16/10/2015

Uma - A wonder for all the senses

Uma

In Swahili, Uma means fork. 

To me *Uma means gastronomic jewel.

Located in Barcelona, Chef Iker Erauzkin & food writer/journalist Anna Yébenes have opened the doors into their imaginative world of gourmet cuisine. Memorable glimpses of Iker's cooking workshop balanced with a showstopping "pure genius" culinary performance has equated to an unforgettable experience, particularly for the tastebuds.

Uma is indeed a sparkling jewel. An open mind and heart will lead you on a glorious dining adventure, into another sphere ... all may not appear as it seems ...

Oh such beauty for the senses awaits ... !

*Normally l wax lyrical in my postings about creativity which captures my looking glass imagination, but for this particular posting it makes perfect sense not to say too much - smile.

07/09/2015

Illustration & exploration

TDAT_Barcelona_Andalucia

September has happily begun with not-too-distant summer memories of places visited and joyfully explored. Prior to my trip to Spain at the beginning of August, l discovered the exuberant map 'Barcelona, Spain' illustrated by Farida Zaman via the web platform 'They Draw & Travel'. Syncroncity at its magical best! Especially since it was just a few days before my flight that l caught sight of this colourful city guide.

Founded in 2011, by brother & sister (design and illustration team, Studio SSS) , Nate Padavick & Salli S. Swindell, 'They Draw & Travel' - younger sibling site to the delicious They Draw & Cook',  is a pure celebration of illustrative maps and travel.

l adore the concept of reflecting the places we love through the visual voice of map illustration. Inviting artists from around the world to illustrate their unique perception of the places they have visited or perhaps even places where they live, Nate and Salli have opened a new window for us to discover and explore, and above all, generated inspiration to record our own travels through map-making.

Having fell under the charms of the incomparable, yet equally compelling Barcelona, and southern region of Andalucia, (2012) the maps (Barcelona, Spain, Farida Zaman / Andalucia, Spain, Benjamin Bay) will long keep aglow the warmth of these places visited.

l warmly invite you to submit a hand-drawn map of your favourite places to the TDAT website, or perhaps have a simple browse as inspiration for your next port of call. l for one, feel inspired to continue drawing, traveling and cooking!

26/06/2015

Beyond words...introducing D.B. Miller

D.B-Miller-extracts

I feel most fortunate to have struck up a friendship with the writer D.B. (Daryl) Miller in the spring of 2003. We met through a magazine project which we were both working on at the time. From the outset she inspired me not only as a creative, but as an individual whose outlook in life carried an air of authenticity and richly cultured prose. The words "raise my game" sprang to mind when l happened to glance over her impressive achievements as a writer.

Blending her passion for music and her gift for telling a story, l believe Daryl's gig-based essays capture a plethora of heightened emotions that arise when watching a band perform live - in her words "the power of something much harder to name". Her acute observations allow the reader to truly feel.

Daryl's writings also extend to other creative individuals and spaces, whether it be a floating theatre, a bookstore or a guitar shop in downtown Zurich, her ability to tell their story goes beyond words. The poetic construction of language which features in her work evokes a powerful sense of truthfulness layered with emotive depth and richness.

As the iconic Glastonbury festival kicks off, l warmly invite you to explore online the published works of D.B. Miller.

 *Graphic Design credits: Elizabeth Hitchman/Seaglass

15/05/2015

Snippets from a new sketchbook

Untitled-2

l was recently given a beautifully hand-crafted sketch-book with crisp white pages. To me, these pages excitingly appear as a blank canvas in which l can play, collect and create visual stories.

l tend to start at the end of the book, as well as the beginning, meeting in the middle - l find this process entices the page to maintain a balanced level of visual interest throughout.

Beginning this sketch-book just a few weeks ago has generated a new creative space for the many layers of clippings that l have collected over time. In this posting l'd thought l'd share an artwork piece of a bookmark which l designed to compliment a book gift, and the opening end pages of my new sketch-book.

ln years to come, l feel it will be fun to look through ... catching a glimpse of inspired conversations, ideas for design projects, exhibitions visited with family and friends, or simply a lovely reminder of visuals that caught my eye.

*Please feel welcome to click on images for a magnified view :)

20/03/2015

Fresh air for the creative eye

Rifle-Paper-Co_MONTAGE

Founded by wife and husband team, Anna & Nathan Bond, Rifle Paper.Co knows no visionary bounds. Starting out as a small stationary business in 2009 their design journey has rapidly, yet intuitively developed into a global "lifestyle brand" with products galore.

Anna has taken her creative talents to heights of visual impact that packs a stylish punch. l'm impressed how original illustrative pieces have been translated and adapted for different mediums, from gift-wrapping to phone-cases, proving a pattern can travel a visual path with distance.

