kapok, the hipster boutique lifestyle store in Hong Kong had their ten year anniversary this weekend, and they've been building up to it with a variety of events. I designed and illustrated a map for their #kapok10 anniversary launch, and they've used elements from it throughout their stores, website and social media.I've never created a map from scratch before, by which I mean that it's an imaginary place, not a real one. I was asked to create a country that embodied everything kapok stood for: creativity, fun, fashion and a truly international flavour. I could start anywhere! And of course a new country needs a crest: kapokland's features the pink dolphin of HK and their new motto: 'future classics' Here's the full map, showing an archipelago of different exotic fantasy islands, covering all seasons at once, with both tropical and arctic lands.The reverse side of the map also featured a close-up of the main town in kapokland: Kapokville. The town had shops and museums, but also global embassies, a castle and even pedalos!This is how it was used on the kapok website...They even had a stand at a local design market with fun illustrated props for customers to interact with......and also used some of the animals as a banner on facebook...I especially liked how they used details from the map on the store windows...and inside...Congratulations kapok! Here's to the next 10 years of fabulous!
I've just come home from a wonderful visit in New York and Washington DC. I love NY, and it felt wonderful to meet friends and wander in all my special spots... I showed my portfolio, ate fun dinners, and saw some inspiring exhibitions in both cities.
I was super excited to see the Lincoln Memorial on the National Mall, the White House, the Museum of American History and the Capitol.I was especially moved by the Jefferson memorial, as he's my favourite US President of all!
I have a photograph in the annual juried plastic camera show at RAYKO in San Francisco, and I popped in to see it last week. So exciting! I'm always taking photos on my holga/Lomo/Olympus Pen and don't show them enough. It's inspiring to see so many people making beautiful images on their plastic, almost toy, cameras.I recommend checking it out! The exhibition is up for one more week, until April 29th. Rayko, 428 Third Street, SF, CA 94107
I spent a few days in Vienna recently, and finally managed to eat at the famous Cafe Central with its glorious arched ceilings.I mixed it up a bit, and then went for cake at Simoni's, a very modern cafe, and just as delicious.The big revelation for me was the visit to the Kunsthistoriches Museum. I couldn't believe how many truly amazingly beautiful works of art there were.My favourites were this portrait of a lady by Rubens...and this absolute gem by Vermeer. It gave me such a lovely warm feeling.Vienna is such a beautiful city, even the hotdog stands are like works of art. This photograph is my tribute to Hopper, and features Durer's Hare on the roof.
One of my photos has been chosen to be in the annual juried plastic camera show at the prestigious rayko photo center in San Francisco. This is a double-exposure medium format shot I took with my trusty Holga when I was travelling in India. I'm not a photographer, but I do love analogue photography so much. The opening reception is this wednesday evening, March 9th, 6-8pm if you're around! Show continues until April 29th.
Today and tomorrow are the last days to see my show at GAW in San Francisco. Hope you can make it! You can view these two hand-detailed mokuhanga prints of a jug and a mug...It's a series of four, with pen-drawn lines, but these two just seem to go so nicely together.
My show continues for 2 more weekends, and I'll be at the studio this afternoon (saturday) so please feel free to drop in!Here are two of the newer pieces in the show. I've been experimenting with adding different media onto prints: the pink jug is a mokuhanga print with added pen line drawing, and the bird mug is an etching with watercolour.Graphic Arts Workshop: 2565 3rd St #305, San Francisco, CA 94107
My show opened last weekend in Dogpatch, San Francisco. Here's me hanging my work...Thank you to everyone who came to the opening reception, I am full of love for you all!The show runs from February 5th – 27th on Fridays and Saturdays noon – 5pm, and by appointment at other times. I'll be at the studio most saturdays while the show is up, if you'd like to drop by! Graphic Arts Workshop: 2565 3rd St #305, San Francisco, CA 94107
I'm going to have a solo show in San Francisco, yay! It's in the little gallery at the front of my printmaking workshop in Dogpatch. The reception is on saturday 6 February from 2-5pm, I'd love to see you there!I'll be showing a selection of my ongoing playing card etching series, along with a new collection of mokuhanga woodcuts and etchings about tea. The show runs from February 5th – 27th on Fridays and Saturdays noon – 5pm, and by appointment at other times.
There will be a presentation by Linda Marshall about handmade Japanese washi paper at 1pm, just before the reception, so please do come along to that if you're interested!
Graphic Arts Workshop: 2565 3rd St #305, San Francisco, CA 94107
This week I'm in London, admiring the lights, and loving the Chrismassy-ness of it all. Along with two of my monsters colleagues, Lynn Hatzius and David Humphries, we had a stand at the House of Illustration annual Illustrator's Christmas Fair, held in King's Cross. We sold prints and cards, and I even had some of my London Toile products.I've been admiring the wonderful Christmas windows around town, and my favourites are the glorious Fortnum and Masons...and of course Tiffanys.And the best thing about London is the choice of exhibitions, and these constructed trees by Ai Wei Wei at the Royal Academy were stunning.Can't wait for more London inspiration this week!
