Monday, April 7, 2014

Showcase your fabulous butterfly designs.

On the 10th of May it will be World Lupus Day and I have decided to celebrate the event by organising a Butterfly Showcase on my blog and on Pinterest. You can participate by sending me a sketch, illustration, painting, pattern, collage or basically anything that you have personally created using butterflies as a theme.  

Andy Warhol - Butterflies
Why butterflies? Lupus, or SLE is a chronic condition where the immune system attacks the body and can cause a multitude of complaints. One of the many symptoms of Lupus can be a malar rash on the cheeks which has the form of a butterfly.
You can easily show your support and help increase Lupus awareness by joining in on my Butterflies for Lupus Showcase 2014.

Black and White scarf designed by Vera Neumann
What you need to do.
Get inspired by butterflies and create your piece. There will be two different showcases, one for children up to 16 years old, and one for all the rest. The final artwork should be square if not it may need to be cropped.
Send me a 600 x 600 pixel jpg, 72dpi and rgb, of your final design. 
Name your file, BFL_yourname.jpg (for example, BFL_dawnclarkson.jpg). For children's drawings BFL_child'sname_age.jpg (for example, BFL_dawnclarkson_10.jpg). Please do not give a title to your piece.
You will be allowed ONE link to a blog or website.
The order of the showcase will be as I receive the files. 
There will be a series of blog posts featuring the designs received in batches. On May 10th I will launch a board on Pinterest which will include all the designs. 
The closing date will be Friday 2nd May ( I will need a week to prepare the whole thing!)
Please send your designs to
I will be making a small donation to Lupus UK for every design published, so get on it... now!

Alexander Henry Fabric - Papillon Collection
The butterfly designs you see here in this post are taken from my Butterflies - Farfalle -  Papillon board on Pinterest, you may want to take a look and use the board for inspiration. Also it is possible to see all the designs created for this project last year on my Butterflies for Lupus board.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

A bit of Yellow therapy... my personality colour!

And what is your favourite colour? I want to tell you a bit about mine. For as long as I can remember my favourite colour has always been yellow. Most people who have a favourite colour wear that colour or have their houses full of it, like an orange dress, blue curtains or pink cushions or such. My love for Yellow is not like this for I own very few yellow things, it is a colour that I don't wear and I don't have objects, cushions or soft toys in this colour. So where does my love for this colour originate? I don't really know, but I think it shines from the inside, I must be yellow inside! I have discovered that yellow is what is called my 'personality colour'.

A few years ago I was ill for quite sometime and I felt the need to paint my studio yellow... a bright Primrose yellow, so that when I was sitting working at my desk I could feel the 'sun' on my back. This is the only time in my life that I have felt the need for my favourite colour and I am still happy with my choice and my yellow room!

I have had a stressful couple of weeks, lots of things have gone terribly wrong. I have lost almost all the files which contain all my designs and patterns. I have been working on for these for over two years. It made me really ill for a few days, I was incredulous and I also felt very stupid. I wondered if it was a sign for me to give up and go and do something else? 

Austria Center Vienna
However I am now picking up the pieces. I have decided to design new patterns. I think it is rather stupid to recreate the same designs (unless of course someone pays me a lot of money to do so). I am streamlining my production methods, before I left many designs unfinished, now I want to work everything through to the end and create a final collection or product with my designs so that nothing is wasted. In my depression I have been attracted to the colour yellow again maybe in the hope that it will give me the energy to carry on. 

Lucienne Day. Miscellany 1952
Luckily I have a Yellow board on Pinterest so that when I feel the need for a little yellow therapy I can just go and have a peek. The photographs featured in this post are just a few examples from my Yellow Pinterest board!
A fabulous yellow plate by Gemma Orkin
Below are a few interesting facts about the colour yellow.
Yellow Represents:
Mind and intellect: From a colour psychology perspective, yellow stimulates our mental faculties; it activates the left or analytical brain.
Happiness and fun: Yellow is uplifting to the spirits; yellow helps create enthusiasm for life and can awaken greater confidence and optimism.
Communication of New Ideas: Yellow is related to the expression and integration of new ideas and thoughts. 

Effects of Yellow:
Creative: The color of new ideas, yellow helps us find new ways of doing things.
Quick decisions: Yellow helps with clear thinking and quick decision-making but it can also be impulsive.
Anxiety producing: Yellow is fast moving so too much time in its presence can agitate and lead to nervousness and emotional instability.
Critical: Yellow makes people more mentally analytical and self critical of both themselves and others.
Non-emotional: Yellow relates to the head not the heart.
Choosing yellow as your favorite means you have a deep need for logical order in your everyday life and to be able to express your individuality by using your logical mind to inspire and create new ideas.

Danielle Kroll
To finish on a high note, I just did this 'quiz' I found on Facebook to define which colour best describes your personality and guess which colour came out... YELLOW, told you so!


Monday, March 10, 2014

Here it is... the PaperLove Blog Hop!

I just love, love, LOVE paper, it inspires me to experiment and subsequently I use it a lot in my work. My relationship with paper is not very sophisticated but of the 'cut and stick type' with a little bit of the 'obsessive hoarder' thrown in. Having a background as a Graphic Designer I adore the printed variety although this can be swayed with any kind of paper that may catch my eye for some reason. 
How can truly declare my love for this versatile material? Paper for me is definitely a visual and tactile thing... in fact instead of writing fancy words about my feelings for paper I'm just going to mess about with the stuff and see what happens! 
One thing which always amazes me about paper is it's strength, a contradiction when we see delicate things made out of paper or old documents which have survived the test of time. I also enjoy the way that with printed paper the content remains, recorded forever as if it is a concrete method of sealing a thing for life. This as where I am hoping to demonstrate my love for paper. I have a beloved collection of U&lc magazines. U&lc was a product created by Herb Lubalin and the International Typeface Corporation and was designed to advertise and launch new typefaces. The magazine was a great success and lasted from 1970 - 1999. Of my many personal copies I have a double issue of Volume 17/ N°2 from spring 1990. So I have decided to set myself a PaperLove brief... to reinvent the content by sacrificing one of these copies and to experiment with the 68 lovely newsprint paper pages.

My first experiment was to create a new format using the same content. By ripping up the original pages of the magazine I created 272 new pages and bound them up with string.

The second experiment, to reinvent the original information recorded inside the magazine. U&lc was primarily dedicated to launch new typefaces so I have designed a typeface using 'bits' of letters and other elements found in the original magazine. 

Thirdly, to use the paper to make a new item or design that is not related to the original form or function. I have begun to make paper rosettes from the torn pages they will be used to create patterns and textured backgrounds for other projects. My main occupation these days is creating patterns so I will use these rosettes to create new designs.
One thing which has become clear to me working through this creative process is that paper truly inspires me and I never know where I might end up when messing about with the beloved stuff. I do hope you have enjoyed my little rambling and experiment with paper. Continue to be inspired and delighted by paper by following the whole of the PaperLove Blog Hop which continues below.

The PaperLove Blog Hop is a celebration of all things paper! Follow the links to discover more bloggers who love paper and use it to inspire and delight. And if you want to explore a whole world of paper, and stretch your paper passion further with a host of creative projects, why not join the innovative new online course PaperLove (starts March 31). Led by book artist Rachel Hazell, PaperLove is a five week creative adventure for paper lovers. Find out more here.