Author Archive: Liv Siddall

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Liv joined It’s Nice That as an intern in 2011 and is now one of our editors. She oversees itsnicethat.com and has a particular interest in illustration, photography and music videos. She is also a regular guest and sometime host on our Studio Audience podcast.

ls@itsnicethat.com@LivSiddall

1705 articles
  1. Rubenfischer-main-int

    Aha, some “digitale malerei und grafiken von Ruben Fischer,” a new protégé of Eike Konig over at Hort in Berlin. It’s no secret that Eike has spectacular taste in who he hangs around with in terms of design talent, and Ruben is a prime example. His digital collages in fun, primary colours are all untitled, which suggests that he’s not yet doing work for clients and the like. But to see someone crack out posters, record sleeves, identities and illustrations just for the hell of it is fantastic and refreshing. Something tells us Ruben has a unique way of looking at the world, and some computer skills up his sleeve – some very important strengths in this day and age. You can see some of his more recent work on his very, very colourful Instagram feed.

  2. Main-books

    Guys it’s World Book Day! One of the only “days” of the year that people should really give a shit about (yeah I’m looking at you “National Play your Ukulele Day”). People all over the world are encouraging kids and adults to get their hands on a brand new book, or just glance at the spines of your well-thumbed publications on your dusty shelf that perhaps changed your life at some stage or another. In honour of this sacred day, we book-lovers at It’s Nice That have decided to pay homage to our own favourite tomes by listing them here for you today in our very own It’s Nice That Bookshelf. So in no particular order, here are the It’s Nice That editorial team’s favourite ever books. Tweet in yours too!

  3. Euan-int-main

    Before I begin can I just say that what you see in these photos is not LARP (Live Action Role Play), it’s SCA which stands for The Society for Creative Anachronism. The difference is where LARP is more playful, going out with your mates wearing costumes and wearing padding and bashing each other on the head, SCA is actually recreating aspects of primarily Medieval history down to the smallest detail in trams of craftsmanship. A bit like a theatrical production, but with jousting.

  4. Mirandajuly-badman-int-main

    The problem with Miranda July is that everything she says or does is great, so editing the interview I did with her the other day has been a bloody nightmare. In this half of our two-part feature Miranda discusses health, drugs, sex, ideas, and – of course – some of the themes in her spectacular new novel The First Bad Man. You know what? Here’s some homework for you: read part one of this interview, then read this, then go read the book. Trust me, you will enjoy all three. Here she is…

  5. Mirandajuly-badman-int-main

    Last week I went to visit Miranda July in a somewhat archaic hotel in Mayfair. Turns out she wasn’t even staying there, but had been placed in a small room on a sofa to talk to journalists all day about her new book The First Bad Man. Although she was meant to be speaking primarily about that, I wanted to talk to her about some of the themes in the book and how they tie in to her own life – particularly as a few times in the past she’s almost cast herself seemingly unawares into her own projects. Miranda had a baby while she was writing this novel, and so this interview also covers how one continues to stay creatively motivated when confronted with eternal busyness, and the ways LA shrinks and doctors can help – or hinder – your work ethic.

  6. Paulinelepape-int-main

    Exciting new student alert! Meet Pauline, currently working on her advanced degree in type design at École Estienne in Paris – how glamorous does that sound? It’s rare to find a student with as much consistently fantastic work on their site, and for a while I didn’t actually twig that Pauline was still studying. She’s designed typefaces, had a bash at letter pressing for her business cards, and made some publications that I’d actually buy. The way she represented a bunch of Stéphane Monnot short stories is well-designed without overshadowing the writing, and that publication about the concept of an ornament just looks fantastic. Remember this name: Pauline Le Pape, she’s got big things ahead of her.

  7. Californiasunday-markmothersbaugh-int-main

    When you hear the words “branded content” you probably don’t get that excited, right? Well, times are changing. No longer do brands want to settle for something that isn’t going to whet the imagination of an audience, and so they’re recruiting fantastic creatives and partnering with cool platforms to make it actually worth everyone’s time. With this in mind, check out this pretty breathtaking animation created by Google Play in collaboration with Creative Sunday.

  8. Geicoad-int-1

    When an insurance company challenges you to not skip through their latest ad on YouTube, your first reaction is likely to be “try me.” But you know what? They have actually pulled something pretty remarkable together for their latest advert. Well, I say remarkable, it’s pretty low-budget, but the idea behind it is great. Knowing that the majority of people wouldn’t watch an insurance ad on YouTube unless you were holding a gun to their head, they made their advert two seconds long. Then if like me you enjoy the first two seconds, you can stay for the whole thing. Best thing about this ad is how they didn’t even green screen the family, and you can see them wigging out and twitching as that dog goes all Beethoven on their dinner. Well done The Martin Agency for keeping us on our toes.

