Page 1

CANTO


CONTENTS


VI. WITHIN THE OTHER WORLD

VIII. DAVID CASS XIV. THE WEIGHT OF THE

EARTH IS CRUSHING XX. ANNA FENNEL HUGHES

XXIV. ENVY

XXX. ANDY NICHOLSON

XXXIV. WRATH XL. FRANCESCA KELSEY

XLVI.SLOTH

LII. FASHION AS A RELIGION XIV. AVARICE AND THE PRODIGAL

XLII. CHRIS

LXVII. GLUTTONY

LXXVI. LUST


INTRODUCTION


Speaking to Stephen this week made me think about different ways to format my magazine. He suggested that I really push the boundaries of contemporary magazines and come up with something that is completely new and innovative. I want my magazine to be an experience so I thought about making my magazine a room or a tent but think this is impractical because people need to be able to view it in their home. I was looking and Visionaire magazine and they presented an issue of their magazine in an old pair of slide projection goggles. I think that this is an amazing idea so I decided to play on this idea but make it more up to date. I found a pair of goggles online, which project images to make it look like you’re watching a full sized screen. I think it would be great if I could present my magazine with these so that it’s not so static, has a soundtrack to it and will be an experience that very few people have had.

Speaking to Stephen this week made me think about different ways to format my magazine. He suggested that I really push the boundaries of contemporary magazines and come up with something that is completely new and innovative. I want my magazine to be an experience so I thought about making my magazine a room or a tent but think this is impractical because people need to be able to view it in their home. I was looking and Visionaire magazine and they presented an issue of their magazine in an old pair of slide projection goggles. I think that this is an amazing idea so I decided to play on this idea but make it more up to date. I found a pair of goggles online, which project images to make it look like you’re watching a full sized screen. I think it would be great if I could present my magazine with these so that it’s not so static, has a soundtrack to it and will be an experience that very few people have had. I think if I do present the magazine with these goggles, I will also make a physical copy of my magazine as well. The first issue of the magazine would have the goggles and then further issues would come on a memory card. This offers an innovative and more compact way to view a magazine.


WITHIN THE OTHER WORLD Dante’s Devine Comedy is one of the most read pieces of literature ever. It takes Dante and his reader on a journey from the depths of hell in Inferno through to a heavenly paradise in Paradiso. Sandwiched in-between Dante’s version of heaven and hell, he paints an elaborate picture of a place called Purgatorio, or purgatory to you and me. Purgatory is a seven-terraced mountain stretching from stormy seas right up to the gates of heaven, located in a cloudy sky. Each terrace on mount purgatory plays host to a different set of sinners who are being punished for their sins before they are allowed to ascend up to heaven. You may be reading this and thinking, that’s great but what’s it got to do with this magazine? Well, I think purgatory is like the forgotten middle child, not as beautiful or as talented as heaven and not as rebellious or attention seeking as hell. Forgotten in the Bible and constantly overlooked.

Heaven and hell have been illustrated through fashion time and time again. It feels like every season there is at least one designer who’s collection is based on saints and sinners but have you ever seen a collection based on purgatory? Dante creates such a vivid and detailed image of what purgatory is, so it seemed only logical finally give the middle child it’s fashion moment. Following Dante’s precise instructions on navigating ones way through purgatory, I have created a series of photo shoots, which illustrate the seven levels of purgatory in fashion terms. Dante leads his readers through each terrace in excruciating detail. Past the proud at the bottom of the mountain who are punished by carrying great boulders on their backs, then the envious whose eyes have been sewn shut with wires and who are made to wear coarse head cloths. Then on to the third level of purgatory, where


we find the wrathful who are blinded by thick, black smoke, which causes them to have hallucinations of meekness, this is the opposite of wrath. Dante continues to climb this mountain, leading us to terrace four which is inhabited by those who were slothful in their past life, here they are forced to constantly run, imagine being stuck on a treadmill on groundhog day. After escaping this we move on to find the avarice and the prodigal who pay for their past sins by lying face down on a stone floor.

and punished by the smell of fruit. This fruit hangs in a tree that they are unable to reach. The final terrace of purgatory is home to the lustful who have to walk through a baptismal fire to rid their soul of their sins before they can enter paradise.

