I love the slightly naive style of these paper illustrations by Swedish Fideli Sundqvist. They create a really playful take on the sombre and thoughtful Old Masters Still Life, and the unusual choice of subject adds another level of humour.
Check out Fideli’s website to see the various other projects she has turned her hand to.
I have finally finished my most recent upholstery project. As per usual, everything is bespoke. I designed and printed the fabric by hand myself and upholstered the chair from scratch using traditional methods. I am really pleased by the end result, which I think is a very beautiful and quirky little chair.
The chair is an Edwardian nursing chair that I bought at an auction. It proved to be something of a labour of love when it came to the reupholstering, and provided quite a few challenges. I went through 6 fabric layers on the top panel, from the last layer to what I believe was the original Edwardian upholstery. But I think the end result is striking enough to justify a couple of extra hours of graft. The chair itself is quite unique, and I certainly feel a little emotionally attached to it now after the long process I have been through!
I am really pleased with how the print looks against the dark wood of the chair. I struggled a little when designing this print, as I wanted the imagery to be the right amount of kitsch, and to compliment the gold leaf patterning on the wood. I think the colours have worked especially well to really rejuvenate this chair – and give it a completely new lease of life.
This chair is for sale now in a beautiful and quirky boutique in Dalston called Pelicans and Parrots Black – please go and take a look!
Just a small preview of a repeat fabric design that I have recently screen-printed ready to be upholstered onto a very beautiful chair. I feel like this design is a step into a slightly more commercial realm for me, and I am really pleased with how the chair is taking shape – there will be more pictures to follow once it is finished!
I have just finished an incredibly fun project. A trio of cushions as a very personal wedding gift, one of him, one of her and of course, one of them together. And the best this about this brief – to be as kitsch as possible. A challenge I was more than happy to accept. Combining digital print and screen printing proved to be a little more difficult than expected – but I think the end results has meant that it has all been worthwhile. Having never met the couple myself meant that my only option was to create these cushions to my own level of kitsch – so I can only hope that they won’t be too overwhelmed.
Congrats to the happy couple – and I hope they are pleased!
I was incredibly lucky to be taken on an unexpected (and wonderful) trip to Budapest last week. It is a city that I feel I know well now, and really love – probably because whenever I go I now feel I can spend the time in spas and bars instead of sightseeing! It offers a completely different vibe to London – so much more laid-back with a real creative-vibe. The ‘East London’ of Budapest is the Jewish Quarter, which is full of restaurants, independent shops and outdoor bars – perfect for 34 degree heat. I was really excited to visit a real favourite of mine, a bar (if you can call it that!) called Szimpla, and it appears to have gone from strength to strength.
It is absolutely huge, and spread out over 2 floors. There are outdoor areas, large patios and terraces, as well as numerous nooks and crannies that are probably a bit more favourable in the winter. The floors are connected by various staircases (some a little more precarious than others) and there are balconies to look down on to what is going on below. But what is really incredible about this place is the truely unique decor.
Every single surface is covered. All of the furniture has been salvaged and updated. And at night the place comes to light with fairy lights and other odd-ball pieces. There is always something new to see. It may take you a while to notice that you have sat down in a reworked bath tub, or that there is a gnome hanging from the ceiling above you. Also, the decor is interactive. There are switchboards where you can change the lighting in a room, or provoke a reaction on a tv screen. There is even a switch that made an entire ceiling of battery powered animals suddenly come to life. It has hard to describe – but the whole experience is a bit of a sensory overload.
The outdoor terrace is amazing, being characterised by a burnt out car. Colourful awning and mismatching chairs make it a really great place to drink on a summers evening. But the entertainment Szimpla offers excels that of a normal bar, with film screenings, bands, performances and food. It really is a one off place – and judging by it’s popularity I am not the only person who thinks so!
The ‘Afronauts’ is an ongoing project from Spanish photographer Cristina de Middel. I really love the mood of these images – they feel like a sci-fi scenario that has got completely misplaced whilst travelling through time and space. They are humorous but also slightly eery at the same time.
However, in a statement about the ‘Afronauts’ project, Middel suggests that her actual inspiration for this project was just as obscure as you would imagine it to be.
In 1964, still living the dream of their recently gained independence, Zambia started a space program that would put the first African person on the moon catching up the USA and the Soviet Union in the space race.
Only a few optimists supported the project by Edward Makuka, the school teacher in charge of presenting the ambitious program and getting its necessary funding. But the financial aid never came, as the United Nations declined their support, and one of the astronauts, a 16 year old girl, got pregnant and had to quit. That is how the heroic initiative turned into an exotic episode of the African history, surrounded by wars, violence, droughts and hunger.
“Afronauts” is based on the documentation of an impossible dream that only lives in the pictures. I start from a real fact that took place 50 years ago and rebuild the documents adapting them to my personal imagery.
Middel creates the perfect realisation of a truly bizarre story. There are so many other beautiful, witty and imaginative projects on Middel’s website. Make sure you check it out.