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Kid Titan




From big-budget blockbusters to the budding blog writer, stories are deeply imbedded in our culture. They are part of what makes us human… fixed in our DNA from old times… times when there wasn’t mush else to do but have a yarn around the fire. Fast-forward thousands of years and we are littered with devices and technologies that shine a new light on the narrative experience. But the principles of storytelling are still exactly the same. A good story is a good story…no matter how it is told. Local author and historian, Frank Sikalas, shares his love of storytelling and Greek mythology in a new series of children’s illustrated books titled Kid Titan. He aims to reignite more traditional forms of storytelling for children, while also creating a new world of mythology. We recently printed a small batch of hoodies for Kid Titan and had a chat about transporting mythology into the 21st century.


Firstly, can you tell me a bit about your background and how the idea for Kid Titan started?

My name is Frank Sikalas and I am a historian, self-published author/writer, and founder of children’s book label, Kid Titan. The idea of Kid Titan came about from the lack of career opportunities as a historian. I wanted to make ancient history and mythology more accessible and engaging to a younger audience. I wanted to add values to children’s books and introduce them to the origins of storytelling. Kid Titan so far has done that.


Tell me a bit about what Kid Titan is trying to achieve?

Kid Titan is trying to get back in touch with the origins of storytelling and to encourage creativity and joy in writing. It is a platform where mythology can be discussed and shared with a wider audience.




How important do you think art and visuals are for kids’ learning experiences?

I think art and visuals are crucial for kids’ learning experiences. All kids, like adults learn and respond differently to the material being presented. It offers kids the opportunity to engage and interact with, not only academic materials, but also to develop artistic and cultural skills.


What are the main influences on your work?

My main influences are the old storytellers and historians, Homer, Xenophon, Hesiod, Arian. Mythology and ancient cultures from various cultures from different times have influenced the direction and depth of my work including comic culture.


What local artists inspire you?

Anna Manolatos (aka Sirmano) and Aly Faye.




What is next for Kid Titan?

Work has already begun on 2 future books, 1 of which has already been written and we will begin illustrations towards the end of the year. A blog has also been released. More projects such as author talks and storytelling workshops are in the works.


Records and Long Dogs





Music and dogs. Two things everyone seems to love. Two things that make the day-in-day-out more enjoyable. Finally someone has married the two and created a store that not only supports the music community, but also supports our four-legged friends. Long Dog Records is an online record store based in Melbourne that provides an ever-expanding, interesting and eclectic catalogue of local and international artists. In honour of their name, they donate a portion of profit to The Greyhound Rescue Program, offering a much-needed helping hand to the longest dogs of them all. We recently caught up with LDR founders Ryan Prehn and Luke Fussell to discuss the ins and outs of running a record store in the digital age.


Firstly, tell me a bit about your background?

Ryan: Until recently, and for many years, I was a chef, and have worked a host of crappy jobs. There are only two things in a commercial kitchen that make being there worthwhile: good music and good people. Usually they would come together, or not at all. Usually it was not at all.


How did the idea for Long Dog Records come along?

Ryan: Many moons waxed and waned while we discussed the idea of starting a business venture, and many more making it happen. The central focus has always been on providing consumers with what we felt was lacking for us as consumers, specifically honesty and affordability.


luke photo


Do you think because we are so connected with the Internet these days that there are more opportunities for online stores and brands?

Ryan: I think there are more opportunities for online stores and brands, relative to connectivity. But I think there’s a potential catch-22 for an online record store, because one of the reasons for the resurgence of vinyl is its collectability, its physicality. We plan to become a physical store as we grow, and in the interim hold pop-up stores and participate in markets and record fairs to stay visible as a physical entity. Ultimately, I think small-scale stores and brands need to operate across as many platforms as possible or otherwise risk being lost amongst the giants.


How do you find the current Australian music scene?

Luke: I think it’s a bit awkward trying to break down and explain Australia as a scene. But if we’re talking good per bands per-capita, then sure, Australia has always been healthy, I think. If you were to look at the ARIA award ceremonies you wouldn’t think so, those things really reduce the ‘scene’ or ‘industry’ down to a room full of people, and might give the average person who feels outside of what is happening, the wrong impression. Like most things, if you’re interested in something, you’ll always be rewarded with a bit of digging and there is an endless amount of really interesting bands just under the surface, you’ve just go to prepared to look, and go to local shows, or take a chance on a record. If you’re willing to support something it will support you, I guess.




