Wednesday, 12 December 2012

On Shining Wings Photographs

Photographs from 'On Shining Wings'

On Shining Wings - Early costume sketches

With my costume designs, I created a grey, and dreary impression of working class life, first in the Late Victorian times, and then, in 1913. With the whole cast in this monotone scheme, it gave a real impression of black and white photographs.

On Shining Wings - Puppets

A big feature of this story was pigeons - and we decided early on in the process, to create the pigeons using puppets.

Developing a puppet that was simple enough to make for a large cast (32, with spares!) was quite a task. Giving a suggestion of the birds, without explicitly showing them was important, and stuffing socks seemed the best way to achieve this!

Another important factor to think about whilst developing them, was to work out how they would work with the cast, who would be wearing them during movement sections of the play.

How the pigeons would be seen and perceived by the audience was also important. I was determined that the actors should still be in their period costume whilst 'being' the pigeon. The subtle transformation from character to pigeon worked really well.

Science PopUp Shop

Our task with this project was to create a Science Pop Up Shop in Nottingham - the first of it's kind.

I was working with 2 others to create the Library section of the shop's space. We wanted to make a quiet and relaxing area, quite separate from the science activities that were going on also - a quiet space to reflect and read.

Our idea was to have a tree to sit under, and read by. By chance, recent storms meant that there were some large, sweet chestnut branches that had been blown down at Wollaton Hall.

We managed to pack them into the car, and bring them down to the rather dreary space - bringing a bit of nature into the space was a lovely relief from the old and grey shop.

It was a very busy week, with a very tight budget - but I think our tree worked well in it's situation.

Other information and pictures, from

Notting Hill Carnival 2010

I stumbled across these pictures the other day, showing the bit of work I did making Biana costumes for the London School of Samba's section of carnival.

I did a lot of work making these pot costumes - stencilling patterns on the fabric, and stitching the black PVC type fabric.

I also spent quite a few hours brushing ostrich feathers. They'd been dyed purple, and they needed brushing out whilst being dried out with a hair dryer. A repetitive task - but looks great in the end!

Photographs by Clare McGarrigle  (of Carnival), and myself.

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

According to Brian Haw

Video Trailer by YMT here -

And images from 'According to Brian Haw'

Photos by Jon Bromwich

According to Brian Haw

This summer, I designed the show 'According to Brian Haw'.

Brian Haw was the peace protester, who campaigned and camped on Parliament Square for 10 years, until his death last June. Brian's story is at the heart of the piece - young people's relationships with and around the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and after 9/11.

For this piece, I really wanted to make the whole space like Brian's peace camp - as if the audience have joined in, and come to help out, and protest. Collections of banners and placards, camping chairs and flags, pallets, and lots of other things that you may find at camp were clustered around the space, and the audience were invited to come and join the camp; very close to the action.

Monday, 20 August 2012

The Physicists

I did a couple of days work at Rocket, whilst The Physicists set was being built. The whole thing was white, which required very careful painting. My task mainly was drainpipe sanding, but I did get to do a bit of painting!

Image by Johan Persson from

Hay Fever

I did a couple of days work for Rocket Scenery, painting lots of doors for Hay Fever at the Noel Coward theatre.

Top image by Catherine Ashmore from

Beauty and the Beast

From last year's panto in Harrogate, where I worked as wardrobe assistant for a month.

There was lots of popper and patch stitching involved, and the costumes (and set) did look truly fantastic.

Images from

Lion in Winter

Here was my first bit of work experience for Rocket Scenery, assisting with scenic painting. Lots of stone was painted, textured, re-painted, re-textured... But it does look rather stunning in the end!

Top image by Catherine Ashmore from