Tagged: Creative communities

foxes, lions, owls and frogs – Sketchbook Peek 22

It’s been quiet over here on the blog, I’ve been finishing up on a couple of projects and secretly moving into my new studio space!

The Old town Bloom community project I’ve been working on  came to an end on Tuesday with a grand reopening of a garden space on our local high street. Take a look at some images here if you’re interested.

Chilling out under a gazebo at the garden opening one of my fellow Hazlehurst artists, Carys, taught me to knit so I could take part in her Knit a Year community project. At one point  Carys nipped off, leaving me unattended with a pair of knitting needles and a load of wool!

Presumably after seeing my puzzled face two random ladies at the event wandered over  and  began to give me pointers and advice. I’m pretty hooked on knitting for this project and I have knitted for the past 4 days as part of the Knit a Year project. I’m even planning a Harry Potter Scarf!

After all that knitting excitement the rest of the week has been dedicated to finishing off  props for Just So Festival, which is next weekend!  Here are a few shots and quick planning sketches.

Frog  - Hayley Holden weekly sketchbook series at www.hayjayoh.wordpress.com

Go Frogs! slightly angry frogs..


Wild Rumpus Flag  - Hayley Holden weekly sketchbook series at www.hayjayoh.wordpress.com

Just So school spirit flag.

Have you been doing arty things? Share them with #SketchbookSunday



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Art Tins for Old Town Bloom – Sketchbook peek 19

This morning I hastily did some  pizza base printmaking for a workshop with some children at The Lady Lever Art Gallery in Port Sunlight.

We created tins inspired by the Chinese collection in the gallery for Hazlehurst’s  current  community project, Old Town Bloom, Have a read about it.

Old town bloom - Hayley Holden weekly sketchbook series at www.hayjayoh.wordpress.com


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Train Doodles – Sketchbook Peek 16

I’m back with a few little commuting sketches from the week. I’ve been pretty lax on the drawing recently so I’ve  decided to attempt to draw everyday for a while. I don’t want to give myself an end date I’m just gunna go with the flow, you know.




Have you been doing arty things? Share them with #SketchbookSunday



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Painterly Postcards- Sketchbook Peek 11

I’ve had a pretty busy week. I’ve been to the zoo and decided to take on a daily blogging challenge.

So if you’re wondering why I’ve been popping up in your news feeds more often that’s why! I am only slightly regretting it now, but I’m also feeling inspired which is a dubious combination. I know we’re only 4 days into May but I‘ve managed to blog everyday, the real challenge is next week I suppose!

Take a look at my posts so far there’s one about my blog and the challenge, one about my creative process and one about how to be inspired by art.

I’ll leave you with some paintings I’ve done this week for some postcards which I’ll be finishing and sending off pretty sharpish.

painterly postccards- Hayley Holden weekly sketchbook series at www.hayjayoh.wordpress.com painterly postccards- Hayley Holden weekly sketchbook series at www.hayjayoh.wordpress.com

Have you done anything arty this week? What have you been drawing?! You should show me with #SketchbookSunday on twitter and Instagram.

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How To Be Inspired By Other Artists

I’m sharing some of my favourite well-known artists, I come back to these artists for inspiration all the time and study how they artists manipulate shapes, texture and colour. All though it doesn’t sound it, it’s a very inspiring process. Sometimes I even attempt to create work in the same style like an old school apprentice would.

Gustav Klimt

Probably the most well-known on my list. Klimt is the first artist I remember being aware of as a child and I always seem to come back to his work. He used shapes and pattern brilliantly, combining them in interesting ways which is also IMHO the pinnacle of good surface design.

Raoul Duffy

My natural illustration style is similar Duffy’s. I like using rough shapes and overlaying line work create detail and interest within the illustration.

Günther Förg

A new addition to my influencers I’ve recently been creating more art  inspired by Förg. I’m playing around with colour combinations, texture and white space. Förg’s composition is spot on and has a lot of balance

Bruce Gray

Gray’s work is a kaleidoscope of colour and shapes. I’m inspired by his bold colour combinations. Colour palettes are something I’m always working on.

Want To Be Inspired? Heres How!

  • Find your fave pieces of art either on the internet, in galleries, books, postcards.
  • To find more artists similar to your style google something like “Famous artists that use _____ in their work” or “Art movements with ________”
  • Really look at the pieces you’ve chosen, zoom in on the details. Make notes, sketches, copy their work (but obviously don’t claim it as your own)
  • What did you notice? Apply this to your own work.
  • Use this process periodically


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Blog Every Day in May #BEDM

Today I’m starting a new challenge.

This has been a slightly rash decision, but I like challenges.