Do you think Australia offers many creative platforms for musicians and artists?

Luke: Yes and no. The standard of community radio in Australia is excellent. Although I’m only really familiar with RRR and PBS in Melbourne, and RTR in Perth, they’ve been invaluable informers. The fact that Triple J has somewhat of a monopoly on ‘alternative’ music on national radio is disheartening, and again, not representative of the true wealth of bands that we have in Australia. I think the Internet has decentralized the idea of creative platforms and by and large it has left it up to the bands themselves, or the forever-dwindling promotional budgets of record labels. Of course, the government could inject more funding and support those who choose to make a living creatively, but it’s hard for them to measure the public value of the arts at a grass roots level. I don’t think anyone is expecting huge handouts, but it does make you wonder what kind of great art has been sacrificed because talented people are spending 40 hours a week stacking shelves or whatever.


Can you tell us a bit about the charity aspect of Long Dog Records?

Ryan: We’re currently approaching different greyhound adoption programs across Victoria with offers to negotiate terms of our donating an amount from each sale to their organisation. It’s not exactly charity, because we’re asking for their endorsement in return; it’s more like community support with mutual benefits.




On Screen Features: Jess Webb



Brisbane is brimming with talented artists and screen printers. With our first On Screen exhibition nearing closer, we thought we would offer a bit of a taste test and share this recent chat we had with one of the feature artists, Jess Webb.


Tell us a bit about your background? 


My name is Jessie – I moved to Brisbane from Toowoomba a few years ago and have been making work in my leafy studio between working for a fashion label and hustling burgers at Bens. I guess I have always collected things and made stuff with my hands. It wasn’t until I was into my second year at University that I figured out that I wanted to spend more time making art and figuring out what I wanted to do – and I’m still in that stage. I really enjoy collecting the work of other artist, continuing my research of different mediums, I take photos on the side, study Japanese and am also a keen gardener. I am trained as a Print Maker with a Theory minor, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that is my main jam – Im always open to new things and I am enjoying the journey that I am on at the present.


What Pantone colour are you and why? 


Im a huge fan of pastel colours, and as much as I love neutral tones, Im a sucker for pink. I think my Pantone colour would be 2036 C which is a super light pink or 164 XGC which is a light orange/guava colour.


3 artists who seriously influence your work?


Photography is a large part of my practice, especially when documenting things that are then used in my prints. Fumiko Imano is a Japanese photographer who makes incredible work and photo books – I specifically go to a certain book shop in Japan to buy her work each year. Another large influence of mine is Ren Hang, a Chinese photographer who sadly passed away about a month ago. Im also a huge fan of Daimon Downey who is a multi disciplinary artist – his use of colour and shapes, alongside his sculptures are awesome.


But I have a lot of influences! I love Volim which is a collective in Perth, the photography of Cass Bird, Mansur Gavriel & most importantly, my ride or die, Leona who now lives in Melbourne.




100 words about your piece for On Screen?


My works for On Screen are Eucalyptus Transfers of images over the last three years of my life. Ive been noticing changes and transitions in my life of late, and I think this work is a response to how I have been feeling about these changes – especially moving cities, moving into my own place, making new friends and my personal taste and influences changing. Its a super powerful feeling when you can see yourself changing, especially the transition from adolescence to adulthood. Images have been a big part of my growth and perception of the things around me, so this series of prints attempts to unpack that.


One thing you can’t live without?


Sadly, my phone. Its my connection to my family & my friends – who mostly live out of state or overseas. Its important for me to feel connected to them – apps like Instagram play a big part in bridging that gap between me and them.


What do you think of the current art/creative scene in Brisbane?


When I first moved to Brisbane I felt like an outsider, maybe because I didn’t study here or know many people. I spent a lot of time in the Toowoomba art community with my friends, making work and exhibiting with them. I think that there are many people working hard to provide platforms for others to exhibit and showcase their work here, and I have always had encouragement or support. If you want things to happen in your city, I think you have to support others who are chipping away creating those opportunities – or make your own.

