Thursday, 31 March 2011

Shhh... a secret look at today's wedding

My fabulous boss allowed me to take a day off today to allow me to photograph Helen's wedding. As I rule I do not take bookings in the week, but long story short these two lovelies are very important to Rob and I, it was essential that we were there today and I begged, all but on my knees to a very understanding boss who initially had not been able to authorise the leave.As the couple are fairly private this will not be a facebook wedding, so will only appear on the official website's gallery, but here is a peek through my lens this afternoon.
More to come following my interview with the bride.

Wednesday, 30 March 2011

All about the paper - Japanese Paper Dolls - Washi Dolls

My husband is a Japanophile, and I inherited an appreciation of Japanese art from my Grandmother. Our home is dotted with artefacts, books, toys, artwork originals and inspired designs.

For Christmas last year I bought some Kokeshi dolls and a bowl from The Japanese Shop. This afternoon I received an email with some offers for Mother's Day. Upon browsing their site I found their Washi Paper Dolls, which I do not recall seeing on the site before, perhaps I wasn't looking.

Washi (meaning Japanese paper) is handmade paper made from bark, rice, bamboo, hemp and wheat, with long fibres, making it stronger than regular paper. It is used in Japanese bank notes and can be used in making clothing as well as crafts.

The Japanese Shop are holding an Ohanami, a cherry blossom picnic in Harrogate Monday 2nd May, raising money for the Red Cross Japan Tsunami Appeal. For more details of the event, click here.

Paper Theatres

When i was around 8 years old, an aunt bought me a Marks and Spencer's book, Cut and Assemble your own paper theatre. My grandma bought me the Panny Bazaar version also, which for the last two years I have been trawlling the internet to try and find, so far no joy but I believe there is one out there with my name on it.

I will be placing images of my favourite examples in the coming months. For the meantime here is a lovely picture courtesy of EKDuncan.

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Paper cuts part one - Julene Harrison

Clumsy clogs ol' me has been slicing fingers to shreds with paper this week, so I thought I'd feature a more favoured variety of paper cuts.

I love paper cuts, from paperchains and snowflakes made in primary schools to these intricate delicate peices.

These are by London based artsist Julene Harrison, and are rather special. She is available for commission, see her website here madebyjulene

Monday, 28 March 2011

My buzzy bee necklace

Wanted to show you this. My usherettes bought this for a gift on my wedding day. I wore it with my bridal garb, it's goregous and by Alex Monroe.

Other collections include pieces with floral themes, feathers and birds.

Saturday, 26 March 2011

Handmade/ Crafting appreciation blog

New arm of All Things Visual - Cutting & Sticking. This is for my likes of the handmade, of print, sculpture, crafty type things! It's a little bare at the moment by I have my feelers out to my crafty folk for submissions. If you want pictures of your work, or a shout out for upcoming exhibitions, sales etc, do email me! Here is the site

Rob Ryan Plate from new Ramsbottom Gallery

I am blessed to live in a pretty area, more so to have a fab little town on my doorstep, Ramsbottom. We have a collection of eateries, Thai, Chinese, Italian, Bangladeshi, Southern Indian, Lancashire Tapas - really, to name a few.

Ramsbottom also boasts privately owned shops, lingerie boutiques, dressmakers, delicatessen, cookery, antiques, chocolatier and purveyors of art. On a recent drive through the centre I passed a new shop, Atelier Rose and Gray, specialising in work by printmakers, what a gem! A certain print by Rob Ryan, displayed in the window was what made me anchor on and park up to nip in.

It was this print - All the words in the world. Would go perfectly in my white dining room/ studio, but not with my bank balance, so had to turn to a smaller variety.

My good friend Sarah Poynter was turning 30 (sorry P) and I chose this gorgeous plate also by Rob Ryan as a gift for her.

Rose and Gray also offer printmaking courses, I am down for an introductory course in May, cannot wait. The gallery is currently developing their website, links and welcomes will be posted ASAP.

Thursday, 24 March 2011

Get Excited and Make Things

Found this wonderful thing yesterday whilst looking for 'excited' faces on Google Images.
It is by designer Matt Jones and is available on

Wednesday, 23 March 2011

Corsages from silk flowers

These were my one of my first attempts at crafting since I left school 17 years ago. I abandoned my crafting like it was an old toy, I had discovered SLR cameras and a nikon coolpix digital. I was consumed in black and White printing and editing my digital pics (3 megapixels you know!!!)

corsage flowers, done! #TwitPict on Twitpic

These were corsages and button holes for my wedding. The donor decoration was a plastic branch with silk cherry blossoms from Wikinsons. The plastic stamen were removed, four or five petal heads were folded into four, stiched at the base then stitched rather crudely together.

During this activity I remembered how calming making things can be, there is something homely, rewarding and comforting about creating something with your hands, without squinting in front of a screen, hunched over a desk.

