3rd November 2013
Those of you who have been tuning into the Do What You Love series will no doubt have fallen a little bit in love with Jasmine Dowling’s typography. She recently offered to show us exactly how she creates these masterpieces, and I jumped at the chance to see her work in action. The funny thing is that before she walked me through it I had no idea it would be so artistic, for some reason I thought most things like this are done on the computer. I guess I should have known, because in many ways it’s similar to the process typography pro Gemma O’brien uses to teach first time typographers (remember?). I was so happy to see that so much of Jasmine goes into each and every one. Read on to see how she does it! I’m also giving away one print from her recent collab with Molten Store so head to the bottom to enter!
My Typography – by Jamine Dowling
The little story of how I got started on my typography band wagon actually started because of college holidays. Naturally being a stress head, who constantly likes to remain busy it got to holidays where uni students around the world breathe a sigh of relief and hit the pillow for most of their days. I did do that for the first day I admit, but after day that I needed something to do asap between work. After studying a typography class a semester earlier I realised my passion for it, I decided to get back into it but this time without the computer.
I was always amazed by those with extreme hand craft skills and wanted to teach myself the skill of hand lettered typography. A few things I learnt quite quickly was that a) you can not do this stressed b) you can’t drink too much coffee before doing it and c) it takes longer than you think.
Anyway, I started off dabbling in a calligraphy-like treatment without calligraphy pens. Then later falling in love with ink. For those who ask what my tools of the trade are, they aren’t anything fancy. All I use is: paper, indian ink / regular ink pot, a fine brush (I am not sure the type I use, I just picked the one that felt right?), pencil, eraser, oh and water.
Now that I am set, I am ready to create ..
I start by picking an expression, I write it out in pencil making sure it all fits nicely for an A4 print. Personally my favourite thing about doing these, is that it is my own handwriting, that no one else has so try to make it yours as much as you can. After that I mix 2 parts water to 1 part ink into your palette. You can change this depending on if you want it really dark or light. Then I go over my writing, changing the pressure of my brush to paper making sure my brush is always wet. Once I am finished I leave it to dry before rubbing out the pencil underneath. To clean it up I then scan it onto my mac, then touch up the colour and line in Photoshop if I need to.
After it is printed it is put into a frame or taped to the wall surrounded by other treasures and of course flowers!
As I mentioned Jasmine has recently launched a line of limited edition prints in collab with Molten Store (you can get your hands on them here and here), and I’m super excited to be giving away one to a lucky reader!
To enter, all you have to do is leave a comment below with what you would ask Jasmine to put in a quote if you had the choice! Make sure to leave your email in the email box so we can contact you if you’re the lucky winner. Contest closes Friday the 8th November.
I almost forgot to mention, Jasmine also does freelance designs, so if you want anything made up click through to her website and get in touch with her. You won’t be disappointed!
Update: Thank you for entering everyone, so much food for thought in the quotes you’ve chosen! The winner, picked at random is Bethan. xx
25th October 2013
I find myself with so few occasions to wear dresses these days, that when I do it feels so special (and a pain in the ass). I recently went to a friend’s wedding in Scotland (ok so this was a few months ago now) and struggled to decide what to wear. Apparently the gym gear I live in now that I work from home wasn’t going to cut it! Stopping through London on my way there, I picked up this pretty dress from Whistles. I’m so down with silky dresses from this store in particular, I used to stalk their sales when I lived in London - I nabbed a red dress (shown in this post) on sale for 40 quid and I have to say, it’s running on a 1 pence cost per wear now! If, like me, you struggle to work out what to wear to ‘cocktail’ events, take a mosey on over to my post at Harper’s Bazaar Australia, where we discuss all things wedding dressing (other than being the bride of course – something I know zero about!)
24th October 2013
Back in the day, travelling was a seriously daunting business, on my parent’s early 1970’s overland trip from London to Thailand they were equipped with nothing but a few photocopied A4 pages (in fact it was the first lonely planet!). As with every other aspect of the world, technology has changed the way we travel. And although some of us prefer the unknown (and like to diconnect when roaming the globe), I much rather travelling with an abundance of technology at my fingertips. You can imagine, therefore, how happy I am to be working with Marriott Hotels on their new Travel Brilliantly Campaign, helping to shape the redesign of their hotels with a focus on a younger, more technology savvy traveller. A major part of this is about conceptualising how technology can continue to make our travel experiences bigger, more vibrant, and well, easier. You may remember from the video we produced together that my ultimate hotel room would have a digitalised mirror so I could see the back of my outfit. To me, this is an example of how technology can make travel easier, more comfortable, and give us the answer to the age old – ‘does my bum look big in this?’ question.
If you’ve not yet entered your idea in the Marriott’s Travel Brilliantly campaign you should hop to it, you could win some amazing travel prizes and have your idea integrated into the redesign. What technology would you love to see in a Marriott next time you stay?
Although it’s not ideal to have your iphone glued to your hand when travelling, one must admit that the humble smart phone has revolutionised travel. No more wandering the hot streets searching for a stinky internet cafe, just find yourself some wi-fi and get your travel on. As part of working with the Marriott to enable others to Travel Brilliantly, I thought I would share with you my favourite travel apps, essential for the perfect trip. I’m heading to Hanoi on the weekend and trust me, these apps are front and centre on my home screen – now I just have to remember to pack my charger!
OK so you’re probably thinking, tell us something we don’t already know, and yes instagram is a great way to document where you go and what you do on your trip, but did you know it’s also a great research tool? Hashtag and locations are the ultimate way to check somewhere you want to go in real time (what is the weather doing? Is it as nice as you think? etc etc). Just be wary of filters that make everything look amazing! While you’re at it check out my insta for travel adventures and ideas (ifidosaysomyself).
Unless you get yourself a sim card in each new destination, you’re going to need wifi (iphone’s are just big calculators when deprived of wifi). This app uses the GPS on your phone (no internet required – duh) to find and map the closest wifi. Genius! Note to self, it’s usually Macdonalds…
I’m always on the lookout for recommendations from clued up travellers (I always annoy my friends for recommendations), as well as ways to learn about my surroundings. Which is why I really like Field Trip. It runs in the background on your phone and alerts you when you’re nearing something interesting – whether it’s a new exhibition, an up and coming neighbourhood or an underground bar. The best bit? Field trip only lets trusted (and, ok, cool) sources contribute so you know the recommendations will be bang on.
There’s nothing more I hate than feeling rubbish when I arrive. It’s such a downer when you should be out having that dinner (the one you tell all your friends about – ‘best food of the trip!’) but you’re asleep instead. I use the Jet Lag app to help plan my flights and work out the best strategy for getting into the zone of my destination.
As most of you know I’m a sucker for a well packed bag. This app puts together a packing list for you, based on where you’re going, who with and for how long. It divides the list into categories (e.g. essentials, clothes and gadgets) and logs items in terms of weight and value. So OCD. But so Good.
Any seasoned traveller will know that not all travel routes were created equal. I for one often choose a flight based on price when what really matters if the hassel factor, ie the number of stops, the airline itself and all manner of other factors. Hipmunk works this out for you when you’re looking for your next flight.
Ever been stumped while trying to select a seat and terrified that you’ll end up in the one seat on the plane that doesn’t recline? SeatGuru outlines over 700 seat maps from around global airlines and colour-codes the seats according to “good”, “not-so-good” and “avoid-at-all-costs.” Never be wedged in the worst seat again!
From experience, if you take a few moments to learn a few phrases of the local language, you’ll be rewarded 1000 times over. This app lets you download basic phrases in a whole range of languages – from German to Aussie slang – and play them out loud, so you can perfect your pronunciation.