Loved Dundee Design Festival 2017

I’ve loved Dundee Design Festival 2017 it’s provided me with inspiration, professional development, place to work, networking and nourishment for me and my practice – just what I needed!

Here are some highlights

Pecha Kucha, with a line up of 13 interesting speakers, my favourites were Leanne Fischler and views on consumerism and the mesmerising sound of Panda Su.

Creative Dundee created a WRKSHP space for designers to work during the festival.  I used for for a couple of days which was great to be part of the whole event as well as tap into things happening.  With Make/Share round the table, I particularly liked the passion and perseverance of Steph Liddle with ceramics.  Great to hear Brian and Mark from McGinaly Bell architects on the start of the journey imaging what the West Ward Works could be in the future and Biome Collective and the creative, interactive and varied work the gaming collective get up to.

My Make/Share was about the process of creating the 12 hand printed patterned illustration wooden panels for last years Dundee Design Festival chatted about the initial conversation with Sion, mind maps, sketches, screen printing, tests, decisions I had to make including the happy accidents and many late nights to pull it off!
There was lots of things take part in, dicsuss and hear about.  Print City was amazing, I love screen printing and the giant 3d shapes really created a interesting space to walk around and loved that the community had a part to play in the creating the visuals.

I chose a blue triangle for Silent Monitors, where the colours and positions were decided by people opinions of how you felt on how your data was being used.

I ate popcorn and drumstick lollipops while watching Graphic Means film brought to the festival by D:Screening.  The documentary was on the history of graphic design production, I didn’t realise how technical it used to be, I bet folk are happy with their apple macs now, even through I’m more of a cut and paste type of person!

Discussion of Why Should we make more with the cool brand Trakke, historic and very profitable Johnstons of Elgin, Clare Cooper and designing aides for the elderly and the inspiring Fi from Make Works.  It highlighted my feeling that we are consuming too much and really should by things that you love with a quality to last or be repaired.

The building is such a great space with the real industrial feel with the exposed pipes and extractors, faded painted lines that separate area and the lovely sunshine shining streaming through the coloured windows.

This worked well with the simplicity of the bright tables legs created by Old School Fabrications showcasing the Factory Floor exhibition bringing together a collection of makers, materials and machines from Orkney to Detroit.  Great to see the links with music and design as well as technical advances of the Ninewells x DJCAD radiotherapy mask and familiar faces of Hilary Grant and her beautiful knit patterns.

There was so much more to see from family workshops, talks, demonstrations, DCA shop with exclusives from Tom Pigeon and Whimsical Lush, tours in the building and factories in the area, Mak Lab workshop, Factory Floor Exhibition, live recording of Creative Chit Chats with a range of questions – looking forward to hearing them!  Not to mention the cool opening night with delicious cocktails on the opening night! Loved the colour combination of the new branding by Sooper DD and Fleet Collective.

Well done to Sion Parkinson and the team that brought it all together!  For more info on the Dundee Design Festival 2017 follow the link.

Dundee Design Festival

West Ward Works
I would like to invite you to the Dundee Design Festival, from Thursday 26th – 28th May in West Ward Works.  I was commissioned to create a series of surface patterns to tell a contemporary Dundee design story.  All my designs are hand screen printed on wood and dispersed through gallery, can you spot them all?

Dundee, the UK’s only UNESCO City of Design is hosting the first Dundee Design Festival from the 25th – 28th May 2016.  The theme for the first Dundee Design Festival is “Place. Work. Folk. Design.” through it explores the potential of design to connect the city’s communities and improve our everyday lives.  This exhibition weaves together some of the great design stories currently emerging from the city, including new innovations in textiles, games design and design for health and wellbeing.

The event is FREE but you need to book ticketshttps://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/dundee-design-festival-tickets-24394298002

There is a real mix of things in the exhibition so it allowed to use my design skills to create images that brought it all together to tell the story, things included: eeGeo 3d mapping, sonic pills, bullet proof vests, fashion + textiles, Hand of X, tools of makers, the changing landscape of the V&A coming.

Frank Gehry Maggies Centre Dundee

I have used the CMYK colour palette to make references to printing methods.  In the image above of Frank Gehry Maggies Centre.  Chosen not only as it represents a building designed by world renowned architect but because I believe it evidences how good design changes peoples’ lives providing a place of calm, support, nurture and tranquility created within a purposeful space. Externally, I enjoy the shape and movement of the roof which I feel echoes the local landscape.

Within the imagery and patterns there are deeper meanings, for instance the colourful pattern is cancer cells, the teacups and books to show support and lavender to give a sense of calm, the sky is a positive sunny yellow patten to show the positivity of space and support.

“It’s very difficult for people to go through experiences like this, and I wanted to create a building that would be calming and accommodating, and one that would be a fitting tribute to Maggie. I think it’s an inviting building, I think people will want to come inside and spend time there, and I really hope that in some small way it might contribute to a sense of rejuvenated vigour for moving forward and living life.”  Frank Gehry, (October,2003)

Let me know what you think of the designs in the show – can you find all 12 of them?

Pieces are for sale, please contact me directly for a price list.

You can keep up to date with my work on

Instagram – kirbyrecipes  https://www.instagram.com/kirbyrecipes/

Twitter – Kirbyrecipes https://twitter.com/KirbyRecipes

Facebook – LouiseKirbyDesign https://www.facebook.com/LouiseKirbyDesign/

Drawing Dundee by illustrator Louise Kirby

Dundee PehToday I’m starting a new project called Drawing Dundee.  I am going to draw local products and places in the city and around the city and post every Wednesday on my social networks –  so keep your eyes peeled. (starting Wednesday 2nd March) Continue reading

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I am delighted to be commissioned by The Woodlands Trust Scotland to help draw attention to an oak tree in Glasgow’s Kelvingrove Park to help it win European Tree of the Year. Continue reading

Xmas Art Fair at Wasps Studios in Dundee

wasps xmas group photo

WASPS STUDIOS XMAS ART FAIR – Saturday 28th November 2015, 12noon to 5pm.

I’d like to invite you to this event Wasps Studios Xmas Art Fair at Meadow Mill in Dundee where you will be able to buy my work.  My stall will have a selection of Festive Cards, everyday greetings cards, bargain box of scarves and hand embroidered tote bags.

indigo pudding Louise Kirby

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It’s dreich outside but these will brighten up your day

red pudding Louise KirbyHere is some of my festive designs on cards –  tasty Christmas Pudding, well fed Robin and Winter in Dundee. Continue reading

Festive Forbes of Kingennie

festive brochure web I’m always inspired in the great outdoors so being asked to create an illustration for Forbes of Kingennie Country Resort Festive Brochure was perfect match for me and my work. 

They wanted to do something different and part of my job is to capture the essence of the place and to bring their vision into reality.
photo 2 small Continue reading