Thursday, 15 May 2014
For those of you who follow on me on any social media sites you've probably noticed me going on and on about my involvement in this film. Back in 2012 when I first received the email from Pete and Gruff asking if I'd be interested on working on this project I jumped at the chance. I've worked with Pete before and he's always a joy to collaborate with. His designs translate perfectly to felt. I'm also a huge fan of The Super Furry Animals and all of Gruff Rhys' solo work so it was a dream job.
There are no images of John Evans in existence so Pete and Gruff had to do some research and figure out what he might have looked like. I met up with Pete in Foyles' Cafe and a folder was handed over containing Pete's design of John Evans. Over the next couple of weeks I created John Evans in felt. He stands over 3ft tall. He was packaged up in a box (with air holes!) and posted to Cardiff.
After that I didn't see him for almost a year while he followed in the footsteps of his real life namesake. It was exciting to get various bulletins showing me his progress through the American interior. He has been home to visit once or twice for some much needed TLC and I must say he had much more experience behind the shiny plastic eyes than he did when he first left. I've even had friends calling round, while he was here, to have their photo taken with the film star!
Since then I've seen him up a mountain in a purpose built shrine designed by Pete Fowler (including hand appliqued flags I made from Pete's designs), in magazines, in an app, in a music video, on the front of an album cover and on the big screen. We went to the premiere in Cardiff a few weeks ago. This was the first time I had seen the film. I was blown away. It's an amazing story beautifully told (directed Dyl Goch, beautifully shot by Ryan Owen Eddleston, produced by Catryn Ramasut). I found the whole experience quite emotional. If it's in a cinema near you please go and see for yourself. You won't be disappointed. Also buy the album, read the book, download the app!
I'd like to thank Pete, Gruff, Cat and Dyl for letting me be part of such an amazing project. Diolch!
Monday, 16 December 2013
IHere is a selection of photos from our exhibition at Wales Millennium Centre, it's on until January 5th so there is still time to go visit (and give The Hugger a hug) Apart from the three oversized pieces, which now belong to the Centre (the Queen, The Hugger and the Storyteller) all artwork is for sale and can be purchased thought the Milllennium Centre (they are also elligible for the Arts Council Wales collectors plan, 0% finance) All the paintings Jonathan produced can be viewed here and his blog post about the show is here.
StridersThe striders stride across bringing with them the winter weather and monitoring the progress of the frost and snow. They report back to the Snow Queen. Striders grow from the feet up. Strider children can be tiny but with gigantic feet which makes Strider nurseries extremely noisy places to be.
The Hiber-Nation QueenOnce the Striders have cleared the way the Hiber-Nation Queen travels the land bringing with her frost, ice and snow. She is accompanied on her annual journey by Ffrinton her faithful frost fox.
Trunk & LogginsTrunk and Loggins are the two main members of the woodland quiz team, The Tree of Knowledge. Winters are spent revising obscure trivia and testing each other's knowledge for future quiz tournaments. They are based in the countryside surrounding Cardiff as they like to be close to the Only Connect studio.
Myfi SnarkFashion correspondent for the Hiber-Nation Times, Myfi divides her time between the frosted pathways of the Welsh woodlands and red carpets events worldwide.
The StorytellerThe storyteller is responsible for teaching the young ones the ways of the Hiber-Nation. Sometimes it's the history of prominent HIber-Nationals, sometimes it's advice on buying knitwear. Occasionally it's an anecdote about what happened to him at the post office that morning or a recipe for stew. You never know what you're going to get.
The TwinsFrib and Drib (the Prib twins) are never apart. They appear like clockwork every winter and work their magic on the landscape. They enjoy placing frosted mittens on gateposts and shaking a snowy branch just as you're walking below it.
Mai Ffrai & Bonto KringMai Frai, lead singer with all-girl rock band "The Hiber-Nations". A darling of the music press she was rocketed to worldwide stardom after the success of their single "Bringing Secsi, Bach!".
Bonto, currently in a relationship with Mai Ffrai, is the guitarist with woodland math-rock band, Cwadratig. Recently photographed, alongside Mai, by Snapper Duvall for a spread in Cwmbran Vogue.
Fernando MulchFernando enjoys reclining in piles of decomposing leaves with his feet up. His parents were Abba fans from Abermaw hence his unusual first name. His sister, Chiquitita, works in a call centre in Newport and often visits the woods for Sunday lunch.
The PoetInspired by the wintery weather Ferris appears ever year at the first sign of frost. Found sitting on his own in the woods he can be heard reading aloud from one of his many books of poetry.
Ffrimp, Dybol, Grwblyn, Plwc and Moslyn are the current group of youngsters listening to the the Storyteller.
PondtificatorsThe Pondtificators appear from lakes and ponds during the winter months providing essential advice which ranges from household repairs to the best way to remove a red wine stain from a sheepskin rug. During the rest of the year they stay in their underwater lair watching Cadfael DVD box sets and eating waterlogged Battenburg cake.
Idris GrimpProfessor Idris Grimp is a keen entomologist and a visiting lecturer at St Grunk's University. He travels the word collecting unusual specimens for his collection and brings them home to Wales where they're displayed in his converted Yew tree. One day he plans to launch his own signature pipe tobacco.
