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From sketch to show to zine… Ryan Heshka’s Mean Girls Club!

 

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In the latest of our 17×23 series, Ryan Heshka sneaks us into a meeting of the Mean Girls Club as they pay tribute to the ghosts of their founders… but be warned, few eyes have ever witnessed a secret Mean Girls Club gathering and fewer yet have lived to see another day… With ceremonial insect venom transfusions and snake worships just the start these subversive sirens cause all kinds of mayhem as they seek out pure fear, intoxication, vice and adrenaline, sweeping like a cruel plague of pink and black.

Ryan Heshka is a Vancouver based, self-taught artist and illustrator. His childhood influences of antiquated comics, pin-ups, pulp magazines, sci-fi and movies persist today and his paintings are full of pop-culture references through the ages. Ryan primarily works in acrylic paint on wood panel and embellishes these images with magazine cuttings.

The Mean Girls Club 17×23 comic was the result of a really exciting project and we asked Ryan to talk us through the timeline from the first sketch to the Nobrow 17×23.

The first of the Mean Girls characters was conceived as a sketch book painting (“my brow”). It was just a throw away idea that I didn’t expect to go anywhere.

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I later ended up coming back to that brow character and developed a bunch of other girls like her. I came up with the visual pun idea of a bunch of mean looking girls, brandishing clubs, that would be called “Mean Girls Club”

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I had been in contact with the large advertising agency Weiden + Kennedy around summer 2013 and had heard that they do monthly artist shows in their vast lobby and gallery space, so I pitched the idea of a show to them.  Out of the need to fill the space with a unified, central idea that could take form of installation and multi media show, this Mean Girls Club idea evolved.  I had been wanting to make a risograph comiczine for some time, so I used that combined with MEAN GIRLS concept as the jumping point.  

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The MEAN GIRLS CLUB show, in July 2014, ended up as a multi faceted show, involving:

  • a full sized club house where people stick their heads in to watch , only to become human taxidermy,
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  • large scale prints and murals,
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  • silk screen prints with 40 of each print available
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  •  and the risograph comic as a run of 300 signed/numbered copies.
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All of the prints and zines sold out within the first two weeks of the show’s opening.

The week after the show’s opening was the ICON illustration conference.  That’s where I met Sam from Nobrow, and put a copy of the comic into his hands.  The rest is history!

You can buy the final result of this incredible project now from the Nobrow shop. Get your own copy of Mean Girls Club and see what these sassy sisters are all about… if you dare!


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Minilab Studios is hiring a middleweight Unity app developer!
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Minilab Studios is the brand new creative production company from Nobrow and Flying Eye Books, set up to make the most beautiful, engaging digital products that children can get their hands on.

We have just launched our first children’s app, Professor Astro Cat’s Solar System on iOS, which was based on a popular Flying Eye non-fiction picture book, Professor Astro Cat’s Frontiers of Space, by illustrator Ben Newman and quantum physicist Dr Dominic Walliman.

We have access to a large and valuable catalogue of IP through our sister companies, but we will also be seeking innovative ways to build our own stories, characters and universes to push the boundaries of gaming and digital education into new frontiers. We are looking for enthusiastic team members to help us do this!

About the role

We would love to work with somebody who:

– has 3+ years professional experience in game development with Unity (both 2D and 3D) and C#.
– is passionate about games and interactive media (children’s sector a plus).
– has a good understanding of mobile development and the relevant technologies, screen sizes and operating systems.
– is good at maths.
– has a head for good UX and slick UI.
– can competently use the Unity UI system to work across all screen-shapes and sizes.
– is keen to learn how to use new plug-ins
– has an understanding of animation, physics and particle engines.
– is comfortable animating with code.
– has a grasp of graphics editing software such as Photoshop, Illustrator etc.
– has shipped at least 2 mobile titles to market (iOS and Android).
– is able to give examples of previous projects and explain levels of involvement.
– displays tidy programming practices and can take care of optimisation/file size etc.
– always strives to make the best product possible.
– can be instrumental in planning out scopes of work.
– is a good communicator and works well within a creative environment.
– is forthcoming with new ideas and keeps abreast of tech news.

Nice-to-haves:

– familiarity with the Flash IDE.
– an eye for design.
– some knowledge of 3D packages such as Maya.
– an interest in AR experiences.

The role will be contract-based with a view to becoming a fulltime in-house member of the team at our offices in East London.

You will primarily be working alongside our lead creative as well as an animator.

Market rate salary based on experience.
Applicants must be able to work in the UK.

If you fit the bill and are interested in joining us on our exciting new foray into the world of digital, we would love to hear from you!

Applications should be sent to [email protected] stating ‘DEVELOPER APPLICANT’ in the subject field. Please include links to your best work and a bit about yourself.

Deadline extended!

Application deadline: Friday 23rd October 2015.

We will contact you by Friday 30th October 2015 if we would like to interview you.

Minilab Studios

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Get set for Art School with Art Schooled!

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As this year’s new set of students embark on their own art school journeys, we’ve a very special competition to announce!

Are you starting art school this September? We’re sure that in the first month, you will have all kinds of new, wonderful and weird experiences and we’d love to see them! Send us a sketch of anything strange, funny or just totally surreal that has happened! You can show us @nobrowpress and @jamiecoeart using #ArtSchooled on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook and we will choose our favourite to win a signed copy of Art Schooled and a set of Nobrow sketchbooks!

And as if that wasn’t enough to be excited about, we have Art Schooled at a special price of £9.99 until the 30th October in the Nobrow webshop! Buy it here!

