Thursday, April 28, 2011

Handsome Frank

We have some exciting news to share, MaricorMaricar have signed to the wonderful UK based illustration agency Handsome Frank! We're really stoked to join the family and be part of an amazing roster of creative and unique illustrators. If you are interested in commissioning work please get in touch with them or directly with us.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Playing with type

Last week we went to Easter School at Central St Martins. For three amazing days we got to play with lead and wood type and live out our type geek dreams. Years ago while at UTS we had the chance to go on exchange to CSM and being the naive silly girls we were, we didn't pursue it and regretted it for a long time. Thanks to the British Council's grant we received last year we finally got the chance to make good and study at CSM if only for a few days.

Letterpress is enjoying a revival at the moment, (Maricor posted last week about the letterpress cards that the Hungry Workshop made up for us) we're fans of the tactility and craft involved with letterpress especially in the movable type variety. In the class we were taught the fundamentals of setting up lead and wood type and creating short runs using the medium sized Farley press and the smaller Adana press. The thing that struck us the most about the process was how much it felt like you were solving a jigsaw puzzle when setting up the type blocks and spacing. And since we both really enjoy fiddly things like puzzles we were having an awesome time.

The downside was we didn't have enough time. Set up and cleaning takes so long that we really only printed for about 15 min out of the 10-4 class time we had each day. And I don't know how we can continue the new letterpress fascination we've now developed.

Our uni lecturers used to tell us stories of lead type being dumped onto the gutter when the huge presses were shut down. Helen Ingham our instructor told us a lot of the CSM letterpress type were salvaged from those dumping days. The history in the corridors, stairwell and workshops at CSM is overwhelming and to think it will all be gone soon, shafted all over to new campuses to make room for a luxury hotel development makes me sad. I hope all the letterpress equipment we used survives the move and continues to be used.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The Hungry Workshop are awesome

For our trip to London we really wanted to get some proper cards done (finally!) and wanted to do something a little special and something fitting to the tactile work we do. Luckily we stumbled across the letterpress work of The Hungry Workshop run by the awesome duo Simon and Jenna. Letterpress is something we've been dying to try as we've been interested in printmaking for a long time (we did a short course in stone lithographic printing at COFA a few years back and we've booked ourselves in for a letterpress course at Central Saint Martins while we're in London which started yesterday - so much amazing stuff to share about the class so we'll make sure to write a proper blog post about it after it wraps up).

Please check out their site, it's chockas with some amazing prints they've collaborated on with other designers as well as custom designs they have created themselves. They were tremendously helpful with getting our business cards done and ready in time for our trip and we couldn't be more happier with the results. Below are the cards, we chose an uncoated, thicker card that suited the handcrafted feel of our work.

Beer Matt Board 390gsm
Pantone Black 5

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Viral dancers

Great view from outside our window on Queensway the other day, watched a production crew and two prankster pop-locking dancers hidden in cardboard boxes jump out and freak out passersby. Trying to read the logo on their shiny orange and purple tops, one of them has a ranga up fro a'la Kid 'n' Play.

Will no doubt see the video up on youtube soon.

This week we managed to get away for some proper tourist fun times and spent a few hours at the Victoria & Albert Museum but unfortunately the Textiles room was closed! And won't re-open till 2013!! Bummer, but there was still heaps of things to occupy ourselves with and we will no doubt be revisiting again..and again.

Afterwards we lost ourselves in the amazing scarves hall at Liberty, drooled over a couple, the patterns, the colours!! Oh well, first excuse we get to reward ourselves you know where we'll be heading.

And just to prove we haven't been slackers, here are a few snaps our friend Catherine took at Kensington Park over the weekend. The sun was out and it was WARM, dare I say hot for London in the spring so we packed up our sewing bags and took our work to the park. Here's a sneak at the sewing we're currently working on, there's a few commissions on the go so in between house hunting and quick trips around London seeing the sights we've been busy bees again sewing up a storm.

Monday, April 04, 2011

London Calling

So long Sydney, we're sad to say goodbye but hello London!

We arrived early Tuesday morning at around 5.30 and after 24 hours flying thank goodness we opted for a cab transfer from the airport. I doubt we'd have made it to our friends' place otherwise. The flights themselves were pretty good but any extended period of time suspended in halfway time between your old timezone and your new one is always disorienting and exhausting. On the second leg from Hong Kong to London we somehow managed to score first row seats which meant we had extra leg room. I felt a bit guilty though. Since we're small asian girls we were in the least need, especially as there seemed to be a whole fleet of giant rugby fans/players crammed in nearby.

Our first week has been a mix of work and exploring.. sadly more of the former. We sorta nerded out and made sure we hunted down an art supply store, fabrics and craft store and grocery shops nearby. No denying where our priorities lie :)

On Saturday we checked out a couple of Markets around east London. I scored a rope necklace at the new Designers Markers Market and we ogled the beautiful food (and people) at Broadway Market. We're hoping to find a rental nearby since the markets are so amazing. I miss living in Newtown and it feels somewhat similar, a cross between Newtown and Surry Hills.

This week we have a commission to finish that's been keeping us from exploring more. I shouldn't complain about being busy but it's a bummer we're stuck indoors. Oh well we'll just have to sew like crazy :)

Maricor and I have also put up a massive update on our site. The full series of embroideries from our Turns of Speech & Figures of Phrase exhibition is up as well as the latest Global Village artworks and an illustration we made for Anorak Magazine's Food is Fun series. We are also proud to share our latest animation that we created for British Council Australia. Together with Republic of Everyone we created an animation to help launch Big Green Idea, a great funding initiative by the British Council. We worked on it before we flew out and had to multitask more than usual for this project. Making the props, rigging, lighting, camera ops and post production. It was a bit of a stretch at times! Although it was a busy two week we had a great time working on it, coming up with the cute paper characters and learning new techniques.