Welcome to my blog, a place to share, inspire and creatively think.
Feel free to visit my website http://cargocollective.com/gemmaluker
or email me g.luker@hotmail.com.
Thanks for visiting!

Friday, 22 October 2010

HelloYou Creatives newspaper

I was very happy to spot one of my illustrations in design agency HelloYou Creatives first published newspaper spotlight, which they sent out to agencies and designers all over the world!

(middle left!)
They feature my vintage TV image, created originally for a 'Dont Panic' poster submission.

The newspaper looks amazing and I wish I could have been privy to a copy!

Luckily Ive been told they will be releasing a pdf version soon so can take a better look!

Thursday, 21 October 2010

Knitted Socks!

Winter is most definitely here now, and I'm giving in and getting the thermals out :-(
So it was time I knitted something warm that wasnt for baby but for me! 

As I get REALLY cold feet (bad circulation apparently!) I decided on socks, and found this really great pattern which is knitted on 2 needles, not circular as most patterns ask! (Which, if you're a knitter would understand as not being the easiest needles to get to grips with!)

They came out lovely, and are very warm, perfect to go over winter boots/converse!
Here they are being modeled by my mum (who has now claimed these once I finish the pair!).

I now have many orders from friends who want some for xmas . . . . .

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Oxford/Cambridge Debating

I recently completed these images for a book about Oxford, which is due out next year. 
They focus on the Oxford Vs Cambridge debate, the top image has each universities motto in Latin as its bike wheels! 

As an Oxford girl myself, I know which side of the river im on . . .

Thursday, 7 October 2010

V&A Visit Part 3 - Peter Rabbit: The Tale of the Tail

Also currently running at the V&A is a small exhibition about the brilliant Peter Rabbit, created by Beatrix Potter. 

Full of drawings and notes, it gives a great insight into one of the best loved children's characters.

There are also several manuscripts, and tells the tales of the beginnings of the books, including the problems getting the story initially published.

(Info taken from the V&A)
Beatrix wanted her picture book to be small (to fit a child's hands) and affordable, with a black and white illustration on every page to hold the attention of even the youngest reader. At least six publishers, including Frederick Warne, rejected Beatrix's manuscript, they wanted a larger, more expensive book with colour illustrations. Beatrix, however, was resolute: 'little rabbits cannot afford to spend 6 shillings on one book and would never buy it'. She decided to publish the book herself. On 16 December 1901 Strangeways & Sons printed 250 copies of The Tale of Peter Rabbit with black and white illustrations produced by the Art Reproduction Company of Fetter Lane. 

Meanwhile a family friend, Canon Hardwicke Rawnsley (a founder member of the National Trust) encouraged Frederick Warne to reconsider Beatrix's book. On 16 December 1901, as Beatrix celebrated her privately printed edition, Warne wrote to offer terms for the publication of the 'Bunny Book', she would have to cut the text and colour the illustrations.
Beatrix used one of her privately printed editions as a working copy, deleting eleven illustrations and re-writing the text until the book was just thirty-two pages. She was interested in all aspects of the book's production, editing meticulously Warne's proofs for both the text and illustrations and designing the cover, title page and frontispiece. She even made suggestions for the colour of the binding.
Publication began in October 1902 with a first edition of 8000 copies, a further 12,000 copies were printed in November and 8220 copies in December. Within a year Warne was already planning a sixth printing. Beatrix was astonished: 'The public must be fond of rabbits! What an appalling quantity of Peter'. Widely considered to be one of the most popular children's books of all time, The Tale of Peter Rabbit has gone on to sell an astonishing 40 million copies worldwide.

The format of the book has changed considerably since its first printing in October 1902. The text of the first three printings is identical but in the fourth printing of April 1903 Beatrix changed just one word, 'Peter wept big tears' became 'Peter shed big tears'. By August 1903 Beatrix had already published a second book, The Tale of Squirrel Nutkin, with colour endpapers.
In order to accommodate the new endpapers in the fifth and subsequent printings of The Tale of Peter Rabbit Beatrix reluctantly eliminated a further four illustrations and adjusted the text accordingly. Warne introduced white jackets to all the little books during the Second World War but it was not until years later that they became standardised to distinguish them from re-illustrated and pirated editions. The 1987 Original and Authorized Edition of the series featured rephotographed illustrations and green covers under white jackets.

Most recently, Warne redesigned the entire series of little books for the 2002 centenary of The Tale of Peter Rabbit, including a new typeface on cream paper and Beatrix's preferred plain endpapers. Most significantly, Warne restored the four illustrations removed from The Tale of Peter Rabbit in October 1903 and included two further illustrations produced by Beatrix for Warne's first edition but never used. Warne's latest edition of the tale follows 'faithfully Beatrix Potter's intentions while benefiting from advances in modern printing and design techniques.'

