Ghost and Wren are two very fashionable Italian Greyhounds
Say hello to Ghost and Wren. The swish Italian Greyhounds from Toronto will probably make you question your sartorial choices. Peek at their Instagram page and you’ll see Ghost and Wren expertly modelling funky glasses, the odd halloween costume, turtlenecks and on trend silk scarves that would make Audrey Hepburn jealous. The littermates spend most of their time relaxing in lush meadows, socialising with their fashionable puppy friends and hanging out with their mum, Shauna. Sounds simply delightful, doesn’t it? Their style is just immaculate!
Peek at Daniel Popper’s sculptures- they are simply other worldly!
This Spanish town has a vibrant crocheted sky!
In the Spanish town of Alhaurin de la Torre, Malaga, crochet teacher Eva Pacheco and her talented students have created a series of huge crocheted awnings. Made from recycled fabric, the vibrant canopy covers an area of approximately five hundred square metres. Brilliant, right?
The project was devised by the local council’s clever environment department and has been running for three years. Aside from protecting local walkers from the sun, the crocheted ceiling has also provided the town with a pop of colour and provided Eva and her students with a welcome distraction from the pandemic.
Salt Stitches Embroidery is inspired by natural textures
Emily takes inspiration from the vibrant colours and intricate patterns found in natural textures from all over the world-think rugged rock formations and sweeping marine landscapes-before getting to work with her needle and thread. She recreates these textures using printed fabrics and threads of varying thickness and lustre combined with other materials including beads and seashells. The result is truly magical.
Working from home tips from someone who turned a bus into a home office
Even if your office isn’t on four wheels, these tips will help you pep up your productivity. Trish Martin runs Chromatical, a marketing firm for creatives and self described weird kids. She also runs her business from a converted bus which is pretty badass any way you slice it. Considering that working from home has become normalised, putting serious mileage on the wifi is an inevitability and everybody is trying to make their living rooms look like inner city co working spaces, we decided to pick Trish’s brain about working from home- or at least working from bus! What will keep us productive? What sort of gadgets and gizmos do we really need?
Having a dedicated work space is a no brainer!
Trish works best in silence and therefore converted the bus to escape the chaos of home. She has a young daughter and needed space outside the house that is free of noise and distractions. A purposeful ‘Go Here Space’ where home and work is differentiated between. Most home offices are in the form of studies- the clue really is in the title. That’s fine- just don’t work from under your doona, covered in doritos dust or on the kitchen bench dodging crumpets and your noisy housemates. You deserve a place entirely for you, even if it’s small.
Styling is the best investment you’ll make!
Trish, knowing that she’ll spend a good portion of her day hard at work, invested money into the bus and purchased what she calls essential non essentials. Plants, visually interesting furnishings- you name it.
For her it’s a mental game. She believes being surrounded by what you love is important. Has a white room ever made anyone happy? Trish’s interior decorating result proves that you don’t have to gold wild here. She picked up majority of the bus furniture from Facebook Marketplace and op shops while thrifting. Her vintage orange chair was a bargain find at only eighty bucks. Do you need colourful paint and furry walls and vintage furniture to get things done? If that’s your jam, if you’re digging it, absolutely! Trish wholeheartedly believes that you need a space that’s inspiring in order to feel inspired. What surrounds you affects your mood. If you’re spending all day in your office and it doesn’t inspire you, how’s that going to affect your job?
And a few practical suggestions- don’t be afraid to digitise and prioritise sorting your finances!
Many creatives get freaked out by finances and the starving artist label. In an ideal world we would always see the fruits of our efforts making what we love. That’s how it should work, right? As a small business or individual working from home, getting your accounting and bookkeeping up to snuff is vital. Time is an invaluable asset and therefore you should spend it doing what matters most. Don’t waste your mental fortitude and brain power on last minute saves.
Another factor with creative work is that you’re limited to a certain extent. You’ve got two hands and one brain and often trade your time for cash. There may be twenty four hours in a day but how many hand painted ceramics can a person really churn out? Trish recommends digitisation and scaling which means finding a way to make passive income online and ideally while you sleep. Your offering on the side can be an extension to the primary product you create. You could sell an online course, ebook or a membership program. Best of all, it doesn’t matter if you have five members or five thousand- your workload will be the same.
Step inside illustrator Cass Urquhart’s breezy and sundrenched home studio
Hey Cass! Tell us a bit about yourself and what you do.
I’m a New Zealand Australian illustrator based in Brisbane. I live in a small Queenslander cottage with my little family of three.
How did you become a professional illustrator?
I’ve always loved drawing! I studied fine art at uni but I wasn’t really sure what to do with those skills when I finished, so ended up training as a graphic designer, too. I loved working in design and I was always naturally drawn to projects that involved an illustration component. Eventually, I decided to focus on illustration when I realised that it was the best of both worlds and a perfect happy medium between the freedom of fine art and the practicality of graphic design.
Describe your workspace for us please!
My home studio is in the front sunroom of our house. It has lots of louver windows and gets lovely breezes throughout the day, which is so needed in the Brisbane summer. My illustration materials are set up along one wall and the other side of the room is where I do sewing and craft stuff, although I often end up running out of space and working on the floor in the middle of the room!
What’s a regular day like work wise for you?
I like to go for a walk around my leafy neighbourhood in the morning. It’s so peaceful and it puts me in the right headspace for the rest of the day. Then I’ll usually check emails at the dining table with a coffee and breakfast and plan my workday. I’ll work in my studio on client projects until around midday, then break for lunch and a bit of yoga if time allows. If there are intense deadlines I’ll go straight back into client work after lunch, but whenever possible I like to save the afternoons for working on personal projects.
What’s your illustration process like?
I always start with a lot of rough sketches, then choose my favourite to trace over with a crisp outline drawing. At this point I’ll often send the line work to clients for feedback. Then it’s onto colour and rendering. I like to use traditional materials on paper, such as pencil, marker or gouache and then scan these to work on digitally. Working digitally allows for endless experimentation and I’ll often move things around and change colours for hours and hours until the result feels right.
What’s your absolute favourite thing to draw?
It’s a tie between animals and plants. My favourite Frankie illustration I’ve done so far was for Kate Stanton’s piece on the history of mullets. It was really satisfying drawing all of those illustrious locks!
Your work is filled with beautiful strong colours. How do you go about choosing colours to use?
Colour inspiration can come in all different ways. I have a tendency to use a lot of the same colours over and over, so to get fresh ideas I like to go thrift shopping, look at my vintage scarf collection or sometimes I just grab a few paint tubes and pens from around the studio, try out a few swatches on paper and see what colours feel good together.
Vegan Strawberry Cheesecake bars
These baked cheesecake bars have just ten ingredients. Everyone loves cheesecake. When made correctly, it has the perfect balance of flavours and textures- sweet but tangy with a soft filling and a chewy crust. However, while everyone loves cheesecake, not everyone can eat cheesecake. Until now that is!