One of the main things which Dante comments on throughout his journey of purgatory, is the music played on each terrace. Dante not only tells us what he sees on mount purgatory but also what he hears, creating Moving on to the sixth terrace, even more depth to his vision Dante paints a haunting scene of purgatory. In the same way of those who were gluttonous on that Dante composes music earth; they are now emaciated, for each terrace, each photo

shoot in this magazine has it’s own soundtrack to accompany your journey through my vision of fashion purgatory. Ok, so perhaps my photo shoots won’t be as intense as Dante’s vision of purgatory and I promise you, you won’t feel like you’ve climbed a mountain when you finish reading this magazine. However, I hope that you find your unusual journey through purgatory thought provoking and memorable.


DAVID CASS

How did you first get into art? I don’t really know! I’ve always done art, since I was a kid, but I first knew it was something I wanted to do when I was at high school. In sixth year I abandoned all of my other subjects and just tried to make artworks, all the time. It didn’t seem realistic to apply for art school but I did and I got in then it went from there. Have you always known that you wanted to be an artist? I think so, I remember my dad once asking me when I was younger what I wanted to be and I said an artist. It was never a massive decision, it just happened. How did you get to where you are now? Whilst I was still studying I applied for quite a lot of awards and things for after graduation. The one that I won was the ‘Royal Scottish Academy’s John Kinross Scholarship’ in Florence. Then

because I had the scholarship, it created quite a lot of interest for my final degree show installation. This lead me to speak to the director of the Scottish Gallery on Dundas Street, Edinburgh, and when he was leaving he asked me ‘what are you doing next?’ I told him I was going to do the Scholarship in Florence then he asked if he could buy my painting! I went off and did the scholarship, which was three months in Florence and was amazing because I met lots of other scholars and we did lots of exhibitions together and afterwards as well. Then when I returned to Edinburgh, I got in touch with the director of the Scottish Gallery again and he told me to come and exhibit all of my pieces and that was that!


Where do you get your inspiration from? Hmm… You could ask me on different days and I would always give you a different answer. I’m currently in a new studio but my key studio, which is in Stow, that is a shed in the garden. It is full to the brim with old bots of wood, scraps and piles of things from skips, flea markets and antique fares. It’s a hoarder’s paradise and that’s where I get most of my inspiration. I obviously have artists that I’m inspired by and things I look up. Recently I’ve been at a book about the 1966 flood in Florence because I love painting the sea and water but I wanted to inject a new concept into my paintings about water, the other side of it. My other paintings have been quite reflective so I want

to do pieces that are about the blackness of water and the dark, bad things it can do. I’ve also been looking at the Paris flood of 1910 so floods are next. You have such an iconic style, would you ever want to try something completely different? I don’t know about completely different because obviously I have to root everything in what I’ve done before, I have to keep it within the same theme. I don’t know if I’d even be able to try something completely different anyway because I’m not drawn to new things, I like things, which have a history. I’ve recently started doing work on paper, which is new for me, but its still always old paper like a collage of old maps. I have piles of


old drawings and antique papers now that I’ve been building up over the summer. So that’s the new direction I’m taking things in. You’ve won awards and do a lot of exhibitions; did you expect your work to be so successful? I’ve won a couple of awards and I’ve been a part of a few exhibitions but I’ve also been rejected from a hundred others. I think as an artist you have to apply for at least one thing a week and get used to handling that rejection. At the beginning when I entered loads of things, I would get disheartened and think I’d never move onto anything else. However, it does feel really good to go down to an award ceremony and have your name called out for one of the prizes. Then that helps you to get new opportunities as well. You use a lot of found objects in your work; what draws you to certain objects? Where do you find them? They are all from France, Belgium or Italy, from antique fares or flea markets. I just love those kinds of places. I get some old postcards and papers from Ebay or a website called Delcamp which is for geeky postcard or stamp collectors. I’ll find an old bit of wood like a frame or something and I’ll turn it over to check the back because it’s the bit I always use. I think it must make me look like I’m doing

something quite professional because the vendors come over and think ‘he’s an antiques dealer, he knows what he’s looking for’. I just look at things and think ‘could that be a painting?’ and if it could be a painting, then I buy it. What’s your creative process when beginning a new piece? First of all, I select the surface that I’m most drawn to that day or that week for a new project. Sometimes the grain of the wood will reveal itself as a seascape, if you follow the grain it could be the strands of a current or waves. Then it just leads from there – it’s very simple. How do you decide what materials to use to compliment the surface? I began by using Guage paint, dry without any water, because it works really well on wood; it has a crumbley, chalky texture. Then I started doing watercolour competitions and thought I need to do some kind of contemporary watercolour stuff because watercolour can have an outdated, old-fashioned feeling. I tried doing watercolour on wood but it doesn’t really show up so you have to really dry brush it but then it’s too sticky to last as a painting so that’s why I’ve introduced paper. I’ve just come back from the Île d’Yeu off the west coast of France and I knew I wanted to do paintings of the island with