There are so many things bubbling away here and I’m keen to stick around and see what the future holds.


instagram – @thevelvetinsides




Junky Comics: Keep Their Doors Open




The Print Bar’s eyes are always open to the amazing things that make our city unique. Brimming with new bars, cafes and DIY boutique stores, Brisbane seems to be continuously growing in terms of creativity. Over the last two years, a little comic book shop in West End, Junky Comics, has housed exhibitions for local artists, put on a plethora of gigs, transported artists from interstate for launches and nearly splintered the wood of their ever growing zine rack. Sadly however, this might be the last year for Junky comics due to the hard realities of bravely opening a niche business. We wholeheartedly hope this isn’t the end for this very important local establishment. Of course it’s not! We caught up with Vlada Edirippulige to discuss the store and upcoming fundraiser to keep its doors open.



How did junky comics start?


Well in a way Junky was a farfetched plan that I thought would never come to fruition. I wanted to be able to collect indie work from all over the world and make it accessible to everyone, not just people that were interested in comics. I also found that as an artist, finding a space to launch or exhibit your work was a bit tricky and scary so I wanted to be able to have a space that ran as a gallery where people could do just that regardless of whether or not they have much experience in the way of putting on a show. Also i wanted to use Junky as a space for people to meet and collaborate. We have such a rich art culture in Brisbane and it’s all thanks to the wonderful people that continuously produce work and I wanted to be able to house that culture in some small way.



You seem to run a lot of events, how important do you think collaboration and a creative community is in Brisbane?


In my opinion it is essential! We live in a great city and there are so many like-minded creative individuals and that’s what makes Brisbane great! The motivation to be a part of the community and create stems from people actually doing it and other people watching it happening and then following suit. Its a really wonderful circle of life and what makes the art and music scene in Brisbane really special.




How do you find the current creative climate in Brisbane?


I think it’s thriving and will contuse to thrive as long as we have the facilities and the community to uphold it. I notice people coming into the store everyday and seeing the local artwork, zines, shirts and then are inspired to make their own stuff. It’s a really cool thing to see and be a part of.



Who are your favourite artists and comic book authors?


I am huge Charles Burns fan, he writes and illustrates very thick lined, dark, strange, 70’s pulp horror inspired comics that I am super into. I’m also a big fan of graphic novel autobiographies such as the work of Alison Bechdel and Marjane Satrapi two of my favourite feminist writers that kick ass. Brisbane is teeming with incredible artists at the moment, Sam McKenzie, Niqui Toldi, Phoebe Paradise, Yippywhippy.. The list can go on for a while.




Obviously you can tell stories through comics, so do you think a tee shirt can tell a story?


Of course, its wearable art. It can represent who you are and who you want to be. Tees are also a perfect way to get your work and other people’s work out there.


The print bar and Junky both have an ethos of creating a community and platform for local artists, do you think Brisbane needs more places like this?


I have so many to list so just to make the list a little smaller I’ll narrow it down to just West End. The cafe/bar Betty’s Espresso where I am having my fundraiser is a perfect example of this. Cat is always putting on events for LGBTI groups, she’s had refugee fundraisers and is always engaging with the creative community by having gigs and launches.

Nook on Browning street stock so many local artists work, Shannon at Jet Black Cat does so much for the Brisbane music scene by stocking local bands’ records and putting on shows.

There are so many places in Brisbane that do wonderful things for the creative community, its fantastic!



Tell me a bit about the upcoming event at junky this weekend?


The event is this Sunday the 19th we are having a fundraiser at Betty’s Espresso in West End to raise funds to try and keep Junky open. We are almost at our two-year mark and the going has been a bit tough. We want to be able to continue putting on local shows, local work, supporting and engaging with the art community so we are doing everything to try and keep the doors open!

We will have raffles going at the event, Young Henrys will have delicious beers and we will have books and march for sale too! It should be super fun!

SuperDate: Love at first byte




As technology evolves, so too does the way we look for love. With the current prevalence of dating apps, it seems we hold an infinite number of potential soul mates in the comfort of our pocket and all we have to do is swipe our finger back and forth like a pendulum until we find a match. And then we do! That initial dopamine rush… those words that flood the screen and your head with endless possibilities… sure it feels great for a fleeting moment, but will you really have anything in common with this person you fictionalised based on a few photos. We recently worked with a brand new dating app SuperDate and caught up with Australian CEO Robert Mrozowski to see if there is such a thing as “love at first byte.”


Tell me a bit about your background?


I have grown up in Brisbane and now live on the Sunshine Coast and have always been very social and love organising activities and fun things with friends.