Today was the first day of our annual open studios at Graphic Arts Workshop. Here's the sunny studio all ready and waiting for the first visitors.I set up my portfolios, wrapped prints and picture wall, featuring most of my newest artwork in a variety of frames.I've been working on a new series of little prints based on the zodiac horoscope signs which are on show here for the first time.I hope you'll all pop in to visit tomorrow, I'll be there from 11-6. Thank you to everyone who came to see us today. Happy Halloween!
Next weekend: 31 Oct and 1 Nov, I'll be showing my work at the annual San Francisco Open Studios event, in my print studio in Dogpatch. You can find all the info you need about the Graphic Art Workshop here. I'll be showing new work, like this hand-detailed mokuhanga print,and some new playing card prints like these.Of course I'll be showing a wide variety of ceramic etchings, like this popular blue peonies print,which you can also see at the preview show in SOMArts gallery in downtown San Francsico right now.I do hope you can make it to the open studios, I'll be there from 11-6 on saturday and sunday. It's always nice to buy art direct from the artists! Please do come and say hello.
I've just got back from a wonderful visit to Kansas. I spent a day doing a spot of teaching at Emporia State University and giving a presentation there. Here's a great poster one of the students made for my talk:I went to Lawrence, to set up a collaborative exhibition with my friends Yoonmi Nam and Katie Baldwin at the new Wonder Fair gallery downtown.We had our opening on saturday evening, which was super busy and fun!We showed our project wood + paper + box, along with a special silk-screened poster of our complete box (available to buy from Wonder Fair).We each also had space to show our own individual work. Here's mine, hung salon style.The show will be up until mid November, so please do pop in and take a look if you're nearby!
I've collaborated with my friends Katie Baldwin and Yoomni Nam on a hand-printed paper stationery set for Wonderfair's Letter Writing Club, in Lawrence, Kansas. This is a photo of all the elements before they're packed together. I made the letter sheets with envelope, and also did the calligraphy for the top label (which Katie then screenprinted). The letter sheets are relief printed in green/gold. Here's the gold block,and the tests I printed to choose exactly the colour that would work.Here's the final set all put together. They'll be for sale at the club, and then afterwards at Wonderfair. The club meetings are held regularly, to encourage good ol' fashioned writing letters, and we'll all be attending the next one on Sunday 20th September. Hope to see you there!
I have two prints in the group printmaking show 'Pressed' at the Pacific Art League in Palo Alto. Here a few pics from the private view last night.The exhibition is on until 25th June, mondays to fridays, 9am - 5pm.
I do hope you can make it!
I've been trying to do more mokuhanga, and recently completed this print of Japanese kokeshi dolls for my new collaborative project with Yoomni Nam and Katie Baldwin. This time we're calling our project alabama + california + kansas. You can find out more on our blog. We'll again be travelling to visit each other in our studios in these locations, and sending work to each other. Here's a pic of the wood block for this print, as I was carving it.
At the Oceanographic Museum of Monaco I admired the gorgeous anemones and seaweed in the aquarium.There were fish, seahorses, sea slugs and coral, and all sorts of weird squiggly things.The shiny gold sparkles of the piranha were mesmerising.There were also fascinating historical displays on the upper floors. I just can't resist the labels and cataloguing of these types of collections.I loved all the hand-writing and little boxes...
I illustrated a branch of plum blossom for the Spring launch of the new aloof mannequin from Bonaveri, for their China showroom. I kept the colours bright and the line crisp, to create a calm and beautiful backdrop for the elegant new mannequins.My illustration is influenced by traditional Chinese painting, but I tried to give it a modern feel. I started with pencil sketches of the flowers, and then drew the line in dip-pen and ink, finally adding colour in Photoshop.
I've just installed a display in the artspace window next to Alleycat Books in the Mission in San Francisco, on 24th and Treat. I wanted to create the illusion of looking into an interior, playing with various layers and dimensions.I drew an illustrated black and white backdrop of a Victorian parlour, looking through to several more rooms. I hid little details in the drawing to create stories: portraits, a lady by the fire, a statue of a rabbit, a cat’s tail, a stuffed bird under a glass dome. I played with depth within the drawing itself, and then added to it by hanging real framed pictures on the drawn walls.The framed pieces are etchings of ceramics and a portrait, echoing the subject matter within the backdrop. They're full of patterns, creating a layer of patterned artwork on top of patterned wallpaper.One of the difficulties was fighting the un-removable grafitti on the glass. By creating a detailed pattern, I hope I've managed to distract the eye! Please go and take a look if you're around. It should be up for 2 months.
The Chinese New Year decorations featuring my zodiac illustrations are now installed in the Thomas Heatherwick designed Pacific Place shopping mall in HK. In the large atrium, there are banners and lanterns, which are also featured throughout the mall. My favourite part of the installation is the glass wall of the lifts; it features my illustration on a huge scale, and looks wonderful when you travel up and down.They're also on the connecting mall walkway, over the main road,and there's a pagoda with flower maze in the lower atrium, with an illustrated rotating display and each of the zodiac animals on the outer wall. At the back of this display are some Chinese-style screens made of wood. I love the way elements from my drawn illustration have been transformed into 3D.There's a smaller pagoda also, based on my drawings, with information screens and drawings on each side. I really like the flowers on the floor!If you spend a certain amount of money while you're shopping at the mall, you can collect a special gift at this lovely kiosk.You can get two of these limited edition fine bone china dinner plates, with my zodiac illustration in a lovely repeat pattern!