The Three Belles

These three lovely ladies are making new music in the old-fashioned way. Based in Woking, Surrey, and inspired by the Andrews Sisters and 1940s vintage, Betty (blonde), Dorothy (brunette) and Gail (redhead) are a vocal trio that celebrate the age of sophistication and swing.

Having formed as part of an assignment for their Creative and Performing Arts course at Portsmouth University, the Three Belles decided to take their show on the road after graduation, and have since travelled the length and breadth of the UK as professional singers and performers. Their sweet harmonies and toe-tapping style capture the essence of an era perfectly, and Betty, Dorothy and Gail have gotten young and old alike out of their seats and swingin’ all the way from Cornwall to Cumbria.

As well as performing, the Three Belles also plan and produce their own 1940s-inspired productions and events, most recently choreographing the sell-out swing experience “In The Mood” at Portsmouth and St Ives Guildhalls.

If you’d like to find out more about the Three Belles, visit their website or check them out on Facebook. Come on, join the party!

– Georgie

Edinburgh Showcase

Tuesday night at the Old Ambulance Depot, Edinburgh’s team had loads of fun showcasing all of the emerging talent we have been documenting over the past three months! With some great shoe designs submitted by all the artists and designers for our exhibtion, and a fantastic array of music, fashion and film surrounding the rest of the space, great fun was had by all! Alex and I, the main organisers for the event had been anticipating the night for weeks, and so when it finally arrived, we were relieved to see everything had gone to plan.

The night started off with some giant drawing collaborations on huge pieces of paper and giant shoes, which turned out very vibrant looking by the end of the night as everyone added their own little mark. We raffled off some exciting Gola shoes, as featured in our footwear fashion photo shoot from earlier this year, and I think everyone ended on a high note, happy with the cakes and drinks we supplied and of course excited to see all the great creative talent we featured from Edinburgh!

Please also take a moment to see all the fantastic shoe designs!

Posted in Art

James Albon

Introducing another interesting, inspiring, intellectual illustrator. Whether or not he is all these things, you will have to read on to find out, but the alliteration sounds good.

James Albon is an illustrator and print maker that graduated from Edinburgh College of Art earlier this year. He has now taken on the graduate studio assistant position at ECA, so I pestered him with some questions, some of which may or may not have been about advice for fourth year. He has some very interesting things to say about illustration, the value of art and life in general, so I will divulge these secrets here.

James says something like, ‘I sort of hate that  question about what I am influenced by? What are you meant to say to that? I’m influenced by… my life?’ That is more or less an accurate description of James’ approach to illustration.  He first jokes that his main inspirations are nicotine and alcohol, then says that he feels the potential for comment in illustration, is often under looked, and a lot of his work is about drawing out what he finds interesting in real life, and this is often criticising society.

His main body of work consists of relief prints. This is a printing process where a block of lino or wood is carved away to create an image, then inked up and transferred onto paper using a printing press (or a wooden spoon if you don’t have the facilities). The results are often quite decisive, graphic, stylised images with bold use of colour and tone. It is for this quality of a planned, finished images that James chooses to use this process. His research drawings are very quick, expressive and immediate, so the finished print is like the drawing’s counterpart.

In the summer, James went to Ethiopia for an Artist in Residency placement, and created a series of prints based off of his drawings from there. Thanks to these amazing prints, he recently won the Royal Society of Printmakers Student Award!

He’s taken part in many exhibitions, a list of which may be seen on his website, and will be touring the UK with his Ethiopia prints, so keep an eye out for these as they may be coming to a gallery near you.

Another large part of James’ interests are in writing. For his final degree show earlier this year, he wrote and illustrated a series of stories about different characters who experience the premonition of the end of the world. He is also giving playwriting a whirl and took a course on theatre design.

In the near future, he plans to travel to Hong Kong, and put together some work based on his experiences there. This work may or may not include a play, which will be definitely interesting to see. I think it shows that students of the creative arts certainly aren’t limited to doing one thing, and it takes a great level of thought and intellect to produce work that has a voice, and doesn’t just look pretty.

To read some more about this interesting individual, and of course to admire his wondrous work, we welcome wayfarers to wander his website.

