Tuesday, 22 December 2009

Justin checks out the Rainforests...

Today I went to visit a Sub Tropical Rainforest which forms part of the Springbrook National Park. It is an area of over 6,000 hectares and is strictly controlled and protected.

...it's also the area where they film the "I'm a celebrity, get me out of here!" - if only they'd known I was there!


Thursday, 17 December 2009

Fenner Paper even makes it to OZ!

Today I popped in to the Tourist/visitors centre in "The Rocks" in Sydney to pick up some maps and was absolutely amazed to see a range of cards printed on our material in their shop for sale!

We have supplied our Flockage Litho for this lovely range of greeting cards, called FABRIC, designed by Kelly Hyatt and published in the UK by Beaumonde Cards.

For those not familiar with Flockage Litho it is a flocked paper ...which means it made using fibres and actually has a suede/material feel to it, and incredibly, you can print conventional offset litho onto it - without loss of reproduction - you can print some really detailed stuff - in fact these cards actually have a readable bar code printed on the back!

So there you have it, 10,562 miles away from Tonbridge and I still sniffed out some of our paper!

Roving Report - Frost Design in Sydney.

I've officially made my furthest ever visit ...to Sydney in Australia. Today I popped in to see Frost.

The studio is in an area called Surry Hills and is an entire floor of a really great converted warehouse. It's currently undergoing some renovation work, hence the scaffolding in the pic.

It was good to catch up with Vince, who I used to do a lot of work with, when he was based in London ...sadly it's a bit too far to deliver our paper to Australia!

Some excellent news for Frost is that they have been appointed to reposition South Africa’s leading retail brand "Woolworths" (nothing to do with the old UK variety). They will be implementing and evolving the new identity across all areas including packaging design. As a result Vince is setting up a new studio in Cape Town and is really buzzing about the project and he's only just returned from South Africa last week.

While I was in the studio I had some cookies which were baked in the studio for the Christmas treat!

For those of you that don't know, I'm the tall one...
(thanks to Louis for taking the pic)
And congratulations to Anthony, who was working as Creative Director in London last year, as he has recently become a proud father of a baby boy.

Vince also showed me his new range of T shirts which he has produced in collaboration with photographer Giles Revell who's based in London.

Thursday, 10 December 2009

Goodbye rain, hello Australia!

...just wanted to let you know that I've now packed up for Christmas and am flying to Australia with my family to see my brother and my Mum for Christmas on the beach!

As a result, I may not be updating too much until the New Year, although I'm hoping to pop in and see Frost Design in Sydney.

So Happy Christmas to everyone, and a wonderful new year...

Tuesday, 8 December 2009

The landscape is a picture - literally!

This is an amazing job which just demonstrates how a highly creative concept, really well executed, can produce an excellent piece of literature.

This project is designed to promote a massive site to developers. Hat-Trick came up with the concept of creating massive graphic images actually using and in the landscape. Earthworks were realised by Willerby Landscapes and the fantastic photography is by Paul Grundy.

Size of the piece is 290x390mm, Portrait. It has a 4pp cover on Omnia 320gsm and the text is divided into two 16pp sections, the front photographic section is printed on Omnia 150gsm and the "plans" section is printed on Redeem 100% Recycled 80gsm.

Creative Directors on the project were Jim Sutherland and Gareth Howat, the lead designer was Mark Wheatcroft.

The back section pages (plans) are below.

It has been superbly printed by Boss Print. Run was 500 copies.


Monday, 7 December 2009

The Drawbridge #15

Today, I received the latest edition of The Drawbridge. If you are familiar with this publication, then I imagine you'll stop reading now because you know how good it is and there won't be any point!