Do you get obsessed when painting or do you sometimes find it hard to stay motivated? A bit of both really, sometime I will be completely obsessed with materials and getting it right; rubbing out marks and putting them on again just until they’re perfect. But, other times I’ll just not be bothered. You recently did your first solo I think it’s the same with most exhibition, years of dust and creative disciplines; you can’t be dry; how long does it take for you consistent with your energy levels. to create a whole exhibition? I finished my last exhibiton at What advice would you give to the Scottish gallery in 2011 young artist looking to work and directly after that I took the in the creative industry? money I made from the show The key thing is to apply for and went straight to Brussels lots of tings; funding, awards, with my van. I filled it with loads competitions, put your work into of new surfaces to work on like open shows. For every discipline, old drawers and tabletops from there are awards that you can the flea markets and antique apply for, it’s just a case of looking shops there. By the end of for them; it’s a good idea to 2011, I had the majority of the subscribe to websites like Artist’s surfaces and from then onwards, News and constantly Google I created the show. It was a competitions. It’s really about couple of year’s worth of stuff. pushing yourself out there and not being scared of being rejected. Do you plan on doing another solo exhibition? I hope so! When I was creating my last exhibition, I didn’t apply to anything, I just focussed on my work. So, I haven’t planned anything yet except a few group shows which I have coming up. I would like to do another solo show but I just need a good venue, I would really like to do one in London. materials from the island. I got driftwood, from the middle of the sea, burnt it then pulverised it. I then got water from the sea at Île d’Yeu and I’m now going to make my own paint with them. I plan on making a completely conceptual piece with the water and wood from Île d’Yeu on old paper.


XI.


THE WEIGHT OF THE EARTH IS CRUSHING.


PRIDE.


ANNA FENNEL HUGHES

Tell me about Crocket’s fall? I wrote the story four years ago and did some preliminary drawings of the narrative. I didn’t do anything further with it until around Christmas last year when I decided I could take the project further. I started experimenting with print making techniques I’d developed over the last couple of years at university; I tried to incorporate the illustrations with the prints. It took about nine months to take the illustrations from the pencil drawing stages to combining them fully into finished prints, after I’d designed the fonts as well. Then I had to put the book together digitally and had a printed copy made.

What message is behind it? I wouldn’t say that there’s any specific message. One of the reasons for not making it biographical was so that it can appeal to a wider audience because the art can be accessible by all rather than just being a reflection of myself. Would you write another book? Yeah, definitely! But right now I’m experimenting with animation so perhaps in a few years when I have the time.

You’re self-published; do you think this was an easier or harder way to produce a book? It’s quicker! If you’re driven enough and are passionate What inspired you to write it? enough, you’ll see it through. It was an event in my life that I felt You’re not relying on anyone had such an impact on me that I else to give it the go-ahead. You wanted to write a story about it but also have free reign over how didn’t want it to be biographical. everything is laid out and that So, I made it more surreal. means that you don’t have to compromise on any artistic level, text or content. I would definitely encourage other people interested in making a book to self-publish it.


How was working with the Kickstarter project? It was difficult and tiring… It’s a great thing that it exists because it does mean that you can see creative projects that otherwise wouldn’t have got off the ground. It’s also good because you are pitching directly to the consumer so there is no middle person. But, you do have to put a lot of time and energy into the preparation of the project because people need to see that it’s going to be well executed and that they are putting their money into something that is worthy of it. People will be more wary of supporting projects that don’t seem well organised.

Did you expect the book to be such a success? I guess I was partly well organised and partly lucky that I found people who were particularly interested in my book, so much so that they wanted to pass it on to others and get it into newspapers and press. So, that was great but most of all I was just pleased that it got to it’s target so it could be printed. Do you think you’ll continue to work within the creative industry? I hope that I always can! It would obviously depend on jobs and circumstances but I would always like to.


XIII.


ENVY


ANDY would have the goggles and then further issues would come on a memory card. This offers an innovative and more compact way to view a magazine. This week I received the answers from my email interview from Chris MacDonald, the comic artist. His interview is very in depth and perfect for inspiring other young creative people to do something within the creative industry. I also did two other interviews this week with Anna Fennel Hughes and David Cass. Anna’s interview is not as in depth as the others but is really interesting piece about selfpublishing. David’s interview is really insightful about the art industry and I think that it’s filled with great advice for young creative people. Working with my idea of

making my magazine an experience, I asked all my interviewees what music they think best suits their work. With their answers I can already start to imagine what the magazine is going to look and sound like. I went to the Viviane Sassen exhibition this week. She has taken many photos using mirrors to create a surreal element in her work. They are very like the photos I had been looking at in my research book to inspire a shoot with mirrors that I want to do. would have the goggles and then further issues would come on a memory card. This offers an innovative and more compact way to view a magazine. This week I received the answers from my email interview from Chris MacDonald, the comic artist. His interview is


would have the goggles and then further issues would come on a memory card. This offers an innovative and more compact way to view a magazine. This week I received the answers from my email interview from Chris MacDonald, the comic artist. His interview is very in depth and perfect for inspiring other young creative people to do something within the creative industry. I also did two other interviews this week with Anna Fennel Hughes and David Cass. Anna’s interview is not as in depth as the others but is really interesting piece about selfpublishing. David’s interview is really insightful about the art industry and I think that it’s filled with great advice for young creative people. Working with my idea of making my magazine an experience, I asked all my interviewees what music they think best suits their work. With their answers I can already start to imagine what the magazine is going to look and sound like. I went to the Viviane Sassen exhibition this week. She has taken many photos using mirrors to create a surreal element in her work. They are very like the photos I had been looking at in my research book to inspire a shoot with mirrors that I want to do.

Speaking to Stephen this week made me think about different ways to format my magazine. He suggested that I really push the boundaries of contemporary magazines and come up with something that is completely new and innovative. I want my magazine to be an experience so I thought about making my magazine a room or a tent but think this is impractical because people need to be able to view it in their home. I was looking and Visionaire magazine and they presented an issue of their magazine in an old pair of slide projection goggles. I think that this is an amazing idea so I decided to play on this idea but make it more up to date. I found a pair of goggles online, which project images to make it look like you’re watching a full sized screen. I think it would be great if I could present my magazine with these so that it’s not so static, has a soundtrack to it and will be an experience that very few people have had. I think if I do present the


XV.


WRATH


CES Tell me about your business, Thrifty Little. Thrifty Little is an up-cycling brand; at the moment I take second hand men’s t-shirts and I hand sew them or stud them or cut them up to make them into women’s clothing. Then because I use second hand men’s t-shirts, not only is there a lot of fabric in them so I have more options of what I can make out of them, but also, the colour and the prints are always more interesting than those on a women’s t-shirt. The quality of the fabric is also always higher than a women’s t-shirt. The best thing about using second hand t-shirts is that all the prints on the front are different. So, if you’ve bought one of my t-shirts, you’ll know that no one else can have that same t-shirt. At some point, I would like Thrifty Little to become a larger up-cycling brand where I branch out into different products.

Where do you get the inspiration for your designs? At the moment, I do three basic manipulations; with the oversized tees, I like to roll up the sleeves and stud them. I also do a sleeveless tank; I cut the sleeves off the t-shirt then sew up the sides, this is what makes these different than some other up-cycled t-shirt brands who will just cut the sleeves off, but I like to put in the extra effort to make sure it looks like something you would buy in a shop. Finally, I make crop tops where I cut off the bottom and sew elastic to them. The way I decide what to do to them is, I will accumulate fifty or so t-shirts and I will take them to the studio and go through each t-shirt and decide which of the three styles I should make from it. If it’s not too baggy and the print is at the top, that’s when I’ll make the crop top. If there’s a rip on a t-shirt that will determine


which style I go for because I will need to cut a certain bit off it. That’s the cool thing about what I do, I can use t-shirts which have rips in them or many men’s t-shirts will have marks under the arms but I can just cut those bits off and just use the bit of the t-shirt that’s still in perfect condition which is better than it ending up in a landfill. What made you want to use up-cycled products? I just love up-cycling, I always have. It maybe comes from being really poor; I’ve always had to make do with what I’ve got. Even when I was a kid, I always had to wear second hand clothes but I always thought I can wear this thing which doesn’t fit me or suit me, or I can cut it up or dye it to make it look better. I would do the same with things in my room, I might have a disgusting table but maybe if I paint the top it won’t look so bad. So, I’ve always just loved up-cycling stuff far more than going out and buying new things. It’s great when someone says ‘I love that’ about something I’m wearing because I can say I made it. I used to run Thrift Little, the blog, which is where I would do up-cycling tutorials. I would take photos of things I made, and how I made them and put it on line. I then decided to move Thrifty Little on to a business idea.