MupsiMupsi is the youngest of the Hiber-Nation characters appearing at the Centre. She enjoys colouring in, unicorns and colouring in unicorns.
If you visit the Centre and get a hug from The Hugger please post your photos with the hashtag #yeticwtsh It's great to see everyone's hug photos. I was a bit disturbed by how squashed his poor feet were getting but after watching some tiny toddlers just smiling at him then collapsing on top of his furry feet I think it's worth it. He's certainly loved :)
Thursday, 31 October 2013
At last I can reveal what we have been working on for the last few months. Our biggest show to date and our first in Wales - The Hiber-Nation at the Wales Millennium Centre in Cardiff. The show opens on Friday the 6th of December with the launch night on Thursday the 5th (6-8pm). Everybody's welcome! We have produced over 50 new pieces for the show including some giant oversized characters (over 8ft tall!) one of which you can get a furry hug from. I'm really excited to announce that the musical guests for the launch night are Gulp!
Here's the official press release -
Mystical Welsh creatures to take up winter residence at Wales Millennium Centre
Seeking refuge from the harsh Welsh winter, The Hiber-Nation will be descending on Wales Millennium Centre this December. Hand-crafted by the inimitable Felt Mistress out of new and vintage fabrics including tweed, wool and flannel from Welsh mills, the band of quirky, colourful creatures are soon to be found huddled in stairwells and suspended from ceilings around the Centre.
Louise Evans, alias Felt Mistress, has crafted over 20 x 3D pieces for the exhibition, including 3 x 8-10ft works: a snow queen, a huggable yeti and a woodland guru.
The inspiration behind the 3D creatures lies in the striking illustrations created by Jonathan Edwards, Louise’s partner and a regular illustrator for the Guardian newspaper. Around 30 of Jonathan’s original works, – a collection of watercolours, acrylics and ink drawings - depicting the characters and the landscape they inhabit,will also be on display during the exhibition. Video content introducing the characters will also be presented on the Centre’s projection wall.
From her studio in North Wales, Felt Mistress has created a legion of felt characters for the best part of a decade. While both her work and Jonathan’s has been exhibited all over the world in cities including Osaka, Los Angeles, Berlin and London, The Hiber-Nation exhibition is to be the Welsh-born couple’s first in their homeland. In 2010, the couple presented a Christmas window display at Selfridge’s iconic Oxford Street store.
Louise Evans originally trained in fashion design and millinery and has brought many of the skills learnt through years of work as a couture dress maker to the world of character design. As well as original Felt Mistresscharacters, Louise has collaborated with a variety of artists including Jon Burgerman, Ben Newman and PeteFowler. A 400 page retrospective of her work, "Creature Couture - the Art of Felt Mistress" was published in December 2012.
Along with providing illustrations for the Guardian, Jonathan Edwards has produced illustrations and comic strips for magazines and publishers around the world. His artwork also appears on the covers of records by artists such as The Black Eyed Peas and The Jungle Brothers.
Louise Miles-Crust, Head of Programming, said: 'We're very excited to be bringing the work of Felt Mistressand Jonathan Edwards to the Centre this Christmas. Their work is both visually stunning and fun, so we hope that art lovers and families alike will enjoy the exhibition. It’s also great that we can host the homecoming exhibition for the talented Welsh duo and display some of the truly unique and exciting art and design work to be coming out of Wales.'
Felt Mistress will also be offering a free workshop on Saturday 14 December from 2.45pm to 4.45pm where participants will be able to make their own felt creatures - the perfect Christmas gifts. Booking is required as spaces are limited.
The exhibition will open on Friday 6 December, with an open-to-all launch party on Thursday 5 December 6pm-8pm, with live music from the band Gulp. The exhibition closes on Sunday 5 January 2014.
Friday, 23 August 2013
This is my tribute to Amy Winehouse for the Amy Winehouse Foundation. I was honoured to be asked to contribute to the fundraisers and events for what would have been Amy's 30th birthday.
"The Amy Winehouse Foundation works to prevent the effects of drug and alcohol misuse on young people. We also aim to support, inform and inspire vulnerable and disadvantaged young people to help them reach their full potential." More information about the good work they do can be found HERE.
This piece (approx 120cm tall) will be displayed in the window of the Camden Pop Up shop and then auctioned for the charity.
Follow @amysfoundation on Twitter for updates and on Facebook HERE.
Monday, 15 July 2013
Made for Nautical Nonsense a Spongebob tribute show at Gallery Nucleus in association with Nickelodeon.
With this piece I wanted to try and heal the rift between the former friends - Mr Krabs and Plankton. Consider it a felt intervention. Details about the show here
This piece measures 29 inches tall. Any sale enquiries please contact Gallery Nucleus.
Friday, 24 May 2013
I am doing another workshop at Foyles next month (Sun 23rd June) Tickets are now on sale (places are ltd) Visit Foyles here for more details and to book tickets. The workshop is open to all skill levels and children are welcome if accompanied by an adult. See you there! :)
- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad
- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad