Thursday, 21 April 2011

10 reasons why I love his work...

A couple of years ago, whilst browsing design websites, I stumbled on an amazing print maker (Graham Carter). He works out of a gallery in Brighton and when I saw some of his work I really wanted a print. And there was one in particular that I couldn't stop thinking about.
I found this particular picture, then I put it as my desktop wallpaper on my P.C so I could keep looking at it and deciding if I could afford to buy it...
Then I saw that "Boxbird" (his gallery with wife, Alice) were having a stall at "The "Affordable" Art Fair" in Brighton. I decided to go, and if the picture was there I'd buy it. So an incidental weekend to Brighton was planned.
I was half hoping the picture wouldn't be there as I felt excited about owning it but slightly sick at the price.
Amongst a pile of other cute pictures, it was there... and on the textured hand-made paper it looked even better than I'd imagined.
But I still thought I couldn't justify spending all that money on what is, after all, one piece of paper. So then I suggested going to think about it over lunch and dither some more. But then Patrick said to me... "Okay, if you can list 3 good reasons why you think it's so great I think you should get it!" I quickly gave him 10 and passed over my credit card within five minutes.
And I'm so glad I did; it makes me smile every day, and I looked at it gleaming in the sun this morning and thought I'd write about it today...

"Quiet Carriage"

There is just no way I can do this justice with a photograph, especially with the glass making it so hard to photograph. You can see how the colours are more calming and less lurid than in the picture from his website (below), however.

And so, the ten reasons I love it:

1) The very clever limited palette. It's so '70s, with the oranges, blues, browns and creams.
2) The colour scheme being warm inside and cold outside giving it nice contrast and a cosy feel and atmosphere. I like the small touches of blue inside too just to balance it out.
3) The fact that the people are dwarfed by the enormous seats in a way that you remember from childhood, like when you start getting convinced that Mars bars were ginormous but actually you were probably just smaller.
4) The laptop and mobile phone suggesting a modern era in comparison to the colour scheme, I like the clash.
5) The pattern of the seat material being reminiscent of Old School British Rail and the snowflake pattern outside being repeated as an icon on the cup inside, it's nice in a kind of positive/negative way.
6) The massive coffee cup is so out of proportion but somehow it works, as does the smoke coming off the coffee that is both a part of the design inside and outside the train.
7) A wacky plant and birds are on the table!
8) The people look content (as am I when I get a table seat) - table seats on trains are great!
9) The little suitcase suggests a mini-break or adventure as does the little temple in the background and adds optimism and excitement.
10) The "squircular" borders make you feel like you're looking through a window at them as well as them having a window to look out of. Actually, I don't think the borders are "squircular", I think that's a square/circle hybrid - not sure if there is a word for rectangles with rounded edges, but I like those shapes...

I actually wonder if the artist liked it as much as me, he was a man of few words when I met him but sooooooo full of good ideas!
And what I find so weird is the fact I'd kind of started decorating my whole bedroom around this picture before I even knew it existed...

Lightshade: Ikea

Jewellery Trees: Ikea

"Urban" Chair: Ikea

Wallpaper: B&Q.

And a style consideration that Bella taught me... position mirrors to reflect interesting patterns from opposite or to reflect something of interest (light fitting etc.)
At certain angles it looks like a picture in a round frame...

Dressing table: Ikea

Orange cushion: Gift from Bella (bought from House of Fraser)

Velour Cushions: Woolworths (Ahhhh, Rest in Peace Woolworths!)

"Sputnick style" Clock: Home Sense

Photo frame: Asda

Despite the fact I have some nice pieces of Art that I've collected for downstairs of my house this picture is my favourite and it's a bit weird to ask visitors to come and look at Art in your bedroom (could get misconstrued for "etchings"...) so it doesn't always get seen which is a shame. Another reason for me to shout about it here... :)

This Summer I WILL finish my study... the starting point is my Isak tray that Nic gave me for Christmas last year but I won't say any more until I actually get around to finishing it... The wallpaper is up at least and I'll just keep looking at "Apartment Therapy" for ideas to perfect it...

Fortunately, this picture, "Red Nest" also by Graham Carter, is sold out or I'd be wanting this one... I could give you 10 reasons why I love this but one too, but I won't torture myself...

And just look at "Polkabrella"  with her little bottle of coke... all in sickly sweet colours, just brilliant!

J :)

P.S. If I haven't told you what I paid for "Quiet Carriage", don't ask me, and if I have told you, please never tell my Mum... ;)

P.P.S. Antony says that wallpaper is a waste of rainforests; I say if I use the remainder to wrap presents I am forgiven... :)

P.P.P.S. Look at these lovely cards by Ruth Green, that I just had to get for Bella, Priya (and myself).
There's so much nice stuff at Boxbird...!

SOMA gallery in Clifton, Bristol sell some work by a couple of the Boxbird artists and by some other good ones too...

P.P.P.P.S. If you are ever wondering where to dine out in Brighton, this place was one of the nicest I've ever been to...

Yep, think that's it for now...!

No it's not.... great framing shop in Bristol:-

Okay, that really is it!

J :)

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