(i wanted to do some witty/punny title there but in my cold addled state that’s pretty hard.)
for almost as long as i can remember i’ve always been interested in stamps, pretty much since i was a child. i don’t remember anyone in my family ‘collecting’ them per se, but i’m pretty sure my dad and/or grandad kept a few here and there. i do distinctly remember and have very fond memories of going to the market in maltings in farnham a few times with my grandparents and slightly obsessing over boxes of postcards and stamps (amongst other things).
i just love that you can have these mini artpieces and bits of history, from the UK or all over the globe, in your home. you can store them specially or just keep them in a box. stamp collections are so accessible and easy to start too because you can just take a look on ebay, etsy (shops like artstamped are great), in charity shops, secondhand stores, markets – you name it. or you could even start collecting new ones that you can go to a post office and buy.
i’ve gathered together a few of my favourites here in this post, some new, some i’ve had for a few years. it was never a real intention to specifically start a collection but over the years they’ve accumulated and it’s just …happened. to be incredibly corny, maybe it was just meant to be.
i follow a few stamp orientated instagram accounts too, if you want a couple to get you started i highly recommend matchbloc, graphilately, mint never hinged and eva moon press (stamps as well as general ephemera).
do you collect anything? something obscure or unexpected? or something more ordinary? let me know!
if ever there was a book made for me, it’s this. full of colourful nature based patterns by various creatives, print and pattern: nature is a pattern lovers dream. this is the latest in the print & pattern series of books, previous ones include geometric and kids. it has the same layout as the previous books, with the initialled headings (in squared diamonds in this instance), brief bio and a page or two showing the work of the artists. as before, there’s a mix of quarter and full page pieces, so there’s a bit of visual variety when you’re flicking through.
it’s hard to write a review of this without comparing it to the other books, but it’s equally as good when it comes to the work covered. the quality as always is excellent, the images are crisp, vibrant and well reproduced. though i would love if there was a little more variety in styles. whilst it’s good that everything fits together and flows, perhaps it would be nice to see something a bit ‘out of the ordinary’. it’s hard to put into words, and it’s probably down to personal taste. by no means a put-down on the book or the artists, i like pretty much every piece within it, which i definitely can’t say the same of, for other books i own!
as before, there are many names i recognise and a few that i’ve never heard of, so it’s going to be a good source of discovering new artists and illustrators (and probably searching for them on instagram!). as a pattern maker and lover myself, books like this are a constant source of inspiration, and a wonderfully visual pick-me-up if i feel creatively fatigued.
print & pattern nature is an excellent addition to the ‘print & pattern’ series of books, and i can’t wait to see what comes next! if you’re as obsessed with nature based patterns as i am you will absolutely love this book, and even if you aren’t, i’m sure there’s a little something in there for all.
it’s always good to see your work (and name) in print, but especially when it’s on the cover of something, so exciting! i was commissioned late last year to do a cover for ‘bulletin’, the magazine for the royal college of speech and language therapists.
as i’ve never done a cover before (well, one time years ago i entered and won a competition for a local magazine for a front cover design, but that wasn’t paid) it was naturally quite daunting initially. once i’d gotten over that, and gotten on with it, it was pretty much like making any other piece of work. like most creatives i know, i still have that natural fear of failure – but most times that actually spurs me on to make my work better. sometimes you need that push!
i did three rough designs, of which this was the third and chosen one. it was actually the one i like the best too, which is always nice! what do you think of it?
if you’d like to commission a pattern or collage from me, for personal use, licensing or for a publication (or anything else), you can contact me via email.