Thursday, 16 March 2017

‘A Summer of Love’ exhibition of illustrations by Caroline Misselbrook

An evening reception to celebrate ‘A Summer of Love’ exhibition of illustrations by Caroline Misselbrook, celebrating generations of her family’s love of nature and creativity, takes place on 28th March at 6-8.30pm at Portsmouth Guildhall.

To mark the 50th birthday of the Summer of Love in San Francisco, the Faculty of Creative and Cultural Industries (CCI) at the University of Portsmouth and Portsmouth Cultural Trust (PCT) host this show as part of our ongoing exhibition programme in the Freda Swain Lounge at Portsmouth Guildhall.

In this series of 10 illustrations, Caroline gives a new lease of life to the birds from her father’s egg collection, which he started as a child in the 1950’s during walks in the Westwood Local Nature Reserve and along Weston Shore in Southampton.

While organising the box Caroline found a complete copy of the Daily Express from 1961 underneath the sawdust. Adverts and articles form part of the watercolour and ink illustrations and highlight the juxtaposition of animals that continued to live happily around us while we focused on our materialistic lifestyles and had unhealthy expectations of men and women. It was this post war culture in the U.S., Canada and Europe that eventually lead to hippies or ‘flower children’ during the Summer of Love in San Francisco in 1967, rejecting these consumerist values and turning to art, religious or meditative practice and politics.

This show is part of a series of Summer of Love celebrations in Portsmouth. Talks, exhibitions, performances, film screenings, live music and other events will shine a spotlight on the history and legacy of the sixties counterculture.

The exhibition is hosted in the Freda Swain Lounge, and opening dates are 20 March – 21 June 2017, Monday-Friday, 9am -5pm, Saturday 10am -2pm

Wednesday, 8 March 2017

MA illustration visit to London

The sun came out especially for our visit to London. We started at the House of Illustration to see three shows;  Jo Brocklehurst: Nobodies and Somebodies (Jo Brocklehurst celebrated subculture in 1970-90s London, Berlin and New York): Book Illustration Competition Longlist 2017: Mansfield Park and Linda Kitson: Drawings and Projects - A lifetime of line drawings, curated by Quentin Blake. 

In the afternoon there was the Cartoon Museum - FUTURE SHOCK: 40 YEARS OF 2000 AD and Tate Modern - ROBERT RAUSCHENBERG, and more.


Monday, 6 March 2017

Congratulations Bo!

Well done to Bo Sun Lam, recently graduate of MA Illustration (and BA(HONS) Illustration) for winning the 'Chinese Year of the Rooster' Drawing competition by Hong Kong International Exchange of Art and Culture Association.

Wednesday, 1 March 2017

Dani Hacket designs T-shirt for the Wedgewood Rooms

Local Artists Design Limited Edition Wedgewood Rooms T-Shirts

To celebrate our 25th year anniversary, The Wedgewood Rooms are teaming up with local artists to bring you exclusive limited edition Wedgewood Rooms T-shirts. The aim of these T-shirts is to both celebrate the Wedgewood Rooms history, but also to promote some of Portsmouth’s best artists! In the last few years, The Wedge has become more heavily involved in Portsmouth’s arts community, having an artist in residence, as well as employing local artists at the venue. This project will be an extension of those previous collaborations between local artists and the venue.

Each local artist has based their design on what The Wedgewood Rooms means to them in their own unique artistic style. For each design we will print a limited batch of 50 T-shirts, with a new shirt being launched every few months. The first T-shirt we will be releasing is by Dani Hacket, a local artist who works at the venue! These limited edition T-shirts will go on sale Friday, so keep your eyes peeled on our social media! Read below to see her previous work and hear the inspiration behind her design.

“My T-shirt design for the Wedgewood Rooms was a particular interest of mine since it has been such a big part of my life for the past few years. I wanted to portray the nautical background of Southsea, and also capture the history of the area. I was inspired by old engravings by JMW Turner, an artist that captured the ferocity and beauty of the ocean, and the combination of the waves with the impressive old style ships. Obviously, being a music venue, I couldn’t leave out the aspect of music, and so I wanted to merge the two ideas together with the musical instruments to create a lively image that captured the energy of a Wedgewood Rooms gig.”

Monday, 27 February 2017

Music Inspired Art - Catching up with John Lihou

A great interview with John on Music Gaff

Friday, 24 February 2017

Visiting Speaker and Alumnus Luke Spooner

It was great to see Luke Spooner who returned to us today to discuss life at and after University, going freelance, pricing work, self promotion and of course his illustrations for a wide variety of publishers and audiences. As well as some humorous cautionary tales he offered some great tips for all the undergraduate Illustration students, many thanks Luke.

See more of Luke's work at;

Monday, 13 February 2017

'Lost and Found' with My Dog Sighs

Upcycler, recycling artist, street artist and can-man MyDogSighs worked with us today to help clear the streets around Winston Churchill Avenue and encouraged the students to create artwork from discarded items. Intrinsic to the workshop is the idea that the item is found - transformed and then left in-situ for anyone who wants to keep it.

