Monday, 25 April 2016

Holy Moly where is the time going (on work that's where)

I’ve been fairly quiet on here recently and I know I use the same excuse every time but I really have been very busy with work…. Promise!  Since I last posted in January we’ve held 6 large student events up on campus. On average that’s one every other Saturday!

I was particularly proud to be a part of our big electro-swing event at the beginning of March as my boss left me in charge of choosing the bands and liaising with them to make sure everyone arrived at the venue on time, fortunately everything went off without a hitch despite having to fly the headline act in from Copenhagen. Check out some of the photos below and see what you think! All photos copyright of the wonderful Jack Matthews.

The full album can be found on the bars Facebook page here.

Our esteemed guests were Don Johnston, The Jenova Collective and Swing Republic. It was amazing to bring such big names to such a tiny bit of England.  Everyone seemed to have an amazing time including me (even if I seemed like a stressy, sweaty mess that evening).

There were so many fantastic costumes, the student’s really looked amazing and the bar and staging didn’t look too shabby either! I’d love to work with some of the patterns and colours in my prints and you can expect a follow up post soon!

Tuesday, 26 January 2016

Sometimes I Just Like To Mess With Things

I don't often have time to make an entire new print from scratch any more. Not at the minute anyway between work and packing my life into boxes again (yes I am once more moving flats) I barely seem to get a moment to myself. However, it's at times like this I like to dig out something I made a while ago and rework it with different colours, patterns or textures. Not only does it give me a minor sense of accomplishment but I also get to brush up on my Photoshop skills!

This is my latest piece. I was working on the rose for my mums birthday card and then adapted the  image for Facebook - my profile needed a bit of a spring spruce up. I'd really appreciate any feedback! :)

Sunday, 3 January 2016

15 things I learnt in 2015

I always find the festive period a good time to reflect on all the great (and occasionally not so great) lessons the previous year has taught me. I guess it's a combination of reaching the end of the year, being able to relax and spend time with my family and my dad and I getting a little over excited choosing fancy ciders in the supermarket. So as has become a bit of a tradition my new year post is a print free zone (don't worry though there will be some fun photos instead)

2015 has taught me:

1. Sometimes life throws you a curve ball but there's always a way to make things work.  It's always possible to find the beauty in the things you already have. Just remember "Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, today is a gift of God, which is why we call it the present." - Yes that was a Kung Fu Panda quote (and also a Bill Keane one)

2. Distance relationships can be difficult but nothing is impossible and they can actually bring you closer together as every moment spent in each others company suddenly becomes precious and worth making a memory out of.

3. Being 23 wasn't terrible and turning 24 didn't hurt. Getting older is fine and you'll barely notice (except you will come to realise that you are the responsible adult in situations and that's a little bit scary)

4.  Growing up may mean you have fewer friends than you could ever have imagined. But that is by no means a bad thing. It leaves you with the reliable friends that'll always be there for you with a cup of tea when you need it. The people you see everyday and those who you can go for months without talking to but when you get back together it's like you've never been apart. Now that's pretty sweet.

Mocktails at Palacio Lounge
5. Letting Agents are all as useless as each other and you can't let them push you around. If your flat isn't up to scratch let them know or get out before they scam even more money out of you.

6. It's actually pretty important to 'dress for work' - it'll give you more confidence and you will be taken more seriously.

7. Sometimes hobbies (like print-making) have to take a back seat to your real job but it's important not to ignore them totally. Everyone needs time to relax and a break from the real world.

8. Burgers and cocktails can solve a multitude of problems - Hub Box I love ya 

9. But nothing beats a home cooked meal... particularly if you haven't had to cook it yourself. Thanks BoyF!

10. As much as you pretend otherwise quiet weekends without plans are the best kind of weekend. There's nothing nicer than snuggling up on the sofa to watch a film with your SO and not having to face the world that day.

Window Shopping in Falmouth
11. It's ok to let your fancy heels gather dust (or mould if you live in rainy old Cornwall) and to only pull your pretty going-out dresses out of the wardrobe occasionally.

12. Although it's nice to fall asleep on his chest or to be the little spoon it can be just as nice to have him fall asleep on you and to be the big spoon (even if proportionately that doesn't really work). When he needs that little extra comfort and support he'll really appreciate this small gesture.

13. Don't let people guilt trip you into making decisions that aren't right for you - it's your life, live it the way you want. Whether that means changing jobs, moving house, going travelling alone or in a group or absolutely anything else - only you can decide what's best for you.

Gyllyngdune Gardens, Falmouth
14. Life's to short to bother being unhappy. If you're not happy with something in your life you have the power to change it so don't sit around and blame the world or anyone else for your current situation, it won't help and you will just stay miserable.  Taking that first step can be scary but ultimately it will be worth it. 

15. Anything can be exciting and an adventure you just have to go into it with the right attitude :)

Tuesday, 1 December 2015

Santa Clause is Coming to town

It's nearly that time of year folks! Love it or loathe it you can't deny Christmas comes with a bang and a bit of sparkle!

Personally I'm in the 'love it' camp. Nothing makes me happier than fairy lights, glitter and family.  Something in particular I love about this time of year is the plethora of blog posts on festive DIY craft ideas.  I'm taking part in Shabby Art Boutique's Link Party if you follow the link there's lots of fun things you can try!

This year I was surprisingly organised and started to make my Xmas card designs back in early November (gasp right) with the deluded idea that maybe I would be able to make 2 designs this year. Then as per usual work got in the way and the Cornwall students were in desperate need of a huge Christmas Blow Out (Introducing the Snowball)... I moan but I love it really. What could be better than helping to plan a huge party and making lots of people happy :)

To get me in the festive mood early (not that I ever really need persuading) for one of the biggest events in our students calendar I convinced Boyfriend to don his Christmas jumper (that I insisted on buying him last year) and help me to decorate a little tree for my little flat.  Unfortunately I couldn't persuade him for the photographic evidence though... Not yet anyway. Instead here's one of me in my Xmas sweater!  I then insisted on making gingerbread stars for the students that live in the flat upstairs and my friends down the road and we watched Die Hard in bed. What could be more festive than that?!

What this all boils down to is once again I only have one Christmas card design. So here it is.  In comparison to last year this one is quite traditional and a little classier but (well I hope anyway) equally as fun.

Monday, 26 October 2015

Happy Halloween!!!

made in a day

It's nearly Halloween and I hope you all have some fun plans for the 31st! I will be ringing in November in style at the Halloween Masked Ball (well worth it if you are in the area - although be prepared to take a few days to recover).

In honour of the holiday and keeping my promise of experimenting with some new styles I put together a fun little design that could be used for Halloween cards or party place holders.

Although the design is far from perfect, for a first attempt at something new and out of my comfort zone I'm pretty happy with the way it has turned out. For such a simplified image I think it is fairly striking and this style is something I am sure I will work on and develop further in the future.

As you can see by the badge on the right I'm taking part in a Linky Party! Head on over to the lovely Made in a Day for more fun Halloween craft ideas! 

Monday, 19 October 2015

Wake Me Up When September Ends...

Seriously what the hell happened to September (and most of October)?! I lost the entire month to making preparations and welcoming the new cohort of students to university and the students union.

 The end of summer and month of September was really difficult and very demanding and I'm not afraid to admit that at times I struggled with the stress of everything and the horribly long hours. And yes there were a few tears.  But then I saw this and it suddenly became very easy to remember what I am working towards and why I put myself through it.

This is the video shot of the four main Fresher's events.  I by no means put these together but I was a part of the team that did.  As the Events Assistant it means I get to do a lot of running around, fetching coffee, filling riders, tidying, paying invoices, pinning and hanging the simple decorations, stamping hands etc. And on very, very, very rare occasions making minor decisions.  For the minute I wouldn't have it any other way.