I have dated for many many years and finally met my dream lady and wife Michelle. One thing Michelle and I both have in common is the ability and love to put people together which has resulted in numerous long relationships, weddings and even families. So why not enable this on a large world wide scale – Superdate. Everybody deserves their someone special and true friendship and contentment.


How did Superdate start?


I have been working on Superdate for over two and a half years with a Canadian mate who knows dating Apps inside out. We realised that people needed a new way of connecting with a person of similar interests, get them off the computer and out into real life.


Tell me a bit about the philosophy behind Superdate?


SuperDate is the next evolution in online dating. The first and only app of its kind. SuperDate is bringing back the date; the tradition of connecting two people through a common activity.Users can view a variety of fun and interesting date ideas and after indicating which ones they are interested in, they can view and message other people who are up for the same thing. We want to bring back romance and real life connection, with women’s safety being at the core of what we do.




Do you think apps like Superdate make it harder to meet people irl and have we lost the art of meeting face to face?


We know meeting in real life through a common activity increases ones likelihood of promoting a real relationship. Research shows that only 5% of people end up in a relationship using current online dating sites and a further 34% using online dating sites have never even met face to face. We want to change those statistics.


In 2012 a bunch of Psychologists from 5 different universities collaborated on a research project to answer this very question. They examined (a) whether online dating is fundamentally different from conventional offline dating and (b) whether online dating promotes better romantic outcomes than conventional offline dating. The answer to the first question is yes, and the answer to the second question is yes and no. What they found was profiles and complex algorithms did not account for real life connection and success in meeting a potential romantic partner. According to their research the biggest predictor of success in a relationship is having similar interests and meeting face to face. But the findings were clear that the online dating arena certainly provides greater opportunities to meet people you wouldn’t ordinarily have access to.  So we are taking the best of both and flipping things around. We are putting real life experience at the forefront of the connection while using the online platform to create greater opportunities to meet.


So in answer to your question. I don’t think people have lost the art of meeting face to face. I just don’t think the online dating space has caught up with how to enable this online to offline ease of connecting. I do think the online dating space has created a void in real life inspiration and romantic connection. We think we can disrupt this space and bring back romance in a fun and authentic way. We believe SuperDate will make it easier to meet people face to face and the sooner they meet the better the outcome or else face possible unpleasant expectancy bias….you build a 3D vision from a 2D platform and the real life meeting doesn’t stack up.




With Superdate’s focus on matching people with common interests, how important do you think having things in common is towards a meaningful relationship?


We are less interested in promoting a profile based assessment mindset. We will enable greater opportunities for experiencing real life common interest activities, as we believe this creates a higher likelihood of compatibility than the current online dating models. The experiential aspects of social interaction are essential to evaluating compatibility with potential partners. You need to hear their voice, laugh together and ensure all the senses are firing. We create greater opportunities for that real life connection.


 Do you believe long lasting relationships can be formed from dating apps?


Most definitely. Our App can also be used by existing couples looking for great dating ideas and assist in re-sparking that something special.


So the Australian launch is coming up in Brisbane soon?


Our first Australian launch location is Brisbane and will include the Gold and Sunshine Coasts. South East QLD boasts a fantastic climate and an immense variety of fun and exciting activities.


Finally, what have you got planned for this Valentine’s Day?


I will be taking my lovely on a Superdate!



On Screen: TPB’s New Offshoot




On Screen is a gallery focused by-product of The Print Bar. Through a series of up and coming exhibitions hosted in various locations around Brisbane, On Screen shines the spotlight on local printmakers and creates a new gallery platform for print mediums. We spoke to Isabel Hood, creator of On Screen and The Print Bar’s very own designer, about the new project.


Firstly, what is your background?


I graduated from The Queensland College of Art (QCA) in 2014 with a Bachelor of Design majoring in visual communication design. Since then I have worked in various design studios, co-run an artist run initiative (ARI) called In Residence and started my Masters of Interactive Media Art also at QCA. I also manage my time to work on freelance projects and in-house designing for The Print Bar.


Tell me about the new project On Screen?


On Screen is an upcoming exhibition series that focuses on local artists who use print-making as a key medium in their practice. The exhibitions will be held at various locations around Brisbane, with further viewing held at galleries and pop ups after the event.


So, Is On Screen a new imprint for The Print Bar or is it a whole new thing?