Along with around 100 others I’m going to attempt to blog every day in May as part of Elizabeth Sellers #BEDM challenge.
Don’t worry, you’ve still got a couple of hours to bash out a post and sign up over at Rosalilium! Even if you don’t want to sign up check out some of the great blog post ideas.  I’m probably going to deviate from the topics quite a lot but hopefully I’ll make it to the end of the month! It’s all in the planning, right?

Today’s prompt is to introduce your blog to the blogging community.

This blog  started out in  a narcissistic manner really! I wanted to share my patterns on a deeper level vom  with more context and to feel ok about exploring ideas around my work and surface design.

I got (slightly) more serious about blogging in December 2013 and since then I’ve been blogging weekly.

This narcissistic pursuit has turned into an inspiring place. Some of my “real life” friends have told me they are inspired to draw because of my weekly #SketchbookSunday posts, which is amazing to hear!

Hayley Holden Floral Sketches

Click the image to take a look at my in my Sketchbook

My blog is still young-ish and I’m developing new ideas for posts, this challenge should push my brain a bit. For the next 30 days I plan on sharing all kinds of interesting, insightful things, but I’ll need your help along the way.

What would you like to know? Any burning questions about Hayjayoh, Surface design, Creativity, The web, Tech? Leave a comment or ping me an email



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Surface Design Guide Favourites

About a month or so ago I found out that I got featured in the 2014 Uppercase Surface Pattern Design Guide. I wrote an entire post about it, which has a sneaky little discount code for Uppercase Subscriptions so click on through!

Anyway the issue has hit shelves worldwide (I picked mine up from Tate Liverpool). I’m so happy with the patterns that Uppercase picked from my 8 submissions, they showcase my style perfectly.


Patterns Featured in Uppercsae #21 – Click through to visit my portfolio

In the Surface Pattern Design Guide there are 100 designers featured, of course surface design being a niche industry, there are a lot of names I recognised. I’m already guilty of drooling over their portfolios.

I came across a  few  new-to-me designers so I thought I’d put together a  little roundup of  some of my favorites from the guide. Click the images to see each designer’s portfolio.


Dinara Mirtalipova

Agnes Schugardt

Agnes Schugardt


Iza Pearl


Macrina Busato

Fabric Drawer

Fabric Drawer


Ellie Fidler

If you want more surface deign inspiration goodness you can check out my roundup of the Tropical Bloghop from January 2014. Oh, and I also made a pinterest board of  the designers featured in the issue, cause I’m nice like that. Check it out and have a look at some more tasty patterns!

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Sketchbook Peek 6

I’ve almost finished my floral project, which I’ve aptly titled “Darkly Dreaming Florals” in homage to Dexter (I love a little cultural reference).  I’m  now starting to pull together a geometric project, so I thought I’d share something a bit different, my development sketchbook.

I generally have two sketchbooks running along side each other for each project, one purely for sketching & the other for theme experimentation, ideas and digital development

At the moment the projects called “Slightly-African-textiles-inspired-geometrics“, not too catchy.

Feel free to chime in if you can think of an awesome project name


Sketchbook GIF

I also did an interview with the wonderful Charlotte Rose about my creative process this week go check it out!

What have you been working on this week?  I want to see it! Share with me on FB, Twitter & Intagram with #SketchbookSunday

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Sketchbook Peek 5

Good morning, Happy Sunday!

I’ve had a bit of a flat week and haven’t gotten too much drawing done so I’ve added a couple of images from sketchbooks that are half filled and floating about my bedroom. It’s really fun to look back at your old sketchbooks to inspire yourself and see how much your style has changed.  My drawing style has changed this year, but it still feels like me (cheeese).


I bought a water brush this week, I don’t know how I’ve never used one before, they are just amazing.


My pops picked some daffodils & I couldn’t resist adding a little springtime to my sketchbook


You may not realise this, but I really hated drawing flowers 6 months ago. Heres some floral drawings I did around November 2012


I’ve been inspired by geometrics recently, here’s a lino print I made back in January at a print workshop (read about the workshop here if you missed it). I’m thinking of creating a digital version.


I’ve completely  forgotten I  made this. It’s the early stages of a layout of a pattern I was creating. I love photocopying.

Sundays happens once a week, so does #SketcbookSunday.

I’d love to see your sketchbooks get involved on Twitter or Instagram with #SketchbookSunday remember to tweet them at me at @HayJayOh or @HeroHales

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Surface Patttern Design Guide Feature

Exciting news! A magazine feature!

I’m really excited to share this news with you all!  I’m featured in Uppercase Magazine’s Surface Design Guide along with 99 other awesome pattern enthusiasts in Issue #21 out in April!

