A test I did on Instagram asking people which stencil they will prefer.
When I painted a 21m mural with the artist Adriana Jarros for the London Mural Festival 2020
Doing some lino with my cat, Mani Jones :)
One of the latest stencils I did using spray paint, my home printer and an old and ugly Ikea poster
I think we could all agree that 2020 is being a though one. Beyond the psychological effects that this global pandemic could have, there is also the economical side that is making companies, studios and small business struggle. So to add to the emails you sent and you never hear back, we need to add the ones that say they are not hiring because of Covid. When I started sending emails, those responding anything were already making my day. Once we finished uni and I handed in after all the struggle, I started to make my portfolio straight away, thinking that If I was starting “early”, I would have more chances to start something in September. Now, looking back, I kind of regret I didn’t have any break and I jumped into this DPS year. But at the same time, looking back , I didn’t think coming back to Spain for summer holidays was a great or responsible idea and I was locked in the flat I live almost by myself without not much pourpuse. That’s why, I jumped into my first placement at SIRPLUS in August 2020. At the beginning, I felt pretty excited just to have something to do or some kind of schedule or structure but quite quickly I realise what in a way I knew when I applied: that I am not interested in Digital Marketing and that If I do it, I will want to get properly, not doing an intern. Until the end of June 2020, I was working in Soho in the commercial department of Westminster Kingsway College, called 01zero-one. There, I was taking pictures of the spaces we were renting commercially (event space, green tv studio, roof space, mac room, meeting rooms and hot desks for freelancers) and also of the events that there were happening there. I was also in charge to update their Wordpress website, social media platforms, creating newsletters in Mailchimp and even, running a free screening event once per month with short films that our clients were producing. In SIRPLUS, I was doing pretty similar tasks but getting pay much lower than London Living Wage. Basically in the studio I was resizing pictures of rooms to fit Instagram guidelines and in SIRPLUS I was resizing pictures of jumpers for the same purposes. The good thing I am taking from that experience with SIRPLUS is that one day, realising of all what I mentioned above, and after having few chats with my supervisor and after few sucessful photoshoots , I wrote a proposal offering myself steeping out of the graphic design intern to become a freelance Social Media Content creator for them. The way I saw that situation was a winning- winning: I didn’t want to carry on doing that intern because I felt I learnt everything that I could have so I offer a solution to something I was more into (like is photography and videography) being concious that If they were not taking it, I will find another placement anyway plus also, by just doing content creator in freelance basis, I could combine it with other experiences that I could enjoy more. After meetings with the brand owner, they said yes, so we agreed two weeks notice, they find other intern and the idea was to plan some themed photoshoots soon. After I left, I had the chance of contacting more people from the list I created, apply to other positions, etc. Regardless If the applications were unsucessful or not, it was great to invest some time in sending them as it’s something that I don’t enjoy that much. After SIRPLUS, I had the chance of working in Bloomsbury Festival as Digital Intern for around two weeks. It was long hours but it was also pretty well paid, and even that today I am still wondering which was my role in that festival (they had lots of volunteers who were doing the same tasks than me), it was great earning that extra bit of money as that allowed me to buy some equipment like an A2 printer, a couple of screens for screen printing, a guillotine, equipment to do lino prints at home, etc. Sometimes you have to put in a balance what you are getting out of that experience. Sometimes is knowledge, skills or contacts. Another times is just money. But that money can help you to keep building and progressing other things you want to make. While I was doing that festival job, I have the chance of applying for an archivist position with Alan Kitching which is what I am currently doing. It’s not a design job and I can tell you that sometimes is hard as I have to move huge boxes full of prints. Sometimes it’s also the feeling of I am never going to get it sorted as I am doing two days per week and I am going through the 60 years career of an artist and also sometimes, dealing with someone that it’s almost 80 is also a bit challenging. But, in the positive side, I feel that it’s a job that is informing my own practice as what I am interested is all what it’s related to typography and the power of words. I also can focus in developing my own stuff and not applying and sending emails all the time. So at the moment, and If things don’t change, I am going to carry on with this until the end of the DPS year. Being honest, I realise that I have been pushing the idea of making my own things because I find it scary. Every time I am designing something, so many questions pop in (which size should I do my prints?, only black and white? How can I include y interest in sustainability in printing?) I find it stressful to show my things to the world as it feels like everybody has their own style, their own thing and I am interested in lots of different things at the same time. But this year is the time to do that, regardlesss the global pandemic. It’s the time for experimenting, for pushing boundaries, for taking “safe risks”. PD: SIRPLUS never contacted me again for any photoshoot and now they are having a just graduate from UAL taking their photos and being paid probably more that what I was getting. But being honest, I don’t care. I am happy with what I am currently doing and they also have a friend of mine who is happy doing graphic design so, happy days.