I feel it is a gallery focused by-product of the business. We share the same ethos and interests in local artists but On Screen has the opportunity to focus more on curating and exhibiting work. It was important for me to distinguish the two as separate things through the business model and visual identity, but there is definitely a similar idea that runs through the two. By distinguishing On Screen as it’s own endeavour, I feel it has more room to grow. But…I also wanted to use it as a platform for sharing The Print Bar’s interest in local print culture.




What do you wish to achieve from On Screen?


For me to say build a community of print makers in Brisbane may seem a little naive, because there are already print based communities in Brisbane that exist. We do want to further the appreciation and connection with this medium while also contributing to the increasing focus on Brisbane’s creative scene. We also wanted to evolve The Print Bar’s resume to include more than its customer based, garment printing model.


What do you think of the current Brisbane art scene?


Being involved in an ARI opened my eyes to how many either recently graduated or even established artists and curators are so passionate about creating their own or being a part of ARI exhibitions and spaces; sometimes as a response to a lack of support from established institutions or just as an outlet to experiment with ideas outside a gallery context. There’s incredible work being produced (not just with ARIs) and what seems like several events every week, so the passions is there and Brisbane as a whole is constantly evolving. I’m really excited to see how it shifts in the coming years.


Are there any artists in particular who have had a drastic impact on your own work? 


Because I am approaching this from a design and curation background I’m inspired more by seeing creatives establish their own events, galleries and becoming more DIY. Like an ARI, On Screen has been modelled off an idea of necessity. There are plenty of local, talented print-makers, yet not a lot of spaces or support to exhibit their work. On Screen is facilitating these exhibitions and finding different spaces to exhibit in order to share our passion for print-making and highlight the talents of local makers.


On Screen itself has also taken some inspiration from McNally Jackson, which is a bookstore in New York that also has its own exhibition imprint called The Picture Room. I respect how they are leveraging off each other yet they could still exist on their own. It’s a great way for McNally Jackson to establish and diversify its passion for literature, magazines and art through the two projects.


How did you formulate the style guide for On Screen? 


I used Print Bar’s typeface and the main colour scheme, with added shade variations. I obviously didn’t want to separate it from The Print Bar identity too much. It was really interesting trying to come up with another style guide from the essentials of another brand. I wanted to make sure the branding was also very clean and simple so it didn’t detract from the artists’ works. Assets were also created to represent On Screen as a logo and placeholder graphic to accompany generic information. The assets are of various stylised and outlined sheets of paper, alluding to the elements of print-making.


What kind of work are you looking to exhibit? 


On Screen is excited to showcase anyone who is using print in an interesting way. We have already started compiling lists of artists who use mediums such as rizograph, screen, woodblock and lithograph printing; approaching their working from a political standpoint or a purely aesthetic focus.


So, when and where is the first On Screen exhibition?


The first exhibition, Growing Features, will be on the 30th of March at Ben’s Burgers in West End. Keep an eye on the Print Bar’s and On Screen’s Facebook for more details. 

Brouhaha: A Tee Can Say a Thousand Words




Whether it be by the ink that finds a home across the front of your chest or by the moments experienced while wearing one, tees can tell stories. Yes… they are a staple item of clothing found in most wardrobes around the world, but they have had a place in narratives ever since Marlon Brando screamed love in his tighty whitie. Local label Brouhaha screams love of a different kind…the love of giving back. We caught up with Brouhaha’s James Koerbin to find out more about the label.


Firstly, tell me a little about yourself and Brouhaha?


BROUHAHA is a small label I’ve recently launched as a way to stay sane amidst a very uncreative desk job. As I get older the creative side of me seems to scream louder and louder for attention, so this was a chance for me to explore that side and learn some new things along the way. I think we’re here to connect, create and try to make the world a better place, so BROUHAHA – through the designs and the charitable aspect – is me trying to do all three at once.


What was the inspiration behind Brouhaha and how long has it been operating?


A couple of years ago at a local market I bought a baby’s bib as a present for a friend. It had a safari design on it that really captured my attention, and I was torn – should I cut up the bib and turn it into a pocket tee for myself, or should I let a baby burp all over it? I ended up giving it as a present, but the bib served to ignite the creative ideas within me, and pretty soon I couldn’t stop thinking about what could look cool on a t-shirt. Fast-forward from there through a lot of doodling and prototyping to the final months of last year, when I’d arrived on some designs I was happy with and wanted to share.


Is there anything in particular your designs aim to represent?