Its amazing to think that so much work went into producing the stories, but they are worth it as the illustrations are beautiful. 
The exhibition is on until January so plenty of time left to check it out.

Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Edu-Play Website Update

Im very happy that Edu-Play theater company have now fully updated their website and use of the images I created for them recently. 

'The Inventors' has now been released for January, and my image is now up on the website. 

'The Lady with the Lamp' is still running, and my image can be seen.

Their website is looking much better (check it out HERE) and I cant wait to work on more images for them.

Monday, 4 October 2010

V&A Visit Part 2 - Illustration Awards

One of the main reasons for my visit to the V and A Museum was to see the winners of the Annual V&A Illustrations awards. Held yearly, they are to highlight the best book and editorial illustration published in the UK. One of the best things about the competition is that it is free to enter, as many of the best competitions do come with a hefty entry fee, and if you are not as established as you want it does seem like a high price to pay.
There are four categories to enter:

Student Illustrator Award

This years winner is Hanshen Gu, with three pieces entitled 'How does transport kill my life?'

Holding a degree in Graphic Design, he is currently studying for an MA in Communication Design at Central Saint Martins.
He explores the uneasy but dependent relationship we have with the machines we use to transport us everyday. 'Most parts of my work are chosen from my sketchbook. There are many illustrations in it relating to public transport … I try to express my feelings and emotions when I spend too much time on it.'

Editorial Award Winner

My favourite winner, Matthew Richardson's Illustration 'Phantom Space Storm' won the editorial award.

The illustration accompanies a New Scientist article which explores the effects that storms in outer space have on the weather patterns within the Earth's atmosphere.
Matthew Richardson studied Graphic Design at Middlesex University (wooo!), Illustration at Central Saint Martins and more recently gained an MA in Fine Art at UWIC, Cardiff. He exhibits his work nationally and has won several awards from the Association of Illustrators. The artist is regularly asked to contribute editorial illustrations to the New Scientist for scientific concepts.

Book Cover Award Winner

Marion Deuchars produced a range of cover illustrations for Penguin's recently republished series of George Orwell titles and it was her cover design for Burmese Days that really won the judges.

The artist creates the cover's identity through a combination of collage and hand-painted elements. The large, imposing panel of predesigned typography that runs through the whole Penguin Modern Classics series is cleverly interwoven into the overall cover design. The cover also contains delicate elements such as the photo printed in pink to create the feel of a Burmese sunset.

 I also really like these covers, they seem so delicate yet strikingly eye catching at the same time.

The Illustrated Book Award and Overall Winner

The overall winner this year was Susan Carr with her innovative use of letterpress printing to form the illustrations for her book 'How to Drink'.

Using only two colours throughout, I loved her simple illustrations and her page layouts.

Carr took inspiration from the work of the Dutch artist and typographer H.N. Werkman: 'I tried to create images by abstracting the letterforms. The textured quality achieved in woodblock printing gives character and warmth to the print, which helps the illustrations feel lively and animated.'

arr graduated with a BA Honours degree in Graphic Design from Kingston University in 2003. She currently works within a small team of multi-disciplinary designers at Here Design agency based in east London. She has worked for a variety of design studios dealing with clients such as Waitrose, Green & Black's, Fortnum & Mason, Nude, and We Are What We Do.

The winning work is on display until January, so you have plenty of time to go check them out, although be warned it is a trek to find them in the museum, they are located on the 3rd floor!

Entry for next years awards is open until December, which I'm considering entering . . .

Friday, 1 October 2010

V&A Visit Part 1 - Hidden Gems

Yesterday I took some time out of my busy schedule to do something I haven't done in a while - visit a gallery. There were a few shows I wanted to see at the Victoria and Albert Museum, Kensington, so as it looked to be the only beautiful day before winter took hold, off I went.
I just love what you can find wandering around a place as big as the V&A. Not only did I see the work I wanted to, but I also found some kooky odds and ends, and inspiring places.

I stumbled upon this design display hidden in a region on the 3rd floor. What I loved about it was the contrast of the modern pieces on display against the old antique book shelves which lined the room.

There was all kinds of topics, and the books were huge and cobweb-y! Spooky!

I loved the look of this bookcase, I could so do with this in my room!

I also came across some vintage posters and loved this one for Colman's Mustard, the poor guy looks so ill bless him!

The main reason I visited was to see the Illustration Awards, and Peter Rabbit, however I will have to blog about them in separate posts as I seem to be having abit of trouble with uploading pictures at the moment.