Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Moving inspiration!

Last week I used a lunch hour (and a bit) to visit an incredible exhibition GIANINI E LUZZATI - Cartoni Animati at the Mole Antonelliana which houses the National Cinema Museum in Turin. Read what I wrote about my favourite museum last year HERE.

An original detail of one of the Gazza Ladra (Magpie)
Giulio Gianini and Emanuele Luzzati are two artists at the forefront in the history of worldwide cinema animation. Their work received two Oscar nomiations and won a number of International film festival awards. A mix of talent which produced more than 30 films over 37 years of artistic collaboration. Giulio Gianini film director and animator, Emanuele Luzzati artist, painter, production designer and illustrator of children's books, were the perfect team. Together they created some of the most contemporary and innovative animations ever produced. Luzzati's colourful characters made of paper cuttings, his paintings, collages and mixed media backdrops, came to life with Gianini's ability to animate with elegance and simplicity. One of their greatest successes is the La gazza ladra (1964), the first of three films set to the music of Rossini. The common element in these films being the absence of dialogue and the perfect timing and harmony of the images to the music. Fifty years on their work still continues to remain unique in bringing together sound and vision to tell fascinating and emotional stories.

An illustration from the book La gazza ladra 1964
The exhibiton contains a wealth of original material and showcases for the first time, over two hundred characters, sketches, set-designs and story-boards. It also shows in detail the creative processes used by Gianini and Luzzati in their small studio in Rome to create these works of art. Whilst wandering around the exhibition I became more and more intrigued by the backdrops created by Luzzati for many of the animations. Colourful, textured and abstract... the perfect pattern maker! Here are just a couple of the patterns I picked up on.


Detail 1 from L'Italiana in Algeri 1968

Detail 2 from L'Italiana in Algeri 1968

I have been rather quiet on the blog front again. It is a struggle for me to fit things in at the moment and my blog seems to be way down on my list of important things to do. So just allow me a little more time to finish some projects and cross a few very important things off my never ending lists! I actually have a new Dream Design post lined up for the near future so please pop by again soon.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Dream Design 20 - Dieuwertje Van de Moosdijk

Today I have a really special Dream Design post but you'll have to read right through to the end to find out why! 
Dieuwertje Van de Moosdijk is a surface pattern designer based in Amsterdam. She works from her garden studio creating surface patterns and illustrations. Dieuwertje has chosen her favourite pattern to share with us and below she explains why it is her Dream Design.


This design 'Is it spring already?' is my favourite because I'm really a floral girl and like nothing more than to surround myself with them. Whenever I draw or paint, flowers always come out naturally. I could picture this design as wallpaper, textile and being put on ceramics. Thinking big: I'm a big fan of Liberty, William Morris, Sanderson, Laura Ashley and Villeroy & Boch... 
I have just finished looking through Dieuwertje's wonderful portfolio. It is full of beautiful flower designs with a difference, they are all based on handmade motifs: either painted, sewn or drawn. Her style is very individual and special. She uses different colour palettes with great confidence and each pattern is identifiable with her unique style. 
It is so easy for me to imagine her designs on Liberty fabric or on beautiful Villeroy & Boch porcelain homewares. I'm sure her style will enjoy great success in the surface pattern world.

So here comes the good bit... Dieuwertje has recently secured a position as a print designer working for a well known and very creative Dutch fashion brand. I'm afraid I can't give the name but it is a super beginning for such a talented designer and I wish her all the best with her new 'Dream' job.

Please take time to look at her designs on her website, (dieuwertjemaakt is Dutch for 'dieuwertje makes') it is well worth a visit. 
You will also find her on Twitter and Pinterest.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Moyo Magazine 3

If you are looking for a bit of patterny inspiration take a look at the 3rd issue of the MOYO magazine, the unique on-line publication dedicated soley to the facinating world of surface pattern design. Brought to you by Rachael Taylor, Beth Nicholls and a growing team of talented ladies it is proving to be a great success in the design world.

The magazine is jam packed full of tips on design, business rules, colour and design inspiration and a lot, lot more! I have been reading the latest edition at my leisure and I particularly loved all of the following articles.

- The Moyo Book Review - Patterns and Layering - Japanese Spatial Culture, Nature and Architecture, by Salvator-John Liotta & Matteo Belfiore, this book will be added to my Wish List immediately!
- Two inspiring interviews with Amy Butler and Josephine Kimberling
- Advice on Working from Home by Patricia Van Den Akker of The Design Trust
- Taking your ideas to the finish line by Monica Lee, was my favourite article... there is nothing like a 'good kick up the ...' to get you going again and out of procrastination mode!
 - The 'new' Moyo design brief - Floral Twist.

I was amazed to find so many of my ABSPD classmates were featured in this issue so I started to take note of the names. Esther Cox won the previous Moyo competition and Majo BV was runner up. Emily Truong, Susan Driscoll, Bethania Lima, Laurie Baars, Rosie Martinez-Dekker, Onneke van Waardenburg, Kirtsten Miller, Deborah Velasquez, Alik Arzoumanian, Mary Tanana, Kayleigh Walls, Kathryn Pledger and Amy Lambert all had some work featured! (I hope I have'nt missed anyone out). Such a talented bunch of designers... I hope some of their talent will wear off on me!

The next issue of Moyo is all about paper, which I just love, and Louise Gale will talk about Sunshine Yellow my favourite colour! Can't wait.    

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

March - 2013 Designer Calendar Project

Is it already March ... where do I live? I almost forgot that I had promised to remind you all to download another month of the 2013 Designer Calendar Project! 

The Freebie Designer Calendar Project is an idea by Maria Jose Bautista V and is totally curated and overseen by her.

The idea - 12 surface pattern designers each to create a month using their unique style, the only guidelines being the format and the colour palette! The result is a very different calendar full of fun designs and patterns. You can check out all the details and download the month of March on Majo's blog. There is also a feature about the designer Simi Gauba of SimiDesign who has clearly created her design with spring in mind! 
March is availbale as a free download. You can get your copy to print and keep HERE.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Dream Design 19 - Anna Dent

Our guest today on Dream Designs is Anna Dent a surface pattern designer and crafter based in London. Her 'Jugs and Mugs' design is featured below and she explains to us why she has chosen it as her Dream Design.

The design is called Retro Jugs & Mugs, and it's one that I did a while ago during the ABSPD course. It started with some quick sketches of jugs as I sat looking at ceramics made by my grandmother. I think it shows my love of retro/mid-century design but hopefully feels modern and fresh as well.
I would love to see this design on a range by Magpie. They are quite a new UK company, and I really love their ranges and their ethos. They are an ethical and responsible company, they work with fantastic designers and they even donate some of their profits to Cats Protection - a charity close to my heart! I collect art deco and 50s teacups and saucers (when space and the wallet allow) so I would love to have my own.
Magpie are a company which I had never heard of until Anna pointed them out to me. They produce a number of super ranges of homeware products which would suit Anna's designs well, I can well imagine a tablecloth and matching tea towels to sit alongside the porcelain cup and saucer designs!  

Trained in Fine Art, Anna is a recent graduate from the Art and Business of Surface Pattern Design course run by Rachael Taylor and Beth Nicholls and has been designing patterns since 2011. Her style is fresh and simple with a strong retro influence and she is inspired by everyday household objects, florals and geometrics.
At the moment Anna is developing a growing range of homeware products featuring her designs, many of which she makes herself by hand. She also uses vintage fabric to create soft furnishings and accessories. You can buy handmade stationery featuring her illustrations and patterns from her Folksy Shop.
Please take some time to look at her portfolio and website here, and be sure to follow her on Facebook and Twitter.