Posted in Art

Benjamin Haywood

Benjamin Haywood is a photographer based out of London, where he is currently studying for BA Hons Photography at the London College of Communication.

Benjamin’s work is attributed to British life and culture, focusing in on remote places within Britain to gain a better understanding of them, as well as allowing the viewer to gain a better understanding of them and their presence, as well. ‘The Kensington Guide’, a book dedicated to the ‘posh’ area of Kensington in London, is an objective view on its distinctive ‘detachment’ of its surrounding London Burroughs, as well as the quiet, fleeting aura that it suggests.

Other projects include his book, ‘Little Britain’ – A look into the life of and an effort upon his part to further thoroughly understand the culture of and what essentially is, ‘British’. Benjamin follows small towns upon the West and Southwest coast primarily, attempting to wonder how and why most of these places have not been dramatically affected by other cultures in the same way that many have within the past decades.

Unlike many of his predecessors, considering the thorough approach and dynamic that Benjamin works with in creating his photographs, I have no doubt that he will continue to prosper from it, as a result. You can view Benjamin’s work collection here.  Check him out, and keep your eye on him!

 

(Photos Courtesy of Benjamin Haywood)

– Killian

Masha Reva

Masha Reva is a Ukrainian-born designer who migrated to the UK in 2010 to complete two short courses in Fashion Marketing and Creating New Concepts in Fashion at Central Saint Martins in London. Shortly after completing her courses, Reva created quite the buzz on in fashion industry, and has since been involved in numerous collaborations and shows.

Reva’s work is completely unique, stemming many ideas from her surroundings and being described as ‘tip-toeing between fashion and art’. Her designs are not for the conservative or for the colour-shy – You have to be bold and confident to wear something so flamboyant and artistic. Recently, Reva was asked by Kiev/London-based clothing company, Syndicate, to collaborate with on designing a limited range of sweatshirts, which are available in six different designs, called “Botanical Layers”. Reva explains the collaboration as, “A juxtaposition of immersion in the rapid pace of contemporary life, gadgets, and social networks with a yearning for our natural environment, explored as a metaphorical botanical garden of Photoshop layers and loading bars.”

This designer is definitely one to be on the lookout for, especially in early 2013. Who knows what will derive next from this talented artist!

 You can view more of Masha Reva’s work/designs on her website here, as well as her current collaboration with Syndicate here.

 (Images Courtesy of Masha Reva)

 – Killian

Lucy Ward

Lucy Ward is a folk singer, guitarist and concertina player from Derby. She writes and plays a mixture of traditional songs and her own compositions and, at 22, is already a well-established favourite of the British folk scene.

Though a multi-instrumentalist, Lucy considers her voice to be her primary tool when performing; her vocal is strong and clear with an endearing regional lilt, and she sings with an eloquence that is utterly enchanting to listen to. Her talents have not gone unrecognised either; a finalist at the Young Folk Awards in 2009, she was further nominated in two categories at the 2012 BBC Radio 2 folk awards, going on to win the Horizon Award as best newcomer.

Her debut album, ‘Adelphi Has To Fly’, was received with much positivity on its release in 2011, with the Guardian’s Robin Denslow praising her self-written track ‘Bricks & Love’ and Mike Harding commending her as one of the best things he’s heard in years. Having supported the likes of Seth Lakeman, Oysterband and Nancy Kerr & James Fagan, Lucy has succeeded in establishing herself as a successful headliner in her own right, drawing crowds from all around by her captivating voice and expressive performances.

If you’d like to know more about Lucy Ward and her gorgeous music, visit her website.

– Georgie

Savvy & Saving Grace Music

While I was enjoying some great art at the Zetland, I was lucky enough to bump into a fantastic recording artist, turned producer and now record label owner, Savvy. There are so many up and coming artists and musicians out there today, so it’s always awesome to chat with someone who has such raw talent, and is really showing the world what he’s got. With his own music racking up hits on YouTube, and his record label working with every genre from Folk to Grime and everything in between, you’re bound to love him just as much as I did.

Here’s what he has to say…

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Tell me a little bit about yourself and your music?
 
