For the past three weeks, I've been kept busy with full time work placement in an animation studio in Dublin. It was fun, I was able to develop my skills, and I met a few wonderful people along the way. I gained so much more from the experience too; discovering what it was like to live and work in the biggest city in Ireland. I'm incredibly thankful to have had that opportunity, but it did take some getting used to... and I was exhausted from it. When I got home, I spent an entire day just sleeping, thinking, writing, and drawing in an effort to get my energy levels back up to usual. So, to kick this blog into its usual routine again, I thought I'd share one of the pieces I did that day, which helped me get back to my usual self again. :)Read More
In recent weeks, I've been developing my portfolio, both online and in print, and I decided that it was about time I bit the bullet and got my own .com! In future, www.OneCuriousChip.com will be my HQ, so I've designed it in a way that means you should be able to find anything and everything you might want to see. My portfolio, about me, my contact details, my CV, and of course, my blog all have a new home! Please do feel free to check it out and click around. And if you think something's missing, or something could be better: please let me know! I'm sure I'll be tweaking various bits and pieces while I'm settling into the new space!
PS: Big thank you to Lightning Strike Comics for supporting the new site!
Last weekend, I was invited to the annual conference of the Art Teacher's Association of Ireland (ATAI) to share my thoughts and experiences on the topic of transitioning from second level art into third level education. I had such a wonderful day, and I am so thankful to have had the opportunity to take part!
Because I left secondary school relatively recently (just over 2 years ago) and because I'm still in third level education (with two more years to go!), the topic of my talk was an interesting one for me to explore. Ultimately, the main conclusion that I came to was the fact that educators - both at secondary and third level - are incredibly important, and have the power to instill a lifetime passion for creativity and give their students the confidence to pursue creative careers. I discovered my passion for art in secondary school, and with the support and encouragement of my teachers, I've grown and developed in directions I may never have reached on my own. And even now, at third level, and in the real world, I'm still building on the base that I found all those years ago.
I consider myself incredibly fortunate to be able to say that I always felt comfortable in the art room, and I am overwhelmingly thankful for the teachers that I had for their creative ethos and drive to support me and the other students in my classes. Despite the challenges and limitations that the state exams in Ireland present - most notably, the sheer scale of the leaving certificate art course - my teachers always did their very best, and it was their ethos and passion that gave me the confidence, motivation, and excitement that I needed in order to pursue art at third level. At third level, too, I have been fortunate in the course that I picked. My lecturers at LSAD, Clonmel have helped me to grow even further, and build on the art forms that I discovered my passion for in secondary school. I have always worked hard on personal work outside of the courses that I have followed - largely because the time limits in those courses have unfortunately been severe - but without the influence of those educators; I wouldn't have had the ability, the motivation, or the passion that has helped me to become the ambitious, optimistic, and enthusiastic creative person that I am today.
So here's to teachers! You wonderful people deserve huge credit, and a thousand thanks
Late post this week, I'm afraid! It's been a crazy hectic fortnight overall, between moving to my new little house and travelling to Derry for
, as well as getting back into the swing of college life and keeping on top of freelance-y work. It's been busy, but I'm learning
much, and I'm having an absolute ball!
Post-con blues have hit hard this week. I came home from ComicCity in the wee hours of Monday morning, buzzing with a renewed passion for creating things, and a huge appreciation for the people that work so hard to make things happen. This week, I've been feeling an almost overwhelming sense of gratitude, new admiration, and incredible excitement for the future in every sense! I've got lots of books to look forward to reading (check out the photo below!), lots of ideas I can't wait to get down on paper, and lots of experiences to anticipate!
For one reason or another, I haven't been able to think straight all week. Ever since I came back from
I've had SO MANY ideas and thoughts, that everything in my head kinda burred together. That, and a very hectic work-life-freelance week, means I haven't been able to draw much more than a doodle. So, inspired by the fact I got my helix pierced a few weeks ago, here's a sorta-self-portrait with a bit of an
Pants on Fire. Your nose is longer than a telephone wire.
