Tuesday, 2 March 2010

New branding

I've been playing about with the Bowerbird branding, it's all very work in progress, but here's how it looks over on my main blog. As you can see, I've applied the same design to this blog too. Be sure to keep up to date with my island adventures at Bowerbirdwords.blogspot.com

This blog (Bowerbird-illustration) will remain inactive while I'm abroad.

Thursday, 14 January 2010

Sketchbook: Grand Cayman

Here's a sketch that I did earlier today, then I played about with the colour after in Photoshop which is sketchy to say the least, but it's definitely better with something more on top.

So, I've not posted to here for a little while and that's because I've been a little busy leaving the country! For this coming year, I'm seeing what the Cayman Islands have to offer, well that's the plan at least. Expect island illustrations and observations, and for more Caribbean goings on, check out my other blog:

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Runaway success of animation

If there's one thing that people love it's stop-frame animation, it's an all round winner, as is slow-motion footage, actually that's two things. But it shows that in this crazy go-go-go society we live in, there is still admiration for the slow and the crafted.

'Going West' is a paper caper stop-motion film animated by Andersen M Studio, for the New Zealand Book Council, the very last scene 'where books come to life' is the stand out part for me. Enjoy!

Via Designboom

Monday, 16 November 2009

London Shop Fronts

Does exactly what it says on the tin. Now celebrates its first anniversary, a lovely collection of photographs by Emily Webber. Just goes to show, that personal obsessions and observations can lead into a surprisingly beautiful collection/project.

London Shop Fronts
Emily Webber's Flickr

Monday, 9 November 2009

Colour film of 1927 London

Fascinating footage, even better after a weekend of wandering those very streets. Over 80 years later and some of the ambiance is unchanged. Magical!

Watch it through to the end and be rewarded with a coy appearance from Claude Friese-Greene the inventor of the Friese-Greene Colour Process. This entire piece of footage is a personal project of his to bring "the Colour of the Mother Country to the screen".

Oh and there's an adorable teddy-like pup at the very end for those who persevere.

Tuesday, 6 October 2009

Free typography

Bowerbird returns with salutations and fond wishes to you and yours. I bid you good day and apologise for the archaic tone. There's something about this embellished Drop Cap which professes to steer me towards the flouncier language in my lexicon.
This typographic treasure is delivered daily from typographical extraordinaire Jessica Hische. You yourselves may pilfer her designs at her behest, and recreate this experience within the confines of ye own fair Blogge Poste. Good day to you gentle folk of the world's web.

Thursday, 1 October 2009

Mind boggling projections on buildings

Projection on Buildings from NuFormer Digital Media on Vimeo.

A truly astonishing display of 3D video mapping. It really does blur all dimensions and realities. I imagine it's breathtaking in person. It looks like the days of of words spelt out in fireworks are soon to be over.

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

How to promote a brand to perfection

Bouncing on a Tom Dixon rubber band chair in the magical light of dusk, sipping on Bombay Sapphire cocktails in good company. There are worse things I could do on a Monday night.

We, (a collection of London bloggers and Twitterers) gathered at the Dusk bar at Somerset House overlooking the Thames to learn all about the 10 botanicals which make Bombay Sapphire a "mixologist's" choice.

The evening was held inside a perspex wonder designed by Tom Dixon with falling evening light, at one point the dusky sky was a truly gorgeous Bombay Sapphire blue, clever those marketing people huh?

Under the tutelage of Sam Carter, buoyed along with delicious cocktails and nibbles, we constructed Martinis and Berry Spice cocktails. All the while learning about the brand's heritage and the world of gin at large. Information that would be very useful when we given a gin quiz later on in the evening.

I tried to be gracious in victory, but all I can say is that the gin revealed my true competitive colours and my lust for academia was rewarded with a bottle of the blue stuff.

We parted ways quite a while after dusk and as we walked off in search of a bus stop, clutching our spoils (a Gintelligensia goody bag including ANOTHER bottle of the blue stuff, cocktail shaker and gorgeous branded tools of the trade) I was very grateful to impulse, a new London friend/partner in crime and the amazing nights that can occur when you say 'yes'.

My thanks to Miss Robinson, fellow bloggers and the delightful Bombay Sapphire team. Visit them while you can and indulge in an expert drink at the bar until October 18th. Dusk will become your favourite time of day too.

More pictures to follow.

Friday, 11 September 2009

Tuesday, 8 September 2009

The importance of punctuation

Commas are wonderful little creatures, allowing us to take a pause, a breath and most importantly not to have this happen to us:

Friday, 4 September 2009

What is the New Energy Future?

