Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Lost in another world

I love books. It's a fact. I also love stories. And while you might assume that they come hand in hand, I want to explore the stories further outside the realms of books. The stories I love are of people, and lives. Simple and familiar to the lives that we ourselves live. Sometimes a bit of drama or fantasy certainly doesn't hinder a story line, but the life of celebrity doesn't interest me.

These stories are often found now-a-days in tv series, movies and of course, books. I love to have a story to follow and find that I enjoy having something to watch or listen to whilst I'm busy with my daily errands and jobs. Just listening to music or the radio isn't always enough for me. (Sometimes I wonder if I have ADHD!) And so I watch tv series's from start to finish over and over again, spending hours following a long story line.

Recently however I ventured back into the option of books, heading straight for the audio version. Audiobooks allow me to follow a story whilst continuing to do other things (which reading does not allow) and I remember loving a couple of audio books when I was a child. Strangely enough one of my favorite reasons for having audio books around is for running.... I get bored of music and need ridiculously upbeat music to keep me going. Whereas with a story I am interested and happy, the time just flies by.

The one problem with audio books is the price, starting at £10 a decent audio book can reach up £50! I do not have that kind of money.... But what I have found is that a local library will only charge you 50p to rent an audiobook (a cd version can easily be imported into your iTunes to listen to on your iPod and keep forever ;) and at most an extra 50p to reserve them.

I recently borrowed all of the Harry Potter Cd's from the kids section (yup the kids stories tend to be my favorite...easy to fall back into and listen along to!) and I cannot stop listening. I find I'm much happier to get on and do things when I have the lush tones of Stephen Fry to keep me entertained. I cannot recommend them enough!

Do you have any favorite stories or ways of entertaining yourself? Or are you quite happy with the radio, or even silence?

Monday, 19 March 2012

Monday Mornings Come and Go

Monday Mornings. Oh Joy. Mine started out with a run, and then a trip into town to sign lots of paperwork for our flat! We move on Thursday and it's soo exciting!! We can't wait :).  But this is how I spent my Sunday evening after work, I love watching the first half about her as a person and more importantly as a business woman. It's so nice to see that side, and to see the normal her that isn't just a superstar.

Abiento x

Sunday, 18 March 2012

Happy Mothers Day!

This is for my mumma, who lives far far away and is missed greatly.

Happy Mothers Day to my mum and all the others out there! :) 

Abiento x

Friday, 16 March 2012

Friday Fun

I don't know whether to say that Wimp came up trumps for finding this or whether to say that Japan came up trumps! This is far too cool, far too clever and far too well done for it not become a phenomenon. The creative use of technology is fun, inventive and brings us into a whole new realm of possibilities within performance art. Like I said- too coll!.

Enjoy your Friday :)

Abiento x

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Journal Day 114

So today was more about experimentation; bringing the drawings in my sketchbook out into the open on a worksheet to allow me to see them all at once, and have the space to play around with them a bit. What I learnt was that so far I have been playing it safe, sticking to flat colours and marker pens when working on paper. I need to play around more and take risks; using different media such as paint and collage. Something Jane has been trying to convince me to do for a while....

I also tried layering colour by use of colouring with pencils ontop of the marker pens to see what happened- I was pleasantly suprised! What came about was experimentation with colours, the discovery that great new colours can be made, and that yellow seems to brighten and enrich any colour. At last I'm opening up to the idea of risk taking and can see how it will help me. I can see how this project could/is unfolding and I'm really excited!

Abiento x

[What] can I do?

Yesterday I decided to discover what I can do in Photoshop for my project. My first main concern was that  I would struggle to get the colour blending I hoped for by over-laying geometrical shapes. I found that by altering the opacity of the shapes I could indeed do exactly what I wanted! This was pleasantly suprising, and reaffirming for me. It showed me that I can and should be able to do exactly what I want to with my designs in photoshop. It is now more about what my knowledge will allow me to do, not what my ability or tool (photoshop) will allow me to do.

What I love about this is how the over-lay of the shapes almost in itself creates a pattern. The new shapes and colours that are created really excites me. 

Next, I decided to continue this idea by comparing this with less of an over-lay of the shapes.