I recently got talking with someone about the best films we've ever seen; and I reckon I will always put Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels at the top of that list. It's got good, solid, characters, the use of the English language is off-the-wall, and it's one of the best-told stories I have ever come across. No matter how many times I've seen it; it still makes me laugh, makes me frustrated, and makes me excited to see what happens next. Classic British comedy at it's finest.
It's also a very, very well directed film (hats off to you, Mr Guy Ritchie!), so there were a LOT of shots that I wanted to illustrate. Alas, the week was busy, so I could only pick one. So, here's Tommy, during the boxing-ring poker game that sets the ball in motion.
I'm pretty happy with how this turned out overall. Wish I could spend more time on it, but between day-job, odd-jobs, and freelancey-design-jobs, I was lucky I was able to spend the few hours on this at all. I might return to Lock Stock for more inspiration in the not-too-distant future though; 'cause I had a lot of fun with it. And it's a pretty good excuse to listen to the soundtrack and watch my favourite film all over again. And with scenes like this:
How could you not love it?:)
I am incredibly excited about this project, and really couldn't wait to share it! Recently, I was approached by Ruth Butler to animate a music video for a song she had written. I'm about two weeks into this ten week project, and I'm happy to say that things are going very well. Ruth has a brilliant sense of humour and a clever way with words, which all poured into this quirky, entertaining little tale about a chicken and a golden egg.
Because the song is such a fun story, because Ruth wanted the lyrics to appear on screen, and because I needed to animate to a high standard quickly, I thought styling it like a comic book would be the best route to take. So saying, I'm looking forward to seeing the final result, and because I've designed everything according to both US Comic Book Dimensions, and HDTV, the story will look good in print as well as on screen when it's finished.
This is just one page in this little story, but there's a lot more to come that I'm very much looking forward to showing you!
PS: If you think that you, or someone you know, would have a good voice to sing a song like this, get in touch at allie22 (at) gmail.com! :)
Final Logo Design
Very excited about this project! Back in June, a friend of mine - super talented cellist,
- approached me about an idea she had. Together with Mairead Hickey, she plans to launch a brand new chamber music festival, called
, which will be based in East Cork in February 2016. It was an absolute pleasure for me to get involved by designing a logo for the event!
Very loose and sketchy initial thoughts.
After discussing the project with Sinéad, I learned that the name of this festival - Ortús, pronounced "ore-toose" rhyming with moose - originates from two words; the latin word,
, meaning rising, beginnings, origin; and the Irish word tús which means beginning, start. The overall idea of the festival is to encourage young Irish musicians who have studied and performed abroad to come home and share what they've learned from their experiences with our local communities. Three concerts are planned, as well as open rehearsals, and outreach in schools. With all of this, Ortús really wants to make chamber music more accessible to the public, and hopefully inspire the next generation of musicians to broaden their horizons too.
With all this in mind, I began drawing up sketches in various styles and colours. I considered a wide range of symbols; inspired by everything from the passion that these musicians had for their craft and the cultural significance of returning home to share their experiences, to the dawning of their careers and the idea of crossing oceans and moving mountains with their talents. I also considered more physical elements of the project; including elements of string instruments and music notes, as well as waves of the ocean and the colours of the sea and land.
After various experiments and revisions, the final design that we came up with was this. Encompassing the idea of crossing oceans, and returning to the island of Ireland, I included waves and 'bubbles' in a deep blue design. I also used four "strings" to represent both the instruments that will be played during the festival, as well as the sheet music the musicians will play according to. The curving shapes were inspired by the scroll at the top of those instruments, as well as the treble clef used in sheet music, and the fluid motion of music as its played- both in the sound, and in the musician themselves, as they pull the bow across the strings.
A few photos I took of the musicians involved.
Sinéad was also kind enough to let me tag along during a photoshoot at the end of June, which gave me the opportunity to meet with the musicians involved, take a few photos, and listen to them play. They're impressive, to say the least! I can't wait to see them perform again next February, and I'll share details as the event approaches on my social feeds, because I think you might like to see them perform too!
Taken while I was waiting around on the day of the photoshoot.
I was also fortunate enough to meet with Richard from
, as he recorded a promotional video on the day, and with
, who handled photography. Go and like the
to keep up to date on all of the Ortús Festival details. It's gonna be good!