For those of you who haven't seen it, do try to see a copy as it really is a fantastic piece of work both from a content and design point of view.
I tried to describe what kind of publication it is but desperately struggled, so I've taken the cheats way out and lifted the following copy from the website: "The Drawbridge is an independent quarterly delivering thought, wit and reflection through words, photography and drawing. It is in turn critically nonsensical and radically serious. With each issue, authors and artists cast an unflinching look at a selected theme. The surprising combination of views and insights pays honest tribute to the progressive reader"
Contributors have included such luminaries as John Berger, J.G. Ballard, Tariq Ali, Umberto Eco, Tony Benn and the list goes on... The publication is edited by the lovely Bigna Pfenninger. It is widely available in creative/literary booksellers and I was in Tate Modern last week and noticed it's available in the bookshop there.
The Drawbridge takes the form of a full-colour newspaper and it is well written, superbly designed and fantastically printed. In particular the images used throughout are of the very highest quality. Design is by Creative Director, Stephen Coates who explores and experiments with the newspaper format with dramatic effect - the way that illustration and photography are combined makes the two media truly complimentary.
Cynics reading this may just think that I'm waxing lyrical about this job just because it's printed on our paper ...however I hope those people who actually know me will realise that whether or not this job was printed on our paper that I would still think this was a lovely piece of work anyway!

The Drawbridge is printed on our Redeem 100% Recycled 70gsm. The size is 288x396mm Portrait and it is a 24pp self cover, saddle stitched with two wires. Up until issue 13, it was a full "broadsheet" size of 578x395mm, 12pp self cover and unstitched (which is a format that I personally preferred). Print is by Push.
These are some of my favourite front covers from previous issues:


Saturday, 5 December 2009

Printer visits Fenner Paper!

Yesterday, we had a customer actually come to visit us! Marisa Ciccarello from printing company Push based in London, came to pay us a visit to see what a paper merchant does. Marisa is a recent graduate and has just started in a sales position at Push .

Apart from showing her our warehouse (... pretty boring stuff as it's just stacked with pallets and pallets of paper!) we also showed her our sample room where we make dummies and send out samples.

Marisa is pictured above behind an "invitation" to a private view for Per Una designed by Rare Creative printed on Flockage Colours which was one of the printed samples I was showing her in our office!


Friday, 4 December 2009

Pre-Christmas Hello

I received this pre-christmas illustration from Rich Fairhead.

Have a look....


Thursday, 3 December 2009

Preen Spring/Summer 2010 Invitation

I've received copies of this lovely invitation for the launch of the PREEN Spring/Summer 2010 collection in New York.

Unfortunately it's a really hard job to photograph satisfactorily. The reasons being that it's printed on our lovely Offenbach Bible 50gsm and therefore has a light feel and "rattle" to it and there is a degree of show through which works really well, but is really hard to demonstrate in a photograph! It starts off as an A5 finished size...
Which folds out to reveal this A3 size invitation...
and below is the reverse side [the bottom right panel is the front of the invitation, as picture 1 at top]
Design by Studio Thomson. Printing is a simple (but very well executed) one colour litho and is by Xtraprint based in London EC2.

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Jobs From The Past - Number 3

Regular followers will know that my first post of every month is a "job from the past" (see posts on 01.10.2009 & 01.11.2009), so that I can show some of the memorable jobs from times past, and here's one from back in 2002...

Towerscan "the realisation of the electrical energy that passes through an architectural space"It isn't often that I see pieces of work printed on paper which are genuinely three dimensional but this is certainly one of them.

This is a promotional piece for an "intervention project" by the artist Charles Quick. The exhibition in 2002, comprised of a photograph taken out of every window in the Art and Design block of the Leeds Metropolitan University building and this superb piece of literature certainly gets this idea across brilliantly.
Design is by Thompson Brand Partners based in Leeds. Creative directors Ian Thompson and Phil Dean worked on the project.
The job was recently written about in an article about 3D paper projects in Grafik magazine, from which I've lifted this quote from Ian Thompson "The budget was rubbish, of course, so we set ourselves the challenge of making this happen with one sheet of paper only. The solution was a single, folded piece of paper which had a pop-up building inside which could be viewed from inside and out - no gluing, just folds and a couple of cuts"
The finished size is 155x295mm (landscape). The Job was printed on Neptune Unique 250gsm. It was printed in four colour process plus a special grey and three of the large letters were foiled in a gloss black. Unfortunately I can't remember/find out who the printer was that did the job (unless anyone out there knows differently...) It is a great job and has always been popular to show, so as you can probably see from the pictures, my last file copy is on it's last legs!
At this time, I had a colleague called Gary Nightingale based in Leeds, working with me at Fenner Paper and he was actually the person that dealt with this project. He now works for himself under the name Packaging Formats (gary@packagingformats.co.uk).

