For varying reasons, food seems to have been a topic for me. I like food. I like trying out different combinations of things, like five spice in stir fries (it’s like a spring roll, only not in a roll), grilled grated carrot and cheese toast, avocado and honey on toast… In fact, a fair few of them involve toast. But my favourite has to be apple, cinnamon and peanut butter on toast. Crunchy, gooey and toasty? Yum. So naturally, this being my blog and not a foody one, I made an After Effects animation dedicated to the best fruit-nut-spice-bread combination ever.

I was going for something a bit infographics-y and stylised, and that advertising staple of ukelele, clapping and jingle bells seemed perfect for the soundtrack (Music by Sweet Wave Audio sweetwaveaudio.co.uk). It’s not a recipe (not unless you count those “1: roll out shop bought pastry 2: fill with can of pie filling 3: cook” things that turn up in magazines recipes as well), it’s just for fun. And to spread the word that apple and peanut butter go really well together.

Cumin is the spice of life : escottdesign.wordpress.com

Again with being food-related, cumin is good in/on many things. Soup. Roast potato/sweet potato/parsnip/carrot. Stew. Couscous. I was trying to get the background on this to look a bit tangine-like (the decorated serving dish with a cone-shaped lid). Perhaps a Victorian inspired tangine? Hmm…

Be seeing you.

Pick Me Up 2014 Part 2 : Collectives & Agencies

As I said in my last post about Pick Me Up at Somerset House, there are a lot of illustrators with work on show, and many are displaying with agencies or collectives. I couldn’t always see the names of the individual artist, which was quite sad as there were some absolutely beautiful pieces that I’d love to see other work by the same people. Sadly, as some of the work is exclusively for Pick Me Up, I may never see it or find the illustrator again. It’ll take a bit of researching on my part to hunt them down as best I can. However, until I do, here are some highlights of the agency/collective areas. I’ll do my best to update with the names of the illustrators I find!

Works from:

My absolute favourite pieces were the zodiac fashion illustration prints in the Handsome Frank room who I think are by Malika Favre. Beautiful.

Pick Me Up 2014 Part 1 : Individuals

Over the Bank Holiday weekend, I had quite a lot of art viewing. I saw a few of the open houses down in Brighton, then on Monday went into town to see Pick Me Up to Somerset House. For those who don’t know, PMU is the big contemporary design/illustration show for the year. If you like screen prints and fine liner drawings, you would love it. The only downside is that in the big rooms shared by collectives, I couldn’t always see who had done an individual piece of work (the problem with low lighting, crowding and writing in pencil on the wall really tiny).

In my first blogging of this year’s Pick Me Up, here are some highlights of individual artists from the Pick Me Up Selects area.

Thibaud Herem
Thibaud Herem
An illustrator who focuses on extremely detailed architectural subjects. At the show there was the most amazing one of Liberty’s (sadly no photo) and the London skyline.

Lynnie Zulu
Lynnie Zulu
Her combination of bright colours and bold, African-inspired patterns was really eye catching.

Andrew Groves
Andrew Groves
Minimal illustrations with bright colours, his set for PMU was inspired by wooden objects. They style looked like what happens when Japan meets Scandinavia.

Jessica Das
Jessica Das
Very simple illustrations, mainly featuring cats (her theme was “Cat Island”). The styles of the prints varied, but all were bright and striking with their contrast.

Jack Hudson
Jack Hudson
This illustrator’s work centers around scale, imagining small people alongside oversize everyday objects. I loved the playful take on the Cowboys & Indians battle being played out around potted cacti!

Gee Gee GG

Over Easter, my computer had a bit of a breakdown. You don’t realise quite how much data you have until you’re worrying that it might all be gone. Luckily, I haven’t lost a great deal (some dummy WordPress posts from my virtual server, a few old saved games that I probably won’t ever want again). It’s definitely time to give my brand new hard drive’s contents a spring clean!

Going through some of my old image folders I came across these. I think that was my reaction to hearing Girls’ Generations “The Boys” for the first time (it isn’t strongest single imho), and then Gee (which, on the popularity-on-YouTube scale at least, probably is).

Girls' Generations : The Boys escottdesign.wordpress.com

Girls' Generations : Gee escottdesign.wordpress.com

(I will stop posting k-pop related things one day, honest.)

Regular work projects, WordPress dev-ing and the Hipster Science graphics aside, I’m in the middle of finishing off something a bit newer which involves toast…

Ready to bingo

So, I might have seen a few k-dramas. And I might have noticed some tropes… OK, a lot of tropes. It’s a bit bigger than a standard bingo card, and even then I couldn’t fit them all in! They’re all observations from a Western (admittedly sometimes slightly bemused) perspective. They’re more endearing than the way some tropes turn up in soaps on UK TV: swearing, fighting, sex & drugs & “You ain’t my muvva!” – that sort of thing (thank you k-drama for mostly keeping it all so cutesy and innocent).

I know every blogger and their dog has probably done a bingo card for this sort of thing, but I challenged myself to use icons to represent the tropes. This is all done for in the spirit of fun. I’m also thinking of doing some explaination sheets for the icons, plus any others I just couldn’t fit in (because 30 is enough, really).

Let’s play k-drama bingo!

K-drama Bingo : escottdesign.wordpress.com

I hope at least some of you are smiling and nodding about now. Aigoo!

What about Finland?

Packaging inspiration, but today it’s from up further up the Northern hemisphere- Finland! I started listening to Finnish music around 2004 after hearing The Rasmus’ chart-bothering track “In The Shadows”. They opened the door to me finding all kinds of bands I’d never have heard of. Some of them even had songs in ~shock horror~ a language that was not English. So you could say in a round about way, Finland is responsible for my discovery and enjoyment of J-/K-/C-pop despite not understanding the words in real-time (or at least not all of them). Thank you Finland!

So on to the CDs. These compilations come with discs of various artists spanning many genres. There’s one out every year, and they make pretty decent illustrated packages.

What About Finland Various Artists (2005)

Not my favourite, but the grunge and stencil type with added vectors really does say mid-2000s (take a look in an old Computer Arts magazine or equivalent). The cover has some of the popular/famous artists of the year vector’d (eg Jonne of Negtaive, Lauri of The Rasmus…) They look like a set, but there isn’t a particular tone to them that feels distinctive.

Come Hear Finland Various Artists (2007)

I like this one. There’s one overall illustration style showing very minimal, vector trees and mountains. There were 4 discs to this, each one with trees during a different season that makes it easy to tell the CDs apart at a glance (pink for Spring, green for Summer (not shown- the jazz disc was missing in mine), orange for Autumn, blue of Winter). The type is clear and easy to read now it’s not competing with the background for attention.

Come Hear Finland Various Artists (2008)

Strangely, 2008 had a different style cover to the discs inside. The outside kept the minimal illustration, but the discs have a combination of photo collage and vector illustration. They’re like a more refined version of the 2005 style.

Come Hear Finland Various Artists (2010)

This is my favourite. I love how the symbols used on the cover pattern come together to make the type on the individual CDs. They all fit in with the mood of each genre (I especially love the bat on the metal disc).

Before being shown these I already knew quite a few Finnish artists (The Rasmus, Negative, Kwan, Husky Rescue, The 69 Eyes, Apocalyptica, Nightwish, HIM, ), but would I have been listening to jazz (Timo Lassy), known that 80s hair rock was still going strong somewhere (Reckless Love), or discovered indie-electronic-instrumental bliss (hannulelauri)? Probably not. Thank you Come Hear Finland!