Hector & Haddock celebrates paper and traditional printing methods. I take great pleasure in sourcing and salvaging paper ephemera: from battered Roy Rogers Annuals to discarded pages of Mrs Beeton's Book of Household Management, my paper collection inspires my designs.
I've always treasured paper; certificates, menus, first love letters - most things I keep, not to trawl through regularly, but certainly to provide a paper trail for my son to one day look back on. My love of such ephemera led me to create artwork out of other paper items which I source from a variety of places- all pieces once-loved, but, for whatever reason, now forgotten about or not needed by others. I trained as an English and Media Studies teacher and have taught for many years. It's no surprise that my love of design & language, books, and the history of communication are now reflected in Hector & Haddock.
Vintage graphics never fail to inspire me: from the hand drawn Borax Boxes I collect which inspired a Christmas Card range, to my Cactus screen print, a nod to the Roy Rogers comics in my collection, every design choice pays homage to paper of the past.
I source my vintage ephemera from auctions, house clearance sales and flea markets. Often, friends and acquaintances will donate items to me. It's like a love affair with personal history: these items have meant so much to someone once, and hopefully, through re-creation, they will mean something again to someone new. It is a real privilege to read other people's stories and can be quite emotional. In my searches I find wedding photographs, Michelin guides and maps, letters from homesick children to their mothers, receipts and title deeds, opera programmes, bus tickets and creased love letters: all evidence of fascinating lives gone by.
I salvage what I can and anything damaged, scribbled in, or torn is used in my phrase and motif pictures. I attempt to complement the paper and the phrase, for example, "I'd be Lost Without You" is cut from vintage atlases and maps, "Heart on Your Sleeve" from pattern-cutting books and "Just the Ticket" from original Guernsey bus tickets, thereby creating new meaning and repurposing the original text. All paper based creations are hand cut using scissors and a scalpel (no lasercutting used) and made in my studio.
Linoprints are all printed in my studio, and screen prints and tea towels are hand pulled using traditional screen printing methods and water based inks by a local studio in Frome, Somerset. Letterpress cards are printed using the traditional Letterpress method by a studio in Flintshire, and the Punck Puns cards are printed by a printing press based in Bristol. My picture frames for the linocuts, and other paper based pictures, are sourced in Hampshire, to keep provenance of materials as British as possible.
I also run linoprint workshops, for large corporations, businesses, schools, and at-home events.