How did you go about starting the business up? I was a manager in Superdry and I absolutely hated it, hated it, hated it. I had been working my way up in retail and just hating it. I thought that being a sales assistant was rubbish but maybe being a supervisor would be better, but it was rubbish, so maybe being assistant manager would be better but the further I went up I realised, it just gets worse and worse. It just gets more and more stressful and less worth the money. I was on a good wage but I was waking up every day hating my life and thinking of reasons not to go into work. My refuge from work was coming home at night and doing my up-cycling projects. I would get stressed when I didn’t have time to make anything. When my contract at work ran out, I had the option to apply for other jobs but I decided not to, I decided to work the system. If your contract runs out, you can sign onto job seekers allowance and then you’re entitled to new enterprise allowance for starting your own business plus you can apply for Princes Trust grants. Basically, you are more likely to get help starting a business if you are unemployed because they are so desperate to get people out of unemployment. So, it was the perfect time to start my business. When I left my job, I didn’t have any idea what business I was going to do. For about a

month and a half, I let myself get bored so that I could really know what I wanted to do with my life. I knew that I wanted to up-cycling so went to a kilo sale and kept finding loads of really cool t-shirts which were cheap. So I bought a big pile and took them home, upcycled them and showed them to my flat mate, who is such a fierce bitch, she has amazing style. She loved them and asked if she could have one, then I knew that was the business I had to do because if she thinks it looks good then it definitely looks good. I could see how it would work as a business too, how I could get the products cheaply and make them look really cool. So, the idea just happened upon me but I’m really glad that it did. What are the positives and negatives of having your own business? The negative is having no money! Another negative for me is, I know there is a market for my product but trying to get to that market is quite difficult because people ask things like, ‘I like this t-shirt but do you have it in blue?’ or ‘I like this one but it’s too small for me’. That’s difficult because every item is unique so I can’t have things available in various sizes or colours. It’s a constant struggle trying to make money, at the moment I’m trying to push sales internationally rather than in the UK because my t-shirts seem to be selling better there.


The biggest struggle is not having any money and trying to make little bits of money to put back into the business. Also, running a business on your own can get quite lonely. I’m really glad I’ve moved into this studio now but for four months it was just me in my living room all day. Then I had no money to go out and socialise so I was starting to go out my mind. The best thing through is that having your own business rocks! I used to spend my whole life hungry, I’d get into work and I’d be waiting for my tea break and then I’d get hungry after an hour and be waiting for my lunch, then waiting for the end of the day. I was always hungry! Since starting my business, I haven’t been hungry in months because when I want to eat, I can go and eat and when I come back I do better work because I’m not focusing on how hungry I am. I can get up when I want, I work when I want, and I’m so passionate about what I’m doing, it’s my hobby and now I do it every single day. When you have the drive to do it, having your own business is the best thing in the world and I don’t know why everyone doesn’t do it. What are you working on next? What I’m going to try and do is find the right avenue of sale for my t-shirts. I’ve been taking them to vintage markets, which is really strenuous because it’s almost every weekend. I have to take all the t-shirts, the rails

and everything else I need, then set it all up then take it down again which is really laborious. I don’t actually make mch money there because we’re in a recession and people don’t have much money and there will be £4 pieces of jewellery in a stall next to my £20 t-shirts so it’s quite difficult to compete. So, I’m looking to really push my online business. I’ve also been looking into dance companies who will often have stalls at their dance competitions. I think it would be really cool to sell my t-shirts as sportswear or dancewear. After that, I’m looking to expand, I have a few ideas for products but they’re all still in the prototype stage. It wouldn’t necessarily just be clothes, I could up-cycle furniture too. I’m thinking about also making a few up-cycled couture pieces when I have the time. Not to make money from them but to try and build more of a name for myself by entering them into fashion shows. I think that could push my online presence as well, if people go online and see amazing couture pieces, they might want to be a part of the brand so would then buy one of the t-shirts. Where do you see Thrifty Little in five years? I would like to be an up-cycling brand. What I would really love is to have a shop somewhere that sells only up-cycled products – The Thrifty Little Shop. The


