Face Me

9Poppy Skelley is a an illustrator who recently finished her final year at Cambridge School of Art. She put together a digital tabloid newspaper called FACE ME, a fine collection of faces drawn over the course of her studies. Her lovely black-and-white drawings look great in newsprint, and we asked her to tell us a bit about her work:

FACE ME is a self-initiated project based on the topic of the face. I was researching into masks, faces and sculptures for a project that I was doing at university where I intended to create my own 3D busts out of clay. I had a lot of sketches and illustrations from museums and books that I produced throughout my project and I wanted to display them in some way.

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Printing through Newspaper Club was the ideal way to show my collection of illustrations and I found the online layout tool ARTHR really useful for playing around with page layout and page order.

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This paper also includes sketches made at home of my friends, self-portraits and faces drawn from my imagination. I am continuously drawing people and faces and it seems to be something that captures my interest and inspires me.

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The illustrations are produced using black and white gouache paints, pencils and pens.  I usually work with a lot of colour and texture in my illustrations, so it was a challenge to put together something that was black and white. It proved to be refreshing to work in a different way to what I am used to and I am very happy with the printed result.

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You can buy prints of Poppy’s drawings, including sketches from FACE ME, in her online shop. She keeps a very lovely illustration blog, too. Thanks for printing with us, Poppy!

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Filed under: art, ARTHR, case studies, illustration, Newspaper Stories

Paper of the Month: Medea/Worn

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We recently printed our 6 millionth (!) newspaper but we’re still constantly being surprised by new and imaginative uses for newsprint. Our Paper of the Month for September is a perfect example: Medea/Worn is a script for an original play printed in the style of a 1950s dress pattern. It’s a beautiful piece of work, printed as two separate digital tabloids that are folded together. The paper was designed by writer and illustrator Emily Juniper, who was just nominated for Best New Playwright in the Off West End awards. We asked Emily to tell us more about project:

Medea/Worn is a limited edition, illustrated script, designed to look and feel like a 1950s dress pattern.  I explored the narrative of Medea’s bloody decision by giving voice to her wedding gown. I wanted to give voice to her wedding gown, as it turned from innocent dress to murder weapon. I wanted this transition to act as a vehicle for Medea to explore her justification and anguish as she considers the consequences of her horrific notion, that she must slay her own children in order to punish Jason completely for his treachery.

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I hand-made pocket-gusset envelopes, risograph printed by Ditto Press, which you must tear open to discover the folded sheets of newsprint within.  The quality of paper was so important to me, and the Newspaper Club allowed me to produce pages that really look and feel like the real thing.

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I’m currently studying for an MA in Illustration and Authorial Practice at Falmouth University.  When I was commissioned by The Faction Theatre Company to write a version of Medea, I felt it was a great project to combine with my exploration of illustration.

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I wanted to create a space for the play text that would utilise the performative quality of paper and also exploit the intimate encounter of the book as an object.

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As the new character in Medea was going to be her gown, I chose to set my poetic text against the schematic drawings of a dress pattern.  I loved the tension between the dense words and economical drawings.

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I sourced vintage patterns and created a grid for my words.  As Medea begins to lose her mind, the formal structures of the pattern disintegrate and the final page, when she has made the decision to kill her children, is blank.

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My hope is that the mathematical lines and shapes provide the same canvas for the imagination as is employed when unpicking metaphors or similes in prose.  Which is why this seemingly disparate connection between poetry and schematic drawings can be made.  The drawn lines in the pattern are compared to the folds and falling of fabric, but one is ink on a page and one is a three dimensional object. The conjuring act involved in this might be compared to the way Shakespeare describes winter branches as Bare ruin’d choirs, where late the sweet birds sang. The writer asks the reader to perform an act of poetic creation. This is what an illustrator is doing with ink lines on the page.  It is not the same thing as the object, yet it invokes it.

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Congratulations Emily, and thank you for sharing your brilliant project with us!

About Paper of the Month

Every month, we give a £100 Newspaper Club voucher to one paper shared in The Newsagent. If you’ve printed a paper with us, share your paper (through the settings in your account) for a chance to win.

 

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Filed under: case studies, illustration, Newsagent, Paper of the Month, students

The Assumption

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Fionnuala Doran is a student at the Royal College Art who recently won the British Library’s Comics Unmasked competition. Her work engages with history through simple, striking illustration — like this wonderful drawing of Tippoo’s Tiger from a series of sketches from the V&A. The Assumption is a 16-page graphic novelette printed as a digital broadsheet. You can see the comic in its entirety in The Newsagent. Fionnuala tells us about her project:

The Assumption is the end result of my first year studying Visual Communication at the Royal College of Art, and was developed initially as a very loose adaptation of Julian Barnes’ short story Shipwreck.

