We have done all the branding, website, marketing collateral and social media posting/imagery for this fundraiser – it’s truly been a ‘labour of love’!
We have just completed a full redesign of Gill Stotter Catering’s website. An scrolling home page linking to further detail throughout the site. A classic, crisp style reflects the company’s food ethos and conveys the attention to detail and level of professionalism in their work.
We were recently tasked with rebranding a company called StarshipIt. Being a relatively new company, the management team didn’t want to move too far from their old name (and lose the hard-earned brand recognition they had to date) and yet they recognised that a rebrand was required to take them to the next stage of the business. It needed to be more in tune with their customer base of eStore operators and reflect the dynamic nature of their offering.
ShipIT is an app that works with e-commerce sites (like magento, shopify, eBay etc.) to simplify the process of shipping goods purchased online. By integrating with courier companies (like DHL, Australia Post etc), ShipIT automates the process of generating postage labels and customs declarations (previously hand-written) and sends customers emails notifying them of their shipment’s progress. In our previous life as a magazine publisher, we would have LOVED ShipIT … honestly, it would have shaved days of work off the time taken to get each new issue out to subscribers and retailers.
The new brand was launched at the PeSA Annual Internet Conference in May and received great feedback. Australia Post (one of ShipIT’s major partners) commented that the new logo was “far more in tune with their customer base”.
We also helped conceptualise and design ShipIT’s stand for the conference – it was pretty different to your usual techy tradeshow booth but totally in line with ShipIT’s values and took potential customers on a truly authentic brand experience.
Along with the rebrand, comes a new website (also conceptualised and designed by us, but built inhouse by the client) and some nifty icons to visually represent what ShipIT offers.
And their new avatar …
ShipIT is really going places and we’re pretty excited to be along for the ride!
Here’s a snipped of ShipIT’s blog – designed and built by us. We have also created a lot of the content and developed a unique style of illustrating each blog post with black and white imagery overlaid with graphic elements …
Another iconic Waiheke business (and a favourite client) is on the market. From the day Kate Hastings and Lynda Benveniste opened Veranda’s doors just over three years ago it has been a wild success. They have both poured their hearts into Veranda and grown it substantially, but now other projects and hobbies beckon.
We have helped with the sale by designing a window poster, ads for the local posters, writing and posting a trademe ad, promotion on facebook and putting together a document to serve as an Advice of Sale (for which we did the design, copywriting and photography).
Our dear, gorgeous (and super-talented) friend Anna Church moved to Toronto about a year ago and has been beavering away ever since on a new series of work. When back on the island for a visit a couple of months ago, Anna asked us to write some text to accompany the series as a whole and each work individually. The series, titled ‘Insignia‘, is absolutely brilliant – it’s such a natural extension of her previous work, yet it truly takes it to a whole other level. It’s not due for release until November, so what you see here is just a sneak preview of one of the pieces. You can follow Anna on facebook, pinterest and her blog if you’d like to keep posted on her work. Here’s what we wrote;
What are little boys made of? As well as slugs and snails? Adventures sailing toy boats down creeks, days spent skippin’ and hollerin’ like the Apache and hours of ping pong with the rain hammering down outside. If boyhood could be captured in two dimensions and hung on a wall, then artist Anna Church has nailed it … and done the same for girlhood, and what it means to be a gentleman, a gentlewoman, or a couple navigating life together.
Church has an unparalleled ability to depict the essence of an occasion, a way of life or a state of being, purely through the collection and artful arrangement of objects and ephemera. In her last series of work, ‘At Your Service’, her subjects ranged from ‘High Tea’ to ‘Sunday Roast’. Each composition was made up of a number of pieces of vintage tableware and when viewed from a distance resembled a medal, thus cleverly exploring the multiple notions of service.
In ‘Insignia’, her most recent series, Church again manages to source the perfect pieces and, by arranging them to illustrate her theme, elevate them to something extraordinary. Insignia are emblems, symbols, flags and coats of arms – those badges we create to identify ourselves, either as individuals or groups. Church has created a series of Insignia symbolising boys (titled ‘Frogs & Snails’), girls (‘Sugar & Spice’), gentlemen (‘Gentleman’), gentlewomen (‘Gentlewoman’), and couples (‘Union’).