FXU Freshers 2015 from FXU on Vimeo. Thanks to Luca Parasiliti for the incredible video :)

Consequently I have nothing new to show you!  ***Sad Face***

Still hopefully things will calm down a little at work now and I should be able to while away the cold nights in with a bit more printmaking.... Famous last words.  

Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Looking for a change of pace

There have been a few changes at HQ recently.  Unfortunately last weekend I had to move out of my lovely shared house with my partner and another couple into a teeny tiny studio flat just for me (and boyf on the weekends).  I found it a much more difficult experience than i expected actually, I've never lived completely by myself before and seeing my new place completely empty really upset me.  Still, onwards and upwards I guess.  Once I've got a bit of furniture and all my possessions in there I'm sure it'll start to look a little more like home.  Particularly once I have a bit more than just a mattress on the floor and it loses that 'crack-den' style.

I thought I would draw on this change in my life-style and bring it into my printing style.  I've been wanting to add a bit of diversity to my portfolio for a while and this seems like the perfect time! As much as I love the traditional printing style - one colour print, detailed, traditional subject, over the next few months I will be looking for a way to spice things up a bit.  I'm going to try a few new subjects, styles and hopefully some more unusual colours (if I can find some exciting printing inks anyway).

So for the time being at least this is going to be the last of my traditional prints!  

Sunday, 21 June 2015

Summer time and the living is easy...

 .... It's really not easy.  This has been an exciting but very intense few weeks at Prints Regent HQ! In the past 3 weeks and a half weeks I have helped to organise the final 3 events in the Student Union calendar - the Garden Party (with everything from a ghost train to enough strawberries and cream for over a thousand people), Student Union Awards and finally Grad Ball (which is held in a castle grounds btw - so that's pretty bad ass too).  Now I've got all the fun of Freshers to plan!

Garden Party (C) Jack Mathews

Grad Ball (C) Laura Bailey

More photos can be found on the FXU Facebook Page.

Between all that I still managed to squeeze in a little Lino-ing too.  It's coming up to summer exhibition season and feeling inspired by the Cornish surroundings and the mythological romanticism associated with hanging out at a castle, I put together a little composition of a mermaid looking out to sea.

Thursday, 28 May 2015

The EspaƱol Exploit

Here is the thank you card I made for
Bfs mum, more can be seen about that
Well the posting every month didn't go to well now did it?! Since starting my new job I've been so super busy I haven't really had much time for printing or for this blog at all.  

One thing I have been doing though is catching up on some photos and prints I have been working on for a long time now.  Last September I was lucky enough to travel to Boyfriend's hometown, Madrid for a much needed break from serving ice-cream after a busy summer but more importantly to spend some quality time with Boyf (the long distance thing became a bit difficult at times but we made it work) and to meet some of his family.  The city is really beautiful and Bf made a wonderful tour guide!  I took lots of photos to work from when I got back from our little trip and since September I have been working on prints inspired by this holiday.

We went to see all the most important parts of the city on the first day and went rowing in Buen Retiro Park. Then on the second day of our holiday Boyf's father showed us around The Museo del Prado.  The Goya collection was really fantastic! On the third day of our trip Boyfriend took me to the zoo because he knows how much I love parrots and for €3 we were able to feed them. I loved it and apparently the smile on my face was hilarious!  On our final full day in Madrid we headed with Bf's father a little way outside the city to El Escorial.  The building was absolutely beautiful and the tour guide gave us some really interesting facts.  On the last day, as we weren't flying back to England until the evening, we went into the city to pick out some souvenirs. Poor Boyfriend wasn't particularly impressed to be dragged into all the tacky touristy shops hahaha! We then went to look around some of the park again.  I wouldn't have been able to see the whole thing even if I'd spent the whole week walking around but what I did get to see was lovely.  I took some great photos of the peacocks in the park to work from!

This was one of the first prints I created from the photos.  I tried to combine a variety of textures to create the allusion of patterns and different consistency's in the birds plumage.  To add even greater depth I left a lot of positive space on the print to allow for a gradient effect with the ink. 


