A shiny new opening for Looking Glass


Seven magical years ago, the Looking Glass journey started as a drawing - a simple vision of an idea to design an online visual space for creative inspiration. It quickly leapt off the page into the digital world, as a reflection not only of my artist side and to show what/who inspires me as a graphic designer, but also as an invitation to you - the reader, to catch a glimpse of yourself and to discover what makes your heart sing - after all, we are all creatives...in our own authentic way.

Looking Glass is "on the move"... l warmly welcome you to (soon) join me on this new and exciting chapter. New visual adventures abound!!!

(Please note all subscribers will be automatically signed up for the new Looking Glass journey.  Should you wish to discontinue, please feel welcome to contact me directly).

Special acknowledgement and thanks to Maru Saurer for her technical expertise and guidance regarding the new visual platform, and to Patricia Vila Nova for the creative collaboration on making the trailer teaser. 


Life Watch - a play time adventure




Everything started with a term that I had never heard: “Gap Year."


Jill Allemang decided to drive a blog called notabackpacker.com, with the aim to take a Gap Year 30 years late and without stopping work. She would develop activities that she still wanted to do and share them on the blog. For that, we needed a good plan, good organization and an image on the blog that explained this all.


I realized the fun part had just started.


We needed an image that reflected the whole blog; so, during our conversations, the words became a draft and the draft became an image. I drew a clock because time was present in all of our discussions. I added “career,” “finance” and “age” as our key words because, as Jill said, these were the reasons to take a gap year now.


For me, everything in life has a reason. In this image, I created a reason for every small detail. I chose 6:45 – sunrise in Zürich during the winter. From this choice came new words on the clock arrows: “opportunity” and “decision.” I think that each sunrise means the opportunity of a new day, opportunity to do better, and the opportunity to make decisions about how to take opportunities, when and if it makes us happy.


We also talked about the idea of turning back time and added the backwards arrow in underscore because time doesn’t return, but the desire remains. From this same desire, we added an arrow in the opposite direction that represents the future.


As my Grandfather says, “stopping is dying.” I added the play button because, to live, we need to move, to feel, and to be humans – for that no pause button exists.


Combining technology and our minds to improve the Life Watch visual, we gained essential help from our designer, Elizabeth Hitchman, who embraced the project with the same passion as us. With small steps together, we created perfect harmony because, with Elizabeth, the Life Watch became our beautiful design, a real image with a purpose.


When I look at this image, I say to myself – I only have time to try, time to go forward and, most important, to be happy.


* Warmly invited as a guest blogger, Patricia Vila Nova brings high levels of creative energy to every project she engages in. 


Focus on Marlow Moss

Upon first entering the Marlow Moss exhibition at the leading institute and internationally known Museum Haus Konstruktiv, l must admit the work of Piet Mondrian sprang to mind. However, this train of thought was swiftly swept aside upon closer inspection of the work and life of artist Marlow Moss.

Layer by layer, the exhibition Marlow Moss – A Forgotten Maverick, (curated by Museum Director, Sabine Schaschl and Art Historian, Lucy Howarth), drew my attention to this artist - whose work has been long overshadowed by the famous male artists of the constructivists movement, namely Mondrian.

The exhibition itself allows you to view the work of Moss in fine detail, within a carefully curated contemporary structure. Based on mathematical principles, Moss explored the structural framework of straight lines using blocks of primary colour, as well as black and white, l found the original drawings exhibited in-conjunction with the actual finished compositions extraordinary and richly insightful. As the observer, we get to enjoy her compositions from intricate pencil drawings to full-scale artworks, as well as sculptural pieces, which include wire adaptations of her compositional line work.

The additional art lecture given by Art Historian Lucy Howarth gave further insight into the life and work of Marlow Moss. We soon discovered that the "double-line element (also a well-known element of Mondrian's work) was in fact invented by Moss...it was (to my dismay, yet not overly surprise) subsequently made apparent that Mondrian did not point this out. During the lecture, their work was presented side-by-side, which l found hugely revealing, as you could clearly see how Moss was aspiring to break away from the boundaries of the black compositional lines.

l rather like the idea of Moss and Mondrian having a 'double line' conversation via their art compositions. Leads me to wonder ...perhaps Mondrian felt challenged by Moss and her compositional approach.

l was left questioning the female artist presence or more importantly lack of within the art world. Briefly talking to Lucy Howarth after the lecture, l feel that Moss was indeed a true maverick, which l believe came natural to her. She is certainly an artist who requires our attention, and whose work demands to be an imperative part of the constructivist conversation.

l may have walked in thinking of Mondrian, but l walked away positively focused on Marlow Moss.

* 'Marlow Moss A Forgotten Maverick' can be seen at the Museum Haus Konstruktiv until 7th May 2017. / All images are courtesy of the museum.



Thought process...


As we embark on a new year, l find myself thinking about how l wish to shape the next twelve months. A box of beautifully crafted pencils and a copy of the inspirational Flow 2017 diary have set me on my way. 

Looking forward to see on which enriching paths the creative thought process will lead me this year? Without a doubt, it all feels pretty exciting...l feel ready to discover and explore...

"We are what we think. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts we make the world". - Buddha.

Wishing you a year of creative adventure!


Precious Cargo


It was during the warm summer months that l was introduced to 'Precious Cargo', (gold, frankincense and myrrh) created by glassybaby.  The team couldn't wait to showcase their Christmas creations, which proved to be rather timely, as l was on my way to Cologne, Germany - home to the shrine of The Three Kings.

How poetic to have such a precious gift appear during my travels...

May it be a bright star that leads you into the New Year. 


LN_16 Part ll


LN16_cloce-up-02 web

A month on and the Long Night of the Museums discoveries have been processed and explored. It was a beautiful and insightful journey. 

Commencing from the floating wooden platform of Manifesta ll, Jill and l watched a series of short films. A collection of stories bringing together various local professions and artists - compelling in topic in conjunction with the artists' individual visual approach to story-telling.

Moving on through-out the evening, we amusingly found ourselves falling down a rabbit-hole via a set of charming book illustrations by Zurich-born artist Hanny Fries, complimented by a live musical performance, extracted from the classic novel Alice-in-Wonderland...this was duly followed by a colourful ride on Moroccan carpets at the Museum Bellerive - striking in textile medium and traditional craftsmanship! 

A few tram stops later, we mused over many an art piece at the Museum Haus Konstruktiv ..."Thinking Outside of the Box"  happily led us to the outside bar to enjoy a colourful drink and engaging conversation under the twinkling stars and fairy lights.

To round off our long night, we slowly made our way up to the Kunsthaus to view the retrospective on the diverse works of artist Francis Picabia. 

In the wee small hours, Jill and l happily concluded that a visual feast for the creative mind had been fully enjoyed. Food for thought indeed. 

*Visual Investigations images: © 2016 Elizabeth Hitchman


LN16_Part l


This Saturday sees me embark (with client & friend Jill Allemang) on my first attendence to the annual 'Long Night of the Zurich Museums'.

Browsing through the program generates heightened anticipation of visual engagement via exhibitions, installations and live performance ... an 'artist day' comes alive during the twilight hour ...

l invite you to watch this space for a visual follow-up on our explorations and discoveries.

Happy Weekend!

*Photo credit: Jill Allemang


Spotlight on Annie Atkins


The magic of film has the power to inspire, enchant, captivate and above all else transport us to another world.

The exceptional work of Graphic Designer Annie Atkins (for filming-making), poignantly stands out as a rich example of visual impact with its meticulous attention to detail.

'The Grand Budapest Hotel' trailer alone grabbed my attention with its quirky and endearing charm...excitedly followed up by watching the film on the big screen. l happily and whole-heartedly confess it was the rich array of graphic design visuals (created by leading graphic designer Annie Atkins and her team) which captivated me from the out-set.

Magnificently amplified by the hand-crafted visual props, the visual story-telling from packaging and stamped documents, to the "artistic" merits of the prison escape map - when handled with care and admired by the characters on-screen is simply beautiful! 

l find the creative process within graphic design film-making fascinating, as Annie Atkins explains, the process involves various steps, including script breakdown, continuity logistics, and the production of several copies of one piece to name but a few, with each step holding its own challenges.

l have great respect for the medium and feel inspired by the perspective in which Annie Atkins views her work  - "Look after the little details...you will in some some way contribute to the movie as a whole. It's our job, people do see it. When we create graphic props and set pieces, we're not always making them for the cinema audience – these are pieces that are dressed into the sets to create a more authentic experience for the director and actors to work in"

l'm delighted to share a short film link for further exploration of Annie's film projects and to invite you to listen to Annie describe her graphic design work in her own words. The clips will undoubtedly generate a deeper sense of appreciation for graphic design work within the field of film-making.

Be enchanted! 


In 2016 ...


l wish to start this year's Looking Glass postings by sharing a photograph of my 'Seaglass space'. This is where my visual communication work is created, where a calendar can be turned in typographic style, where a 3D-cardboard globe can be spun while pondering creative ideas, where l rotate creative expression that inspires...

l wonder with much anticipation, as to which visual direction client projects will take me in 2016...all very exciting!

Wishing you a creative & inspirational 2016!


A sprinkle of season's greetings...


It has been said that *"Christmas is almost the Olympics of wit for designers, with the toughest competition and past performance to surpass". 

Not wishing to appear twee or over the top, as a designer l like to take the creative direction of raising a smile with a gentle injection of seasonal humour, and the "Christmassification" of an object is an approach l find most fun. 

l was recently asked by writer D.B. Miller if l had interest to come up with visual ideas to sprinkle some wintery sparkle onto her corporate identity, (a project l also had the pleasure to co-create) ... during our conversation, it became quickly apparent as how best to add a note of seasonal cheer.

Best wishes for the holidays and for 2016!

*Extract taken from 'A Smile In The Mind' by Beryl McAlhone, David Stuart. Published by Phaidon.