The Assumption tells the story of the almost forgotten 1879 death of a ten year old boy during a riot in the small market town of Lurgan, Northern Ireland, the attempts to define the circumstances of his death by both his family and the police and the subsequent events in the town, the truth of which has never been determined.

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Thank you for printing with us, Fionnuala! You can find more comic newspapers under the ‘illustration’ tag in The Newsagent.

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Filed under: art, case studies, illustration, Newsagent

Paper of the Month: Everything for Breakfast

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Our Paper of the Month for July is Everything for Breakfast from Sheffield-based illustrator David Hill. Set in a brilliantly drawn universe, the 20-page digital tabloid starts off with an invitation to a birthday breakfast on a lighthouse. The story follows an adventurer in a fabulous jumper, making her way across the world one breakfast at a time — it’s our kind of comic. Just look at that bedroom!

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Unfortunately we can’t jump into the pages, but David was happy to tell us a bit more about his comic:

Everything for Breakfast is the result of my final university project, where I wanted to create something for children to interact with, to read through, and to implicitly receive the message of the importance of acceptance and tolerance amongst different cultures.

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I use my child protagonists – Scottish Explorer Aggie and Ghanaian food lover Kofi – to get the message across in their own unique way. In issue one, Aggie encounters the Tunnel Dudes, a grumpy set of postmen, who become both help and hindrances throughout. They reluctantly help her on her way south towards the Congo jungle so she can find the best present for Kofi’s birthday, while eating all the breakfast she can before setting off again.

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Children’s comics have been around for many years, though a gap seems apparent in educational comics for kids who are becoming more socially independent as they move from primary to secondary school. With this project I was hoping to bridge that gap with my contribution.

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I see the comic being read by kids in schools during the morning breakfast routine, or at break time, so I wanted the comic to be a larger format than the usual issued comic of today, and saw that our University’s graduation brochure was being printed through Newspaper Club. I’ve been aware of the company for a while so this was the perfect excuse to see what my work looks like as a newspaper. The results are great, and I didn’t expect the company to be so personal with the project! And now I know how to make Issue 2 even better.

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This is just the first of a planned four installments, and we can’t wait for the next issue. Thanks for printing with us, David!

About Paper of the Month

Every month, we give a £100 Newspaper Club voucher to one paper shared in The Newsagent. If you’ve printed a paper with us, share your paper (through the settings in your account) for a chance to win.

 

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Filed under: art, case studies, illustration, Newsagent, Newspaper Stories, Paper of the Month, students

Observe: Cambridge Edition

 

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It’s always tempting to sneak a look when you come across someone drawing in a sketchbook. But sometimes you’re lucky enough to be given a guilt-free glimpse in the form of a newspaper. Hannah Blackman-Kurz is a terribly talented illustrator — she’s written a gorgeous children’s book called The Qalupalik and designed posters for the Cambridge Arts Theatre – who has published bits of her travelling sketchbook as a 12-page digital tabloid. Observe is a collection of drawings she did in her local coffee shops, and she tells us a bit about the project:

Observe was a self initiated day project that was based in Cambridge coffee shops. It was a experimentation on how my images would feel placed on a newspaper format and if it gave a different quality to the images, it also fitted the theme of coffee shops and how newspapers are associated with them.

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It was great to see how they finally turned out, it gave the images more of a tactile approach where people can pick them up and don’t feel they have to be so precious with it unlike going through someone’s sketchbook. I’m going to keep experimenting hopefully there shall be a few more editions over the the summer! Thanks Newspaper Club!

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We love Hannah’s work and you can see more of it on her blog. Thank you for printing with us!

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Filed under: art, case studies, illustration, Newsagent, students

Splendid Vol. 1

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Splendid is a handsome collection of black and white ink drawings from illustrator  Samuel St. Leger. The 16-page digital tabloid includes a centrefold drawing of the Raft of Medusa and a wrap-around cover featuring this dour chap, Sea-weed Sad-face:

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It’s a great little publication available in The Newsagent now for £6.50 including delivery. We asked Samuel to tell us about the project:

The idea behind Splendid (in as much as it can be said to have any idea behind it at all) was that I wanted to collect together some of the illustrations I had made at the time. There isn’t really a coherent theme to the paper, and each image is printed large enough to be considered on its own, though in general I tend towards nostalgic images, often tainted/mutated/warped by the passing of time and all rendered in a harsh black and white line which borrows somewhat from woodcuts, engravings, and comics.

