Wednesday, 15 December 2010

100 Artists for World Aids Day

Still looking to buy those last minute Christmas pressies? Then look no further. Why not pop along to The Phoenix Gallery in Brighton this Friday 17th Dec between 4pm-9pm? The gallery will be featuring artwork from up to one hundred south-east based visual artists and makers (including yours truly) to raise awareness of World Aids Day and funds for The Sussex Beacon.

There will be entertainment, food and lots of beautiful and original artwork to buy. I hope you can make it!




Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Sunday, 22 August 2010

Festive Fun

I'm still here! And still working on Chr!$*^@s designs. Here is my latest giftwrap design which is available for licensing through my agent: Advocate Art.

Please throw ideas my way if there is a gift wrap or card design you would love to see but have not as yet been able to find. Cheers!


Monday, 5 July 2010

Ch******* Time!

Here are some new Ch******* card designs which can be licensed/purchased through my agent, Advocate Art. I can only apologise for posting this so early on in the year!




Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Blue Tit



I've just finished this little painting for my Grandad for Grandad's Day on Sunday, but it's a secret shhhhh!

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Assignment 7

Sorry I've been a bit slow about posting this one, but I've been a busy bee...26 line conversation between two characters, doctor and patient. Each line of the dialogue starting with the next consecutive letter of the alphabet. First line starts with M, last line starts with L:

Mrs Samson?

No, no Doctor, please call me Sylvia.

Okay Sylvia, what seems to be the problem?

Postmen.

Quivering with anxiety, she repeated herself: P-Postmen, I think I’m allergic

Royal mail, he smiled, or postmen in general?

Seriously Doctor, this is no joke – ever since the new postie started his job, I get palpitations every time I hear that Italian accent of his, or see him strolling up the garden path.

That is unusual…have you been experiencing any other symptoms?

Unease, nausea, dry mouth, breathlessness, excessive sweating and at times I become light-headed.

Virtually all of the symptoms you describe, Sylvia, seem to indicate that you are suffering from a phobia rather than an allergy.

Well that’s ridiculous, why on earth would I be scared of the postman?

Xenophobia is what I am proposing - a fear of foreigners or strangers.

You think I’m racist?

Zero tolerance is my policy on racism, and besides, my Grandmother is Italian and I don’t believe she has ever caused me to have palpitations.

At no point did I suggest you are racist Mrs Samson, but perhaps it is change or the unconventional that you fear.

Beta blockers might be a means by which you could control your anxiety; Propranolol may do the trick.

Could give them a go I guess Doctor, but I don’t know why a woman of my age would despair at a handsome Italian delivering her mail.

Doesn’t make sense at all if you ask me!

Ever thought you might be attracted to this man Mrs Samson?

Fluttering heart, adrenaline pumping around your body…all of the signs are there.

Guess you could be right Doctor.

Hands are sweaty just thinking about it.

I don’t know why I didn’t see it before.

Just glad I could help Mrs Samson.

Know any cures Doctor?

Love is the drug I’m thinking of Mrs Samson…

Thursday, 13 May 2010

Sausage Arm

Assignment 6: 107 words, must contain the word 'sausage'.

This patient presented at the surgery today complaining of numbness creeping through her left arm with restricted range of movement in the wrist and fingers.

On examination: skin clammy to the touch. Early signs of hypopigmentation and extensive ballooning of the forearm, hand and fingers. Fingers lack definition – difficult to decipher where the arm ends and hand begins.

Blood investigations indicate high cholesterol.

Probable diagnosis: Botulusarmo (“Sausage Arm”)

Action taken: advised to reduce intake of red meat – pork in particular and to avoid dogs at all costs. Discussed cure by salting.

Treatment: 500g sodium chloride. Rub into skin twice daily and leave to dry. Follow-up 6 wks.

Thursday, 29 April 2010

Peepshow at Pick Me Up

(Pictured artwork by Chrissie MacDonald from Peepshow)

Last weekend I was invited to help Peepshow run a print workshop at "Pick Me Up" which is running at Somerset House in London.

Lots of lovely artists can be found at this Contemporary Graphic Art Fair, and for just £3 you can even make and take home your very own masterpiece courtesy of Peepshow.

Ever wanted to stick your head inside a giant bottom? Well Le Gun have put together a display which makes this all very possible...

Other artists and collectives exhibiting and selling work at this venue include Nobrow, It's Nice That, Print Club London, Concrete Hermit, and you can even see Rob Ryan and his team cutting out delicate paper designs in his purposefully built studio.

Wondering what to do this weekend? Then pop along for a peek at Pick Me Up.

Sunday, 11 April 2010

Hooray!

I have a shiny new computer, so I can keep on blogging...how exciting!

So here is Assignment 5:

Ok. Choose a proverb or well-known saying. Write a story with that as your theme. Each of the words from the proverb must start a new sentence of your story. These should appear consecutively. E.g. Look before you leap. 'Look' starts your first sentence, 'Before' starts your second, and so on. As long or as short as you like.


Procrastination creeps up on a person often disguised in the form of someone or something they are familiar with, and before they know it they have let down their guard, and become both criminal and victim of a very serious crime.

Is that my phone bleeping? I find myself thinking (knowing full well that I had turned it off so I could concentrate on the task in hand).