While her work unabashedly romanticizes these states of being, it is both nostalgic and current. Rather than wanting to neatly ‘box’ people, Church hopes those who see her work will “recognise in each ensign elements of their own histories and realities” and that, for example, ‘Sugar and Spice’ will have as much resonance for the mother of young girls (who was once a ballet-loving ingenue herself), as for her little girls themselves.
Just as a coat of arms is made up of a number of elements each representing some aspect of the bearer, Church’s insignia are collections of symbols. The trophy in ‘Gentleman’ represents the drive of man to achieve and central to the work is a vintage boxing bag representing strength, agility and strategy. The pearls adorning ‘Gentlewoman’ were traditionally given to a woman by her fiancé upon their engagement or the birth of their first child. The foliage adorning ‘Union’ is a metaphor for the growth and evolution of two people together over time. Each and every element of these compositions has been painstakingly considered and subsequently sourced. Church describes this process as being “like having a pair of divining rods – I just had a clear idea of what I needed to find and a sixth sense kicked in and helped me discover it all”
In 2012 Church moved to Toronto, Canada from Waiheke Island, New Zealand and she describes the finding of the numerous pieces needed to create this series as “an absolutely magical way to familiarise myself with my new home”. As well as the internet (eBay and etsy), Church scoured her local flea markets (The Junction Flea and St. Lawrence antique Market) and became a regular fossicker at antique markets around Ontario such as Christie’s Antique Market, in order to find the perfect set of Stag playing cards for ‘Gentleman’, a woman’s clutch which could have come straight from The Great Gatsby for ‘Gentlewoman’, a sheriff’s badge in just the right shade of red for ‘Frogs & Snails’ and well-pirouetted (but not too grubby) ballet shoes for ‘Sugar & Spice’. Videographer Vuk Dragojevic followed Church on her hunt and has documented the process in a charming video which can be viewed on Church’s website (coming soon!).
Church would also love to create bespoke insignia for individuals and their families, thereby taking all those precious (and not so precious, but highly sentimental) pieces out from storage boxes in the basement and attics and making something truly unique, representative and heirloom-worthy of them.
For more information please feel free to contact Anna directly via email firstname.lastname@example.org
In preparation for an exhibition at Waiheke Community Art Gallery in late 2011, Emma asked us to write a press release about her latest series of works. Emma was extremely excited about these new pieces and felt the need to “get down on paper” the motivations and energy behind them. An updated biography was in order too …
Image above: a close-up of one of Emma Wright’s recent works photographed by You&i.
Artist Emma Wright’s work embraces the apparent randomness of life and celebrates the beauty of ‘the big picture’. Her love of the environment, although not explicitly depicted, is in every brush-stroke. She believes “nature is the absolute basis of, and informs, everything we are.” While Wright doesn’t profess to have any of the answers, painting affords her the opportunity to ponder the larger questions and give her subconscious free reign to create.
Wright’s works begin with words – barely visible and completely illegible in the finished pieces – whatever is in her head at the time. The text might be as inane as a few lines borrowed from Dr Seuss, or as fundamental as “I am”. Layer upon layer of different materials then make their way onto the canvas; builders’ plaster, smaller pieces of canvas, house paint and translucent acrylic. Together they form luscious, abstract ridges, drips and shapes which she describes as “representing all that life throws at us; messy, inconvenient and unpredictable.”
Wright uses geometric shapes to challenge how so often we assume we know the full picture, when in fact we may know only a fraction of it. In her works, the viewer automatically ‘sees’ a full circle when what is off the canvas could actually take an infinite number of forms. We readily assume we know what makes us tick, life work and the world go around, but the reality is that life rarely goes as planned. Wright explains, “It always amazes me that I keep thinking the unpredictable will cease. My paintings are a reminder that that’s not the case.”
Significantly, this latest series of ‘New Works’ began when Wright unexpectedly (but very happily) fell pregnant with her second child. She found herself drawn to her studio where the paint flowed with an ease she hadn’t experienced for some time. She felt propelled by a new momentum and an energy which is palpable in the vibrant canvases. Their brushstrokes are strong and certain, their dripping paint is calm and meditative and their palate is joyous in its lolly-box hues. Wright has said, “I like to imagine my life dipped in sunlight, rolled in irreverence and sprinkled with hundreds and thousands. My paintings offer this view of life as a rich context for living.”
Coating each composition is a generous, almost decadent, layer of lacquer. You only have to stand in front of them to see your reflection clearly in their glossy surfaces. Yet it is only once you decide to look past yourself that you see what lies beneath.