Uppercase is a creative, independent Magazine stocked all over the world, you can even pick up a copy from The Tate.

The ultimate cherry on the top though, is that this guide is only going to be distributed at Surtex! The Surtex show in NYC OMG! This is a  huge step in the right direction for me and Hay Jay Oh for awareness of my designs and opportunities


One of my prints had a quick début in  the preview video for the guide, which is a fun little video with Uppercase’s top tips on “How to stand out in Surface Design.” My purple textured print is on your screen at 4:32 in the “Don’t be afraid” section

Of course a massive Thank you to Janine Vangool for including me in the feature. I love how Upppercase engage with the creative community and that the magazine is mostly made possible by its readers.

So Lovely readers, I have a special discount code for you which is good for $15 off the subscription price. Just use ‘USPDG2014’ at the checkout.

Subscribe to Uppercase

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An Arts Participation Volunteer’s Diary

I volunteer at one of the most historic galleries in Liverpool, The Bluecoat. It is an early 18th century building that has a long history of housing artists and enabling creativity. I volunteer with the participation team, mainly with The Blue Room Project a service that helps adults with learning disabilities respond to current exhibitions & events at The Bluecoat. If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram you may have noticed me putting a lot of Bluecoat related stuff out there into the internet recently and quite possibly looking like I never leave the place. But that’s not just because it’s a great organisation which you should totally visit, there’s been loads of things going on. I thought I would give you a bit of context and maybe encourage you to get involved and volunteer with a local charity

Thursday 30th: Blue Room Thursday is my day with the Blue Room group, we were making props for a Stig of the Dump Read-a-thon event being held at The Bluecoat. I lead Team Camp Fire! I got our small team into the garden and we collected branches for our faux fire hayjayoh-team-camp-fire

Friday 31st: Art Valley Celebration On Friday I helped with finishing touches of The Art Valley exhibition which involved running about, moving stuff and taping wires down. I also got to run a craft table were we created sand paintings of flowers and leaves inspired by the current exhibition, Soft Estates. We had a lot of keen children who wanted to play with the sand, I’ve no idea how this happened but I’m still finding sand in my hair and bed?! Hayjayoh- Art Valley Celebration

Saturday 1st: Stig of the Dump Read-a-thon Being an all round good egg I offered to help set up the props for The Stig of The Dump Read-a-thon. My friend Anna had organized the event so I stayed to help manage  the readers and to persuade people to read. I was in my element, the set looked awesome, we were busy and I was mega sad when we  had to take the set down but we got to leave some home-made cabbage printed bunting and milk jug flower planters up in The Hub! hayjayoh-stig-of-the-dump-readathon

Monday 3rd: The Blue Room Exhibition Install I spent the day running about, framing works and making things straight. It took me back to hanging my final major project at uni, Good times. hayjayoh-blue-room-exhibiton-install

Thursday 6th: Blue Room & Exhibition Launch I had a lovely day with The Blue Room supporting members to create animal sculptures for an animation we’ll be making soon. I worked one-on-one with two of the members at various part of the day to create a textile art movable robin and a wire & newspaper chicken that kept falling over. It was also the launch of the groups exhibition, the group had invited their parents, support workers and friends to come along to see their work. We headed over to The Bistro for cake & tea and to peruse the exhibition which everyone loved. hayjayoh-blue-room-exhibition

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lino printing workshop bonanza.

This weekend I did a thing.
I engaged with textiles and the creative community in my small hometown.
Creative communities exist everywhere, who knew!

My degree and training is officially textiles but I am most comfortable using digital mediums I think this is because it is so easy to hit CMD+Z. I wish that existed in real life, le sigh. Also it is just so darn inconvenient and expensive to get fabric digitally printed to manipulate and work with, double whammy! So I label myself as a “digital print and surface designer” and I’m starting to dabble with research and “art”. see my writings on Practice based research.

Anyway I want to experiment with traditional printing methods more. I do actually find it really fun when I am focused and I love learning new art skills. So I attended a lino print workshop at Hazlehurst Studios on Saturday and boy was it fun! I found myself in complete silence carving away at my little piece of blue soft lino. We never actually had a taught lino workshop at uni but I had dabbled in it rather unsuccessfully a couple of times so it was useful to have a guiding hand.

The studio was really pretty and decked out for a Halloween studio opening; they even have a rentable printing press and boast the only highstreet wet plate photography studio in the UK, impressive.

I’ll probably go to some more print workshops, they are running a monthly series. I had a really fun day and it was good to do something messy and hands on rather than drawing on screen. But I will most probably state true to my vices and manipulate the pieces I created in Photoshop.

Lino prints on cartridge paper and fabric, October 2013


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