My name is Savvy, some people also may know me as Asaviour, I’m a producer & recording artist from Huddersfield and I’ve worked with a range of artists like: T.E.E.D, DJ Q, Stac, Athlete, Jehst, andDJ IQ to name a few. I’ve released 3 mix tapes as part of the a Play To Win series and have couple of albums out, one called The borrowed Ladder and another called The A Loop Theory. I’m currently working on a new album title to be conformed.

The Gola campaign is called “Born in Britain” are there any British artists that inspire you today?

Thats a long list erm……Mr Scruff, Radiohead, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, David Bowie, Arctic Monkeys, The Clash, The Who, T.E.E.D, The Stone Roses, The Cure, Dizzee Rascal, Kate Bush, The Specials, Amy Whinehouse, Happy Mondays, Damon Albarn (Blur/Gorillaz), M.I.A, Joy Division, Queen, New Order, The Beatles, Franz Ferdinand, Goldfrapp, Basement Jaxx, erm, erm The Streets, Roots Manuva, Labrinth, Calvin Harris,  Emeli Sandé, La Roux…I can literally go on and on and on……
 
You’ve also been busy working on your own record label “Saving Grace Music” Tell us about the label?

Erm… I guess it was just natural progression for me I stared featuring on peoples records, then got the chance to release my own records via labels then moved onto releasing my own records via my own label. I guess the aim is to give other artists & my self a platform to put out quality music whatever the genre. I stared the imprint in I guess 2007-8 firstly with mix tapes (Play to Win series) then moving onto singles & albums.

What projects and releases can our readers look out from you in the future?

Well I just released a free track from my recently released mix tape Play to Win vol.3 its called Adapt or Die (The Remix) it’s only free for a limited time so grab it while you can. http://soundcloud.com/savvy/savvy-adapt-or-die-remix

The second track is a forthcoming single from an artist I’ve worked with on my last album the A Loop Theory my collaboration album with DJ IQ ( Professor Green’s Tour DJ) has call Pride and it features a singer song writer called Stac, The track is called The Right Idea and features remixes from DJ Q, The Whiteboys, Noji & XLII. take a listen > http://soundcloud.com/saving-grace-music/pride-the-right-idea-ep

And last but not least we have a new artist to the label called Ben Hoo, Hes a singer, songwriter, guitarist, rapper, drummer generally and all round talented guy, he has a single due called Failing its amazing but hey I’m biased.

And I guess my new album, sorry I can’t tell you the title at the moment but I’m aiming to have that out later in the new year, I’m real happy with it so far.

 Finally, anything else you’re dying to tell us?
 
I’m also currently rehearsing with my new band for when we tour the new album its coming together nicely, we got a few special dates planned to make sure you follow me on twitter via @iam_savvy to find out when & where as i’ll be coming to a town near you soon!!

 Laterz…..

 

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Well guys I hope you enjoyed reading that as much as I enjoyed writing it. You can find Savvy online on many platforms, so check out the links below and make sure you’re the first to hear about all the latest news and new releases. Follow him and Saving Grace Music on their journey to bring us the best music has to offer. Don’t be left behind…

Savvy:
Twitter: @iam-savvy
 –
Saving Grace Music
Until next time guys!
Katie

Emeline Nsingi Nkosi – Textile designer

Emeline is a Graphic Textiles designer having recently graduated from Ravensbourne in June 2012. She currently is an artwork designer at the advertising company Hogart as well as owning her own interiors brand Mako by Me.

I have chosen Emeline to customise a pair of shoes for this week’s charity auction at the Carnaby Street store in London. I known her shoes will have a mix of all her best creative qualities, painting, drawing and an energetic array of colours.