It's also worth pointing out that Thompson Brand Partners still work with the artist Charles Quick which shows that relationships as well as excellent print jobs can stand the test of time!


Saturday, 28 November 2009

Our visit to Favini.

This week we visited a paper mill in Italy called Favini. It was quite a "whistlestop" tour but Chris (Fenner) and I hadn't been there for many years and it was time to become re-acquainted.
Favini is a group of two mills, one in Rossano (not far from Venice) and one at Crusinallo (pictured). They make a wide and varied range of products including uncoated text and cover papers, feltmarked papers, label papers and Cast Coated papers - many people will be familiar with the ASTRALUX brand of Cast coated papers ...well these are guys that make it!
As you can see from the pictures above, they were making red paper on the day we visited!
Favini have been developing some new products which will hopefully be introduced into the UK market next year. Chris Brown is the Sales and Marketing Director (pictured here) who was showing us around and I must also thank Antonella Agostini, Michele Posco and Caroline Wagner who looked after us very well and who made it a really interesting and enjoyable visit - thank you.

Friday, 27 November 2009


I've just picked up some copies of this lovely brochure for a new design agency set up by art director Kuchar Swara.

Drawing on a spectrum of talent including stylists, writers, strategists, Swara & Co is working with some of the best names around Europe.

The brochure is written in both English and Italian and is clearly aimed at customers who will identify with quality and art direction at the highest level.

The brochure is 16pp self cover, the size is 340x230mm portrait. It is printed on our Starfine, Natural White 150gsm (which, for those of you that are not familiar with this paper has a smooth feel and a neutral whiteness). A particularly nice touch is the use of black staples.

Here are some of the spreads....

The job was (very nicely) printed by Principal Colour.


Tuesday, 24 November 2009

Rob Ryan Screenprint

Last week I picked up my file copy of the Rob Ryan limited edition print produced for advanced subcribers of "It's Nice That 2" and it's lovely! Silkscreened in just one colour, this is a great example of the way Rob combines words and illustration which makes his work really special.

Silkscreened in one colour on our Redeem 100% Recycled 315gsm.

Don't forget you would only have received one of these if you pre-ordered your copy of It's Nice That 2 ...so if you don't want to miss out next time, don't forget to pre-order!


Monday, 23 November 2009

Happy 5th Birthday to Studio Thomson

Last Thursday evening I was invited to a party at the b-store in Saville Row to celebrate Studio Thomson's 5th Birthday. It's quite indredible to think that it's been five years since brothers Mark and Chris Thomson set up, and looking back over the work they have done, they have been quite prolific!
The first job that I recall being involved with was an invitation for PREEN by Thornton Bregazzi in 2005, printed on Redeem 100% Recycled 100gsm.

Then in November 2005 , an invitation for Aquascutum on Offenbach Bible 60gsm printed by Generation Press.
In the summer of 2006, there was a fantastic book to celebrate the 10th Anniversary of PREEN.

This casebound book has a 72pp text and is 250x350mm. It is printed on a combination of Omnia and a coated silk paper (not sure which one!) and has a fantastic quality about it.

...and here's one of the most beautiful and innovative pieces produced on our Flockage Litho. An invitation for Liberty to their Christmas viewing. It is totally unprinted on the flock side, just heat de-bossed [this is a process where you make a block as if for hot foil blocking, and using the foiling machine you simply de-boss using the combination of heat and pressure but with no foil. On the Flocked surface this has the effect of flattenning the pile, so that it becomes smooth and the effect is subtle yet very noticeable]

Anyway it was a fab party, thank you Mark and Chris. Unfortunately I only took a few party pics to share.
[Left] Here is Mark Thomson with Megan Simpkins from Gold East Paper.

...and [Right] Roy Killen from printers PUSH, in deep contemplation with Carlsberg

Party venue, b-store with Studio Thomson "notebook installation"
Exhibition space at b-store with Studio Thomson exhibits:

...and a view through the window at b-store showing the books specially produced for the event.