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From the pastures of the country to the pavements of the big city; Art Schooled is an unforgettable journey into adulthood. Daniel Stope is a small-town guy who dreams of becoming an artist. His enrolment at art school and consequent move to the city opens up a world of exciting possibilities. Unsurprisingly, Daniel struggles with his newfound independence – the difficulties of dating and making new friends in the big smoke. Coe’s tale is a visually powerful and enthralling graphic novel that anyone who has been through the doors of an art school can relate to!

1. What was the best thing about starting art school?

Probably the idea of leaving the nest and starting a ‘grown up’ life as an artist, living somewhere new (that you can keep as messy as you want = rebel), studying art stuff alongside like-minded people and making new friends.

2. …and the worst?

I guess it can be kind of cliquey at the beginning, but that usually settles down.

3. What do you particularly miss about it now?

I didn’t think I would miss it as much as I do, but, yeah I definitely miss it. Art school is the perfect place to play around with your art, make mistakes, learn from them and grow as an artist. I really miss late-night drawing sessions with my buddies. We’d play music, drink some beers, smoke ciggies and just hang out making stuff till the early hours, was a great time.

4. What are your favourite 3 moments in the book and why?

A.) The ‘Creepy Guy’ scene because that actually half-happened, but it was when I was at school, before uni. I had a lot of fun drawing the opening panel, making the life drawing model as creepy and gross as possible. No disrespect to the life drawing model community of course.Picture 1B.) I really enjoyed writing and drawing the ‘LABELS’ section of the book, where there are diagrams of all the stereotypes of modern art school students, based on their fashion, interests and attitudes. It’s a bit harsh, but go to an art school, you will see similar people.

Picture 2C.) The bit where Daniel punches Pip’s ex-boyfriend in the throat. Because I got to draw someone getting punched in the throat.

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5. How much of the book is based on your own art school experience?

It’s a fictional story with fictional characters, but yeah, it’s definitely based on a lot of my own experiences.

6. And what one piece of advice would you like to offer this years’ new art school beginners?

(*clears throat, ready for an emotional, motivational speech*) I guess I’d say, enjoy it while it lasts (*cries pathetically*) and you know, ‘work hard, play hard’.

GOOD LUCK!


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Say Bonjour to 750 Years in Paris!
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We’ve been bursting to tell you all about this brilliant book for a long time and we’re delighted to finally share it with you! Embarking on a fascinating journey that moves only in time, Mahé transports us over 750 Years, from 1265 to 2015, standing in one spot, focusing on one building on a street in Paris.

In this unique, historically accurate and beautiful graphic novel, we travel through the changes of this building, starting in the 13th century, via the French Revolution and the 2nd World War to Paris as we know it today. Through his distinct, captivating visual style, Vincent has elegantly and concisely created snapshots of the city that capture the style of architecture, fashions, transports and political states of each time depicted. With each revisit there is more to see and more to learn in this book that keeps on giving so go ahead, explore and enjoy 750 Years in Paris!

To celebrate the launch of his first book, we sat down with Vincent and asked him a few questions:

  1. If you could travel back in time to any of the years shown in 750 Years in Paris,which would you choose and why?

A part of me would like to be in 1789 to witness the first moments of the French Revolution. These events inspired so many people, writers, artists, directors. I would like to differentiate the myth from the truth. But the other part wants to be in 1998 and win the world cup again.

  1. And which the least? 

I would avoid the middle ages in general. I mean, can you imagine that these people didn’t know the taste of tomatoes and potatoes?

  1. How many years have you lived in Paris and what are the biggest changes that you have seen in this time?

I was born in Paris but grew up in the west of France. I moved back to the capital in 2003. Many things have changed in 12 years. The arrival of Velib’ (city bikes) was quite something. It created a global desire for riding bikes all over the city.

  1.    What are your predictions for this building in the next 5, 50 and 500 years?

5 years: It’s full of tourists, every single room in rented on airbnb.

50 years: a bit like Interstellar, every single parisian is a farmer and is taking care of there indoor soilless planting.

500 years: Western civilization has collapsed, but its ruins are visited by talking dog tourists.

  1. Also, why did you choose the colours of the book as orange and bright blue? These are very striking and it looks great but aren’t colours that we’d usually associate with France/ Paris!

I didn’t want the book to be that obvious with a color palette like a French flag. I needed colours that could, when mixed, give me a good range of others colors. Also because of what’s happening in the book, the mood is heavy sometimes, I wanted the palette to be warm, to cheer it up a little.

  1. How long have you been working on this project? Which were the most enjoyable aspects of creating this book? 

I have been working for 2 years on this project. Not full time, but still, it was a huge amount of work. I love drawing buildings and architecture but when this was done I must admit that the best part was to put the little characters in the scene and make them live in it. It was as thrilling as playing lego.

  1. Which one thing would you recommend a new visitor to Paris do on their first trip? 

If it’s the first day of your very first visit in Paris, I would recommend you to go on the rooftop of Centre Pompidou to get an overview of the city. The restaurant up there is not bad at all, it’s called “Georges”. Don’t forget to visit the museum 2 floors below, the collections are amazing.

  1. Do you often sketch on the streets of Paris? Do you have favourite spots to sit and draw?  Can we see a page from your sketch book? 

I do, not as much as I want unfortunately. Jardin du Luxembourg is a good place to draw. There are kids with their model boats, old men playing chess, tennis players, statues and ponies… Here’s a page of my sketchbook, from outside a bar near Bastille at nighttime.

Thanks Vincent! You can buy the book from  http://nobrow.net/shop/750-years-in-paris/?


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