A corporate restructure in the early ’90s saw Emma Wright facing the prospect of having to move countries to maintain the high-flying career she enjoyed. It wasn’t a prospect she savoured and forced her to question how much she really wanted to keep her career. As is so often the case, when one takes the time to truly reflect, the answer wasn’t what she expected. The truth was that she didn’t know what her vocation was and, while she gave herself the time and space to figure that out, she painted.
A significant body of work emerged and Wright held her first exhibition in Wellington. It was greeted with acclaim and her future as “one of NZ’s favourite artists” (Robinson, 2008) was decided.
Wright has since moved to Waiheke Island and had two children with her partner. Along with her unexpected (but extremely welcome) second pregnancy came a new momentum and an energy which is palpable in the vibrant canvases she produced during that period and subsequently. Their palate is joyous in its almost lolly-like colours, the brushstrokes strong and certain, while their drips and bleeding feel calm and meditative.
In their abstraction, Wright says her works “represent all that life throws at us; messy, inconvenient and unpredictable. Yet if we welcome these ups and downs they reward us in delightful ways. We become clear about who we are and, despite our circumstances, we can appreciate the roller-coaster bits of our journey. Conversely, while resisting the rough patches may make a safe life, it will make a boring one as well.”
Wright’s studio on Waiheke Island off the coast of Auckland is a popular destination for art lovers and collectors. Her works have been exhibited internationally and in galleries throughout New Zealand, and are held in numerous private collections. She was a Finalist in the 2011 Walker and Hall Art Award.
We penned a press release for artist Anna Church in preparation for her exhibition at The Poi Room, Auckland in 2011.
The exhibition garnered a number of mentions in mainstream media and the blogosphere as well as a fantastic profile of Anna by ‘Her’ magazine.
Image: ‘Medal Set’ from the series ‘At Your Service’ by Anna Church.
It’s a fair step up in life for a gravy boat to become a service medal (or part of one at least), but in artist Anna Church’s latest series, one manages to get that promotion … as does a formica serving tray, a tea strainer and ice tongs.
‘At Your Service’ is a stunning new series of works in limited edition by Church which compel at least a second and third look. As in her previous series, Church has brought together a collection of objects and arranged them to resemble something other. In this case, each large-scale photograph appears to be of a service medal, however on closer inspection, it reveals itself as being composed of a number of items of serviceware. Silver spoons, linen napkins, platters and the aforementioned gravy boat all make an appearance as the more masculine bigger picture unveils itself to be far more feminine in its intricate detail.
The ideas underpinning ‘At Your Service’ were two years in the polishing and Church spent months scouring antique dealers and friends’ china cabinets for just the right piece for each composition. The components had to be perfect, both thematically and aesthetically. For example, ‘Sunday Roast’ is made up of a silver gravy boat, serving spoons, carving knife and fork, linens and china.
Unapologetically nostalgic, ‘At Your Service’ draws upon rapidly fading notions of service. It pays homage to a day when, whether one had ‘help’ or not, the utmost care was taken to present and serve meals impeccably; on the best china, the silver polished to a sheen, the linen starched to within an inch of its life and a different fork for every occasion. Compared to today, when heaven forbid one should go to too much fuss, when casual is cool and relaxed reigns, ‘At Your Service’ celebrates the time when a night cap warranted the cut glass crystal and a Sunday roast was in itself a reason to decorate the table with the family silver.
As importantly, the series also references service to Queen and country and an era when men and women were called, in their thousands, to practice feats of the greatest bravery in order to preserve their way of life … and were decorated in gratitude for doing so.
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High Tea is “the opportunity to dress up in your best dress and spend hours indulging in gorgeous little treats served on a cake stand, with tea served in fine china and catch up with girlfriends”, says Michelle Milton, founder of the High Tea Society. It is little wonder then that High Teas are making a resurgence!
Mid Sunday morning the meat goes into the oven. Vegetables skirt its base and its juices caramelise in the pan. A few hours later, the family drift in, drawn by the smells from the kitchen and while Father takes up the carving knife and fork, they all take their seats. The gravy boat is filled, a roast is to be had.
A special birthday, a child leaving home (finally), a change of season or just an exciting terrine recipe to try … Who needs more of an excuse to send out proper (i.e., by mail) invitations, adorn the table with fresh flowers and throw a lovely luncheon for the ladies?