Digit have been busy working on the latest installment of Shell.com with four great animations which are part of the work to illustrate the New Energy Future. Have a look, more to come.

**UPDATE, here are all four animations, click on the four icons in the bottom right to navigate to the site. Or visit the new energy future to find out more.

Tuesday, 25 August 2009

Clicking cursor oven mitt

What's on the menu? I hear you say. A cursory glance around the kitchen will have you pointedly picking up the Clicking 2.0 oven mitt to handle your wares. (Sorry they were the best puns I could muster)

If these were on sale, I'd buy one, but then I am a cake-baking geek, so I'm their target audience.

Tuesday, 18 August 2009

Weesay hello!

WEESAY ABC from Digit on Vimeo.

Welcome to the latest iPhone app from Digit, the video will explain everything. Joss Brook gives a professional and unbelievably cute voice over too, enjoy!

AppShopper review here.

Wednesday, 12 August 2009

Food air miles are hard to swallow

Here's a piece of hard hitting and crisply designed messaging from Kingston graduate James Reynolds. I'd previously admired James' boarded up work but in the same week that the inaugural M&S Plan A newsletter is launched. This is a message close to my heart.

Speaking of which, be sure to sign up to receive more Digit designed (and Bowerbird written) Plan A goodness in your inbox.

A perfect wedding video

I stumbled upon this video on a cinematographer/photographer's blog and I was spell-bound.
The perfect choice of song, fluid filming, I kid you not I shed a tear at my desk. I had to share this. I don't know the couple, but I hope they're bowled over by this incredible memory of their wedding day.

Josh Goleman, I know nothing about you, but you may have just ear-marked yourself as my future photographer of choice.

Friday, 7 August 2009

It is 12:34:56 7/8/9

Happens once every 100 years

Thanks for this fact Joe. I'm suitably impressed.

Thursday, 30 July 2009

Bowerbird featured in Anorak magazine

I have a full page illustration in this season's Anorak magazine. If you don't know it, it's simply the most fabulous children's magazine, touted as 'The happy mag for kids', it really is so jolly happy, it's a quarterly and cheap as chips at £3.50 because it's packed full of stories, games and fun.

If you know a little person 4-7, you and they are missing out if you've not discovered Anorak.

Follow them on Twitter, it will make you happy too.

Wednesday, 29 July 2009

Tuesday, 28 July 2009

Building projection, dreams meet reality.

555 KUBIK | facade projection | from urbanscreen on Vimeo.

Unbelievable projection onto a geometric building, it bends all reality, it must have been breathtaking to experience in real life. This is the stuff dreams are made of!

"How it would be, if a building were dreaming"

More info here.

Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Toyota IQ font is wheely good!

iQ font - When driving becomes writing / Full making of from wireless on Vimeo.

What happens when typographers and a pro racing driver get together? A free downloadable font from Toyota IQ which is pretty cool, with a great video to boot.

Via Happiness.

Client: Toyota Belgium
Pleaseletmedesign : Typographers
Stef Van Campenhoudt: Race pilot
Zach Lieberman: Interactive artist
Happiness-Brussels: Advertising agency

Friday, 17 July 2009

WWF ambient paper towels

Great idea, does what it says on the tin. Sometimes we can be so detached from our environment, this is a stark reminder that we can each do our bit. Save paper. Save the planet.

Advertising Agency: Saatchi & Saatchi, Copenhagen, Denmark
Creative Director: Simon Wooller
Art Directors / Copywriters: Cliff Kagawa Holm, Silas Jansson
Release: April 2007

Wednesday, 15 July 2009

Tour de force photographs

Spectacular photography from Brent Humphreys, a photographer by trade with a life long passion for cycling. He migrates to France each summer to capture the carnival atmosphere along the Tour de France route. Breathtaking scenery meets fanatic lunacy. 

See the whole collection from his work in progress book.

Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Let the Nightwatchman de-jargon cricket

You may have noticed that cricket season is upon us. I know I have, it seems to be all over the papers, pubs and tv. So here I was thinking, I'd like to understand it, I can certainly get down with the fashions, white is so summery, and the picnic liquid lunches, Pimms anyone? But where do I start?

Well bowl me over with willow and leather and LBW your googlies, there is a website which helps the complete cricket novice understand the fine art! 

Vodafone's Nightwatchman is just the right mix of informative, entertaining and bitesize. Let Dougie Anderson (complete cricket novice) guide you through the rules, jargon, and banter that makes Cricket quintessentially English, oh and you can win tickets. 

I've signed up, hopefully by the time I win (positive, mental, attitude) I'll known my seams from my creases, or something like that. Howzat?!!!.