I had such a wonderful time and hope I get to go back soon! :)

Sunday, 25 January 2015

Let's get to know each other

Very text heavy post today as I've been nominated for the Leibster Award, big thanks to Amy at Work Play for the nomination! This is an award that is passed on from one blogger to the next as a way of discovering new blogs. Once you are nominated you simply answer the 11 questions given to you, choose bloggers to pass it on to and then create 11 new questions for them.

The 11 questions Amy asked me were:  

1. How did you come up with your blog name?
  • The Prints Regent came from a combination of things really most importantly desperation.  It's actually a really boring story. I was setting up my blog the day before  I started university so I could continue to promote and sell my work whilst I was away. I'd completed everything and was really keen to launch it before I left I chose the first name that came to me.  The British comedy Blackadder happened to be on the TV as I was playing around on my laptop, one of the lead characters in the Blackadder The Third is Prince George or The Prince Regent. I settled on that.....  Plus I love puns.

2. What is something most people don’t know about you?
  • I'm not sure there is much really. I'm a pretty open book.  I guess maybe that I've been playing the Clarinet for about 15 years (don't let that fool you into thinking I'm any good though).  I don't really like playing in public much so it's only close friends or people who have happened to live with me that have ever found out.  

3. If you could live anywhere in the world for a year where would you go?
  • I'd love to see Canada one day, it always looks beautiful and growing up in England I've never really seen proper snow.  

4. Favorite food?
  • Jambalaya, particularly the one Boyfriend makes. 

5. Biggest fear?
  • Spiders. I'm such a wuss when it comes to most creepy crawlies but spiders in particularly are just bleurghhhh  

6. If you could pick, what decade would you have grown up in?
  • I'd have loved to be a teenage in the 1970s.  I'm really interested in the Punk movement and actually wrote my third year history dissertation on just that.  A lot of it might have been grim and difficult but it also provides one of the clearest examples of rebellion and self expression. Also amateur printmaking became huge through Zines. So yay for that!

7. Your favorite possession? 

  • I'd never be able to choose my favourite possession, I have far too many things that mean far too much to me. The most thoughtful thing anyone has ever given me though was once again from Boyfriend (I'm a bit of a soppy girl really).  I have always kept little things from when we have been dating, cinema tickets, event wristbands etc.  The usual little trinkets.  Towards the end of last year I started to notice that the tin I had been keeping them in was getting a little too full so for my birthday this year he bought me a fancy new box with plenty of space in it for all the things I might want to collect.  This was thoughtful enough but what really got me was when I opened the box there was an almost empty bottle of his cologne.  When we had been doing the long-distance thing it was always this smell that made me think of him and he gave me what was left of the bottle so that even when we had to spend time apart I could always feel close to him.

8. Spring, Summer, Fall or Winter?
  • Definitely winter.  The UK doesn't exactly do Summer brilliantly anyway. I love all the lights at Xmas and the crisp cold nights too much to say anything but that.

9. Favorite life moment?
  • Getting completely trashed and tragic at a local punk show with Boyfriend in Falmouth, Cornwall. There's actually a brief bit about it in this post.  

10. Books you want to read in 2015?
  •  Oh the list is so long! Throughout my entire degree I used to think about how after it I could read fiction again, now I'm there the decision is far too hard.  

11. Favorite store?
  • Oooooooo another tough question! I'm not sure I could narrow it down to just one but I love any fabric and haberdashery shops.  I get so excited wondering around and imagining all the things I'd like to make or what I could use the different trims for. 

My nominations are:

Holly from Holly Exley Illustration 

Claire from Heart Handmade

Meagan from Travel Write Draw

Jane from Handmade Jane

Carly from Carly Watts Illustration

And your questions are:

1. How did you come up with your blog name?

2.When and why did you start blogging?

3. What are your goals for 2015?

4. Who is your biggest inspiration?

5. What’s your favorite thing to wear in your closet?

6.What's your favorite possession?