The thought leads to a train of thoughts and I find myself calling my mother (who I haven’t spoken to in at least a day), but she isn’t home, so I call my brother, but he isn’t home either, so I start scrolling through my list of contacts…

Thief! I want to shout, as I realise the day has vanished with little evidence of accomplishment, but I realise that the only perpetrator is quite literally under my own nose, and I chuckle at myself going cross-eyed trying to look the culprit in the face.

Of course there is always tomorrow – I’ll do some work then, I promise myself, but the promise is an empty one.

‘Time’ is normally a punishment for those that do the crime, but to sufferers of procrastination, it’s like a bag of swag and they dare to offend time and time again

Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Eek!

To the detriment of my sanity my computer sadly keeled over...however a shiny new one is on its way, so do come back for more blogging soon...

Friday, 19 March 2010

Assignment 4

Assignment 4: 125 words. First and last sentence must be the same.

Her throat began to swell, or so she thought. She put her hands up to her neck; there was nothing to report. But it felt real, like she’d been feasting on balloons in the middle of the night and one had become wedged. It began to expand, pushing down on her chest and up and out through her ears. She felt woozy. The bigger it grew, the more her heart raced – she felt sure she would pop, but the day went by and the pop never came.

As night approached, the balloon began to deflate, and her heart began to relax. Peace. But the morning soon arrived. Her eyes came to. Her brain began to whirr. Her throat began to swell, or so she thought.

Sunday, 7 March 2010

Assignment 3: RADIO STAR

Assignment: 99 words. Title: Radio Star. You cannot use the letter E.

A radio star in many ways is an optimal companion.

With an ability to look as old, young, ugly or alluring as your imagination will allow, company of such quality will in no way find you wanting.

Fantastic for all occasions, your companion will charm you with musical flair and you can sing or jig along to your pick of songs morning, noon and night.

In a loving mood? Simply turn your radio star on with a flick of a switch.

Dating a star known globally by many is a sound and satisfying way of making your pals’ jaws drop.


This one was a little tricky, but not a scratch on the novel called "A Void" by Oulipo member Georges Perec, which he wrote entirely without using the letter E. The novel was originally written in French; "La Disparition" (1969), and was later translated into English using the same constraints.

Sunday, 28 February 2010

Ambitious Trousers

Assignment 2: AMBITIOUS TROUSERS. That's your title, which does not necessarily have to be in the main text. Exactly 100 words, please.

I could take on the world in those, I thought; the high nipped-in waist; five perfectly-formed red buttons; hip-skimming soft black fabric highlighted with fine red stripes (of the pin variety), each held in line by a very satisfying 2.5” cuff.

I headed straight for the fitting room, imagining a female version of Clark Kent stepping into a phone box, to emerge as … Michelin Man. I had to tackle the buttons – a superhero’s nemesis. Last one…there. Note to self: must not breathe.

“Any good?” enquired the assistant.
“Just right," I said. My face had turned blue.

Sunday, 21 February 2010

Assignment 1

Assignment : Seventy-five words exactly. The piece must contain the words 'question', 'library', 'invisible' 'nurse' and 'ambition'. The piece must end with one of these words.

She rarely spoke. Some would question her mental state, but this child was bright and full of ambition. The library was her favourite haunt. She fingered each book, searching for the ideal occupation: dentist, nurse, doctor…SURGEON.

It began with Teddy’s leg. Amputation. The stitches were crude and some stuffing escaped, but with practice…

She progressed from toys to small creatures: a winged mouse. Perfect, she thought, tying off the thread, the seams now almost invisible.

“To be or not to be: that is the quibble”

(Oulipo Compendium. Ed. H Matthews & A Brotchie 2005. P.202)


I am first and foremost an illustrator, and recently completed an MA in Sequential Illustration at the University of Brighton, but during the course I also became interested in writing, and have managed to persuade my ex-tutor and friend to set me a writing task every week, each with a very specific set of rules and constraints.

Oulipo (founded by Raymond Queneau and François Le Lionnais) are a group of writers and mathematicians who have been creating literature using these kinds of techniques since 1960. The name is short for “Ouvroir de Littérature Potentielle” or “Workshop of Potential Literature.”

The N+7 method invented by Oulipian Jean Lescure, is a technique whereby each noun is replaced by the seventh noun following it in a dictionary. The result is different each time depending on the choice of dictionary. The following example is given in the Oulipo Compendium (Matthews & Brotchie):

In the behest God created the heckelphone and the easement. And the easement was without format, and void; and darshan was upon the facial of the defeasance. And the spirituousness of God moved upon the facial of the wattles. And God said, Let there be lights: and there was lights. (p.202)

My own assignments will vary in length and difficulty and the aim is not to create a masterpiece, but to make myself really think about the task in hand and to deliberate over each word used as though painting from a very limited palette:

Vigorous writing is concise. A sentence should contain no unnecessary words, a paragraph no unnecessary sentences, for the same reason that a drawing should have no unnecessary lines and a machine no unnecessary parts. This requires not that the writer make all sentences short or avoid detail and treat subjects only in outline, but that every word tell. William Strunk (The Elements of Style. William Strunk JR. and E.B. White 4th ed 2000)

Sunday, 14 February 2010

Little Critters

These little fellas are a selection from a set of miniature paintings that were recently for sale in "io", a gallery in the North Laines in Brighton (http://www.iogallery.co.uk/). There are still a few available; bugs, bees, butterflies, beetles etc, so do get in touch if you are interested in giving them a good home. Each painting is a signed original, approximately 4cm in size.