Also, sweet simple cricket animations in-between the video clips. Pretty.

Monday, 13 July 2009

Beautiful music video

"This music video was shot for Sour's 'Hibi no Neiro' (Tone of everyday) from their first mini album 'Water Flavor EP'. The cast were selected from the actual Sour fan base."

Quite a logistical tour de force here, I don't envy the organisers behind this heart warming video.

Wednesday, 8 July 2009

Latest painting commission

This homage is occupying my evenings of late. It's a painterly impression of the classic GNER Victorian poster. I've struggled with, for want of a better word copying, but I've added more depth to the landscape and decided to take the poster as a guide. It's getting there, more detail and time needed on the typography.

Tuesday, 7 July 2009

Why Free is the future of business!

"Every industry that becomes digital eventually becomes free".

Great article over at Wired, how Gillette made his fortune with freebies. Get your business models altered NOW! Offer it for free and cash in. 

This post was brought to you, for free, by your friendly local Bowerbird, all donations gratefully received.

Friday, 3 July 2009


(My genuine email to House Of Fraser, after seeing the above, awaiting response...)


Surely, this is not following Brand Guidelines?!  
I'd be interested to know if you're aware of this shop frontage in Leicester. 

Sincerely, Curious Customer.

Thursday, 2 July 2009

Post-it animation is appealing...

Got a deadline? Procrastination to the extreme as demonstrated by Bang-Yao Liu in this epic post-it note stop frame animation. I genuinely forget it's made from post-its half way through, fantastic immersive piece of animation! 

Monday, 29 June 2009

It's all about perspective

The scale of this video will knock your socks off, a very designer retro piece of film by Charles and Ray Eames, the clever, multi-disciplinary husband and wife duo.

Friday, 26 June 2009

This just in...

Funny 'cos it's true. News saturation has occurred less than 24 hours after MJ's death. Twitter, breaking news and live text updates have made us flighty and unable to concentrate on anything for more than...

Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Anyone want a backie?

Madsen Cycles Cargo Bikes

So what's the deal? This hot little bike from Madsen is up for grabs, head over to their site to find out how. Aside from that it's gorgeous and I could picture myself riding one. Although I know I'd fill the 'tub' up with rubbish, cool for a picnic and giving a mate a lift huh?

Monday, 22 June 2009

Harry Pearce inspirational talk at Pentagram

A magical thing happened last Thursday over at Pentagram. Stepping inside a little yard, Pentagram Yard no less, we were welcomed in to the hub of their London office where we sat and listened and smiled our way through Harry Pearce's talk, the latest offering from 26.

It was everything you'd expect from a Pentagram partner, a person of notoriety and acclaim yet with humility, humour and childlike wonder at the world around him. Listening to touching anecdotes of Pearce's relationship with Alan Fletcher, we all took pleasure in the disarming simplicity of his work, but mostly his playful way with words.

His upcoming book Conundrums is a collection of witty wordplay, Pearce must be a devil to try and beat at Dingbats! He introduced us to his 'Schizophrenic Roads', a collection of photographs of road signs that are the ultimate in paradox: 'Avenue Road' and 'Pink 'Green' as well as his almost prescient use of typography highlighting the issues in Burma. Pearce's work for Witness, clearly a pursuit of passion and integrity stands head and shoulders above the existing charity and good causes publicity. 'Infantry' is a stark attention grabber.

We walked away from the talk buzzing with ideas, wordplay and the connections we can make with words and images. There are truly magical things all around us if we can only see them, as Harry muses on one of Alan Fletcher's wondrous thoughts, a take on the Matisse quote, the world is full of flowers if you just have eyes to see.

So whether we're seeing humour in the miscommunication of predictive text, faulty signage, dreams or Schizophrenic road signs, as long as we're seeing, we'll all be enjoying.

Images courtesy of Pentagram, Conundrum answers available here.

Tuesday, 16 June 2009

We Have Band stop-frame animation

Incredible animation for We Have Band's single 'You Came Out' made by the mighty Wieden + Kennedy, seems like our neighbours are branching out into music videos, tricky, time consuming ones at that! Bravo. 

Thursday, 11 June 2009

D&AD: I'll be there

I am so part of this industry, look my face, there in that wall of 'industry type' and student faces. Oh yeah, I have officially made it. Sarcasm aside, it's a good idea, in an age of apathy and redundancy a little bit of solidarity and community spirit is welcomed. Sign up now for D&AD New Blood

Private View, Monday 29th June, 6pm.

See you there!