Ravensbourne college catwalk show

 

Bags Emeline Nsingi Nkosi GFW

 

For more information on the auction please go to: http://www.facebook.com/events/305949856175618/

Mako by Me

 

I find Emeline an inspirational graduate who I thinks knowledge and experience would be useful for many potential graduated this year. Here are a few questions I asked her opinion on:

 

1. Do you find the media platform within London a good springboard for up and coming talent within design?

If you know where to look, there will always be help available, I definitely think it’s imperative to start at uni, scouting ‘the help’ for after, making contacts not only with the industry but your own future industry; other fellow students. Who can have ands share the skills you may need to propel you further. Finishing uni does feel like a big learning curve, no one can really prepare you fully for what is to come. The most important is building contacts, starting to understand the industry. There are tons of jobs you never hear or get told about, but they exist. Choosing which direction to go in with the guidance from a tutor who has worked in the industry does help, even if it is not what you end up doing. As long as you have a direction, it’s better than none, and along the way doors will open that you may have never imagined and this is where being able to open is essential, at the time, it will be harder to apprehend but with time, I believe things will fall into place. For this reason, searching the internet asking around can lead you to ‘the help’. I had funding for the start up of my business “Make by Me” which would have never happened had I not spoke to people @ uni, @ talks, go to trade shows, museums, events … everything and anything helps.

2. Currently, in your opinion, do you feel people as a whole are interested in up and coming talent especially from a university source?

I definitely think there is a buzz about a fresh meat, fresh talent, with many of the new technologies such as 3D printing, new digital printers printing on non-coated fabric and having a much more eco-conscious mind. Young designers are growing around an environment that nurtures the new. We have to work hard to come up with something fresh, if possible new (debatable) I feel much harder than before. We have to have an edge, something different, learning new processes and researching on a daily basis. Once in the industry though, we have to learn fast.

3. What key points could you give to new students to advertise their work within the current media and social climate?

The key points I would give to a student are; be curious, ask questions, no matter how silly you think they are. Be life curious, it will enrich your work. Talk to people, go to events (yes you don’t think you have time, but make time, if no one knows you exist  … I believe things happen for a reason and often you are at the right pace @ the right time and thne it’s up to you to make your move. When there are competitions @uni, do them! Often it can lead to great opportunities. Through the competitions I have entered I was chosen as one of Hilary Alexander’s ‘secret seven to watch” and was featured in British Airways High Life magazine in June 2012. Which through I was featured in online Drapers and it dominoes … do not miss them! Keep your eyes open. Don’t worry, what is worse that can happen? In addition, if it happens, learn and move on.

4. What is you next key inspiration path for you design company, MAKO by Me.

Right now, my key inspiration path is to approach key boutiques to stock my cushions in. Online sales are also growing rapidly; I have seen a couple of online boutiques that are the target market. I have some prints I would like to test, depending on where I stock. Being a textile designer, you often try different styles, but it is important to have a second eye, a business eye, because you have to be able to love, as sad as that sounds. You spend three years being as creative as you want, I have come to realise it often becomes 80% business and 20% creative, make sure you learn as much as possible or have someone to help with that side. Enjoy uni! Be free! Experiment I would like to branch out into home wear and mostly bedroom textiles at the moment, stock and present in eco boutique hotels. Ideally in the near future design interiors. I would love to make wallpaper but such is the mind of a creative. Always looking for the next challenge.

For more information on Emeline and her business, Mako by Me, then please go to:

www.emelinenn.com

@emelinekosi

 

Chloe Newman

Chloe Newman is a London-based photographer, currently in her 2nd year on the BA Honors Photography course at London College of Communication. Previously, she has completed a Foundation in Art & Design at Camberwell College of the Arts in 2011.

Chloe’s work stems from the era of Surrealism, as well as the idea of voyeurism and the uncanny. She attributes much of her inspiration from David Lynch films, creating the same sort of ‘film-like’ aesthetic with her work. Her compositions are impeccable, as well – Another obvious attribute to her love of film. Her photographs urge the audience to really think about what’s occurring – Why are these people rid of their identities? The subjects in her photographs, despite obviously present, seem to be eerily stripped from the photograph – We’re not looking at them as people, as subjects; but rather, what they are represented as, whether it be an object of intrigue or stagnant.

The artist, despite her age and still studying at University, has exhibited widely, but in national shows and via the internet. She has also previously exhibited for the charity, ‘Art Against Knives’, gaining donations for the charity through sales of her work. She has also recently been chosen as part of the Top 10 in 1883 Magazine’s ‘Issue 7 Photography Competition’ – Seen here.