In the spirit of Free Art Friday the students explored the techniques and concepts MyDogSighs employs and responded individually to the item they had found. These might be worth looking out for around the Eldon Building over the next day of two.

Here are a few of the pieces; there are more photos over on the Illustrated Menagerie Blog.

Teaching Volunteers

This year fourteen Illustration students volunteered to devise and deliver a creative brief in a local secondary school, a Further Education college, Riverside Special Primary school's Creativity Week and a local Infant school.

Activities included still life in mixed media, printing, drawing and collage.

Many of the volunteers wish to teach after graduation and this experience provided them with valuable classroom experience across a wide range of ages and abilities.

The teachers have been delighted with the skills delivered and pupils have the opportunity to ask about university life with current students and enhance their portfolios with new skills and techniques.

Tuesday, 7 February 2017

'Mechanical Animals' Workshop - Level 4

Here are a few of the 'mechanical animals' produced at the workshop in which the first years created animal imagery incorporating mechanical elements and using it to communicate something about the animal's physiology.

You can see more about the project and the students' work on the Illustrated Menagerie blog

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

MA illustration - Lino Myriorama workshop

MA illustration workshop, where we created a collaborative 'Myriorama' in linoprints.

A Myriorama is usually a set of picture cards that can be arranged and re-arranged to form a continuous landscape. (popular in the 19th century and often seen as a children's game).

We marked-up the linos so we could make a continuous line when printing the images together in sequence.We rearranged and printed in alternate sequences to form the long print. You can see how the line connects the prints together even though the imagery is in different styles.

Children's Book author and illustrator Neal Layton visits MA illustration

We were excited to welcome Neal Layton to lecture on MA illustration, he showed us a range of work and discussed constructing narratives for children, his work as a student through to his published books and working with writers. Neal bought lots of wonderful examples of his books and sketchbooks in for us to look through.

Scraper-board workshop in Level 5

Level 5 had a go at using scraper-board to create drawings of urban landscapes found via Streetview.

Monday, 30 January 2017

Exhibition at Cafe au Cinema

Two Illustration students, Anna & Else, from the University of Portsmouth, level 6 are having a pop up exhibition on Friday the 3rd of February, and would love it if you'd be there. They are exhibiting a range of original illustrations and prints from the natural world. A great chance to purchase hand made original work
They would like to invite you to their private view on Friday evening at 7:00 at 50 Osborne Rd.

Sunday, 22 January 2017

Ministry of Book Exhibition at aspex and Book Making Workshop

It was an absolute joy to give a lecture at Aspex last Thursday to open their exhibition which is really beautifully displayed. I received a very warm welcome and really enjoyed talking to those that attended the session.

Aspex are presenting 'The Ministry of Books’, a two-part exhibition celebrating artist’s books from local and international artists. The collection has been loaned from the University of Portsmouth’s Illustration Department, the location of ‘The Ministry of Books’.The artworks have been created by both by students from the University’s creative faculty, as well as artists from across the globe.
The exhibition comprises of two-parts:
Part I // 11 January - 9 February

Part II // 22 January - 2 April

‘Anything but ordinary’

Introductory book making workshops are being taught. These are £20.00. This intimate, two-hour session will take place on Thursday 9 February, 6 - 8pm and will be led by University of Portsmouth lecturer and artist, Ros Simms.

This workshop is inspired by our craft exhibition, 'The Ministry of Books', a unique collection of artist's books on loan from the University of Portsmouth.

To avoid the online fees, book via email ( or call the gallery on: +44 (0)23 9277 8080

Saturday, 21 January 2017

Book Cover Exhibition and Music

There will be a first-year virtual book cover exhibition with live music at the Student Union (third space and bar) on Thursday, the 26th of January starting at 6pm (music will start at around 7pm). Please come and support your fellow students and enjoy a fun evening of music from Louis's band VANCHANGO and special guests!

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Chris Ridell - Children's Laureate

We were delighted to ​have the UK's Children's Laureate Chris Riddell​ giving a lecture on Tuesday to BA and MA Illustration students and also students from Creative Writing and Animation. ​It was an invaluable talk from a world-renowned author and illustrator who provided great insight into his world as the Children's Laureate, creativity, fiction writing, illustration, the importance of drawing and the publishing industry. He was very generous with his time, talking to students, signing books and advising them on their projects.


Chris Riddell, the 2015-2017 UK Children's Laureate, is an accomplished artist and the political cartoonist for the Observer. He has enjoyed great acclaim for his books for children. His books have won a number of major prizes, including the 2001, 2004 and 2016 CILIP Kate Greenaway Medals. Goth Girl and the Ghost of a Mouse won the Costa Children's Book Award 2013. His previous work for Macmillan includes the bestselling Ottoline books, The Emperor of Absurdia, and, with Paul Stewart, the Muddle Earth books, the Scavenger series and the Blobheads series. Chris lives in Brighton with his family.