While I still like this layout, and think it could work as a background (perhaps with negative or white shapes/pattern on top), when I first looked at it I found it to be too much. Strangely the many many shapes formed in the first layout makes it a bit of a blur and a haze, making it easier on the eye. Whereas this layout gives more for the eye to follow, possibly making it too much information? Am I right? Or is it actually the other way around? I need some distance and outside perspective to see this for me.

And so from there I decided to see what this layout would look like with more negative space (in colour). This would leave room for a pattern as a background as well as the one in the foreground. 

Here I went with a colour theme to keep the pattern slightly simpler. However I do feel that this could work well with each of the 3 squares in each set being a different colour. That was a risk I didn't want to take when I was creating the layouts in photoshop, but feel that I should have done. 

Abiento x

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Journal Day 113

This project has taken me a while to get into. From a suggestion of my tutor's I started with birds; mainly tropical birds. I headed to Paradise Park in Hayle and snapped some photos of the birds from which I have based a few simple drawings and have found shapes with which to work with. I tried to start drawing at the Park, and found that I could draw, mainly better with colour, but that it wasn't what I was after. I tried various things, working with line mainly. A week in, with not much work I hit a wall. I started thinking and thought that perhaps it was the birds- maybe the birds wasn't for me? However I picked up my sketchbook, rifled through and had some ideas of how to develop and continue drawing. I decided to carry on, and am really pleased I did. I learnt that by taking some time and perspective, and that going back on what I had already done I could develop and re-think my project. Doing research into other work that has similar features and characteristics to what I want my work to be has really helped. Jane suggested not looking into other work too much, and in many ways I agree, although I have found it helpful in terms of coming up with new ideas for patterns, backgrounds and layouts.

I have started to think more in depth of what it is that draws me to pieces that I have found and discovered a few patterns and links. In order to identify them I am going to include the mood board pieces again, with captions.

So, starting from top left, down and around linking back up.
1. Messy, bold colours that merge together.
2. Geometric shapes (triangles) that form the shape of an item and are filled with detail/pattern.
3. Stripes of colour create a pattern.
4. (skipping a few to the print of the forest) Geometric shapes that form the background of a piece with a theme of colours.
5. (Again skipping a few) Shapes in shapes (dots in squares) that form a pattern and act as a detail.

1. Over-lay of shapes to form a shape.
2. Over-lay of shapes to form a pattern.
3. Colours combined to form a background.
4. Block colour shapes over-layed to create the pattern. Symmetrical and opposite over-lays.
5. Over-lay of triangles creates lots of new colours.
6. Chevron stripes as a possibility for detail inside a shape.
7. Overlay of bear (and people) creates both new shapes and new colours.
8. Over-lay of wine glass shapes to form a pattern.
9. Stripes and colours combined in a pattern to create the detail on the inside of a shape.
10. (back to the beginning) Basic shapes taken from what looks to be birds, repeated, mirrored and in various colours.

1.Two bolder colours, but with 4 colours and 4 over-lays of the same shapes makes a pattern stand out.
2. (bottom left) Bird pattern laid over another pattern, laid over a colour.
3. Colour and line over-laid to create a new pattern.
5. Block colour shapes over-laid but with no transparency.
6. (Pear) Simple shape with multiple colours and details inside
7. (repeat bird pattern) Simple bird shape made into a pattern with mirroring and varying colours.

From this I can see that there are the following ideas and preferences emerging that I would like to explore within my own work, as a base from which to take my drawings.

  • The idea of pattern inside a shape appeals to me as a way of offering up detail in what could become work full of just colour.
  • The use of shape and colour to form  a pattern or even another shape.
  • Block shapes 
  • Linear drawing and patterns (perhaps best saved/used for the background?)
  • Bright bold colours with a simple pallette that always seems to involve blue and yellow plus 3 more colours. (usually green, pink or red and a neutral tone. 
  • Over-lay of the block shapes, with some transparency to create new colours and shapes. (This is what most excites me- see the bear image, the person smoking image and the orange black and white bird image.)
  • Simplicity within patterns- stripes, chevrons and dots. (Something that was the basis of the pattern in my previous project.)
Abiento x

Mood Boards are the way forward

Some of you may have seen some of my current project inspiration before on here, or even on Pinterest, but I created these mood boards with the images and thought I would share them here as part of my journal.

