Somehow we’ve already made it to February, and January is soon to be forgotten. As we continue on this exciting 2016 adventure, I thought it would be a cool idea to keep track of my favourite things each month to see what makes my life easier and happier along the way, so here’s my favourite things of January 2016. Perhaps they could become your favourite things too!
This year I really wanted to be more onto it when it comes to social media, and take advantage of the platforms that I’m on to help other creative students through design school. That’s the whole point of this blog and I wanted my other social media accounts to support it along the way. I’ve also been listening to the SeanWes Podcast again which has encouraged me to get my stuff together and be more aware of my personal brand. So, I’ve been intending to post on my Instagram every day throughout the week to document my life as a design student and hopefully provide some insight for other students and creatives. In order to do this effectively and to be on top of things, I’ve been using the free iOS app Latergramme to schedule and plan my posts before they’re sent out to the world. The app lets you set up the image, when you want to post it, and the caption. It then sends a reminder when the image is to be posted and then copies the image and caption to Instagram for you to add tags to and post! This allows me to plan what I want to post when, stay on top of my posts, and make sure I have enough time to create a worthwhile post that represents what I’m trying to convey to my small following! I’m still working on posting the right stuff, and on being consistent, but this is helping me get there! If you have any other tools for scheduling social media posts or tips for creating great content, let me know! I’d love to hear your thoughts!
Extra-large Moleskine Journal
I am a huge lover of stationery - journals and notebooks in particular - so when my friend turned up at Christmas time with a stack of Moleskine journals for me, I was over the moon! These three extra large Moleskine journals are all filled with plain pages and have a wide pocket at the back for loose notes. I am planning on using these journals for my major project at university this year so that I can keep track of my ideas and things that I need to remember along the way. The plain pages mean that I can write notes, sketch ideas and plan out my thoughts in any way I want to! The journals themselves are also quite thin which makes them easy to slip into my laptop case or my bag and take with me wherever I go. Moleskine makes notebooks and journals in all shapes, sizes, colours and paper types so if these don’t meet your needs, I’m sure you could find the perfect one for you! Head over to moleskine.com to find the one for you and if you see any that you think I’d like, let me know! I’d love to hear if you have any other favourite stationery too!
I love being productive, and to be productive, I love being efficient in the way that I do things. In creating these blog posts and during other creative endeavours, I create a lot of illustrations and hand-lettering that I usually draw myself, take a photograph of, upload to my laptop, import into photoshop, edit, and live trace in illustrator to create a vector illustration. This is quite a lengthy process for something that really shouldn’t be so hard. Last year I had given the free iOS app Adobe Shape a go, but I wasn’t exactly sure about how to use it and I never seemed to get the results that I hoped for. Towards the end of last year, during a university assignment I gave it another go on the recommendation of a friend who showed me the results they had been getting. Finally, I figured it out! Slowly but surely I managed to vectorise my drawings in a few simple steps and see them appear in my creative cloud library almost instantly! Since starting this blog and doing a few lettering commissions in the last month, I’ve been using this non-stop! I recently upgraded to Adobe Capture which includes not only the shape feature, but allows you to also create brushes, colour palettes and looks. This has streamlined my workflow and made things so much faster! There are still times where I need a more rustic feel to my lettering, so I will stick with the longer photographic way, but for the most part, this works great! Give it a go and let me know what you think!
Copic multi liner Brush Medium
Over the years, I’ve collected a fair few different pens for lettering and illustration, and almost every time I go to Gordon Harris here in Wellington, I usually buy and try a new one. My bank account doesn’t really like this tradition, but my creative soul loves it, and usually wins the internal battle every time. I’ve found quite a few cool new pens this way, but I have recently found my absolute favourite! I actually purchased the Copic Multiliner Brush Medium a while ago on one of these trips to the art shop, but hadn’t really had the chance to use it much. In January, I was working on a commissioned hand-lettering piece for a friend of mine, and decided to give it a go. Thank goodness that I made that decision, because I have fallen in love. The brush tip is so soft and glides across the paper so nicely! It is easy to use both thin and thick strokes with this pen, and it feels so natural to write with. Such a dream! I’m definitely going to run out soon so I’ll just have to get a new one, and I might need to invest in some different colours too! What’s your favourite pen? Got any recommendations for other ones I should try? I’d love to try them!
There’s just a few of my favourite things this month! I’m going to get onto thinking about my favourite things of the next month starting today and in the meantime, I’d love to hear about your favourite things! Let me know what’s been making you happy this month and if there’s anything else you’d like to hear from me, let me know! Want to hear about my favourite designers, books, podcasts, movies etc? I want to know what you want to know, so let me know!
Much love, Hollie! :D