Meeting London National Park City Founder, Daniel Raven Ellison, along with Sean Perkins of North was undoubtedly an inspiring experience. Organised by Sarah and Laura, this live brief offered us the opportunity to design a tote bag/t-shirt for the first National Park City Week in London – using the identity, created by North. Getting a glimpse of North’s minimalist Studio, as well as listening to Daniel’s fascinating talk about how London should be considered as an urban jungle, helped me to understand how we should all embrace and encourage the humble wildlife of the urban landscape to thrive. To appreciate the creatures of the city, to get outside and go greener. It was exciting to be part of such a sustainable and socially driven project, something I had not considered before starting DPS.
My designs showed various London species taking the form of the London National Park City asterisk, created by North. These acted as conversation starters and emblems of solidarity with one’s spirit animal – bringing humankind closer to nature. After having my ideas kindly presented back to Daniel and North on my behalf (as I was unfortunately away on holiday at the time!), I was so happy to hear that my aster animal range had been selected for the screen-printing stall at the LNPC fair.
After collaborating with both Daniel and Josie Molloy (Screen Grab) remotely over email, the designs were eventually developed into a more participatory mark, due to time and budget. A blank asterisk would form the template for my illustrations, encouraging users to draw their own spirit animal and define who they are for themselves. During the process of finalisation, I feel really gave me some experience and an insight into the value of communication, time-management, proactivity and compromise. So, I hope to use these skills in the future.
The Fair was held at Conway Hall, as part of the National Park City Week. Josie set up a couple of screens and printed the template on tea-towels and t-shirts. I was also asked to create other animals during the day, from a Queen Bee, to a Dung Beetle and Silver Wolf! I was so glad to see my system in action and seeing people, charged by the cause, engaging with the concept of finding their own spirit animal. Meeting people from all walks of life gather to make a positive difference in the world was humbling. Being able to contribute to the support of the London National Park City was rewarding in itself. It was great fun and an invaluable experience! Thank you so much to Sarah, Violet and Josie for organising and running the stall and to Daniel and Sean for giving me this opportunity!
Images of the Fair can be seen on the London National Park City website and Josie Molloy's Screen Grab Instagram.