[Click on the link to pinterest to find each image and it's original source]

Shapes and Patterns

Layers and over lapping

Colour, Shape and Pattern

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Photography Inspiration [It's in the Details]

I've begun to notice that there is one thing in common with most of the portraits I save- their focus and attention to detail. So I have collected them together here to showcase the most beautiful of the bunch.

(I know the artists behind most but am missing some gaps- feel free to let me know if you do, so I can credit them properly!)

Jenn Stark 

Anna Hardy

Anna Hardy

Snakes Nest



Anna Hardy

Jasmine Star

Sarah Rhoads

Fanni Williams

Monday, 12 March 2012

30 Day Photo Project {Reflections}


A small self portrait in reflection form for the second image of my second photography project.

Abiento x

Friday, 9 March 2012

Friday Fun

Wow this is late in the day- sorry! I have been busy celebrating Anniversaries and securing new houses :)

The original song of this is pretty popular right now- but this cover kicks ass. Just watch the serious guy. Brilliant. 

Abiento x

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Colour Combo's

Some more colour inspiration for your day-

I really love this bright and poppy combo!

{Bringing Home the Bacon When Your Blog Isn't Huge} Alt Summit Channel

Morning! Now, sadly, due to some posting issues my last course post slipped into the nether regions of the world and probably wasn't seen by most. So I may need to do a little bit of explaining. Forgive me for simply cutting and pasting from said post.

"Since I began my foray into blogs and the whole world that comes along with it, I have slowly discovered the amazing world of conferences that the US has to offer. From those specified to wedding photographers, to those, like Alt Summit, that are for designers and the like. Well, like I said, the conferences take place in the US. And sadly, I live in little old Cornwall! Hopping on a plane to Salt Lake City really isn't option for my measly student budget. However, from following the blogs of the people who not only attend, but also speak at these conferences I found that Alt Summit has a new venture; Alt Summit Channel. The lovely people behind Alt Summit decided to share the knowledge of their friends through short online courses that only cost $15 (roughly £10!). I signed up for 4 of them pronto!"

So, a week ago I had the first course; Content is King. Last night I had my second class Bringing Home the Bacon When Your Blog Isn't Huge. Both of these have been with 26 year old Melanie Blodgett who runs You Are My Fave

To be honest, out of the 4 classes I signed up for, this was the one I was least worried about. I won't say that I wasn't looking forward to it, because of course I was. However making money from blog isn't my first priority right now. I know that in order to make money my blog needs to be bigger and better. I'm just not fussed that it isn't that right now. All I want is for my blog to be at a stage where once blogging is as popular in the UK as it is in the US, that it can help to make me a profit and give me a following that could support my business. Right now, I'm in a place where my blog can't feasibly get much bigger or better- I may only be a semi student, but that still comes with hours that need to be filled in certain places, and that doesn't leave much time for running a blog.

Anyway, let's move on to the class. 

The number 1 thing I learned and know I have to implement? Putting myself out there to get opportunities. The phrase 'If you don't ask, you won't get" is more true in the freelance world than it is anywhere else. Hearing this confirmed for me that it's okay to be the annoying person asking. It's not just annoying even. In fact it shows determination, dedication and interest all of which are things that potential employers cannot help but like. 

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Colour Inspiration

Just a bit of colour love for your Wednesday afternoon :)

There's just something about grey with hit of colour that gets my juices flowing! This bright, almost coral pink is just heavenly to me, especially with the cool blue thrown in. Oh and the fact that its on a floating house makes it even cooler. Imagine living on a house that floats! Apparantly some of the locals (in Vancouver and on Granville Island) kayak work. Seriously. Too cool.

Abiento x

Monday, 5 March 2012

Journal Day 106

Project 3 begins today, and the best way to move forward into this project is with a small evalutation of project 2. I have already evaluated it to a certain extent with my project proposal for Part 3, but here I would like to delve deeper into what I really think worked, didn't work, and what I learnt that I would like to take forward with me.

So what did I do in my last project?

Well, I drew lots and lots of street signs. In fact I drew the same two or three over and over again in many different contexts and forms. This became a bit monotonous and did not necessarily help me to learn or develop as much as it could have. 