shop wouldn’t just stock my work; it would be a place where other up-cyclers could sell. Upcycling is such a useful and forward thinking way of doing things because of the amount of wastage we produce and the way the economy is, I believe it’s a socially good thing to do. In five years I want my brand to be really set so then I can branch out to have Thrift Little as the name of up-cycling. That’s the dream. Do you think that within the fashion industry, upcycling is something which we need to promote? Definitely, because of all the social benefits it has. Looking at it from a more selfish point of view, I hate seeing lots of girls walking down the street wearing the same clothes. The thing with up-cycling is it’s always going to be a smaller business, you can’t go and have things made in China; you have to source stock so in terms of the economy, it supports local businesses. Socially, it great because you have to buy products from charity shops which then funds charities. Then environmentally, of course up-cycling and recycling is the way forward because clothing is one of the highest wasted products that we have. However, I don’t think that the customers will be thinking about the social side of up-

cycling, I want them to think to support small and creative that it’s just so cool and that it’s businesses and that’s what we’re something completely unique. focusing on. It will be free for 18-25 year olds then anyone Tell me about your else who wants to use the space involvement with helping will have to pay a membership young people working in fee or rent out a space to work. the creative industry? It’s so organic what happens here; Would you encourage there are three of us working other young people to here and we all have different start their own business? skills. The idea is that we’re going I really would although it is to work together, although we all hard; you could be the most have our own projects at the same creative person ever but you time, we’re going to put the effort might not have the business into finding other volunteers to acumen. I would say if you feel make this old office block into like you don’t have that business something amazing – a place acumen, then it’s a good idea where young creative people to collaborate with someone can come and do their work. who does but doesn’t have a We’re organising markets where product. It is so difficult to run 18-25 year olds can come and a whole business all on your own. sell their products for free, My advice would be, remember this is a great way for them to that it’s hard work and remember promote their products but also that you might not have any promotes the project we’re doing. money for a long time so if it’s We also have contacts from not worth that, then don’t do it RBS who want to use this space but what you’ll probably find is as part of their Community if you try it, it will be worth it. Give Back program. We have The absolute main thing with RBS managers who come and any business is, networking. do DIY and painting for us! The idea is that it’s a mixture of the organisation, Somewhere To, and a new charity, which we’ve started, called Space Club. Once we’ve turned this into a useable space and we have money and volunteers we hope to be self sufficient but nonprofitable creative space aimed at young entrepreneurs but available to anyone. We want


XVIII.


SLOTH


FASHION AS A RELIGION Speaking to Stephen this week made me think about different ways to format my magazine. He suggested that I really push the boundaries of contemporary magazines and come up with something that is completely new and innovative. I want my magazine to be an experience so I thought about making my magazine a room or a tent but think this is impractical because people need to be able to view it in their home. I was looking and Visionaire magazine and they presented an issue of their magazine in an old pair of slide projection goggles. I think that this is an amazing idea so I decided to play on this idea but make it more up to date. I found a pair of goggles online, which project images to make it look like you’re watching a full sized screen. I think it would be great if I could present my magazine with these so that it’s not so static, has a soundtrack to it and will be an experience that very few people have had. I think if I do present the magazine with these goggles, I will also make a physical copy of my magazine as well.

The first issue of the magazine would have the goggles and then further issues would come on a memory card. This offers an innovative and more compact way to view a magazine. This week I received the answers from my email interview from Chris MacDonald, the comic artist. His interview is very in depth and perfect for inspiring other young creative people to do something within the creative industry. I also did two other interviews this week with Anna Fennel Hughes and David Cass. Anna’s interview is not as in depth as the others but is really interesting piece about selfpublishing. David’s interview is really insightful about the art industry and I think that it’s filled with great advice for young creative people. Working with my idea of making my magazine an experience, I asked all my interviewees what music they think best suits their work. With their answers I can already start to imagine what the magazine is going to look and sound like. I went to the Viviane Sassen


exhibition this week. She has taken many photos using mirrors to create a surreal element in her work. They are very like the photos I had been looking at in my research book to inspire a shoot with mirrors that I want to do. Speaking to Stephen this week made me think about different ways to format my magazine. He suggested that I really push the boundaries of contemporary magazines and come up with something that is completely new and innovative. I want my magazine to be an experience so I thought about making my magazine a room or a tent but think this is impractical because people need to be able to view it in their home.