  9. Stefaniemoshammer-int-main

    “Las Vegas is the strip club capital of the world,” says Stefanie Moshammer, an Austrian photographer whose recent project led her to the underbelly of Nevada’s shimmering city. Stefanie began work on a series called Vegas and She, in which she documents strippers, nightclubs, and various bits and bobs that represent Las Vegas culture: bright pink limos, dust trails, palm trees, and diving boards into sapphire pools.

  10. Stevenchorney-int-main

    The reason design blogs and Pinterest are overcrowded with hand-painted signs, hand-made furniture and hand-printed textiles is because (you guessed it) it’s made by hand – and the joy of seeing craftsmanship is never, ever going away. The world is changing, and the more we demand, and the shorter our attention spans become, the less we’re spending time on getting things just right.

  11. Jc-int-main1

    London Fashion Week is officially over, and we have now come to the end of our Workwear feature. We thought we’d round the series off with Jack Cunningham, a London animator who works at Nexus Productions. We chose to finish with Jack because he represents an enormous chunk of mid-twenties creatives in London – he’s just a nice chap who wants to not look like a scumbag and be able to get his hands on good quality clothes. Below Jack tells us how to get away with buying expensive things for cheap, and chats about how shit men’s high street fashion used to be compared to nowadays. Once you’ve read this, check out how good he is at animating things.

  12. Gaeanwoods-int-main

    Gaea Woods caught our eye the other day with the portraits she took of her friend Samantha, seemingly covered all over in Vaseline. A bit of research led us to finding out that Gaea is actually a photographer with a whole host of talents under her belt, particularly when it comes to shooting things really close-up. Gaea was born in rural northern California and now resides in LA, where she’s making her career as a photographer.

  13. Josephmann-int-1

    Remember that really racy animation about loads of people getting it on by the seaside? Well the guy behind it – 2009 It’s Nice That Graduate and now BlinkInk director Joseph Mann – is back with a fantastic new animation which is just as well-made, but maybe features less pubic hair. This time around, Joe has helped put together a music video for a band called Police Dog Hogan, featuring a crowd of ne’er do wells in a scummy old boozer, watching the band perform. In true Young Ones style, we are taken below the floorboards to where the rats live, and watch as they begin drinking the beer sloshed on the floor by the humans above. Fantastic animation by Joe, and a pretty high-quality, entertaining music video for a song that is essentially a love letter to the West Country.

  14. Studio-audience-lemon_list

    Welcome, podders! Fantastic episode this week featuring me, Liv Siddall, and Billie Muraben and James Cartwright from the It’s Nice That team. After a great question submitted by Hattie Stewart we chewed the fat over the latest art and design news, including the new identity for the Royal Albert Hall and the much talked-about cover for The Gentlewoman. In section two we discuss London Fashion Week, the sartorial habits of creatives, our new Workwear feature and the effect social media has on the the world around fashion week. Any comments, complaints, compliments – just get in touch via Twitter, email, or the comments box below.

  15. Simonwhybray-workwear-int-main

    He may not grace the covers of magazines or the red carpet, but designer Simon Whybray is more famous than you think. When you’re lurking about on the internet and being entertained by seriously cool and interesting stuff – do you ever stop and think, who the hell made this? Well, occasionally, it’s Simon. Designer by day, Tumblr scroller by night, Simon spends most of his time tucked up in his bedroom overlooking Old Street on his laptop. Sound lazy? It isn’t. He’s busy creating products, GIFs, designs, logos, club nights, clothing, memes, typefaces, music…you name it. Being on the internet all day has fed Simon’s brain like a drip, and subsequently he’s now asked by big brands to come in and teach them what the hell is going on out there in the real – well, online – world.

  16. Matamatyka-int-main

    LA artist Misia emailed in last week with a bunch of her drawings and paintings, and I was super impressed. She’s managed to mash up Nick Sharratt’s illustrations from Jacqueline Wilson books with The Babysitter’s Club, The Fresh Prince and a bunch of other pop culture references – all drawn in well-practiced monochromatic inks. Unique and skilful aesthetic aside, what I truly love about Misia’s drawings are the characters in them – GIRLS. Girls barefoot doing acrobatics in living rooms, girls lounging on beds listening to music, girls hanging out together doing nothing, girls wearing zigzag leggings and looking bored. These pictures remind me that I’m a girl, and being a girl is SO cool. They make me want to text every female I know and arrange some sort of day where we can watch TV for hours and eat peanut butter on crackers and cereal out the box. I hope it does the same for you.

  17. Main-nt-int

    We’ve had a bit of a hunch for a while now that all you lot are pretty into magazines, so we decided to dedicate this month’s Nicer Tuesdays to the people who know most about that very topic and theme the night all around publishing. Port’s David Hellqvist, Dirty Furniture’s Anna Bates and Elizabeth Glickfield, Steve Watson of Stack Magazines, and Tim Noakes of Dazed and Confused all came together to deliver some home truths about the tricky, expensive, but ever-adored world of printed content. Thanks to all who came along, we hope you enjoyed it and see you again soon.