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I have always loved the look and feel of newsprint and this project seemed to finally be something where I could marry the two — my black and white illustrations printed in a newspaper. It hadn’t escaped my attention that several artists also used newspapers to produce limited run comics and the like (Chris Ware being the easiest one to spring to mind) and I think I hoped to make Edition 1 from a backlog of work, print it and sell the whole run, then move on to Edition 2, 3, 4 etc.

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I really didn’t have to search that hard to find Newspaper Club — literally just Googled ‘newspaper printing UK’ I think — and the site was the first to appear that was able to make short runs, in a good turn-around period and at a price I could understand and afford. Also, upon further investigation, Newspaper Club are very human, helpful and engaged — especially when I had a small flap about using process black or 100% CMYK black for my edition.

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I faffed around quite a bit with the ordering and layout of my paper, and having decided on a short run, set about making a wrap-around cover (combined with a centrefold image, both things I remember as massive selling points for comics and fanzines of my youth) and drawing a couple of new bits. Then I sent it to print and waited.

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The best bit was when the box arrived at my workplace and I scrabbled at it pulling newspapers out. As I work in a creative agency a fair few people there were interested in the paper and bought them immediately. I still love to look through Splendid and it brings me immense satisfaction as an object to be interacted with and as a record of my work at that time. I have a couple left on my shelves in my studio, and every now and then, if I sell something via Etsy or the like I will chuck a copy in as a bonus!

You can find more of Samuel’s drawings and musings on his blog. Thank you for printing with us!

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Filed under: art, case studies, illustration

A Biography of Tadeo Isidoro Cruz

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Argentine writer Jorge Luis Borges published his short story “A Biography of Tadeo Isidoro Cruz” in 1949. The folk tale has been beautifully interpreted by Falmouth illustration student Christos Papakonstantinopoulos in a monochrome graphic novel– we think the bold black-and-white panels look brilliant printed in a digital tabloid newspaper. A Biography of Tadeo Isidoro Cruz is available in The Newsagent now for £7.25. Christos says about his project:

This illustrated newspaper was the result of my research on adapting short stories into the Graphic Novel format. It was part of my final project for the MA Illustration: Authorial Practice in Falmouth University. A limited edition of 22 numbered and signed copies was exhibited in the 2013 MA show in Falmouth, Cornwall.

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The Argentine Jorge Luis Borges, one of the most significant writers of the 20th century, dedicated a lot of his writings to telling stories about the life of well known folk heroes of his country. His short story “A Biography of Tadeo Isidoro Cruz (1829-1874)” is an example of how one of these heroes lived. It’s a documentation of customs, habits, and traditions related to the gauchos: the South American version of cowboys.

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Gauchos played an important role in Argentina ‘s struggle against colonialism, and became a symbol of courage and freedom. Living in the country’s wide plains (with sole companion a knife, a poncho, and a horse) was tough, and sometimes brutal. This explains, in a way, the reason why they were so popular among literature, and artistic circles all over Latin America. These features of the gaucho’s way of life, which reveal the unknown but very interesting world of the South American cowboys, are presented through the pages of this newspaper.

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By telling the story through the Graphic Novel medium I hope it will reach a wide audience of all ages as, in my view, the narrative potentials and the special aesthetics of the medium redefine the limits of contemporary literature.

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This visualized version of J. L. Borges short story was hand written, hand drawn and inked in Kathmor House Studios, based in Falmouth, and it is part of a collection of illustrated short stories under the title Kathmor Illustrated Series, which will be released shortly.

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My tutors, fellow students, and me agreed that the most suitable print form for my work would be the newsprint. The expressive character of the black and white drawings are perfectly presented through the material qualities of the traditional newsprint paper. When I received the package with the papers I was surprised to see the final drawings printed, and eventually work as a total visual composition. The newspaper fulfilled our expectations completely, and it was a big success.

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Thank you for printing with us, Christos!

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Filed under: art, case studies, illustration, Newsagent

Pond Life Papers

For the last year, David Ross, Glasgow based designer (and NPC neighbour), has been working on a collaborative product to make beautiful flat pack lamps with a whole host other local illustrators, artists and designers.