I was looking and Visionaire magazine and they presented an issue of their magazine in an old pair of slide projection goggles. I think that this is an amazing idea so I decided to play on this idea but make it more up to date. I found a pair of goggles online, which project images to make it look like you’re watching a full sized screen. I think it would be great if I could present my magazine with these so that it’s not so static, has a soundtrack to it and will be an experience that very few people have had. I think if I do present the magazine with these goggles, I will also make a physical copy of my magazine as well. The first issue of the magazine


would have the goggles and then further issues would come on a memory card. This offers an innovative and more compact way to view a magazine. This week I received the answers from my email interview from Chris MacDonald, the comic artist. His interview is very in depth and perfect for inspiring other young creative people to do something within the creative industry. I also did two other interviews this week with Anna Fennel Hughes and David Cass. Anna’s interview is not as in depth as the others but is really interesting piece about selfpublishing. David’s interview is really insightful about the art industry and I think that it’s filled with great advice for young creative people. Working with my idea of making my magazine an experience, I asked all my interviewees what music they think best suits their work. With their answers I can already start to imagine what the magazine is going to look and sound like. I went to the Viviane Sassen exhibition this week. She has taken many photos using mirrors to create a surreal element in her work. They are very like the photos I had been looking at in my research book to inspire a shoot with mirrors that I want to do.

Speaking to Stephen this week made me think about different ways to format my magazine. He suggested that I really push the boundaries of contemporary magazines and come up with something that is completely new and innovative. I want my magazine to be an experience so I thought about making my magazine a room or a tent but think this is impractical because people need to be able to view it in their home. I was looking and Visionaire magazine and they presented an issue of their magazine in an old pair of slide projection goggles. I think that this is an amazing idea so I decided to play on this idea but make it more up to date. I found a pair of goggles online, which project images to make it look like you’re watching a full sized screen. I think it would be great if I could present my magazine with these so that it’s not so static, has a soundtrack to it and will be an experience that very few people have had. I think if I do present the


XIX.


THE AVARICE AND THE PRODIGAL.


CHRIS Tell me about your comics? The comics my brother and me work on at the site are generally short stories, no longer than seven pages and they vary pretty broadly in terms of tone and genre. Character work and highconcept stories are things that interest both of us and those are things that we like to try and focus on in our work. For me specifically, the comics are about challenging myself artistically and trying to find interesting ways to tell a story visually. How did you get into comic illustrations? Apart from a few very silly ones I made when I was a kid, I never really got around to drawing any comics of my own until a couple of years ago. I drew a

seven page story that Keith (my brother) wrote and after it was finished, I got more of a sense of accomplishment and pride from it than anything else I’d been turning my hand to, so I just stuck at it and have been trying to improve since then. When did you start drawing and when did you realise you could do it professionally? Like most people, I drew when I was very small, but I just kind of stuck with it. I started getting more serious about it when I was halfway through my second year of studying English and Psychology at Glasgow University. I was doing alright on the course, but I was putting in the bare minimum of effort and really couldn’t be bothered with it. It seemed silly