Monday, 8 June 2009

My First (dark) Dictionary

I've always found these kinds of illustrations a little creepy, more so after Mark Slack used them in an NSPCC Loughborough University project five years ago. In any case, Ross Horsley has finally put 2 and 2 together and gone slightly too far, so depending on your morals you may love or hate this.

I shall remain impartial but it's a good use of words and pictures to create an emotional response.


Get Help Here!

After a little stall in the launch process, I'm proud to announce the launch of our latest Directgov application, it's called Get Help Here, it's like an interactive flow chart to get help for those out of work, worried about redundancy or wanting to study.

It's my first project where I've done all the copywriting, it may seem small but there are over a hundred different end-lines in there. On the upside I have a full working knowledge of my redundancy rights and childcare benefits...

Have a play with the application here or download it/blog it/share it if you want to spread the information and help.

Vodafone Taxi Grand Prix

Here's an exciting little competition for any racing fans, create a racing team from two taxi drivers, then get live stats as they pick up fares throughout the country and clock up the miles you need to get F1 prizes.

The site explains it all, team Bowerbird consists of cabbies Robert (Manchester) and Colin (London), go on get involved, see you on the podium.

Thursday, 4 June 2009

Welcome to Bing

Now that Bing has launched, I'd just like to suggest you to try it out. I've been working on something associated with this project for a little while and have been excited to see it up and running. 

Although frankly, it doesn't recognise this blog when I search for it... (Google does, top hit)

Wednesday, 3 June 2009

MTV risqué ads for Skins

MTV Portugal have just made my morning! These daring adverts touch on the explicit nature of the show and I'm still chuckling. Illustrations courtesy of Bruna Guerreiro.

Congratulations to the copywriters too, "Parents can't forbid things they don't know exist. Skins. Don't let them know about this show."

Advertising Agency: Leo Burnett Lisboa, Portugal
Creative Director: Horacio Puebla
Art Director: Luciana Cani
Copywriter: Pedro Ribeiro
Illustrator: Bruna Guerreiro
Creative advisor: Tura
Published: April 2009

Wednesday, 27 May 2009

Egg box painting

Enno de Kroon describes it as 'eggcubism', it's an interesting technique and I'm sure it's harder to do than it looks. He's an artist based in the Netherlands, although I wouldn't be surprised if a few cash strapped English students adopted his style of canvas...

52 Poems

Tuesday, 26 May 2009

Ode to National Express

17.57 to London Kings Cross

Nestled down in the vestibule
Wedged against the fire extinguisher’s nook
I sit and sway

It’s an interesting vantage
Athletic male legs are much of my view
Along with the luggage, baggage of varying size-age

Vestibule 12438 in our temporary transit
3 girls, 2 boys, 3 seated, 2 standing
Suitcase, rucksacks, hold all, handbag and canvas tote

Denied a seat on a £40 ticket
So I jot down while we squat down
It may be Bank Holiday but it’s really not cricket. 

Monday, 18 May 2009

Kittens in Mittens!

Lovely lady Lauren Beard has opened her very own Etsy shop, go and purchase all your high quality illo based brilliance now. Thank you.

Can you give me a hand?

We are starting a caption competition over at the Digit Blog, and to keep it I need to prove that people will actually use it. 

Get your puns and witty words at the ready for the above image and post it here.


www.blog.digitlondon.com if you want to add it to your RSS feeds and have a convo with those clever thinkers...

Friday, 15 May 2009

Tell me how you're feeling

I've been doing a lot of thinking and writing for Digit this week, so in a self serving manner, would you like to look at one of my posts and tell me how you are? Thank you.

Tuesday, 12 May 2009

I'm in a tangle over this clip

Spaghetti Western, by PES, winner of a Sundance 2009 award, it's simply genius.
Watch over and over...

Monday, 11 May 2009

Playful is the way forwards

Illustrator Zara Picken strikes again with updates to her blog, and some playful self-promotional pieces including the two above. Have a little scroll through her blog, there are some really beautiful tactile pieces.

Take a peek at her entry to the AOI/TFL competition and her editorial illustrations, they look great in situ.

Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Blog in a blog, this is how mad cow's disease started...

So, I've been sneakily moonlighting, well, doing my day job really. The Digit blog is finally live! So check it out, add it to your RSS feeds and soak up all that great thinking from a bunch of great thinkers. Well I would say that wouldn't I? Please comment if the urge takes you, join the conversation.

Tuesday, 5 May 2009

He's behind you, he's got swine flu

This Streets track is dedicated to a lady with all the symptoms, catch it, bin it, kill it as the adverts say! Get well soon. Catchy track by the way...