Tuesday, 22 June 2010

The Red Door Gallery would simply not be the same if it wasn't for the wonderful support of independent and emerging designers and artists dedicated to presenting original, inspirational and affordable artwork.

In amongst all of these talented folk is Paul Farrell. Paul's main body of work, the Tree series, is an example of his strong graphic style. Silhouettes are the epitome of graphic design and illustration, as they help visually communicate any object clearly by the simplest of methods. The variety and interesting outline of natural forms, in particular the tree, are emphasised by the use of the silhouette. Paul’s knowledge and research into colour is equally important and he has exercised this in his work.Based in Kent his collection of work continues to develop and expand with new projects for fashion and home wares and private and public commissions. Significantly, new metallic screen print collections, featuring birds in flight were created recently for his one-man show in London – ‘The Birds & the Trees’. He is represented at major art galleries and shops throughout the British Isles and abroad, including The Red Door Gallery.

So when Paul agreed to be our next interviewee for our blog designer/artist feature we were over the silvery moon! Thanks Paul!....

Q - Please describe what you do. What materials/techniques do you use?

A - I am an illustrator and apply my bold, graphic style to many different designed products. My main body of work is limited edition prints and greeting cards inspired by the image of the tree.

Most of my work is simply created using an Apple imac. The initial process combines numerous sketches, lists of ideas and collecting colours that compliment each other. My imagery and ideas are applied to a wide range of materials such as fabric, wood, vinyl and paper. Some applications are hand printed along with digital production.

Q - Where do you live? How does it feed your art?

A - I live in Kent but I am soon to move to the West country where I was born. I am in a rural area currently which provides peace, space and inspiration but my next move will hopefully bring me greater riches, feeding also off a vibrant, contemporary and creative hub such as Bristol or Bath.

Q - Describe your studio. Where is it? Do you work alone? How often do you go there?

A - I work from home, alone, so I am here all the time, unless I’m tripping to London for ideas or to make a delivery. My imac is in my bedroom and it looks out over a fine south-facing garden. My creative tools are simple but I hope to locate studio space soon as I take on more hand printed projects.

Q - Have you always been a designer? What brought you to doing what you do now?

A - I have always been interested in art and design, in particular colour and the beauty of form, in particular those found in nature. I was a graphic designer, specialising in brand design, in London over the last 23 years which has given me a good background to business affairs and the market place. As a graphic designer I always wanted to have printed my own projects and managed to get my personal Christmas card produced free each year. After approaching a few galleries and shops in London the response was encouraging and sales grew along with a demand to create more. Large format prints were requested from the imagery and my style developed as thank fully they became more popular.

Q - Where did you train?

A - I completed an Arts Foundation course at Bristol Polytechnic in 1985 and went on to obtain a BA Honours degree in graphic design at Middlesex Polytechnic in north London.

Q - What inspires you?

A - Nature and the graphic arts are the main points of interest – the former is the subject matter and the latter is the basis for my style. Having been a brand designer I see everything as simple form, beauty and colour. Illustrating a subject as simply as possible and still communicating it’s identity, is key and the challenge.

Q - Is there anyone or any style that you’re influenced by?

A - Andy Warhol for his brave graphic interest, David Hockney for his use of colour and Gary Hume for his simplicity and modern day observations. But my style is not at unique, it is how you apply it and with what idea and subject, that helps it stand alone.

Q - What piece of machinery or tool could you not live without?

A - imac

Q - Besides the products you sell at The Red Door is there anything else that you make?

A - I have currently designed a series of pocket sketch books, decorative parcel tape, veneer bookmarks and further editions of screen prints for one-man shows in Bristol this coming September at Centrespace and The OXO Tower, London in January 2011.

Q - You recently took part in ‘The Poundshop’, a London based pop-up boutique selling excellent products for a pound. Can you tell us more about it and what you produced?

A - I was invited to sell hand made products by the ‘Poundshop’ team, which could only retail at £1.0. Additionally the item should have been economic to produce. I opted for postcards that were formerly cardboard boxes and packaging etc found about my home that I would usually recycle or throw away. Four designs of ‘calling cards’ that could be sent out i viting people to join in with an event - be it a picnic with friends or a Friday night cocktail. All designs were screen-printed.