Most of the designs are focused around communication or culture; although a couple are just things I thought would look cool. What links them all is that they’re really bright, fresh designs on crisp white and black tees or tanks.There’s usually a little nugget hidden for those who take a deeper look at the tops, like the secret message the nautical flags spell out in the TRUTH tee, or the peace sign the pilot is doing in the MARHSALL tee.




Tell me a bit about the charity aspect of the label?


Each top is affiliated with a charity, with $10 from the purchase going directly to the cause.  It’s just a small way to make a difference and give back, and there’s some really neat causes we support. There’s some exciting ones I’ve got in mind for some upcoming designs still floating around in my head, but I’m always keen to hear about what great work different charities are up to – so if anyone is involved with a cause they think we could partner with, definitely drop us a line.


Do you think a t-shirt can portray a story?


Most definitely. Not just the story told through the design of the tee, but the story of your life wearing the tee – where you got it, all the adventuring and laughing and highs and lows and life that you experienced in it. My favourite BROUHAHA top is one that has Come say hi written in large font on the back. When someone sees it and comes over to say hi it leads to new stories and connections, which is always fun. I especially love seeing photos of people wearing the top alongside the person who has come up and said hi to them!




Who inspires your work?


I’m super inspired by people who are fuelling their creative fires – whether it be playing music, painting, performing dance or acrobatics. One artist I particularly dig is Sydney-based Mulga, who does some really incredible murals that are just damn cool.


What’s next for Brouhaha?


At the moment I’m working on some plans for a stall at various markets in Brisbane, Byron Bay and Bondi. There have been a million ideas floating around my head lately, so I’m looking forward to doing some more doodling, bringing the ideas to life and partnering with some great charities to raise funds.


BNE Girls



Hannah Roche and Dani Marano’s small print publication, BNE Girls, shines a spotlight on the abundance of talented women who call Brisbane home. Although Brisbane often wins the “bronze medal” in Australian creative capitals, the humidity and relentless sunshine that hits the city seems to inspire work that reflects the day-to-day life in the 4000. BNE Girls contains 27 portraits that celebrate female creativity and highlights the many artistic communities that Brisbane has to offer. We caught up with Hannah and Dani to discuss their inspirations and what’s next for BNE Girls.


Firstly, can you tell me a bit about your background and what you do? 

H: I am a fashion photographer living and working between Sydney and Melbourne. I’m interested in capturing the relationship between the female body, fashion and design.

D: I am a renaissance woman. A wannabe everything. I lived in Brisbane for 8 years before moving to Melbourne at the start of the year. I occasionally style shoots for local labels and as a day job I manage a women’s clothing store in Fitzroy.

What inspired you to create BNE Girls? 

H: Brisbane is full to the brim of talented creative women working in so many different fields. We really wanted to create a series that focused on and celebrated those women. Dani shared this passion, so we wanted to produce this together. Dani’s a really talented stylist and her ideas translate really beautifully.

D: The amazing women of Brisbane and working with Hannah.  Hannah has an amazing eye for detail and really knows how to make people comfortable in front of the camera. I have loved watching Hannah’s work progress over the past few years and am so thankful to work with her.

Where do you see small/boutique/start up labels sitting in the fashion world when there are so many large established labels to compete with? 

D: Small boutique labels may have large established labels to compete with but there is still a market for the conscious consumer. Ideally the conscious consumer considers their purchases and prefers to shop for locally produced labels. Being able to control all aspects of production can be used to a start-ups advantage and give them a point of difference against their chain store competition. In saying this it can be difficult for a small label to maintain their brand ethos and identity as they expand. We need to be more aware of what we are consuming and smaller labels have the ability to educate us and promote positive practices.

naomi blacklock

Has the internet and broader scope of communication made it easier to start a label? 

H: Absolutely. It is so much easier to promote your work through the social platforms that exist. I have come across so many new labels to follow on Instagram. Instagram particularly is a great tool and allows for labels (and artists) to get beautiful imagery out there. Because of the Internet and social media you can also start a business from your bedroom, which reduces overheads and ultimately helps to get your business off the ground. In saying that, it’s also a heavily saturated place and people have increasingly shorter attention spans, so you have to be doing something different to stand out.

D: The Internet has made it easier for labels to engage the consumer through clever use of social media platforms. The customer is constantly provided with visual stimulus through Instagram, blogs and websites to create a cohesive brand identity. A designer can run a whole label from their studio or on the run with the help of the Internet.

