They say that the devil makes work for idle hands. Luckily we’ve got alcohol to keep those idle hands busy in between bouts of creating.
Being the ironic street artists that we are we’ve decided to put paean to alcohol on a derelict pub. Take that society! No more idle hands kept busy in there. The devil will have to find something else for them to do…
There’s little id-iom enjoys more than a roadtrip – especially when it’s to somewhere new – so when we got a call from Smirnoff about jazzing up the smoking area of Society Bar in Burton upon Trent we didn’t have to think too long before agreeing. After a lengthy approvals process we finally got the go ahead so packed up the id-iomobile and hit the road. It’s lucky we started straight away as it turns out that doing loads of stripes is easy when designing on a computer but surprisingly time consuming when doing it with paint. Especially when we had to work with very little access behind the scaffolding poles. Which we would have been able to remove if we brought an adjustable spanner rather than some allen keys. It wasn’t our fault though, for once, as we were told that we’d just need allen keys. Anyway, we just about managed to get it all done and you can see the fruits of our labour yourself if you’re ever in Burton.
Bonus: We passed through the suburb of Branston on our way out of town and we joked about Branston Pickle being from there. It turns out that it is actually the case. So now you know.
I thought I’d kick Friday off with another instalment of Other People’s Graffiti which today feature’s a classy light installation found at a mystery pub I found myself in by chance. Some might dismiss this as just some lights in a bottle but they aren’t really paying attention. There is much to like. One – it’s a light installation. Two – it’s in a Lambrini bottle with all the labels still on. Three – they’ve actually gone to the effort of drilling a hole in the bottle so the power lead can come out and they can still have the cap on. Four – the alluring glow of the pink lights on a windowsill behind a net curtain. Five – the presentation as a whole.
Put all those things together and just marvel at it’s majestic glory. Unbounded creativity combined with a wry eye for social commentary and some slick presentation. Beauty is where you find it.
There’s nothing id-iom likes more than a good pub so when we got the call from an imminently opening pub in Streatham called The Mere Scribbler and were asked to do a portrait in their beer garden of Frances Burney – after whom the pub is named – we jumped at the chance. Frances ‘Fanny’ Burney was a 18th century novelist, diarist and playwright who progressed her career in the area. Given the limited number of pictures of Fanny that are available we didn’t have all that much to work with other than a handful of severe looking portraits from the time. After a bit of toing and froing however we finally had an agreed design. There’s no detail in her hair as they are going to get some ivy on the wall which will, in time, hopefully become her hair so the plain yellow is a bit of a stopgap til then. If ever there’s a decent excuse needed to go to the pub then I guess that’s it…
With some new soundproofing being constructed to go over the windows in the back room of our local boozer they needed us to add a touch of id-iom design magic so it would also function as a sign to let people know a band night was on and which way the entrance is (it’s an old pub so has 3 possible entrances – only one of which actually opens). A couple of design variations later and we were left with the bearded hipster style guy staring imperiously at you along with a couple of Band in Hand logo’s and the yellow and white arrows. It’s pretty clean and straight forward all things considered. I think I need to go and make a proper mess somewhere now…
Picture this. You’re id-iom and the sun is shining. You find a stencil which had been been sat there ready to spray but had somehow been forgotten. What do you do next? Well, you set about rectifying the problem just as quickly as you can. After identifying a likely looking door made of corrugated plastic you round up some paint and get to work. That door is ugly and needs an id-iom style makeover. As there’s 2 of you the next sequence is somewhat schizophrenic as you talk to yourself in order to get things done.
After only a short while you reach another hurdle in that you’d applied too much masonry paint and now have to sit there and watch paint dry. Being a resourceful pair of chaps you then decide there is a better use of your time so head to the nearest pub for some liquid refreshment. On your return you fear there will be no chance for a decent photo but to your surprise the photography gods are with and give you a nice backlit effect. Win. You go to bed that night thinking if you have to be id-iom for one more second you’ll probably go mad.
It’s been in the pipeline for a good while now but we finally managed to get our wall completed in our local boozer in Brixton, The Hand in Hand. After batting potential designs back and forth for a while we finally came up with a winner in the wall of quotes featuring Winston Churchill quotes, an ambigram, a watercolour & stencilled wallpaper background and my favourite quote of the lot ‘Don’t take life too seriously. No one is getting out alive…’
One of the obvious problems with working in a pub (for us at least) is the proximity to beer. We overcame this potential pitfall by starting early and having a breakfast beer to aid in the creative process. Three and a half pints later and we were all done and dusted. Then it was time to get out of there before we got in too deep and spent the entire day in there…