Sunday, 7 December 2008

A History, A Secret History

As our first competition brief, I have initially decided to do the Penguin book jacket competition, this year the chosen title is The Secret History by Donna Tartt. I first read this book about five years ago at my local book group in Sidmouth. It completely captured my imagination (unlike a few of the older members of the group!), and I re-read it several times. I've decided to come up with some ideas before reading it again, as the images and feelings I have of the book at present are so vivid, it would be best to explore them now.

On Friday we had an induction on the laser cutter (no Mr Bond, I expect you to die!) and were asked to bring an A5 vector image to practice with. As I was looking at the rites and rituals performed in the name of the Greek god Bacchus for The Secret History, I chose to draw images of the signs and symbols related to him. These include: a serpent, grapevines, ivy, a bull, foxskin, panthers and other big cats, pinecones and aulos (recorder type instrument). The laser cutter was amazing! So precise and fast! Definitely want to use it again. It was just an experiment, so I'm not sure what I'll do with them all, although the foxskin would make a fantastic brooch...

P.S. here is the link to the Penguin competition page for the whole brief and mini summary of the book...

Wednesday, 19 November 2008

D&AD Student Annual 2008

The parcel arrived at the studio the other week - the new D&AD annuals! The industry one is a beautiful object crammed with great work as per usual, and the student one was also very impressive. This was what I managed to get in there! Although this is a better image than the one I sent off.
It was for the Ted Baker environmentally conscious packaging. I'm still not sure if I want to do one this year, there is the added pressure of being an MA student, and having been in it the year before, but we'll see.

Monday, 17 November 2008

The Wrong Room

This is a first experiment for a little book, a short story by young author Daisy Hat. I really loved the descriptions and they evoked such images, I wanted to illustrate them and practice my layout skills etc. This is rough though. The copy for this spread reads:

'This one looked less agreeable. Perhaps it was the semi-orgasmic sounds leaching from it, or the purple smoke curling from the gap beneath, or the unmistakable ‘Fuck Off!’ engraved vigorously above the handle. It was difficult to say. I wiggled my face and rapped sharply upon it. There was a long pause. I knocked again. I heard a bolt being slid unhurriedly sideways.'

copyright Daisy Hat. More of Daisy can be found here -

Knit that in your pipe and purl one

I'm not the most experienced knitter, but I do like to make more than just scarves. This is a finished slipper for my aunt, its a duck's foot if you can't tell! (And I wouldn't blame you if you couldn't!) The partner is coming along nicely. My last project was a massive banana, so this was a good way of using up all the yellow wool I had lying around!

Sunday, 16 November 2008

Narnia's new location

Here are some photos of the
Canon of Reconstruction exhibition in a cupboard, I apologise for the poor photography, it's still set up (apart from the mashed potato pottery which was beginning to smell a bit odd) so I'll try and get some better shots soon. I liked the way the cupboard glowed in the darkness, asking to be opened.

Saturday, 15 November 2008

Canon II

These are some pages from A Canon of Reconstruction, just to show how I used the illustrations in the end. The layout and printing (and putting together of the exhibition!) was pretty much the work of a (manic) day, so there are tweaks to make, but I'm happy with it for the stage it is.

Tuesday, 11 November 2008

Set In Stone

Today we got to work in a medium not normally tackled by graphic designers - it is a lot more permanent than paper, it was STONE! Yesterday John Neilson came down to demonstrate his craft, and then we had to design some type of our own to carve. As we only had a day, it had to be a maximum of four letters, and here's the result! It was quite an intimidating process to begin with, but I really got into it and had a fantastic time. Spending so much time concentrating on the form of such a few letters was a great opportunity, although we didn't really have much time to design them in the first place. I love working with my hands and the act of the craft, so this was a perfect 'provocateur challenge' for me. I'd love to try it again, but I'm sure it will influence my process when working with other materials as well.