Do you think Brisbane has a lot of opportunities for creatives? 

H: I think there is a lot of creativity coming out of Brisbane – great bands, artists, designers. In my experience it has been a great place to study, learn and collaborate with other artists, but it’s hard to get paid work here.  Often people end up moving to Sydney or Melbourne for paid work opportunities.

D: I think Brisbane has a lot of opportunities for creatives to collaborate and develop skills but not consistent paid work. There are always exceptions though, local businesses like Frank and Mimi, Bianca Mavrick, Lovestar and Talty Sargent found their point of difference and are going strong!

What local/Australian artists inspire your work? 

H: Saskia Wilson, Miso, Brooke Holm, Phebe Schmidt, Levon Baird, Frances Cannon, Intent Journal is an ethical fashion publication that is constantly inspiring me in terms of mindfulness in the fashion industry.

D: Margaret Preston, Julian Meagher, Miranda Skoczek and Elizabeth Barnett. I am a sucker for a good still life.


Do you think it is harder for females to become established in creative fields? 

H: I think in some industries it’s harder for women to be taken seriously. I’ve heard some stories! I’m lucky to know and be surrounded be so many women killing it in their creative fields. For me, the support from other women is something that encourages me to work hard every day.

D: Obviously there are some challenges in areas like architecture and music, but many women I know work in creative fields. They work in art galleries, own cafes, take photographs, make jewelry, create art and they work hard. They are establishing themselves in their chosen fields and gender has nothing to do with it!

What are you trying to achieve with this project? 

 D: To put it simply we wanted to acknowledge creative women and their contribution to to Brisbane’s creative communities. Brisbane is an underrated city brimming with amazing talent and we wanted to start a dialogue about that. We were also drawn to idea of creating a book rather than an online publication because the more virtual our lives becomes the more we crave the physical. I love being able to interact with an object, feel the texture of a books front cover and flick through the pages. You don’t experience the same interaction with a digital publication and a book stays with you for a lifetime.

What’s next for BNE Girls?

H: We’d love to take it to another Australian capital city so we have to figure out the logistics of that.. Stay tuned!


Hannah – @hanro
Dani – @dee_dee_sparklehorse




Local artist and children’s author, Anna Yum, highlights the everyday moments and heroic abilities in each and every one of us in her new book, “Everyday Superhero.” Written as a kind of therapy, the book is a lesson for children to accept themselves for who they are and celebrate their own unique qualities. We caught up with Anna before her book launch and exhibition at The Print Bar.


Can you give us a brief summary of what Everyday Superhero is about?


Everyday Superhero follows two characters, Rosie and Meeko, as they discover what it means to be an Everyday Superhero. The narrative focuses on the things we do everyday that makes a difference in your life and the lives of those around you.



What are the main themes and messages the book covers?


The book teaches kids that they are more than good enough just as they are. The way they care for their friends, the way they are brave when trying new things and the way they make mistakes… kids need to hear these messages to help them build their self esteem and realize they don’t need to change for people to like them.



Do you think we don’t celebrate the everyday moments enough?


Yes! And it is so hard to just stop, physically and cognitively, and realize how wonderful we have it. There are so many distractions, demands and stresses in our everyday lives, most of them telling us that who we are needs to change to fit with what is required.



What is your typical creative process and in the case of Everyday Superhero, did the visuals or story come to you first?


I have two little inspirations in my house, my daughters Genevieve and Imogen. So the characters in Everyday Superhero are a combination of their personality traits as well as the things they like to imagine they are. And this is a very typical way that my creative process takes shape. People and things around me inspire me; I look for colour, pattern, textures, personalities, feelings…all trigger ideas that make their way into my journals and can surface in artworks.




What artists inspire your work?


I studied bachelor of arts/education, so my background has always been in the visual arts. Rachel Whiteread was my first inspiration and she would cast the negative space around chairs, so you are left with a presence of a chair. This has always played a roll in my art concept developing- what impression are we leaving based on what we do and who we are. We have the ability to have a strong impact on those around us. Good and bad. Other artists I get inspiration from Beci Orpin, Lisa Congdon and Lauren Childs. All these artist use of colours, texture, pattern and material always inspires me.



What type of children’s book do you wish you read as a child?