I used 5 pastel colours that I liked and worked well for me. I stuck to these colours right from the beginning of the project as I loved them so much, and did not explore the colour further with the street signs on my worksheets until I got into the print room. I felt stuck with the worksheets and inspired when I moved into the print room. So much so that the whole project very nearly changed once I moved into the print room, and the final result was not what I expected to come out of the project.

I explored one idea and one set of colours in depth, but did not develop further than that. For this next project I want to begin by exploring a huge range of ideas and colours from which I can make an informed choice to move into the print room with.

I worked in photoshop with colour themes, finding colours that work well together. However I did not pull them into the project itself. With this next project I would like to be able to do that. I have also been interested in designing more in photoshop, and with digital printing and feel that this will work well for me to incorporate new colours from the themes I developed in the last project. 

Throughout Part 2 I did not draw much, and feel that this may have hindered my project slightly. For this project I want to start with drawing, move into exploration and ideas and then go onto the development stage before deciding upon my final outcome. 

I feel that through the course I have learnt a lot about my working style and choices and what works best for me. So with that in mind I know that I want to carry the following things forward into the next project;

  • The choice of a set of colours/theme that can be altered slightly and can be developed into creating a range. 
  • The idea to create a series with the pattern(s) developed that can give more choice.
  • The idea to create a series of products with the patterns- i.e bedding, wallpaper, tea towels, stationery etc. 
  • The use of simple patterns that come from stripes, chevrons and dots. 
  • The development of basic shapes that resonates with and is slightly influenced by patterns from the 50's. 

  • I would also like to explore more with all aspects of the colour/shape and pattern criteria within a pattern. 
  • I would also like to develop my ideas more in photoshop as I feel that this tool can better say what I want it to than my hands can with a pen or pencil. It will be neater, more organised and more aesthetically pleasing. 
  • This can then lead me on to an easier production of the range perhaps through digital printing, but can then allow for future merchandise to be created much quicker and easier. 
Here's to the next project!

Abiento x

New Photography Project

Good morning and Happy Monday! My weekend was busy and productive having dinners with my family and working at the cafe. Plus today my mum heads back to Canada as her holiday here is up. I'm sad to see her go, even though I'm very used to her not being around now! Anyway, since the ending of my 365 project, I have been thinking of new ways to challenge myself photographically and creatively and I found this photo challenge that I have decided to start, beginning with today;


I hope to be able to extend and continue this project once the initial 30 days are up- what do you think!? Is it too abstract or random?Feel free to let me know your thoughts!

Abiento x

Thursday, 1 March 2012

365 Project- It's finished!

Over the last year I have completed a 365 proejct, a photography project that inspires many every day and encourages creativity. I decided last year to start one on mine and the mr's 2 year anniversary to document a year in my life. Each day I took photos to represent my day, and while sometimes I struggled and forgot, other days I was glad to have documented the day. Anyway, now that it's over (phew!) lets look back at my year and celebrate mine and the mr's 3 years together!

Plus check out these other 365 Projects;

Anna Hardy did one for a year photographing anything and everything
Kelly spent her year similarly and started her blog especially for the project and is now doing this new project!
This guy spent a year photographing skulls before moving onto more skull related 365 projects

Abiento x

My Week in Photos (365) Project (The last one!)

The 28th marked the last day of my 365 project! I have to say that I was very excited for it to end! It had become quite a chore by the end, and I struggled to take photos that represented my daily life when do often my daily life was boring! As a student I frequently spend days in my room alone, doing work. Or at uni, alone, doing work. I'm often in student spaces that are bland and boring and most of this does not translate well into pretty photographs. And so often I would feel like a bit of a failure when it came to this project, and I hope to start a project that will excite me a bit more next time (more info coming soon) But for now here is the last ever week of photos, plus coming soon a roundup of the full year!


Gran's Birthday, with tea-time celebrations!


Paella with family friends


Shopping! :)


Fancy pants birthday dinner to celebrate my aunt's birthday- with cocktails!


Hot Ribena in bed to help my cold go away!


Celebrating our 3 year anniversary with ice cream, lunch and a movie night! Followed next week by a meal out and a cooking class! I can't wait!

Abiento x