How long does it usually take to illustrate one of your comics? It depends on the page. The least amount of time it’s taken me is around 10 hours, I think. That felt rushed though, and I wasn’t too happy with the result. Generally it takes a day; to What’s your personal favourite sketch everything out and start comic to read and why? the inking, then maybe a second I’m a big fan of Grant day to ink it, apply any colours/ Morrison’s writing and almost mid-tones, then the lettering. anything by Frank Quitely, Francesco Francavilla, Ross You work on short comic Campbell, Brandon Graham, stories, would you ever Becky Cloonan, Kate Beaton, create a longer length one? Michel Fiffe... It’s a long list. That’s something Keith and I have talked about, but right now Did you study to be an illustrator I want to get more pages under or is it a natural talent? my belt and improve before After dropping out of the course committing to a big project. The at Glasgow University, I got best thing about short stories accepted into a portfolio course at is that if you get bored, you can Langside College and then ended move onto another one fairly up on the Animation course at quickly. If I were going to work Duncan of Jordanstone, so I did on a big project, it would have study. I feel like I need to work to be something I was really really hard to get anything I invested in and wanted to see get even think of as passable onto a produced. I’d like to, eventually. page. Studying anatomy, colour theory and a ton of other things Your brother writes the related to drawing is still an stories for your comics, and ongoing process... Apart from a you illustrate them; how few very, very exceptional cases, well do you work together? I don’t really think there’s such We get on really well and we share a thing as natural talent. Maybe a lot of the same sensibilities as the closest thing for 99% of far as films, comics, TV shows creative people is the ability to and animation go. There’s very maintain focus on a particular few things that one or the other discipline or something and then of us will like that the other put in the hard work to improve. hates. We’ll collaborate on the early stages of stories as well, discussing the kind of thing we to keep doing a course I wasn’t passionate about and probably wouldn’t even be able to get a job with, so I decided to drop out and get on the path of going to art school and pursuing a creative career a bit more seriously.

want to make and then Keith will go off and approach it in the way he thinks works best, we’ll workshop the script and then I’ll usually tweak some of the dialogue when I letter the pages. Do you ever disagree about the direction or content of your comics? If we do, it’s usually at the early stages when we’re trying to flesh out which direction we want the comic to go in, or what we want it to say. When that happens, I usually just ask Keith to do his own thing and get a first draft of the script out the way he sees it. That gives us a foundation to work from, and then we can make changes and refine it instead of arguing pointlessly about vague ideas. Where do you get your inspiration from? A ton of places... For some stories like The Bird and the Cave, that was just a sentence that I thought was cool, then Keith just built a story with that as the title. It can also just be things we think are funny, or maybe an old folk story that we think we could adapt. Generally any themes (such as they are) come later. The Captain Max stories started out as just spoofs of some funny games console ads that were in old magazines, but I started to think of the character as representing the “angry fan” that writes horrible posts on the Internet. A lot of the people


Do you think that comics can say something that can’t be captured in books or films? The thing about comics is that at their best they combine several elements in a very unique way. They’re different art forms, so it’s hard to compare, but I think Where would you like to see that you can tell a certain type of your comics go in the future? story in a comic that’s harder to I’d like to do some more personal do in film and TV. Even the lowest or autobiographical comics, as budget film or TV show has a well as some stuff that’s a bit number of people involved that more crazy and high-concept. can dilute the voice of the director We’ve got lots of ideas for different or the writer. In a book, an author stories. I’d like to develop my can describe a scene in great style of storytelling and also just detail, but a comic can present improve my artwork in general. the same scene with more impact and more succinctly. The artist also has greater control over how he guides the reader through the scene, maybe placing subtle, who feverishly defend whatever console the own come across as immature, stupid people full of impotent rage. Captain Max is basically the personification of that: he’ll fly into blind fury at even the slightest provocation.


subliminal details in the artwork without drawing attention to them. It really depends, but I definitely think there are certain types of stories that lend themselves more towards comics than any other art form. Can you tell me a bit about Melissa? The Melissa story is really about how people manipulate the talents of other people to suit their own ends. It’s also about the human instinct to gawp at things we don’t understand or seem weird to us. Then the fact that people will always try to make a profit from that. We saw it in the Victorian freak-shows and you can still see it today in “documentaries” about people who have some deformity or another. It boils down to the same thing: exploiting people. Describe your creative process. When starting a page, I think about what I need to get across to the reader and what the best way to do that is. For example, if a character is supposed to feel depressed, I’ll place them low down in the panel and draw the scene from a high angle; if a character needs to look powerful, I’ll draw the scene from a low angle and put them in a strong pose. I’ll break down the script while thinking about these things, then sketch out the pages, blocking in things like where the characters are in relation to each other and also block in where the lettering will go roughly to make

sure I’ve got enough space. After that, I start refining the linework, adding details, shadows, and background elements and so on during the inking process. I always do any colour last, but I’m trying to integrate that more into the early stages, since it’s so important in setting the tone. Finally I’ll letter the page properly, always making it as easy as possible for the reader to follow which speech balloons come after which (this sounds easy, but when you’re trying to fit them around the artwork and make the whole thing work together, it can be a challenge...). Once I’m happy with the way the lettering looks, that’s it, a finished page!


XXXIII.


GLUTTONY.


XXVI.


LUST


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