I watch my daughters read all those fairy/princess stories and I never remember reading those stories as a child. I don’t know if it is because I was a tomboy and grew up with two brothers where the matchbox cars definitely out numbered the barbie dolls, but I don’t ever remember imagining those stories to be true. Don’t get me wrong, my imagination got a work out with great books like James and Giant Peach and The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.



How do you find juggling being a mother and an artist?


I know that most people like to brag about how wonderful their kids are, but I swear my two are the cream of the crop! And they love being involved with any projects I am working on. They are well used to hearing me say “I have an idea for a workshop, do you gals want to have a go?”. And there is never a “No thanks mum” to that one! But in all seriousness, I would never have thought I could be running my own business, write and illustrate a children’s book and keep things all running at home with a young family. I think my kids and my hubby have helped to give me a balanced outlook on life, they have boosted my confidence and believed in me. Go team YUM!



What’s next for Anna Yum?


Well HQ is currently being renovated, so a lot of time and energy has been spent project managing this space. But once that is complete, art classes from 1 year olds to adults will be up and running.  I am launching my book at Avid reader in the September holidays with loads of workshops for kids and a special one for adults too. And I am working on my next children’s book, following on from Everyday Superhero. I can feel a lot of creative juice flowing at the moment!




An Interview with Buzz Studios




The Print Bar blackboard has showcased many amazing artists over the years. Not only the heart of Print Bar HQ, the blackboard is also a platform for the abundance of talent that walks through our door. One artist whose mural we can’t bring ourselves to dust off is local designer, illustrator and mural artist Adam Busby, aka Buzz Studios. We recently caught up with him to discuss his process and the themes portrayed in his work.


Firstly, tell us a bit about yourself.

My name is Adam Busby, born and bred American, now based in Brisbane where I have lived with my wife for the past 6 years. My background and study began in fine art, traditional oil/acrylic painting and drawing, which I really enjoy and still practice. At the time an influential and forward thinking teacher introduced me to graphic design which I had no idea about, from which I applied to the program and studied for the next 2 years. Those initial years away from the computer getting hands on with learning about paint, space and form was critical in developing the style and process that I use today.


How has your practice changed over time?

My practice has become much more regimented and clinical over the years. Most creatives try to be loose, flexible and avoid routine as a way to stay creative, but I find the exact opposite to be true. The stricter and more consistent schedule I have, the more creative I become and the more work I produce. I have learned and continue to learn that there are a certain number of terrible works you have to get through to get to something great, so it is really a numbers game, the more your produce, the better you get, and the work reflects.


Do you approach a canvas differently to a wall?

Definitely. A canvas is very much in isolation and is transient, you never really know the end resting place and surrounding. Walls on the other hand are very difficult to move, which means the art, the shape and the colours all have to interact with the surroundings, lighting and people in a more permanent capacity. I personally love this creative constraint and have used odd shaped or textured walls to help guide the direction of the artwork that goes on it.




What themes do you pursue in your work?

I try to explore all different themes, but some recurring ones at the moment are: plants, lines, textures, faces, and food. Also my colour palette usually creates more of a theme than the subject matter I am designing.


Describe a real-life situation that has inspired your art?

Ooh that’s a deep one. You could go one of two ways, sometimes the emotions and surrounding mood such as frustration or energy could influence my art, and on the opposite spectrum a texture of a leaf, the movement of a bird, or the architecture of a building might inspire a layout, design or illustration.


What do you like/dislike about your work?

I personally love the process. I nerd out hardcore over things like grids, prepping work and thinking about how things will translate. I wouldn’t say I dislike it… but getting people to value your work has been a challenge in the past in my career. Once you jump the hurdle of lining up the clients perceived value and your time, ideas and labor as an artist, you are smooth sailing and it is much easier to move projects along without convincing people of the value of what you do.




What is your dream project?

I’ve got my sights set on a few 5+ storey building to push the limits of how large I can go with my mural work. Also on the bucket list is to design/illustrate a beer and or wine label.


Which local artists have impressed you?

I am a huge fan of the work Frank and Mimi are doing in the sign writing and conservation awareness space. Georgia Hill has a hugely impacting textural style that is fantastic.


So what’s next for Buzz Studios?

Bigger murals, nationwide and overseas. My focus is also about being very intentional about who I work with, what my work communicates and who it impacts. I just want to create more passionate work with passionate people!




Check out more by Buzz Studios:

Instagram @buzzstudios

Twitter @adamsbusby

Facebook /buzzstudios




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