For External Examiner – Read First

When looking through the the blog I recommend doing it by the categories listed at the side.

Negotiated Illustration Briefs

Beer Bottles

Cities of Tomorrow

Personal Obsessions


Contemporary Illustration


Latino Film Poster

Interpreting Nature

Penguin Random House

Reggae Poster

Creative Futures



Creative Conscious

Sounds of the City

Professional Practice Folder (most of this is in a physical document)
-Game Concept Art

There is also a for all the final pieces I completed this year and one for evaluations done on briefs.



700 Bottle Development



The 700 bottle is a fairly simple design. I wanted to reference the fact that the ship got stuck in ice and the colour of the banner that the 700 was printed on. This meant that the 700 had to be blue. In the top image I was trying to directly parallel all of the banner colours. The whitish colour of the 700 text on a blue banner background. It made the ice odd and a little cartoony. The second image I experimented with making the 700 blend in with the ice but this I decided was counter productive to what the title on a beer bottle was supposed to do.


In the end I went for a deep blue so that the title was readable on such a white ice background. I also added a blue gradient sky so that the shape of the ice was more visible. I used the old design on the back of the bottle where the text was smaller. Smaller text got a little lost in the broken up design but it looked less broken in the brighter, mostly white ice sheet.

700 BACK piece final redone

Snickersneeze Bottle Development

For the Snickersneeze bottle I tried a new shape label for variety. I tried numerous layouts with the knife and the text. I had similar issues to that which I had with Gale Force in that the word didn’t split up very well so it often looked off balance. Having the word in full meant positioning the knife was awkward to fit in. In the end I decided to go back to the rectangular label so that I had more room to work with.

Something new I decided to try at this point was to have an additional knife on the label as the phrase the beer was based on did imply fighting with the knives so it would make sense to have two. Fitting two full knives on the label would be difficult without them being very small and diminishing their impact on the piece so I looked at ways to position them partially cut off. The important part I felt was the hilt and the bit where that met the blade as the recogniseable part of the knife.


The layout I went for shows a lot of the blade and uses the hilt to line up the text with the knife. It adds a neatness to the piece and makes the text look less like it is floating.

Snickersneeze back final

For the back I added the full knife which replaced what used to be a black line dividing the two sections.

Rose View Development


The basic idea with the Rose View bottle was to recreate the the above window. the early stages of the vector stage were spent establishing the shapes and trying to get the colour of the bottom window right. The reflection of the window was difficult to translate to a flat surface.


To fix this and add some depth to the window I used a photo of a curtain take from my room that looked similar to the curtains from the top photo. The curtain texture gives the image more of the impression that it is indeed a window rather than coloured boxes.


The next stage was to add the brickwork around the window as things were looking a little flat. I also added linework around the vectors surrounding the window so they stood out a little more. I think using it where I have looks fine and makes the brick work a little more subtle and remain as the background piece that it is. A mono print texture was added to the brick work to give it a bit of a gritty feel.
I also began experimenting with which font I would use. Other than the Italics I was happy with this style of font. It looks old like it is from some sort of street sign.


To make the text clearer I added a street sign vector behind it. It brings it up off the brickwork background that it got lost in a little. I also took it off italics which I didn’t think added anything to the piece.

I considered having the text in the windows. This was one of the rough ideas in my sketchbook but in practice it meant that there was the empty space at the bottom of the image. A solution to this could have been making the window the whole label but this would have made it difficult to add extra information to it and it would be less identifiable as a window without the wall behind it.


The final piece has the extra line work around the sign and an extension on the bottom to more naturally fit in the required information. I also added gradients on the window  and the frame around it so it looked like light was hitting the window in a more natural way. The earlier pieces looked a bit flat whereas I think this has further developed the section into an actual window.


To further the Royal theme I added a crown to the window. Whilst the name references the tinting of the window all I had to mention the royal visit was the tagline underneath and text on the back of the bottle. The crown fills in the empty space and brings across the theme I wanted more.

back stickers rose view

Rose View New Back Sticker

The layout of the back piece was a task of making sure the space was well filled and had the relevant information that made it look like a professional beer bottle. From the front I carried over the crown design, the font at the top and the brick background to link the pieces as part of the same label.

Rose View Name Research


The idea for Rose view started from a Facebook post in which people discussed this window. It is on the royal hotel near the station and was apparently Rose tinted by order of Queen Victoria for when she visited the city and used it as her throne room.


The difference in colour of a vectored window allowed for a simple design choice with the differentiation in colour being the main interesting focus point. The vague title and odd subject matter I think works well for a beer and makes someone looking at it ask questions.

700 name research

The 700 beer bottle was named after a flag on the last active Hull whaling ship ‘The Diana’ The design on the bottle itself is a reference to how the ship was trapped in ice for a long time and the damage this caused signaled the end of the whaling industry in Hull. For research on the subject I visited the Hull maritime museum and confirmed and backed up what I read there with information from here.


Image of the Diana stuck in the ice.

The number 700 as the title of the beer was chosen because of a mysterious banner that I saw in the Maritime museum. The information alongside the banner states that the Diana flew it but nobody knew what the significance of the number was, it wasn’t realted to any official record.


The blue 700 banner can be made out in the painting above.

I chose the 700 reference because I thought the mystery of the banner and why it was there was more interesting than just repeating the story of the Diana which maritime historians would likely already be familiar with. Telling a story and adding a lesser known piece of information that people may not know.

Snickersneeze name research

I stumbled across the idea for the Snickersneeze bottle from an article when looking up connections between Hull and the Netherlands. The original inspiration for this was a local exhibition in the Ferens years ago but the information in that exhibition wasn’t as readily available online so I broadened my search for a subject.
I found the term Snickersneeze here and chose just because it was an interesting word which had a short backstory that was easy to put as a bit of light reading on a beer bottle. The phrase has Dutch origin with snickersnee being the ‘the Dutch way of fighting with pointed knives’ whilst the phrase snickersneeze was adopted by Hull parents who would threaten their children (I’ll Snickersneeze yeh) if they didn’t behave.

I also ran the author of that blogs claim from oxford dictionary saying that ‘snick or snee’ means to fight with knives which it does mention in the origin section at the bottom.

The design I based the knife on the front of the bottle was from WW1 Dutch fighting knives. Whilst not the knife likely to have been around at the terms origin this knife has a unique looking handle and is pointed. I settled for the fact that it was of Dutch origin as the basis for the design.

Examples of WW1 Dutch Fighting Knife


My design of it for the bottle