Two collections which have been picked up on the Looking Glass radar are the recent collaborations with French illustrator, author, and photographer Garance Doré and Lauren Conrad of Paper Crown. Featured above, both give a compelling nod to glamour from a different perspective, a pure reflection of their own unique style.

"We strongly believe life's personal stories and moments are best told through the gift of a handwritten card or note". With this ethos, it's no wonder Rifle Paper.Co are growing their stationary roots and branching out to wallpaper and other homeware products...be sure to check out the carefully crafted gift guide and the enchanting 'Puffin In Bloom' book collection.

A welcomed breath of (visual) fresh air for the creative eye.

*Special thanks to Jill Allemang of jallé GmbH for bringing the Rifle Paper Co. brand to my 'Looking Glass' attention.

06/01/2015

Animals at large - WWF Together App

 

The animal kingdom has long fascinated me. My trips to Africa and Asia, have fortunately allowed me to take the opportunity to observe animals in their natural environment. These trips truly hightened my awareness, leaving me with an indepth sense of awe and wonder. The visual delight (spent one late afternoon in September 2011) of watching a giraffe family slowly meandering against a backdrop of the Tsavo West National Park landscape will be a moment forever etched in my memory.

Thankfully, since 1961, the World Wildlife Fund continues to educate, support and make new discoveries. Their appetite to invite us to learn and contribute knows no bounds, and recently l made the exciting discovery of the creative 'WWF Together App' a visually rich & playful interactive experience.

l warmly invite you to explore the award winning WWF app, enticing you to learn, play and above all generate awareness of the many stunning species who share the planet with us.

Oh, and look-out for the origami animals currently roaming around on the app!

23/12/2014

"Carrier of valuable messages"

Le-pigeon-voyageur

lt was through printing talent Rita Nicolussi that my introduction to the communicative charms of Le pigeon voyageur was made. A collaboration (based in Switzerland) between Rita and illustrator Naomi Baldauf, the classical form of high-end stationary is richly celebrated hand in hand with creative illustration and extensive exploration of print production techniques.  Their passion for creative ideas and printed form is widely reflected in the attention to detail.

l've had the immense pleasure to enjoy a couple of printing conversations with Rita Nicolussi concerning some of the projects created via the Le pigeon voyageur collaboration...the phrase "eyes light up" springs to mind.

In recent months, l was most fortunate to attend the annual printing Messe in Frauenfeld, Switzerland. While visiting Rita Nicolussi and the Le pigeon voyageur exhibition stand, l came across these beautifully illustrated Christmas tags. The Snowman imparticular caught my attention, closely followed by the Owl, Baby in a shoe and the Mushroom man. l find they make not only lovely gift tags, but also appear rather pretty as a tree decoration. The Snowman has certainly found a new home on my tree.

Le pigeon voyageur retains the pleasure of receiving a hand-written note, and truly is a "Carrier of valuable messages".

05/11/2014

A 'Nendo' moment!

Nendo-objects

Welcome to the world of Nendo! The Nendo objective is to give people a small "!" moment. On discovering Chief Designer Oki Sato and his team's work, l've certainly enjoyed many a moment.

A refreshing feeling evolves when browsing the Nendo website. Looking at everyday objects from a different viewpoint and celebrating the clean, uncluttered form of simplicity truly makes my creative heart sing.

The humble elastic band has been given a shapely, yet robust make-over, a classic set of oil paints beautifully presents itself as an aesthetically pleasing chocolate box (perfect for artists who have sweet tastebuds), and the timeless key calender leads us to the delightful thought of opening new doors on a daily basis.

Simple, effective, and oh so very clever!  

03/10/2014

Cut and 'paste'.

Paste-collection_updated

With an accomplished background in textile and interior design, Denise Fiedler has successfully expanded her exploration of textures to a creative project called 'Paste'. Re-discovering in 2009 vintage books and flashcards which she had collected over a number of years, Denise came up with the idea to turn these new-found materials into handmade cut and paste collages.

l happily browsed through the visually enchanting 'paste' collection, and my eye was drawn to these cleverly contructed paper gems - Marie Antoinette looking most regal yet playful with a couple of colour birds nested in her hairpiece, a beautifully constructed typewriter reminiscent of a bygone era. And a beady green-eyed tabby cat along with a friendly-faced terrier waiting patiently to be adored.

l have a mixed-breed dog called Rupert, and with my love of paper-play, it would certainly be a joy to see him make the 'paste' dogs and cats wall of fame.

04/07/2014

A typographic celebration of a band, that speaks to me...

Pearl Jam typography piece_setlist_20.6 copy

Pearl Jam live in concert, Milan, 20th June 2014. A date that will remain steadfast in memory. A band that l've followed since the release of their debut album 'Ten' (1992). A repertoire steeped in emotive music, richly indepth lyrics sung with a beautifully haunting voice...

A captivating combination of artistic elements - inspiring me to create a typographic set-list.

Perhaps you'll discover a Pearl Jam song, that speaks to you...