Tuesday, 28 December 2010

Stanley Chow Illustrations

Stan Chow is a British Illustrator born and raised in Manchester, where he is currently living. He began his career in 1997, mainly as a fashion illustrator and storyboard artist, and has become one of the most highly respected and established artists in the UK, working across a platform of media in advertising, design, publishing, packaging, gaming, animation and interactive. One thing I like about Chow's illustrations is how he adds such recognisable features from so few shapes and lines. Below is a selection of some of my favourite illustrations of Stanley Chow's. There's plenty more of cool pictures to check out on the links at the bottom, you can even buy them in the shop on Stanley Chow's own site at http://stanleychow.bigcartel.com/ for £20.

Stanley Chow
From Up North

Kyle Simpson

On 'The Simpsons' movie's website you can create your own Simpsons Avatar. It's a lot of fun, it gives you the chance to be really creative making a character who could live in Springfield or you can be silly and make someone that looks like a freak. You can customise your Avatars gender, size, hair, eyes, nose, mouth and clothes, with a large selection of different styles to choose from. As you can see below i've been on the site and have had a play around creating Avatars, below is what I think I would look like if I was a character in 'The Simpsons'.

I also gave it a go creating Simpsons Avatars of my tutors from university. Below are Darren, David, Paul, Catherine, Karl and Ian. Out of the six of them I feel The Simpsons Avatar of Paul was the best result and most like him.

Check out the link below to have a go creating your own Simpsons Avatar.

Thursday, 16 December 2010

London's Routemaster bus of the 21st century

"Say hello to my little friend!", ...I mean say hello to the new Routemaster bus of London, which should come into service in 2012. There has been a competition, where people had to send in their designs for the new London bus and this is the winner. The new Routemaster has been designed by Thomas Heatherwick and Wrightbus of Ballymena. The original Routemaster was introduced in 1956 and a number of them are still in use on heritage routes in London today. I remember when the original Routemasters got withdrawn from regular routes in 2005, it was awful, mainly because of the loss of the hop on & hop off door at the back, but I also do prefer the classic look of the original Routemaster.

One thing which I can say I like about the new bus is the bringing back of the hop on & hop off door, and I don't think I'm the only person in London that prefers their buses with that. It's also good that it's going to be a hybrid car with the most recent green technology, so it will be much more environmentally friendlier than any other buses in the streets. The 2 sets of stairs and 3 doors will be quite useful on a crowded bus as well. But I still have to say that If I compare the modern style Routemaster to the original one, the original wins, hands down!

Below is a video talking in detail about the new bus for London.

Boris Johnson unveils a mock up of the new Routemaster bus
London's new Routemaster bus
The new Routemaster bus is a design cacophony

The Mayor Gets Some Air

Here's a funny video of not the real Mayor of London, but a man in a suit with a Boris like wig doing some cool tricks on a bike, from the Barclays Cycle Hire scheme Boris Johnson brought to London. I bumped into this YouTube video while doing research on politics for Project 01.


Sunday, 5 December 2010

Imitations of Faireys poster

Shepard Faireys Barack Obama "Hope" poster has been appropriated many times already, mostly in humorous ways but also for other purposes such as newspaper articles and clothing etc. I've also seen it in an episode of Futurama when Richard Nixon's head (president of Earth 3010) where they replaced the word "Hope" with "Despair".

On the link below you can listen to Shepard Fairey talk with Lawrence Lessig and Steven Johnson about what is the future for art and ideas in an age when practically anything can be copied, pasted, downloaded, sampled and re-imagined.

New York Public Library

Barack Obama "Hope" poster

For my VCT essay, I have chosen the Barack Obama "Hope" poster which was designed by artist Shepard Fairey for the Barack Obama presidential campaign, 2008. The original poster Fairey designed had the word "Progress" on it, however after selling 700 copies the Obama campaign wanted to promote the theme of hope, so Fairey designed posters which had the word "Hope" or "Change".

In this video Shepard Fairey talks to Bill Whitaker about politics and pop culture.

This poster was made by Shepard Fairey in 2008 when Barack Obama won the presidential election and became President of the United States of America.


Anatomy of a Murder

For VCT we had to bring in a piece of work we liked which was made by putting words & images together, examples of what you could bring are a magazine, a panflet or a cover to a record etc. The piece I had chosen was the title credits made by Saul Bass for the film Anatomy of a Murder.

Saul Bass (1920-1996) was not only one of the great graphic designers of the mid-20th century but the undisputed master of film title design thanks to his collaborations with Alfred Hitchcock, Otto Preminger and Martin Scorsese. It is interesting when he uses shapes which look like cut off human limbs to list the cast on, with it being a film investigating into a murder case, also with how the star of the film goes on the head, followed by the co-stars on arms & legs.

Anatomy of a Murder: The Title Credits
Saul Bass

Friday, 26 November 2010


For my introduction to Letterpress, we've made a newspaper of different typefaces. The project was to get into groups, then each group would get one typeface which we could use, mine was Albertus, which was for many years used for English coinage and is used for the street name signs in the City of London. We had 3 weeks to design and print our own newspaper page, and print copies of it almost 300 times. Below are snapshots of each stage in the process to make our final piece. The first photo is of when I constructed a famous quote by Milton Glaser; "Computers are to design as microwaves are to cooking".


Sorry for taking so long to update my blog, I've been a bit busy with college work, but I'm back now. On my way home from university, whilst walking through the streets I noticed how much typography is actually in our everyday lives, with how almost everything man-made has its own name, therefore it requires some typography. Here's some images of examples you'll find in the streets of London.

Sunday, 31 October 2010

Two Right Charlies

We cut out images, headings & sub headings in the newspaper, and re-arranged these elements to produce different narratives. Both of these narratives below are employing the simple design technique of substitution.

On this one the simple substitution of Wayne Rooney for Charlie Sheen produced humour in one move.

George Osbourne made homeless by squatters... I wouldn't mind that, and by the look on the policeman's face neither would he.

Nightmare Before Christmas

When I passed Fortnum and Masons in Piccadilly I spotted some interesting pumpkins they had on display for Halloween.

This pumpkin reminds me of one of the characters from the film Where the Wild Things Are based on the book by Maurice Sendak.

Both of these pumpkins another made me laugh, the second pumpkin reminded me of Winston Churchill because the carrot makes it look like he's smoking a cigar.

Check out the Carving Gallery link below.

Happy Halloween!

Carving Gallery
Carving Tutorial

One Thing Leads To Another And Another And Another...

Every image was made by tracing the basic shape of the oak leaf.

The first leaf drawing is created using parallel lines to make the shape of the leaf, the lines also resemble the veins in the leaf because of their upward direction. By adding a leaf green colour, it has given it more life and made the image more powerful.

The second drawing is one of my favourites because of the use of negative space to make the leaf shape. The cross-hatching background is very bold and gives a structure to the drawing.

The third leaf is comprised of a series of dots numbered 1-50. I like this image because its humerous being a join-the-dots puzzle.

The last image is probably the most successful. By using the method of repetition of the leaves on top of each other I have created a circular shape which could be seen as a snowflake or a flowerhead.