Sunday, 9 November 2008

Letterpress: A Celebration

On Friday (07/11/08), A
lex and I went up to Londonium to the wonderous St Brides Library, for a day of appreciation of the hand printed letter. Among those talking were: Alan May (the guy that made the Gutenburg press for Stephen Fry's BBC program), Harry McIntosh (a visionary - he's made software so that he can cast Monotype composit straight from his laptop [not a Mac as his name suggests]), Patrick Walker from Dust (nice stuff, all topped off with words from the amazing Alan Kitching and his partner Celia Stothard. It was a great day, definitely worth the six and a half hour train journey and boiling hostel. We also went to The Serpentine Gallery, the Gerhard Richter exhibit is definitely worth a visit.

Eden Project: A New World

So we got to the Eden Project with our suitcases, not sure what to expect. After hearing Sue Hill (Art Director of Eden Project) speak about her background in outdoor theatre and what her company's next project was, we realised we were being used! She was doing research for the play, which is about the future and what people would want to take with them. We then showed everone in the group what we had packed, then split into groups and using Blue Peter style materials were asked to make a view of what we thought the future could possibly look like. Ours is some kind of I Am Legend inspired world, where the man-made has been overtaken by nature and a few humans survive to repopulate the world. Not that this isn't an interesting point, the way we're abusing the planet, who knows what it'll look like in one hundred years time, but it is quite hard to communicate this through the medium of cardboard and electrical tape. Somehow you can see our hearts weren't in this challenge... (nice trip out though!)

Monday, 3 November 2008

Eden Project suitcase

We're off to The Eden Project tomorrow, and we were set a preparatory brief.

"You are leaving home. You don't know if you will ever return. You are part of an exodus into an unknown future. Pack a small, portable box or suitcase. Choose 7 things that you think will be essential, or precious to you. You may choose intimate things that tell your story, that remind you of who you are. You may choose things without which your life would be unbearable. Think quickly: you do not have much time. Pack lightly, you are a nomad now. We are leaving..."

Hmmm. Interesting. Not quite sure where it going to take us (thats part of the challenge isn't it), so in my suitcase I will be taking: paper and pens/pencils, the complete works of Jane Austen, my favourite scarf which I never leave home without, a toothbrush (boring but essential), needle and thread, photos of my family and friends and some packets of flower seeds. I was just going to bring a towel and a packet of peanuts (Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy? No my housemate didn't get it either), but I'm sure I'll survive. A babelfish might be useful, but now I sound like a proper nerd. I'm not. Not a proper one anyway.

Wish me luck!

Saturday, 1 November 2008

A Canon of Reconstruction

Mental first few weeks on the MA, here we are with some work for the first project. It was a self reflection brief, I made up these 'things', surreal objects combining different parts of my life to date. I started with the illustrations, then made stories to go with them then went the whole hog and had an exhibition in a cupboard with a catalogue and poster etc. Here is
Saxa Phatanga, a flower found in the foothills of the alps, and makes a sound like a soprano saxaphone when the wind goes by. So far the course has been amazing, we've met some fascinating people. I think I'm getting more into gear so will try to be more regular with this, Eden Project brief next tuesday, yey!

Wednesday, 1 October 2008

Two for joy

I'm doing some postcards about my like/dislikes etc, I do indeed like both hand drawn type and magpies. Start my MA on monday, eep!

Sunday, 21 September 2008

So this is something I was doing on a placement at The Chase in London, but the final brief was different to what we were expecting. I still liked what was going on with this one though so I left it as a poster sans type. Is it a forest or is it gravity defying water dribbles? Hmm...
Hi I'm Harriet.

I'm new round here.

I've just finished a BA(hons) in Graphic Design at Norwich School of Art and Design (now Norwich University College of the Arts - yuk) and am about to start a Masters in Graphic Design at Falmouth.

I intend for this to be a little place to keep the things I've done that I'm proud of and the things other people have done that I wish I'd done.

Lets start now, shall we?