The Second Magpie

Posts Tagged ‘t shirt’

Mail Art: Episode One

In Uncategorized on October 6, 2011 at 02:17

I think everyone secretly wishes for amazing things sent by snail mail. Ever since I was a child I’ve loved receiving post, though recently it seems to be more junk or bills than anything else, unless I pay for it. In the past few months I had just been involved in collaborations that involved sending work by mail, until @jessicagowling followed me on twitter. I was soon addicted to checking her blog and was delighted when we finally got around to swapping mail art, she sent me the most wonderful envelope back in June and above is my reply. I think one of the most inspiring things about Jessica’s work is the nature theme, if you are interested in that or printmaking as I am, you should definitely find her in social network land and follow her everywhere.

About a month back @Dig_A_Pony sent me some Victorian sugar mice, too amazing to eat really, and also enclosed some of her prints which you can see here. I admired her work so much when I first saw it and the more I look the more I want to live right in the middle of it. Shown on the right is the reply I sent to her.

Back in July it was my friend @Rooofz 18th birthday and of course the perfect excuse to send some surprise mail as we live quite a way away from each other. I included various bits and bobs of painting, collage etc and also one of the t shirts I produced for @adamficek of RKC (Roses Kings Castles) as I still had the screen from that.

Last May/June/ @PeterDohertyoff ended up in Pentonville yet again, for a while I had been considering a project sending mail art to prisoners so put a couple of mini pieces together for him. There are restrictions on what you can send to prisons so if, in the future, I do follow this project up I shall probably have to read up on those. I’m pretty sure that nothing dangerous was enclosed…

Above is a parcel I packaged up for my friend Steph of Sparrow Squad, you can read about them in my last post:

Steph had requested two discs of the artwork I did for her so I put those together and added a few other things including stencils for Sparrow Squad, one of my playing card collages and a Peter Doherty-QPR shirt from the old days – I used to hand paint t shirts for friends and enemies. I posted this about a month ago and it should have arrived within a few days at the most but only arrived at it’s destination today, much to my relief. I had been preparing a riot for An Post.

A few weeks back I posted one of my tea zines to Twinings Tea. I used their mixed berries teabags to create the pink version of the zine/mini-book and I decided to send one to them so they could enjoy it too. Last week I received a lovely letter and a complimentary box of mixed tea.

And finally, I also posted one of the traditional tea zines to Tetley Tea as I created the one seen above with their circular teabags. Two days ago I also received a letter from them which included a voucher for any of their products.

Here ends the first episode. If you’re interested in swapping mail with me just drop me a message here, on twitter, facebook or email. I will soon be swapping a second lot of playing cards for anything and everything.


She’s in Fashion

In Uncategorized on May 17, 2010 at 02:39

I have finally had a chance to start screen printing t shirts again, I have a 2009 diary full of design ideas that I have been itching to work with for a long time. I do need to restock my t shirt supply though, and buy some more screens so to fund that I have relaunched some older designs, available from today in my shop:

The Roses Kings Cassettes design is one I printed which Adam gave away with copies of his Apples & Engines record, if I remember correctly. There were only 10 printed at the time and Adam has agreed to let me print up another lot as I have had quite a lot of messages about them.

The other t shirts come from collages and prints I have been working with over the last while, ‘I shagged my way to the cover of NME’ was a hit in their office so I decided to reprint that one with larger font, apparently it’s something to be proud of. And while Drew has been off with The Bronx and Adam has been digging gardens, I sat down to make the much requested Team Ficek McConnell shirt, for everyone who asked.

I am always happy to take commissions and am also open to printing onto other fabric or t shirts if you should like to send them to me. If you have any enquiries about this idea please email me at or write to me on twitter or facebook.

JazzCakes100: T Shirts Exhibition

In Uncategorized on April 7, 2010 at 03:21


My work is to feature in the Jazzcakes 100 exhibition in Cardiff, “JazzCakes100:T-shirts project is the first in a series of projects envisioned by JazzCakes to illuminate each facet of the arts arena.” The show will run on the 10th and 11th of April and will also feature work from artists resident at Studio B, Cardiff. I have included photos of my piece and the initial sketches which led to it above.