Fancy a cuppa and a biscuit mid-morning? Back in the day, in community halls, bowling clubs and RSAs across the country, people were served what was known as ‘Elevenses’ on a mismatch of crockery, most of which is now highly collectable, including our homegrown Crown Lynn.
Appetites are sated, just the embers remain in the grate, slumber beckons, but more rich conversation is to be had. The only fitting conclusion to such an evening would be to retire to the dark-panelled library for a tumbler of Scotland’s finest.
Image above: Penny Stotter’s ‘Precious Vessels’ 2.
Penny Stotter’s ‘Precious Vessels’ hold pukeko mingling with kowhai, kea alongside flax and tui amongst pohutukawa … flora and fauna more precious even than the vases they adorn.
Refreshingly, Stotter is the first to say that she is driven to create works of beauty rather than ‘meaning’, however scratch their aesthetic surface and there is far more to them than she gives credit. In this, her most recent series of limited edition prints, titled ‘Precious Vessels’, several of Stotter’s influences converge; her love of Italian minimalist still life, her own gorgeous collection of vases and pride in her New Zealand heritage.
Stotter is an admirer of the work of Italian still life painters, particularly that of Georgio Morandi and his minimalist, rustic representations of groupings of pottery. She also has her own collection of vases, now stashed away (and finally out of mind) after days spent gazing at them from all angles, rearranging them here and there and ultimately rendering abstractions of their shapes into this series of work.
The cobalt blue of Stotter’s vessels’ patterning is reminiscent of Delftware – the instantly recognisable blue and white, tin-glazed pottery made in Delft, the Netherlands since the 16th Century. However, where Delft pottery features scenes reminiscent of Dutch life; fishing boats, hunting scenes and windmillls, Stotter’s vessels are adorned with motifs of indisputable New Zealand origin. The abstraction of their shapes, a nod to her years practicing as a graphic designer prior to devoting herself to her art full time and doing justice to her degree from the Ilam School of Fine Arts. Stotter also speaks of her love of the process of pattern-making, the arrangement of these shapes into the final compositions. In this, ‘Precious Vessels’ is a natural progression from her earlier ‘Heritage’ series with its similarly delicate and graphic arrangements of native flora and fauna.
‘Precious Vessels’ will be shown for the first time at The Poi Room, Newmarket from 8 July until YY 2011 as part of a joint exhibition titled ‘Handle with Care’ with artist Anna Church. www.poiroom.co.nz
For further information please contact the artist
at penny[at]pennystotter.com or on XXXXcell phXXXXX
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Penny Stotter is one of New Zealand’s leading contemporary printmakers with a distinctive style born of her heritage and love of pattern-making. Refreshingly, she is the first to say that she is driven to create works of beauty rather than ‘meaning’, however scratch their aesthetic surface and there is far more there than she readily gives credit.
Stotter’s pride in her homeland was honed during years spent in Europe and Melbourne. When she returned and put down roots on Waiheke Island (off the coast of Auckland) she began to employ motifs of New Zealand’s unique flora and fauna in her work as well as less likely cultural icons such as a vintage Maori doll (named Rua). Her love of the process of pattern-making is obvious in the meticulous arrangement of their shapes into her final compositions. Their abstraction is a nod to her time spent practicing as a graphic designer prior to devoting herself to her art full time and doing justice to her degree from the Ilam School of Fine Arts.
Stotter’s most recent works form a series titled ‘Precious Vessels’. Look closely at these still lifes and you’ll see they are actually far from ‘still’. Teeming with life, the vases hold pukeko mingling with kowhai, kea alongside flax and tui amongst pohutukawa … flora and fauna more precious even than the vessels they adorn. ‘Precious Vessels’ is a natural progression from her earlier ‘Heritage’ series with its similarly delicate and graphic arrangements of native flora and fauna.
As well as developing a number of series of works over past years, Stotter has been highly sought-after to work on a commission basis with corporate and public partners. Recent projects have included designing t-shirts for the Vodafone NZ Music Awards’ and the Max Foundation for Women, producing a limited edition print for the 2011 Auckland Arts Festival and a one-off print signed by the All Blacks for a Treasures World Cup promotion. Along the way she has collaborated with clients as diverse as Icebreaker, Continental Cup of Soup and Stoneleigh Wines.
Stotter’s works are held in several major public collections and can be found in galleries the length of the country. A full list of stockists can be found here.