Category Archives: meta


New sketchbook - back cover I always keep an A4 hardback sketchbook with me for ideas, brainstorming, notes on events, and general Everything purposes. They’ve been getting more & more ornate with each one, partly so I can see how new designs stand up to daily wear & tear, but mostly just because. The nori-collage one flaked off badly enough that I had to retire it halfway through, but the one after that had a spraypainted stencil made from one of my relief prints, and that’s lasted perfectly. Next time, though, I’m either going to try something less ornate than this, or start much earlier, because I’ve been scraping up space in the last one ever since the empty shop conference.

It’s basically done being painted now, though, and just waiting for a few coats of varnish.

Maker Studio

After the Transforming Spaces conference I wrote about a while back, I had an idea, and it’s now ready to unveil!

Maker Studio is devoted to crafts, making & selling useful beautiful things; to removing as many barriers as possible; to helping emerging makers into the public eye.

It’s early days yet, but we’re working towards moving into an empty shop and setting up a physical studio & gallery.

Craft fair preliminaries

Malachite & gold notebook (unvarnished)

There’s something quite special about varnishing a piece. On the one hand, it makes the colours glow and shine, jump out at you and grab the eye. On the other, it’s the no-changes-now point—once the varnish goes on, there’s not much you can do to change any problems.

Rationally, of course, that’s false – this varnish needs three coats to get the effect I want, and it’s easy enough to intersperse a correction. But it’s still a powerful state-change.

I’m doing this for a craft fair I’m attending—the Mad March Fair, at the Queen’s Head pub in Rye. If you’re in the right part of South-East England on Saturday 26th March, drop by and say hi! I’m taking prints, jewellery, masks, and some of these notebooks along, and I know there will be a lot of other amazing craftspeople there too.

Infrequent poetry

I used to write a lot more than I do now – I haven’t been able to do this on a regular basis for quite a few years. So enjoy this one.

We understand the world through ink and light;
we draw, we see, we draw again
as faith becomes our paper, hopeful-bright.

Mathematics helps us get it right,
models all that is within one brain.
We understand the world through ink and light.

Which is most important, brush or sight?
We glance from world to model, back again,
and faith becomes our paper, hopeful-bright.

Each drop of ink transforms the paper – white
becomes a sheaf of colours with each stain.
We understand the world through ink and light.

There’s close-packed worlds in everything we write –
a thousand contexts that we can’t explain,
for faith becomes our paper, hopeful-bright.

Our dear friends help us share in their delight –
they show us how to see a truth again,
to understand the world through ink and light.
Our faith becomes our paper, hopeful-bright.

…is this thing on?

Apparently so!

Right, time to replace the lorem ipsum with some actual text. So I’ll start by answering the basic question: why this site?

Briefly, I decided it was time I tried to take my art & design work more seriously, and that trying for a bit more (and more formal) exposure would help that.

Everything is my own work – the logo’s done with a digital camera and the Gimp. The font used is True Golden, from Scriptorium – it’s based on William Morris’s Golden Type, which he used to set News from Nowhere and other works around the same time. The only other software I used preparing things is Scribus, an open source desktop publishing program – I try to use free open source software where I can.