My t shirt design evolved from a recent interest in the Victorian era and tea. I was given the number 90 by Jazzcakes and noticed if I separated the syllables I had the words ‘nine’ and ‘tea’. Being a lover of tea I calculated that I drink, on average, nine cups per day. I began by removing the front piece of the shirt and replacing it with a piece of white fabric which was stained by tea. During a session of playing with scissors and paper, the stencils of Victorian style patterns which I used for the shirt were created. The font I chose for ‘tea’ was inspired by the many letterpress designs I have seen and I finished up by collecting used tea bags which I emptied and sewed around the top, collar area of the shirt.

You can find out more at:

Shut Your Stupid Little Mouth…

In Uncategorized on October 31, 2009 at 03:22


If I haven’t taken too much time from the world of RKC, here is the print Ficek will have on t shirts for the November tour avec Peter Doherty, check out Adam’s sites for more and come and say hello if you see me in any of these destinations….

22 Nov 2009 20:00 Utrecht – Tivoli Utrecht

23 Nov 2009 20:00 Rotterdam, Watt Rotterdam

24 Nov 2009 20:00 Einghoven, Effenaar Einghoven

25 Nov 2009 20:00 Cafe Central Brussels

26 Nov 2009 20:00 Antwerp – Trix Hall Antwerp

27 Nov 2009 20:00 Cafe Kairo Bern

29 Nov 2009 20:00 Munich, Backstage Werk Munich

30 Nov 2009 20:00 Cologne – Essigfabrik Cologne

1 Dec 2009 20:00 Hamburg – Uebel and Gefaehrlich Hamburg

2 Dec 2009 20:00 Berlin – Kesselhaus Berlin

4 Dec 2009 20:00 Stockholm – Debaser Medis Stockholm

5 Dec 2009 20:00 Malmo – KB Malmo

6 Dec 2009 20:00 Oslo, Rockefeller Oslo

I shagged my way to the cover of NME…

In Uncategorized on September 20, 2009 at 23:25


A while back I made a t shirt print out of the words above which can be found here:

I promise I will get around to stocking the store up and a few other t shirt projects I have in mind. I have been busying myself with commissions and life in general for the past few weeks. I found the stencil above, which I screen printed with because of a lack of emulsion, and decided I would collage it all onto a poster, adding some bits and pieces for good measure.

I wonder just how many bands have made a career out of this…


In Uncategorized on July 25, 2009 at 00:18

Mother Earth cries angry, black tears as factories grow, emitting their poisons and leaving behind only blackened and charred remains of what she used to be. Father Time, crushed above her left eye, counts minutes, then seconds, while a murder of crows flock to the last untainted piece of land. What shall become of us?

Greenpeace was formed in 1971. Why don’t we listen?

Collage from recycled materials, monoprint scraps, magazine cuttings, pen and ink.

If you like this please vote for it here:

Thank You


Roses Kings Cassettes

In Uncategorized on June 20, 2009 at 15:22

I recently printed up some t shirts for Adam Ficek (Babyshambles & Roses Kings Castles). He had the wonderful idea of releasing a cassette and I got ridiculously excited and doodled a bit. The original design was a combination of a monoprint, I inked up thread and then printed it to represent the rose stems and the tape, the rest was hand drawn and some watercolours and inks used.

When we decided to use this as a t shirt design I enlarged the print and photocopied it onto a3 size acetate so that I could expose it onto the screen this size. It was a4 size originally which was far too small for a white t shirt. It would have looked lost on all that white as it’s quite a delicate piece anyway. So the screen was exposed and I did some proofs on paper and canvas before trialling the shirts. I also used a section of the screen to print labels for each t shirt. There are only ten shirts and each one is numbered.

Find Adam’s work here: