Tuesday, 27 September 2011

London Design Festival 2011

As many of you may know, last week was London Design Festival 2011, a celebration of London's buzzing and ever expanding design scene. Not ones to miss a trick Yawn chose Fridays event, hosted by GraphicBirdWatching, to get involved. The event was a 'Graphic design walk' through East London's studios. On the day 15 studios opened their doors to ticket holders giving us the opportunity to nosey around the natural environments of Graphic designers, illustrators and boutique agencies allowing us to get a feel for how they approach their work. The additional bonus to the day was that it was comprised of purely female designers - hence 'GraphicBirdWatching' - Great name, great idea.

 The day proved a big success and talking to other industry professionals and comparing notes on styles and varying ways of attacking briefs is always very profitable and enjoyable. Plus the areas we walked through (Bethnal Green, Hackney and Tower Hamlets) had so much cool stuff going on that it would inspire even the blandest of people. During the course of the day we met lots of different designers and interacted with heaps and heaps of high quality and diverse design. As we did so we photographed the different designers in their studios. Check out our personal favourites...

Mia Wallenius 

Mia Wallenius is an Art director and designer, she founded a design studio together with a artist Klaus Haapaniemi in 2010. Their design approach is influenced by nature, Finnish folklore, fantasy and traditional decorative arts with a modern twist. They create furniture, home textiles, fashion and books. We found her studio very interesting as it was a wash with a vast array of intricately detailed designs.. spanning across all types of canvas from cushions to tea pots. Really cool stuff and a very nice lady too.

Above is a photo we took on our visit to her studio.. Mia stands in amongst her work. On the left are some examples of some her fantastical and detailed prints.

To see more of her work go to http://www.klaush.com/.

Rosalie Pryor

Rosalie is an illustrator with an original and organic style. It is this originality that has led her to having her work in publications such as Jamie Oliver, Stella, Stylist, Esquire, Time Out, Red or the Guardian... a formidable list.
Her work is hand painted and she draws influence from fine art, food, fashion and the every day details of London life. Yawn found her to be a lovely lady and her studio an interesting space.

Having completed illustrating her first food book Rosalie has just launched a new (very nice) websitewww.rosaliepryor.co.uk. We definitely recommend you take a look for plenty of refreshing illustrations.


April was found in 2009 by Lisa Sjukur and Joana Niemeyer. It is a multi-disciplinary design company working with clients from all sectors and from all over the world. Their projects have included books, magazines, identities, exhibition graphics and new media projects. We found these guys really interesting due to the content of their work, most notably a publication they are about to release called The Inspirational Moustache. We enjoyed hearing about this project not only for its amusing concept but also as it was beautifully well executed. Just a few names for moustaches that amused us... Nose neighbour, soup strainer and lip tickler. To check out more work from April go to www.studio-april.com, we suggest you do as they have mountains of brilliant projects to boast of. Also keep your eyes peeled for the release of 'The Inspirational Moustache'... its going to be a goodun.


Above is Rosa Powloski of 'Them", who treated us to a very insightful and interesting talk when we went to visit their offices on Friday. Founded in 2007, Them are an award winning creative agency with a passion for social innovation. They combine many years of creative, commercial and technical experience with fresh ideas and a social conscience. Them are lucky enough to be housed in a very cool office which must be a perfect for generating creative ideas. On that note Yawn are going to steal their on the wall bike rack idea...(see above). According to London Design Festival "Every brief, large and small is approached with equal vigor and creative is artfully crafted to generate results. They have a rich portfolio across print, web, film, exhibition and signage. Their eclectic client base has grown steadily through loyalty and recommendation"..... well said. Check them out at www.them.co.uk. THEY. ARE. COOL. 


 All in all Yawn took alot away from the event and would recommend it to anyone with any form of interest in design.

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