Festive Freebie!

To quote that very famous Slade song… iiiitttt’s Christmaaaassss!

Well nearly and what better way to celebrate than by making your own cards and tags? Yes! Do you need a little help? I thought maybe you’d like to have some festive freebies avaiable to help wow your friends and family!

Click on the button below and you’ll grab a freebie and I won’t even ask you to give me your email… but you can if you’re feeling friendly.

Finally, if these freebies aren’t enough there’s a further five pages available to download for only £5 on my store!

toasty festive freebies

Glasgow Workshops in June and July

With the June dates selling like ice lollies on a hot day we have added a couple more Beginners Brush Pen Calligraphy to the mix! You can now book the 14th June or the 11th July to join us at the Braw Wee Emporium for a three-hour workshop.. trust me, three hours absolutely whizz by!

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May The 4th Be With You... and the 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th.....

STAR WARS FANS.... i've only gone and popped a wee exhibition up in R:Cade Glasgow!

welcome to the bark side

WELCOME

TO THE BARK SIDE

Launching on the 4th the exhibition is in collaboration with Mark who's composite photos of Star Wars in Glasgow are infamous! 

R:cade is an amazing place, it's got games, it's got shooty things, it's got guitar hero, it's got noodles, it's got crafts, and it's got crabs (seriously there's a game called crabs). It's got everything you want for a fun wee evening and I highly recommend you give it a go though watch out, the games can get quite addictive - My brother nearly took Mark out wrestling to get crabs. yup, that's my brother everyone. 

Don't forget there's prints on sale, both A3 and a4 along with some cute little 'I love you, i know' originals of which there are only 10! 

Visit the R:cade website here.

The exhibition is running till the end of May, no excuses... go visit and have a game or two while you're there! 

A love letter to London

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I recently spent a few days in London, it’s hard not to fall in love with this city as there’s so much to see and do... and many lovely pubs for a revitalising glass of wine.

It was a real treat to take myself away and indulge. I visited a heap of places including the V&A, the Science Museum (space yay!), the Museum of Natural History (dinosaurs yay!), the Design Museum, the Wellcome Collection and the incredible, mind boggling neon heaven of Gods Own Junkyard - you have to visit here!

I took a trip to the theatre to see Kinky Boots, ate some tasty food and visited some fantastic art shops thanks to my lovely calligraphy friend @lettered.by.beth.  (Check out her beautiful insta!)

Each day I created a visual diary of my adventures - not only does this look good but it’s also a great reminder of the trip as I have a terrible memory! 

So long London, it was a brief affair but let's do it again soon!

A great big party... oh and a wedding.

Never one to shy away from a challenge I was excited to be asked to do these awesome invitations for Hayley and Mark- two very awesome people who decided to spend the rest of their lives together and were having a massive party to celebrate.

I loved the collaborative design concept for the invitation - the cover image drawn by Neil Slorance and they let me loose on the inside with a very open brief. It went a little along these lines...'we like your writing, we like that fadey colour thing you did on that other thing and please don't use the phrase 'getting married... '

pencil sketches

BUT WAIT!

How do you write a wedding invitation without using the phrase 'getting married'?

Google my friend, a lot of Google!

Spliced, Hitched, Wed, tying the knot... there were many options, so I sent over some suggestions. 

It was clear, the main focus was to be on the fact it was a celebration. A great big party with all their favourite people. The fact they were getting... erm... hitched was a side line. 

I started with pencil sketches, testing layout options and wording before streamlining the chosen design and testing in pen. Here's a selection of options that I worked on, you can see the process here from pencil sketch above through liner, adding colour and the final invite.

The final product included a small number of fully hand written invitations with envelope and a digital versions for printing. Can you see the difference between the digital and the hand written in the gallery below?

I'm really pleased with the final versions of both the digital and the handwritten. It was a challenge – especially to get the hand written ones as close to identical as possible. I had to keep reminding myself that it was highly unlikely that their day guests were going to stand and compare invites… but you have to keep your standards high, right!

It was a challenge but I really enjoyed the whole process and I'm delighted that Mark and Hayley loved them too. Wishing them both many happy years together <3

The final product

MATERIALS USED

Tombow dual tips and blender, Pentel Touch Sign Pens and some really nice fine liners that I never remember! Ipad Pro, Procreate, photoshop and a lot of coffee.

 

Star Wars in Glasgow

The pen is mightier than the... lightsaber? 

I have been asked by my friend Mark Boyle Design to take part in an exhibition he's curating. It's called Star Wars in Glasgow and technically this is the second, so does that make it Episode V? I'm not sure I've got my head around the order of the films, someone help... I'm way out my depth.... ahh this backpack is a rucksack....

 Da Vader- Toasty Type

Da Vader- Toasty Type

Anyway, back to the matter at hand, the exhibition. I was asked to pull a few pieces together so I've been having a hoot translating well-known phrases from the films into Glaswegian... Da Vader on the right here for example.

