is running a campaign called House of Cards, to highlight the plight of thousands of people whose homes have been repossessed, and the lack of sufficient social housing.
A TV ad (below) has been produced to promote the campaign and Shelter has asked 52 artists and designers to created artwork for each card of a deck of playing cards. Their designs will be exhibited at the Haunch of Venison art gallery, and auctioned in aid of Shelter.
Shelter has run a competition to design the deck's Eight of Clubs, and this (above) is my entry. I've made the eights 'clubs' into trees, around a figure-of-eight pond, with ducks and a duck house, as a nod to the recent 'MP's expenses' furore. It's paper collage on a handknitted background. All entries are being put to a public vote online from 21 to 29 August - so if you like my design, I'd really appreciate it if you'd vote 'Love It'! :)
* SONG OF THE DAY: Orbital - I Wish I Had Duck Feet *
I love Royal Mail's latest Special Issue stamps, which feature traditional British post boxes. I've been a letter writer all my life, and I love anything with a red post box on - I even collected Postman Pat stuff when I was a teenager (although I see that lately he's sold out to The Man, presumably to fund the purchase of his new helicopter).
I take photos of postboxes, and am part of Flickr's Postboxes by Postcode Area group. I'm currently knitting Jean Greenhow's Christmas postbox for myself, and if I had a little extra cash I'd love to give an appreciative home to one of British Cream Tea's amazingly detailed, beautifully made Red Postbox felt sculptures.
Image (c) British Cream Tea
The LEGO shop had a really detailed model of a hotel in its window, and I thought it must be a special display item, but when I went in I found a whole range of these premium models, available as kits. They're expensive but would be really fun to make (but a bugger to dust)!
I love fairground imagery. There are some lovely things on Etsy, including gorgeous prints of carousels and helter-skelters. For a treasure trove of fairground images, check out the National Fairground Archive at the University of Sheffield.
* SONG OF THE DAY: Dead or Alive - You Spin Me Round *
Clip from Bagpuss (c) Smallfilms. Via YouTube
The other day I saw a clip from my childhood favourite, Bagpuss, of the mice from the mouse organ singing their little song, and it struck me that they would make great poster children for the credit-crunch era - being very into 'make do and mend':
We will find it
We will bind it
We will stick it with glue glue glue
We will stickle it
Every little bit of it
We will fix it like new new new
Clip of Bagpuss (c) Smallfilms. Via YouTube.
You can buy a CD of songs and music from Bagpuss, which was written by John Faulkner and his co-writer Sandra Kerr, who also voiced Gabriel the toad and Madeleine the rag doll (did anyone else always assume that Gabriel and Madeleine were a couple?)
I love the old ceramic name tiles many of the streets in Hove near me have. I can't find any info about how far back they date from but I'm guessing they're Victorian.
Some of them are a bit worse for wear but I'm glad they've not been replaced.
Some have even been remounted on new walls.
So good they named it twice...
* SONG OF THE DAY: Teenage Fanclub - I Need Direction *
Via the Simply Knitting newsletter: A traditional wooden boat in an unusual knitted coat will be on display at The Customs House, South Shields, from 12 Jun - 21 Jul 2009. Artist Ingrid Wagner worked with Esen Kaya, visual arts development officer at the Custom House and lots of knitters to create the fabric to cover the boat.
School children, college kids and knitters of all ages and abilities have been busy working on all sorts of accessories for the boat. Over 300 knitters have been involved with the project, both locally and from around the world. The boat was built by the Northeast Maritime Trust. On 12 July it will be launched into the Tyne! More...