Animation - Pre-planning animatic submitted

Admittedly, this was a little rushed. I didn't source the audio in time so I did a botch cut in Soundbooth, on an overly 'obvious' choice, Babylon Zoo's Spaceman. This was sketched on my graphics tablet into Illustrator, then tween in Flash. Well here it is, this will be 20% of my mark, yikes! Search for flash animation

Monday, 21 March 2011

Yummy steak at Grill on the alley for Herry's Hen!

Mmmmm, Chateaubriand, mussels and chocolate & rasberry torte of a Sunday evening! @herrygilly is to be wed 31st march and last night we sent her off with a dose of cocktails and bubbles. The Grill on the Alley in Manchester was our venue for the evening, their cocktail bar is my favourite in the city, try a glass of prosseco with their rose liquor, oooh delicious. Here is Helen enjoying her bubbles. Search for

Tuesday, 15 March 2011

Red Nose Day - Doing something funny for money!

We have launched Red Nose Day in today's assembly. The whole school will be dressing as Heroes and Villains on Friday, collecting money for Comic Relief Amongst many other fundraising activities, we have pupils cycling 13 miles, using only their right hand for a day, greeting people in foreign languages, sponsored silences, a Wii Party championship and cake sales. On Friday we will be taken over by a regiment of soldiers, Mutant Ninja Turtles, a range of historical baddies and inspirational characters. I'm dressing as Jean Grey, the X-Men's Phoenix, although the wig ways a tonne. The school raised a total of £471 for Children in Need, we hope to exceed that amount following this week's efforts. I'd love to present the 'Big Cheque' live on TV, so we had better raise a decent sum to show off!

Monday, 14 March 2011

Animation - storyboards

Here are the initial sketched storyboards for my Animation Concepts module. These will no doubt be revised, again and again.
Search for storyboarding

Animation - Pre-planning

Here are some of the sketches that I have done for the development of my character for the current Animation Concepts module. My little dude is a spaceboy, based on an old character that I created a few years ago, and shamefully did nothing with him, but graffiti my colege books with. I have decided to go with the mood excitement. For this I will have my little spaceboy getting ready for his first day back at school.

Sunday, 13 March 2011

I'm a Bridesmaid!

Congratulations to my gorgeous friend Sarah and her lovely (and lucky) fiancé Andy. Whilst celebrating Sarah's 30th birthday in the Lake District, Andy proposed and Sarah accepted! I received a call this evening, from Sarah, asking if I would be a bridesmaid, of course I am thrilled to. Along with Sarah's sister Clare and girlfriend's Philippa and Ellin, I'll be flanking Miss P on her big day, and hope to get involved in the planning of the whole affair. I am starting a scrap book this week with ideas that I hope will be able to help. Watch this space for more wedding chat and planning from the support team!

MUTV Pundit Spoofs

I've been laughing my socks off at Dreamscope's recent uploads to YouTube.  Mark Lawrenson and Alan Hansen are sent up by my Hubby Rob Hallam and former flatmate Andy 'Barney' McHugh, in these sketches for MUTV. Click for Youtube video

Monday, 7 March 2011

Animation Concepts Module 2011 - Year 2

We have started a new module, Animation Concepts, continuing our yaer two studies. Since the start of this year, we now have two deadlines per module. The first deadline is technically 4 or 5 weeks in, a work in progress submission to see where we are up to, for the tutor to check we are on the right track. This is usually 20-30% of the final mark. Unfortunatley we have introduction lectures to the subject before we get the assignment brief, so in this case we only have actually two weeks to work to the brief. The Brief We are to create an 11-second animation that conveys a mood/ emotion through characterisation, based on a story, narrative or section of audio. Upon our first deadline, 22/03, we must submit a pre-planning animatic. This is an animated version of our storyboard. We will be marked on the cinematography, story-telling, pace and style and how it is synced to the audio. The rendered animation needs to convey the mood and emotion, as well as demonstrate our understanding of the 12 principles of animation. We must show the techiques that we have developed in animation, artistic ability, texturing and lighting. The rendered verison needs to be in Quicktime format, H.264 Compression Codec, 640x480, 1500 kps data rate, Apple lossless (AAC), Stereo (L,R), 44.1 KHz, maximum file size 30mb. Wooooooo. Having never animated anything before, this is going to be a fair old challenge.

Sunday, 6 March 2011

New websites!!

I have been a busy girl.... 2 new websites under my belt, well, just testing for glitches, and but of prac'ing as they say.

I finally have a showcase for my websites, I wanted them separate from the photos.

The other is for Lighting Camerman Matt Wright, talented camera operator and all round lovely bloke... give him some work!!!

Saturday, 5 March 2011

After effects assignment complete!

Finally did it!!  My after effects work is complete for this assignment.

I made a 30 second teaser for my friend's shop.  Unfortunately they cannot use this version for their website as it has copyrighted music, but I am on the look out for some that is copyright free.  (although I LOVE this one, it is The Brouhaha by the Beastie Boys)

Final Marks: 75 = First

Friday, 4 March 2011

Save the Duke

New blog for the campaign to Save the Duke of York pub in Romiley Stockport. See We'd love your comments and stories.