I feel rather chuffed to be invited alongside some pretty awesome creatives.... including Neil SloranceMatty ,Tanya Roberts and Mark... wowsers. Have a look at the teaser images here.

The exhibition opens on the 3rd Nov for the month at Drury Street Bar and Kitchen. You should come along, it's going to be diverse, it's going to be entertaining and you might even bag yourself a limited edition print, or start your Christmas shopping early!

There will be prints on-sale with money going towards charity (the exact one we are still deliberating over but i'll update when it's been decided!) So stick the date in your diary, I can't wait to see it all come together.

 This exhibition is a great excuse to dig out this picture again. Ha ha!

This exhibition is a great excuse to dig out this picture again. Ha ha!

No Opportunity

I'm a bit slow off the mark with this one but you can forgive me, right? It's time I took the opportunity to give the guys at Jam Hot design a huge big thanks for adding my little poster into their 'No Opportunity' exhibition at the Veneer Gallery in the West End.

The show featured a lot of really cool designs from some emerging designers and artists and was a great chance to see what everyone is up to!

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Here's a close up of my piece... one of very few hand drawn designs at the event.

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And here it is in situ... surrounded by digital pieces! While i now look at it and think... gads, I could have done so much more it's important to get your work out there.. it's the start of many more opportunities i hope! Thanks again guys, you're the best :) 

Three styles of bouncing

Modern Calligraphy comes in many forms but an extremely popular style at the moment is what you'd call 'Bounce' lettering.. where the letters bounce along the page and don't seem to sit still!

 Nib and Ink

Nib and Ink

Bounce lettering, in a slightly more technical form means that the upstrokes or the downstrokes have been extended, often the scale has been played with and some of the traditional rules have been thrown out the window- hurrah! All of this means that the words seem to bounce along the page - it looks free and flowing,  a far more informal style to the traditional copperplate calligraphy... and i like it, a lot. 

If I'm honest, I'm not very good at keeping within the lines at the best of times so this style does seems to be a favourite of mine. Any excuse to bend the rules and push it a little outside the box! 

I thought it might be interesting to show three different ways in which I practice the bounce... it may look free and easy but you still have to practice... A LOT!

 

 

 
 Ecoline Pens and Dip Ink

Ecoline Pens and Dip Ink

 Drawing Pen for clean thin lines... none of this brushy business here!

Drawing Pen for clean thin lines... none of this brushy business here!

The first image is in the standard drill format... lines upon lines of the same shapes, working the muscle memory and aiming for consistency. Changing the tools often creates a different style so the other two pictures are of nib and ink bounce alphabet practice and a big, thick, inky Ecoline alphabet. It's pretty awesome to see the difference between the materials... which is your favourite?

You are gold, GOLD!

Always believe in your souuuuulll.

Oh Finetec, I love you. 

I finally caved and bought some of the finetec inks and OH. MY. DAYS... it was worth it. 

In my order was the 6 pack, an extra rose gold ink, a Brause Rose nib, Zebra G nib and a new oblique holder with a metal flange. What a treat! I immediately sat down and started working out what to do. These little ink blocks need to be wet then you paint the ink into your nib rather than dipping into a pot. It's a bit time consuming but oh so worth doing. Just look at this glorious ink!

Finetec Ink 2
Finetec Ink
 

It's probably best not to talk too much about how many pens there are there, those are the ones i use regularly. The rest are in the drawers... eep!

You can see I really couldn't wait to get stuck in!

Behind the scenes
 

A little wedding gift...

With wedding season in full flow I wanted to create something really special for Liz and Paul so i cracked open the foiling machine and thought i'd better learn how to use it. After putting the foil on back to front a couple of times and ending up with wrinkly foils on numerous occasions i think i have finally got it! 

Watch the video below for the big reveal... the best part of foiling is when you get to peel off . the foil and see if it worked... it's like taking the plastic of your new tv. Bliss!


 Here is the final piece in all it's glory. Wishing you the happiest of lives together Liz and Paul x

Here is the final piece in all it's glory. Wishing you the happiest of lives together Liz and Paul x

Girls just want to have fun

Girl Code 101- if you're asked to help out for a hen do, you say yes. Full. Stop.

So  when i was asked if i could possibly draw on some bags a day or two before the do, I naturally said, yes and found myself sitting down to draw after a day at work and a night in the gym... but they came out just lovely. Here's a pic of the bags and the hens in all their henny, trekky glory.

 The Happy Hens...

The Happy Hens...

To the moon and back...

After posting an image on my Instagram of a drawing I had been working on I received a commission for a piece. After a consultation and a few ideas sent over this was the chosen design which was drawn on the ipad, printed using a laser printer then embossed using a clear and a glittery gold finish. The final article was ever so shiny and I do believe the recipient was delighted. 

 Here's a look at some of the other options that I drew up for consideration with a view to using the foiling machine again, i love gooollllldddd. If you scroll down, you can see how the embossing worked out.

Here's a look at some of the other options that I drew up for consideration with a view to using the foiling machine again, i love gooollllldddd. If you scroll down, you can see how the embossing worked out.

 
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V1