London transport museum

Today I spent the day in the London transport museum in Coven Garden. There I found a lot of material supporting my research and it has been a pleasure to be in straight contact and in context with some original pieces of design that makes what the underground is today.

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Originale Fougasse’s poster

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50 years of illustration Exhibition at London College of Communications

Today I visited London College of communication for this very interesting exhibition which fully related to my dissertation studies.

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Alan Kitching and Monotype Exhibition

Another Exhibition I went at LCC was the Alan Kitching and Monotype which was celebrating the centenary of five pioneers of the poster. Here I found some of the remarkable posters produced for London Transport

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Worth pop-up shop featured in:

The Independent

Dazed and Confused

It’s nice that

Grafik Magazine

Complex

People of print

UAL

Trend Space

Printsome

Despoke

Remarkably

Corriere della sera

 

“It’s nice that “studio talking about our pop-up shop

It’s nice that weekly podcast

 

The impact:

1.7 million Facebook impressions in under 4 days
Price tag reduced by £999,949.88 in 17 days
Trending on Twitter in London, UK
Crashed university servers due to high traffic

All done

After carefully paint all the buttons and heat fixed all the prints on the bags by an iron,  I can now say I am done !

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Colouring the buttons black

I bought this matte paint for metal so I can make the buttons black ( gold was a bit…). Each button need to be painted 2 times. each time the pain is applied it need to dry for 30 minutes; so it actually take an hour for 1 button to dry and so 4 hours for all 4 buttons to dry in a bag…but hey … black buttons rule!

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Packaging thoughts

At first I wanted to display all the bags on a table for the upcoming pop-up shop like you would see in a bags and accessories shop.  I have now changed my mind and thought that maybe one bag can be for show and all the other 10 can be folded and presented in a more luxurious way within a package. I looked closely at food package, t shirts and other accessories and came up with a couple of ideas.

These are some of the packaging I took inspiration:

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Retouching the bags with textile markers and using heavy duty snaps buttons…

Below are the bag with too much paint and another one that hasn’t got much

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Watching some youtube tutorial to understand how snaps buttons work

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Problems solving

After all the bags were left to dry, it’s now time to think how to solve some of the problems I had to deal regarding the screen printing session. Some bags have a very light print and some have heavier. So I went around to see if there are some painting markers and so I can fix manually the illustration reinforcing either the white background or the black hotlines.

Another task for today was to find some snaps buttons and the way I can seal them in the bag without sewing them. I have tried sewing them in an earlier prototype but they did not look nice and not to be used as”heavy duty” at all….so I found these pops button that can be fixed on the bag by using an hammer.

 

Mission to buy the paint , start cracking on by printing all the bags today and wishing the best of it on my birthday…

First things first: Buy the paint and try, try, try

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The results I had were superb till the 4th bag….Because this paint is super thick and covers well, it seems like rubber, almost like plastic and so it dries extremely fast and blocking all the screen little holes if not used quickly.I realised that on the 4th bag when the paint was starting to fade away and leaving some gaps. What I had to do was to wash the screen every 2-3 prints, let it dry and start  the process and so on…Obviously the prints aren’t extremely professional to be sold so I need to find a way to fix them.

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A tiny light at the end of the dark tunnel: the lady who told me all about textures printing and paint

PERMASET was the answer! This amazing lady explained to me how all these “speedballs” and mediums do not work when printing on very good, thick, heavy textiles and so she let me try some of her paint

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Better results…not the best but getting somewhere…

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This bag had to much paint on it although I can still see the artwork and think maybe how to resolve this problem next time.

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More attempts made: different type of screen and my artwork changed with ticker lines

After not much luck on my first attempts I tried to make another screen with thicker lines and use different paint. So I tried this time  just on paper  if it was working out instead of messing more bags….

The lines were too thicker in one screen and the paint still absorbing too much into the heavy texture of my bag.

 

 

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First and second attempt gone wild…

Unfortunately the paint I have used had some issues…This was because this paint in conjunction with the medium I bought made it way too fluid and my screen had very fine lines so all the paint smudged  all over the bags…

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This is actually the second bag I have screen printed with bad results. The first one just came out with white paint only with no lines no design which I had to run and try to save this bag by washing off the paint and possibly re-use it when dried.

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Screen printing 1st session

So today I went to screen print the bags. I was a bit concerned about the bag heavy texture and not sure what paint to buy so by speaking to some people at the shop I used some textures medium in  conjunction with normal paint.

 

 

Preparing the file ready for screen printing

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So I had to invert the colours so I could get the black to be the colour to be exposed for my screen print, but than white paint will be used.

That will be printed on acetate and exposed to a screen. Screen to follow…

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Experimentation/ problems to be solved

Since I wanted to do a bag and obviously aware that between 94 students there is a high chance of other tote bags to be sold, I tried to make it a bit different.

Most of the times tote bags are not made of good material and that they are open from the top. I tried to explore if there could be a chance to make my artefact appealing as an object, not considering the illustration.

The bags I bought are black (not the usual organic colour) and at the first I tried to put a zip in order to close the bags. Unfortunately the zip does not look professional if sowed by hands.

So I tried something else instead: buttons and metal clips buttons. The button look great, however in order to make the hole in the other side it requires  a lot of stitching need to be done and preferable with a proper machine so I decided to use the clipping buttons.

 

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Into digital – Something to be concerned

After scanning my drawing, I am now working on making it digital using illustrator and so ready for screen printing. I decided to print only one colour also to make it very bold . I have decided to use black bags so at the moment I am working with black hotlines on white background but will make a colour swap later. Something I am concerned is that the type of cotton I have ordered is quite thick and I am a bit worried that the ink will smudge so I am trying to make the lines big enough in case something goes wrong. This is going to be the first time I screen print on textiles so fingers crossed!

 

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Illustration idea/ Tattoo as external look

As a symbolic meaning to my slogan I ended up taking ” tattoos ” as a way to symbolise the external look

 

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My research

After some reflections and some feedbacks from the last workshop, I decided to go for the bag as my definite artefact. My intent is to make an illustration that can be seen in public and so a tote bag is a good way to make this work.

The ” issue ” I decided to go for, it is how people judge others from the way they look without taking into consideration how they really are.

So I summarised all this into a sentence : “It’s what’s inside that matters” as my slogan.

The reason I decided to pick this issue is because I felt that as this is a product that have to be sold and I did not want to take political or social issues that can be offensive or that cannot be shared by everyone. So I felt this issue is maybe less specific and can be addressed within different circumstances and we should all agree on this.

I wanted to make something positive, something that can just make people think for a second.

 

It’s what’s inside that matters

Today’s society is in continuos obsession of exterior look…

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Findings

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I am planning to make an illustration that it  is connected to an issue I am concerned (social, political, etc.) After some evaluation I came out with some issues and artefacts that can be connected. For example a notebook with an illustrative cover saying “never judge a book by its cover” like it’s delivering a double message.

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