Friday, 30 March 2012

Geode Street Art

Awesome street art from Los Angeles by Paige Smith.  The sculptures are made out of paper and resemble natural crystals but instead 'grow' from nooks and crannies in walls and street furniture.  How exciting it would be to stumble across one of these:


Tripping out in SketchUp

This is me in the middle of trying to come up with the form for my (urban, sustainable) design.  Looks like this man's on some crazy psychedelic trip...

That aside I think I'm finally getting there with this.  I think all good designs have to go through a stage of madness.  Genius is madness justified.
Interesting article my course mate found:

Thursday, 29 March 2012


SUDS: Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems

But this is more about my latest pointless cartoon:

This is how one could turn a non sustainable roadside drain in to one that feeds rainwater to a flower bed, making it sustainable.  The water soaks into the ground to be taken up by the plants rather than flow into the nearest river, causing it to flood in extreme situations.

Will explain more another time.

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Monday, 26 March 2012

Goodbye Birley Fields :(

Birley Fields is a part of Hulme, Manchester, that had been left as a piece of wasteland since the demolition of all the old Victorian terraced slums in around the 1990's. (Showing the context here:)

This is an overlay I made of two maps of the area.  One is from the 1800s showing the old terraced houses and the other is a modern one.  The black outlines Birley Fields

This is part of one of the old Victorian cobbled roads that survived:

So anyway Birley Fields has been around for about 20 years and has become a natural green space highly valued by the local community.  Being so close to the city centre there's not much other green space around (other than Hulme Park which in my opinion is boring and hideous).

Birley Fields from this winter just gone:

Not so pretty I know, because it's winter.  But this is what I found when I went there today:

The diggers have moved in.  Sad times.  I wasn't the only one taking photos either.  There was also a very angry and upset looking lady who later went over to a man busy cutting up one of the London Plane trees and looked like she was giving him a hard time.

So here he is cutting up trees:

And here she is, hands on hips, not very happy:

To be fair he was only doing his job.  It's not his fault. 

So whose fault is it then?  

My own university's!

They're building a massive new campus and student accommodation.  This is the model of it in our library:

And here are the plans from MMU's website:

It looks like they're trying to be ecologically sensitive but there's no way that what they're proposing could be ecologically better than what exists now.  Birley Fields grew naturally out of a pile of rubble, and it's rare (and fascinating) to find a place like this that has been left to its own devices for so long, especially so close to the city centre.

I just think it's a shame because there are so many ways this place could be enhanced ecologically AND for the community.

At least Hulme will still have its Community Garden Centre:

And I leave you with some lovely tulips from their community garden:

Friday, 23 March 2012

I was just having a look on the internet to find some good Easter garden pictures (you know the mini ones you make in school?) but didn't find anything that inspiring.  I did find this however:

This man must really like omelettes.  Pretty cool picture :)

Thursday, 22 March 2012

The Battle Begins...

I'm now entering into an epic battle with time before I hand in my next portfolio in May (and have a formative review in April):

And don't worry, I drew this in my allocated break time :-P

Saturday, 17 March 2012

Birthday Card

Birthday card for my house mate.  Her surname's Bass, hence the European Sea Bass from an old pack of cards.  The background is from paper left over from making the mirror (posted earlier).

Friday, 16 March 2012

Adobe Illustrator Workshop

A little something I made playing around in our Adobe Illustrator workshop:

The workshops have been really great for me as I'm not the most computer literate person.  Can't wait to start using Illustrator in my work more :)

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Lampshade and Earrings

Crazy idea I had last night:  sticking my earrings into my lampshade, like fancy tassels:

Works quite well I think.  I like how the light catches these ones. Although might look better with a different lamp.

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Pothole Gardens

Pothole gardens: so cute!! I love stuff like this.  Just a little something unusual that puts a smile on people's faces.  Think I will try and convince my course mates to do it in Manchester :)


Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Today's Photos...

Interesting doorway by uni:

The daffodils I cycle past every morning at the moment.  Make me happy ^_^

All Saints Park, Manchester:

Giant plant pots:

Monday, 5 March 2012

Creative Block

We all get creative blocks...

... and mine are back.  I'm thinking at the moment it's a lack of confidence.  A fear of trying after not achieving what I wanted last term (because of previous creative blocks and other issues).

Last time I got the dreaded creative block I read this, writings from various artists about how they overcome their creative blocks:

One that stood out to me was this:

"Staying creative is hard work. Honestly, I don’t think when I got into art school I was very talented at all. I struggled to stand out. I struggled to stay in school. Staying creative was hard work. BUT, the one thing that kept me focused was my desire to be good. I wanted to be really good. I wanted to be as good as those people that WERE talented. I used to think I would eventually, if I worked hard enough, master art like a math equation and then I could relax and just make great stuff and let everything else follow. That time definitely never came, and I know now I never want it to, because the most important thing that keeps me creative is my wanting to be good. So if I’m ever in a rut, the best things to get me out of them is to put myself in places that engage that desire to be good. In a general sense this means to get out and be expose to others creating. In my opinion, there is no better way to trigger your own creativity, than to see what great things others have made or are making. Going to museums, galleries, shows, etc. always inspires my mind in a way that make me want to get back into my own work and make good things. Be good."

Over the last few weeks I've realised that I definitely work better when working with others.  This semester at university our first two projects have been done in groups.  Group work is a lot of hard work (last week I did 3x 12+ hour days with my group) but it's so much more interesting and rewarding to share ideas with others.  And, most importantly, it's so much more MOTIVATING.

So anyway, my advice on creative blocks:  Don't be afraid and work with others.

"A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new" - Albert Einstein

Mirror made for a friend's 21st birthday.  Bought a mirror with a plain frame and covered it with wrapping paper from Paperchase :)


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