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His pondlife themed designs were created to “restore a little love for self-assembly furniture”, giving owners “a connection with the object, a greater understanding of the design and an increased sense of ownership of the product,” once they’ve teased together the simple, elegant frames.

David says: “The shades and frames were inspired by an ongoing interest in ponds, particularly the creatures, plants and structures that make up a pond’s ecosystem.”

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“I made the newspapers for my exhibition primarily because I wanted the opportunity to give a greater background to the product I was launching (including information about 10 collaborators!) without having to print hundreds of sheets of paper in my studio.
Secondly, the newspaper is a far nicer object to pick-up and read than a few sheets of A4, and I hope people will be more likely to hang onto it.
And thirdly, with the Pond Life Laser Lamps I tried to create an honest and fun product – I feel that this is mirrored with a newspaper.”

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The lamps are still on display now in an exhibition at the Lighthouse in Glasgow, and can be bought through the Lighthouse shop, Tojo, or David’s website here. They also happen to feature work by the great Chris Watson, who shares our office space, and one shade by yours truly.

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Filed under: art, case studies, illustration, Newsagent, Newspaper Stories, team

St. Jude’s In The City

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There’s a lovely event happening now at The Town House in Spitalfieds. St. Jude’s In The City is an exhibition of recent works by artists Angie Lewin and Alex Malcolmson organised by St. Jude’s Prints.

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They printed a mini newspaper to go alongside the exhibition — a teaser edition for the second issue of their publication Random Spectacular. (The first smashing issue of Random Spectacular can be seen on their website.) It features works from the exhibition, including Alex Malcomson’s box constructions and Angie Lewin’s linocuts, as well as essays about London from Random Spectacular contributors.

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Free copies of the newspaper are available (while stocks last) at the exhibition, which runs until 5pm on Saturday 24th May (daily open times are listed online). They’ll also have a small number of copies available to purchase (for a nominal amount) online after the exhibition.

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Full exhibition details can be found on the St. Jude’s website. Random Spectacular No. 2 will be published in June, and as with the first issue all profits go to Maggie’s Cancer Caring Centres. You can follow St. Jude’s on Twitter and Facebook to be the first to hear when it’s out for sale.

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Filed under: art, case studies, illustration

IRISS On…Weaving Innovation and Evidence Together

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IRISS is a charitable organisation that promotes positive outcomes for people who use Scotland’s social services. They teamed up with Dundee-based illustrator Amanda Bataller to produce an eye-grabbing newspaper aimed at people who work in the social care and support sector. Company reports can be a chore to read but the illustrations here are wonderful, cleverly interpreting the newspaper’s theme of ‘weaving innovation and evidence together’ and getting the point across in an engaging visual way. Here’s more about it from IRISS:

IRISS On… is a newspaper series written and published by the Institute for Research and Innovation in Social Services (IRISS). The newspaper aims to enlighten, inform and support people to change how they work using new knowledge and processes to develop the ways people are supported. The first IRISS On…was about innovation and improvement — this post is about the creation of the second editon, IRISS On…Weaving Innovation and Evidence Together.

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IRISS On…Weaving Innovation and Evidence Together is a 24-page traditional mini newspaper that was written by Fiona Munro and Gayle Rice (from IRISS) and illustrated by Amanda Bataller. The subject of the newspaper is an exploration into the relationships between innovation and evidence in the context of Scotland’s social services, as the way people approach innovation and evidence affects the outcomes and outputs of work. IRISS is using the newspaper to share this knowledge and encourage people to consider how they think about these two concepts, rather than seeing them as distinct and separate.

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Amanda created the illustrations using Photoshop. The images use the weaving concept to visually communicate the copy and make it more engaging. The ideas is innovation and evidence are represented by two different coloured threads: green for innovation and blue for evidence. The illustrations were used to narrate two characters using the threads in different ways and the copy provides examples of how innovation and evidence have been used in these different ways. The style is simple, clear and eye-catching.

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Fiona, Gayle and Amanda worked collaboratively, providing feedback to each other during each stage of the development process to reach a newspaper we are all proud of.

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1,000 copies of the newspaper have been printed by Newspaper Club, and are being delivered to IRISS champions around all Scotland in different social care and support services and organisations. The license of the newspaper is creative common, so everybody can download it and use it for non-commercial purposes. Please share it widely.

You can find out more about IRISS on their website and follow them on Twitter. Amanda has some more lovely work online too. Thanks for printing with us!

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Filed under: case studies, illustration

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