There is much to be said for this photographer, both with her innovation and style. It will be interesting to see what comes next with her projects, but I can assure you that if anything, it will not be anything that you’ll want to miss.

You can view more of Chloe’s work online here.

– Killian

(Images Courtesy of Chloe Newman)

Bwani Junction

Edinburgh based Bwani Junction doesn’t need more than a brief introduction telling you that you just have to listen to their music to find out how good they are. I am doing just that, however I will say, that Bwani Junction has had an amazing and successful year.

They have played at about 15 festivals this summer including, Stag and Dagger, Down the Rabbit Hole and perhaps most excitingly at Hyde Rock Calling!

Also important to mention, they have recently released their first album with Aksatak Records. ‘Fully Cocked’ is now available on iTunes, Amazon, & at HMV. There is also a rumour that they have finished their newest album, so if you like what you are hearing, then keep your ears peeled for that as well!

The band is composed of four members: Fergus, Jack, Rory & Dan and well, I’m just going to say that their music is awesome. An eclectic mix of chilling riffs, earthy rhythms, harmonic vocals, vibrant lyrics and lively, Afro-Caribbean influences that just make you feel good. Listen to it. You won’t be disappointed.

Listen to more of their music here, buy their album here or here, and don’t forget to like their facebook page!

Captives On The Carousel

Captives On The Carousel are my latest (and most favourite) Sheffield discovery. I had been hearing the name drifting around for a while, but I finally managed to catch them live a couple of weeks ago at a charity gig where they were playing alongside fellow Sheffield bands Young Peculiar and Screaming Maldini. For me, as a committed fan of folk music (and especially folk that errs on the side of ethereal), it was pretty much love at first listen.

Singer and guitarist Sarah and cellist Ben have been playing as a pair since 2008, when Ben started joining Sarah at her solo shows. In 2009, they decided to make things official and Captives On The Carousel was born. Together they sing haunting folk originals, in which delicate strings and dark-edged prosaic lyrics soothe you into a dreamlike and otherworldly existence.

Since the middle of 2011, the duo have been, as their website puts it, ‘taking things more seriously’, and with the help of friends succeeded in putting out a self-released debut EP. This was followed by another, ‘The Garden’, in 2012. They’ve been busy working the folk festival circuit in the summertime, as well as securing stage-time at Tramlines, Peace in the Park and Off The Tracks, and have recently spent some time touring to promote their latest EP release.

If you’d like to find out more about the wonderful folkiness of Captives On The Carousel, visit their website or their Facebook page. There’s also plenty of gorgeous tracks to listen to on their Soundcloud profile – go check them out, you won’t be disappointed.

– Georgie

Bloomer White

At a time when we’re faced with a relative deluge of electronic music –  the internet awash with new beats every day – I think we shouldn’t underestimate those moments when we hear a new producer and his music draws us in. When what you’re hearing is more than a pleasant backdrop to that essay you’re struggling to write, or (more likely!) that facebook stalking you’re indulging in. When it demands attention.

Enter, Bloomer White – aka Gary Kelly – who’s dealing in a fine line of beats, breaks, and choice cuts, measured tastefully against some ambient textures and delicate keys to create absorbing electronic music that still sounds fresh after the first few listens.

Originally hailing from Lurgan, Kelly is now based in London to study Music Computing at Goldsmiths and to further hone his craft. He self-released debut EP ‘Stolen Goods’ as a free-download through Bandcamp last year. For me, standout tracks would have to include the galactic-sounding beat-propelled ‘Space Cab Engineer’, and the retro vibes of ‘Tape Deckin’, which he balances nicely with softer and more understated moments such as soundscape ‘Adaption’, and his imaginative remix of Anneka’s ‘Shut Her Down’.

More recently, Bloomer has been uploading some new material to his Soundcloud, including a couple of 30-minute mixes that are worth a few moments of your time, and certainly wouldn’t sound bad playing-out if you were planning to have a party any time in the new future!

This pioneering young producer is one to watch.

Bloomer White will be playing a set at the Gola Charity auction in aid of ‘Art Against Knives’ on 29th November. I’ll definitely be listening.