7. If you could choose, what decade would you have grown up in?

8. What's your party trick?

9. What is your earliest childhood memory?

10. If you had one extra hour of free time a day, how would you use it?

11. What is the most played song on your ipod?

 I look forward to reading all your answers!!!

Sunday, 18 January 2015

Somebody's all grown up!

Just a very quick post to kick off a New Year of blogging.  The 15th January marked one of my friends/housemates birthdays and as part of his present I made him a personalised birthday card. As he is the president of the university I wanted to make him a jokey card which referenced this.  It's surprisingly pretty hard to depict someone as president (unless you include a cliched sash) so I decided to go for king instead... I mean I guess he's sort of top dog (not that I'd ever tell him that).

This design used skills I'd not stretched in a long time, for the joke to have full effect it had to look obviously like my friend.  I chose a Andy Warhol style image (something I hadn't attempted since I was in college) and added a cartoon crown.  I'm pretty pleased with the outcome and it seemed to go down pretty well with him too!

Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Happy New Year!

I'm afraid there's no print for you all today.  With all the winter festivities printmaking has had to take a bit of a backseat.  I just wanted to round up 2014 by sharing with you some of my personal highlights from the last 12 months. It has been a busy old year in Prints Regent HQ and so much has changed!

The big happy highlights are:

I graduated from university - something I never thought I would do

I finally managed to take a holiday outside the UK - Lino's of this are still in the works

I both left a job and landed a job

I moved from Falmouth back to home and then from home back to Falmouth

I moved in with Boyf and his lovely housemates

I've been more active on blog-social networking and learnt so much about printmaking from other bloggers

And finally I have actually been keeping to my 2014 New Years Resolution of updating this blog at least once a month (well virtually, everyone's allowed one slip right?!) - something I hope to continue in 2015

I've had a truly lucky year and have lots of things to be thankful for but with every New Year comes greater challenges in life and I wish you all the courage, hope and faith to overcome any hurdles you may face.

I hope you have a fantastic New Year and ring it in in style!

Sunday, 14 December 2014

Autumn Almanac #3 - Baby It's Cold Outside

Since moving to Cornwall for university the beginning of the Christmas period has always been marked by the Truro City of Lights parade (even if it is in mid-November).  All three years I was at university I stood in the cold to watch the procession of volunteers trudge, march and dance though whatever weather condition a Cornish November could throw at them.  Having graduated last July I was a bit disappointed at the thought of missing it this year when out of the blue (absolutely no cajoling necessary) Boyf sent me a message offering to take me (although he obviously regretted his generosity and selflessness as I skipped off to the train station with a slightly grumbly Bf in tow).

I took a whole host of photos throughout the night to work from and I'm sure you can expect a selection of lino cuts to come from them.  This is the first one I completed. I had some unusual problems getting the ink to adhere to the paper which explains the slightly mottled effect.  Having said that, I really like the vintage effect it gives this print. I only wish I knew how I did it so I might be able to recreate it another day! This is a pretty simple and sweet design and I think it would make a lovely Xmas/Thank you card for that special someone who gave up his evening to make mine awesome!

Tuesday, 2 December 2014

It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas!

It's almost my favourite time of year again! All the lights are twinkling, the fires are crackling and the chestnuts are roasting.  This year I'm taking part in a Christmas Blog Hop so be sure to follow the link and check out some of the other wonderful crafting ideas!

The beginning of December means starting to think about Xmas cards for my family and friends.  This year I wanted to design something a little less traditional, so left the mince pies, mulled wine and Christmas Wreaths to those more talented artists and went for something simple but effective.  I wanted to strip back the idea of homemade cards to what they used to be when I was younger; a way to show those I love that I appreciate them. Using this principle I decided I wanted to make this years design as simple as possible. It would not be featuring any intricate texture or detail, just a simple image with lots of bold patterns similar to something I would have made when I was a child.  Simple, no fuss, black and white... Well almost.

Sweaters Hung By The Chimney With Care

I hope everyone likes receiving these cute little winter jumper designs!  They came out just the way I hoped they would. Now all I need is a bit of crisp winter weather to deliver them in!