Q - What are you working on at the moment?

A - An exclusive, limited edition series of tree prints for the Old Sweet Shop Gallery in Southfields, London. They have invited me to recolour/remix a select nine existing prints in candy colours promoted as ‘The Old Sweet Shop Mix’.

Q - What do you do when you’re not working? Can you switch off? How do you unwind?

A - It is difficult to switch off when you are involved in something that is your main interest. Your weeks are your weekends and bank holidays are all of the time. As a sole trader traveling, eating out and playing with my three beautiful nieces all help to distract me plus I have just bought a kayak, so hopefully that will get me out and off the subject.

Q - What’s your favourite pastime?

A - Cooking for family and friends.

Q - What do you like least about being a designer? Any occupational hazards?

A - There isn’t a lot I dislike but I guess if I had to choose one it would be preparing my tax assessment each year, it’s important but it keeps me from creating.

Q - What do you like the most about being a designer?

A - Receiving compliments from happy customers.

Q - What’s your favourite possession? This can be anything!

A - It would have to be a black and white photograph of my Mother taken in the 50s while she was on a picnic in the Peak District, near Matlock Derbyshire, with a huge sunny smile.

Q - What advice would you offer to other creative’s?

A - Do not let anything get in the way of an idea and its completion. All work finished helps develop a style and keeps you interested and everyone else, be they customers, retailers or simply followers of your work. Plus, if your work has commercial appeal, then a bigger portfolio of products will help you maintain a living and try to lead and not follow the pack or market.

Q - Who else’s work do you love? Any artists/makers/friends/galleries/websites you’d like to share.












All photography copyright Paul Farrell 2010. Photographs top to bottom: Paul Farrell painting The Old Sweet Shop gallery mural in London, 'Last Stand' Kelston Hill in Bath Print, The Birds & The Trees Exhibition, Foil-blocked Printed Bird Cards, A Murder of Crows Vinyl Decal, Field Notes, Recycled Travel Mugs, Christmas Card, Carrier Pigeon Tote Bag, Tree Badge Set, Bird Badge Set, Parcel Tape, The Poundshop, Calling Cards, 'Pigeon Grey' Print, Limited Tree Prints featured in May 2010's issue of Living Etc.

Monday, 21 June 2010

Amazing video and track from Ok Go. Clever, colourful and witty. Enjoy!

Saturday, 19 June 2010

Put a smile on your Dad's face tomorrow with these wonderful cards by the hugely talented sunlight on closed lids!

Friday, 18 June 2010

TXT ISLAND : shortfilm by chrisgavin from Chris Gavin on Vimeo. We found this via Present and Correct (thanks Neal) and couldn't resist sharing it with you. Enjoy.

Eeek... I almost forgot it's father's day on Sunday. Thank goodness we have lots of super cards and prezzies here to choose from, which meant I just got my dad a wide angle pin hole camera kit. It's craftily flat packed so it can pop through the letter box. Don't yo just love when a plan comes together. And, bargain at only £20... heck... I hope he dosn't read this... sorry pa!

A lot of chitter chatter behind our Red Doors is about our second favorite subject... cake. A couple of weeks back one of our lovely Canadian customers picked up on our (healthy) obsession and said she would drop us a link to a website that no self respecting cake lover could live without, and how right she was! Bakerella is packed full of baking tips and recipes like the one above - looks like a burger, tastes like a cake... the best veggie burger I've ever seen. If this has you licking you lips then I give you fair warning... don't click here until you have a spare hour or so to get lost in Cakey heaven... look out for the Cake Pops too... so much more fun than a lollypop... Thanks Kim!

Thursday, 17 June 2010

Seymour, 'The Adventures of an Antiquitarian' is hanging on the shop walls and looking amazing. Above are a few images of some of the work; from top to bottom:

A collection of 28 original ink drawings framed - £85 each
'Arthur Bazaljet' sculpture - £320
'Dick Van Winkles Time Machine' sculpture - £200

The Tourist Lane - awesome!

The 2010 Edinburgh film festival opened yesterday with 'The Illusionist', Sylvain Chomets, latest film which is set in Edinburgh during the 1950s and described as 'cheeky, boisterous and witty'. What a perfect film choice to open to the worlds oldest film festival, and one surely to set the tone for another stunning lineup for the weeks to come. Check out the EIFF website for all the great listings.

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Its always fun opening new parcels, especially when there is something new to The Red Door enclosed. Todays surprises were gorgeous necklaces, brooches and kits from LOVE by Geneine Honey which we think are just about the cutest things we have seen for some time.

Friday, 11 June 2010

This Monday at The Red Door, a brand new collection of work from Seymour (aka Arthur Bazaljet) titled 'The Adventure of an Antiquitarian' opens for us all to see. Twenty five original ink drawings, sculptures and prints will not only document the exploration of Arthur Bazaljet (see four posts below for explanation) but also show us how much this amazing artist has to offer.
We won't be holding an official private view for this show, but will be offering interested customers the chance to have images emailed directly to them for first picks before we open the work to the public. If you are interested in receiving these, please flick us an email.

Just posted today by Edinburgh based video productions company Foundlight (and a fine job they do too), is an edit of the recent Johanna Basford Edinburgh Fringe Festival cover project. This is worth taking a peek at since it makes this years cover seem even better. Check out the snippet of The Red Door thrown into the mix. Love it!

Wednesday, 9 June 2010

Look look! Its a lovely badge from our new friend Lovey Pigeon! This delightful fan-tailed birdie is pretty to look at and a bargain at only £12. Each of her badges is drawn by hand... yes by hand... so each little chappy is truly unique and has a little personality of his (or her) own. To keep things even more fresh, Lovely Pigeon has a couple of other classy creatures making their homes here with us, in the form of a cheeky stag head and another cute birdie... but your just going to have to come and visit them in store as they are a little camera shy! Lovely Pigeon is the Design Studio of Kirsty Thomas, based in Cellerdyke, Fife and we look forward to seeing more vintage inspired works from her soon... if your in the area between 12th and 13th June her East Neuk Studios is having an open day.... so pop along from 10.30am-6.00pm to catch the Lovely Pigeon live!

Monday, 7 June 2010

TWEET TWEET......................................................................


Give your feathered friends a classy new home with this foldable birdhouse. You can customise it to your hearts content, it's easy to assemble and water repellent too! Grab one in store or online today.

Friday, 4 June 2010

We are pretty excited about the up and coming solo show, 'The Adventures of an Antiquitarian' by Seymour which opens here at The Red Door on June 14th. Its a very special show of original ink drawings based on his latest character, 'Arthur Bazaljet'. Below you will find a blurb about the show which looks set to be stunning. More post to follow on this show next week.


Arthur Bazaljet, like his father, his father's father and many more generations before, is an antiquitarian. This is not just a professional title, but the process of seeking, exploring, finding and collecting, which is a skill that has grown stronger in each Bazaljet as it has passed down the family line.

Bazaljets current Voyage is his boldest and most ambitious to date, spanning over many years, lands and oceans. With his trusty companion Otto Heinz Vanderpaw (and Murray the stool pigeon), Bazaljet has dedicated his life to discovery. Each find, some few and far between, is carefully observed and documented for recording and cross-referencing purposes.

Bazaljet has agreed to show some of his most interesting and important finds as a series of detailed original sketches at The Red Door Gallery between June 14th and July 14th, from a project that will probably last his lifetime.

Thursday, 3 June 2010

A new artist joined The Red Door ranks this week. Lindsay Grime, illustrator extraordinaire has supplied us with a fine bunch of earrings and brooches for you all the enjoy.

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

We are thrilled that the wonderful Elsie Dodds will be making her way down to London for this years PULSE trade show so she can show off her amazing range of playful cushions. We have been lucky not only to have a selection of cushions in store for some time, but also to have Elsie Dodds designer, Catherine, as part of our team. We hope that some of you can make it to Earls Court from June 6-8 (stand LP84) to see this talented designer in action and wish her all the success in the world!