Tag Archives: entomology

Screen Print

17 Jan

Here are a couple of pics of a screen print I have had made for my Helen Ward Studio project.
The print will be available soon through my new shop on notonthehighstreet.com – YAY!

Helen Ward Studio

25 Nov

Just when you thought I’d been sat around on my bum twiddling my thumbs for the last few weeks…
…turns out I’ve actually been working like a loon on secret shenanigans!

This project has been a looooong time in the making. As you my or may not know, I work as a freelance graphic designer and illustrator and I specialise in developing homewares and giftware for mass-market major retailers such as WH Smith, Sainsburys etc. etc.. I have been designing for this sector for  several years now and over the last few months, it has become increasingly apparent that I need to pick up the pace a bit and start designing some stuff for myself rather than other people the whole time. Cue Helen Ward Studio – my new brand name that I am going to use for my own new range of product and surface pattern design!

I have just developed one collection of patterns for this so far, which I am filing under the name ‘Entomology’. It seemed to be a sensible progression to work along this theme, as some people will already recognise my name from my artwork. I intend to develop more collections in the near future that will build to create a full compliment of design work to be used over a  spectrum of homeware and gift products.
I have had samples made of this new ‘Entomology’ range so I could do a bit of market research during the arts trail. The initial response for this seems to have been very positive, so I am really pleased about that! 🙂


This picture shows the display I had for the Arts Trail of the Entomology range. A full list of all the product samples I had made are:

  • Cushions – in three designs
  • Lampshades – two sizes in two designs
  • Greetings cards – sold separately and in packs of 8
  • Tea Towels – in four designs
  • Ceramic Mugs – in two designs
  • Pocket Mirrors – in 5 designs
  • Melamine trays – in 2 designs
  • Screen Print – as a limited edition of 100

I had planned to have a couple of other products than this too, but I nearly lost my marbles just trying to get this lot sorted on time. I never knew how difficult it would be to get things like this produced – it took me WEEKS to get this far! I guess the main problem was that I am having to fund this myself, so I only wanted to have things produced in very small quantities. Anyhoo – it all came good in the end and I am really  glad that I persevered with it.

Here are some more details:


greetings cards


ceramic mugs


tea towels


pocket mirrors

I am trying to decide my next move with all this now.
It would be really really great to hear any feedback anyone may have about it all so far – thanks!

Front Room: Totterdown Arts Trail 2010

12 Nov

Whoa there! – is it that time of year again already??

Our house will be open next weekend for the Totterdown Arts Trail  (v. exciting!) – would be great if you can make it along!

Amsterdam AAF 2010

29 Oct

Just a quick note to say that I will be exhibiting work at the Affordable Arts Fair in Amsterdam this weekend – from the 28th-31st October – Get a load of me!

More info on the show can be found here.

A couple of new commissions…

13 Aug

Just thought I’d post up these pics of a couple of new commissions I have done.

The first is for a lady who had specifically asked for something using browns and golds with an oak frame. Nice 🙂

The second was made in an original old Victorian entomology case. It has quite a different feel to it than the first one – but I reckon this one’s a winner too – hurray!

I’d like to do some more pieces in old entomology cases. The have such a nice feel to them and I really love the stained paper in the background. I picked this one up on ebay a while ago and haven’t been able to find any more since.

Any ideas on finding any more, anyone?

Commission O’Clock

8 Oct

In the interests of cutting things ridiculously fine, I agreed to take on a commission for some artwork last week. Here is the finished piece, fresh back from the framers:

I am really pleased with it – sometimes it’s so great to get a commission on the go as it’s a good chance to do something a bit different that you perhaps wouldn’t have thought of before…

This client wanted something that would look good in her living room, so she brought me round a sample of fabric from her Marimekko curtains which look like this and we talked about how she has a few things that are covered in gold leaf.

All the butterflies are colours to match in with the curtains and I added in one large butterfly in gold leaf for good measure – lovely!

Entomology Commission

18 Jun

Here are some pics of a commission I finished recently for super-ace Bristol artist Kathryn Thomas.

Katheryn got in touch with me through the recent Nature’s Way exhibition I did at the Grant Bradley Gallery in Bristol. She wanted a piece specially made for her then fiance as a surprise wedding present. It was a fantastic brief to work on – Katheryn wanted me to use images of her own paintings and a couple of little love notes that her man had written for her within the piece.

I scaled up images of her paintings to appropriate sizes and then had these printed out onto pearlescent paper. Then I scanned in the love notes she had and printed the text from these out onto tracing paper. Then I cut everything up and fixed it all into place in a specially made box frame.

I was really pleased to see the finished results and (thankfully) Husband and Wife were both really stoked with the piece too. It was really interesting for me to see this idea that I have been working on for some time now moved on to the next level using the new subject matters. The images of the paintings seemed to really lend themselves to this new format – which was fantastic considering how delicate all these tiny pieces are and how massive the original paintings are! The pearlescent papers really made the colours of the paintings shine out and they were a great contrast with the very flat looking tracing paper pieces.

– Hurrah!

I am the weener!!

9 Jun

Much joy and celebration was to be had (very soberly) on Friday evening as my entry for the Grafikea competition in this year’s Bristol Design Festival bagged the first blummin’ prize!!

So sure was I that I would not be winning this competition, I missed the awards ceremony due to being at home trying to squeeze my ever expanding form into a variety of different outfits – D’OH! I got a call from a friend to say that I had won whilst I was in the car on my way to the event. I couldn’t believe it!

I was greeted on arrival to the design festival by a lovely trophy and a massive cheque!! (cheque was for £250 – but it was one of those massive ones like you see on telly – cooool!) Official photos were taken which I will post up on here as soon as I get them and I also did a quick ipadio phonecast interview which you can listen to here.

Here are some pics I took with my phone of my entry:

And this is a pic of my favourite entry entitled “Bristol Apple”:

Like a goon, I didn’t make a note of who this table was by – I can remember that his name was Olly. I had wanted to buy it, but some other punter came in and snapped it up before I had time to decide! Props to you Olly – it was super-cool!

For more info about the Grafikea competition and some more pics of the different entries, have a look-see here.

Everything’s going to be all white…

9 Mar

I have been asked to participate in an exhibition about the natural world at the Grant Bradley Gallery in Bristol next month (hurrah!). There are quite a few new plans afoot for my paper entomology artwork at the moment, so for this exhibit, I have decided to do something a bit different…

Here’s a couple of pics as a taster. Hopefully they should look great in white frames up against the white walls of the gallery.

More details on the exhibition to follow.

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