  18. Sonyadyakova-main-int

    Now London Fashion Week is in full swing, welcome to the second week of our Workwear feature, in which we interview creatives about the clothes they really wear. This time we’ve taken a short trip to Sonya Dyakova’s London studio from which she runs Atelier Dyakova. Sonya is a Russian designer who produces some of the most informed, delicate publication design out there. Most of the books she turns her eye to are artistic publications, which she brings to life with clever typographic systems and cheerful colours that are the toast of the art world – not to mention the fact that she is the art director of Frieze and Frieze Masters magazine. Sonya’s natural ability to work with artistic books stems from her time working closely with Alan Fletcher at Phaidon in 2005 where she was responsible for “commissioning, art directing and designing books on contemporary and fine art, fashion, food, design, architecture, and photography.”

  19. Yurisuzuki-int-main2

    Yuri Suzuki is pretty magical. He was born in Tokyo with a natural curiosity for electronics and taking things apart to see what’s inside, just so he could transform it into something else. He wants to show the world the enormous amount of possibilities when it comes to sound, especially with the technology available in the modern age.

  20. Davidgalasse-skate-int-main-

    Fun little short here from animator Antonio Vicentini with a little help from Brazilian designer David Galasse. Using a load of fluoro squiggles and some very good animating skills, the duo has put together an informative film about the history of skateboarding. A lot of people make projects about skating, but hardly anyone can pull off a five-minute-long animation about it without showing anyone actually skateboarding. That’s why this works so well: they went for the relaxed, rebellious vibe rather than just showing someone jump down some steps in a barren shopping mall, and it’s way more interesting for it. David actually designed a typeface especially, but the rest of the visuals were just stolen off the internet – which is just the icing on the cake. Great voiceover, too.

  21. Collectionrevue-gif

    What could be better than six cool pals getting together to make a whopper of a comic book? Meet Collection Revue, a French sextet formed in 2010 and made up of Sammy Stein, Vanessa Dziuba, Marine Le Saout, Antoine Stevenot, Jean-Philippe Bretin and Julien Kedryna. For a year they spent their time and money putting on a bunch of small shows in Paris, exhibiting the work of cartoonists, visual and graphic artists and illustrators to what I can only imagine is a very cool and good-looking crowd. They now channel their collective obsession into very, very appealing publications.

  22. Studio-audience-lemon_list

    HELLO podlings. Boy has there been a lot of news in the world of art and design this week, ready to catch up? Join me, Liv Siddall, and my guests Rob Alderson and Karl Toomey to fill you in on all you need to know. In this episode we chat the new Skoda ad , The New Yorker’s 90th birthday (happy birthday, we love you), the NME (maybe) going free, London Fashion Week and the very exciting nominations for 2015’s Designs of the Year.

  23. Hattie-main-int

    Hattie Stewart never stops giggling. It’s infectious, she’s a hoot. Her current solo show at London’s KK Outlet is under way, with a whole bunch of her now notorious, collectible doodles on magazine covers and, more recently, leather jackets. A Kingston graduate, Hattie now works for the likes of Rookie, House of Holland, Pepsi, and whoever else wants a big old dose of colour and weird magic injected into their brand. Her working style is instantly recognisable, and you’d be right in thinking that the nature of her work ties in to what she wears day-to-day.

  24. Juliahasting-akademiexmain-int

    A few weeks back, an enormous book the colour of a tube of Love Hearts landed on my desk. It was Akademie X: Lessons in Life an Art. Not often does a book look this succulent: the weight, texture and little details were enough to have the whole editorial team cooing over it. Published by Phaidon, it’s a collection of lessons written by artists such a Miranda July, Katharina Grosse, Walead Beshty, Marina Abramovic, Tim Rollins, John Stezaker and many others.

  25. Izumimiyazaki-main-int

    Life can be pretty boring when you’re a teenager. Rather than turning to the gory allure of video games and SnapChat, 18-year-old Izumi Miyazaki decided to take matters into her own hands and make a series of selfies that make yours look absolutely rubbish. By utilising household items and foodstuffs as props, and sometimes going as far as building her own sets (see head in the clouds photos below) Izumi transports herself into far off lands, so far off that they’re on a different world entirely. Her fixed, deadpan stare throughout makes the project not just endearing but also worth much more than if she was just larking about. It’s art, man. FYI she also sells badges and other small merch items – get ’em while you can.

  26. Robryan-workwear-int

    London Fashion Week is fast approaching, so we decided to cover it in our very own special way: visiting artists and creatives and interviewing them about the garments they wear day to day. First up is Rob Ryan, a visual artist whose romantic paper-cut works bring squishy happiness to cold hearts all over the world.

  27. Anastasiakorostevla-classmates-main-int

    This post comes by way of submission from young Russian photographer Anastasia Korosteleva. You may have seen her Girls series over on Dazed in which she burnt out the faces of the subjects of her dream-like photographs. This series entitled Classmates takes Anastasia to sunny East London in South Africa where she turns her lens to school kids. Once you get past how fantastic their uniforms are, and that feeling of nostalgic schoolyard bliss has passed, notice just how fantastic Anastasia is at contrasting the primary colour uniforms against the stark, school-y backgrounds. Also worth noting is how clever she is to not make the project cutesy in the slightest, but just a study of a group of innocent, cheeky mini adults.

  28. Wongping-doggylove-int

    You know what it’s like when you’re of that age, when even the sight of certain pieces of fruit and veg can turn you on faster than you can say “wet dream.” Cantonese animator Wong Ping decided to take all of the cosmic lust he felt as a teenage boy, and channel it all into one seriously hot animation made exclusively for NOWNESS. Watch as a teenage boy becomes intensely obsessed with a girl in his class whose bosom is on her back, until he can take it no longer and starts placing objects in-between and and top of them without her noticing. Things get racy, then racier, but because it’s produced in Wong’s happy, colourful style, seeing people have sex and jerk off in the toilet isn’t even that weird. You know what is weird, though? Wong Ping’s interview over on NOWNESS, in which he says the first time he had a crush on a classmate he “sniffed inside her school bag and tried to lick her books. I was ashamed of myself and have suppressed my emotions ever since.” Okay…

  29. Lovemixtape-main-int

    Hey gang! We can’t deliver you roses, we can’t buy you a puppy, and we certainly can’t reserve you a table at a restaurant in Soho, but we CAN make you a loving, sexy playlist for you to crank up in your place of work today. Hey, maybe tomorrow you could put it on while you stir red wine into a Bolognese de Lurve, or before you go out on the town with your mates to raise a toast to being single and free of all this Valentine’s crap. Regardless, this selection of crooners and crotch-awakeners will remind you that even if you haven’t got a special someone in your life, you have us, and we love you very, very much. Enjoy!

  30. Daniel_eckler-whereswallet4-int-lisst

    Find yourself losing your wallet a few times too often? On the bus after a couple of shandies? No longer in your pocket at a festival? On the cistern of a toilet? Yeah, me too. Luckily we live in the age of technology, so people all over the world are making sure dummies like us can keep track of our personal bits. Where’s Wallet has just made its online debut, and looks fantastic: “Thanks to cutting edge technology, each wallet features a thin, unobtrusive sensor, so you never have to replace your wallet, or its contents, ever again.” Sounds good to me! Before you get your shit old wallet out to actually pay for one of these babies, check out the brilliant interactive website for it illustrated by Harry Bloom. The Where’s Wally? aesthetic of the site asks you to locate lost items, and play fun quizzes about tech. Bash that auctioneer’s gavel down, I am s-o-l-d.

  31. Tod-papageorge-studio-54-int

    This is fantastic. An interactive, well-designed web article about Tod Papageorge, who photographed Studio 54 in its heydey, with accompanying photographs of said photographer by one of my favourite photographers Jeremy Liebman. And that’s not all, as you scroll down this slick, smooth site and learn about the glitter-smeared naughtiness of the club that notoriously only let in people with “high energy” and was once referred to as the best party in the world, ever, you are treated to soundbites from an interview with Tod about his new book.

  32. Taschen-psychedelicsex-list-int.png

    Unless we ask our parents (which we will certainly not be doing) us young’ns will never really know if sex in the 1960s and 70s was better than it is now. They say a lot of things are better when you’re on acid, so I can imagine the rumours are true: being naked in the company of someone else, and getting down and dirty on some hand-embroidered rugs sounds far superior than a quick bonk in the dark with your iPhone pinging in the background.

  33. Thefamilyacid-stonehengeunboundmain-int

    Books like this should be created much, much more regularly – and it’s odd that few people pick up on this. Take a spectacular photographer who’s had something of a colourful life, have a dig around in his archive and wrap the nuggets of treasure up in a profoundly beautifully designed publication. The Family Acid is a new drool-worthy book the colour of fresh orange juice, published by the cool guys of S_U_N_ over in LA. Their publishing back-catalogue is a witty library of books that transcend the olde worlde/modern divide like a big trippy rainbow – drawing on old zine formats and themes for their content, but remaining firmly enough in the present to secure tables at the coolest art fairs in the world.

  34. Awaytogo-main-int

    I very rarely struggle to start writing a post – but I have hit a bit of a wall with this. Bear with me while I try and get across the magnificence of this game. I just spent a while playing A Way To Go – a web game created by Vincent Morisset with the help of Caroline Robert, Philippe Lambert and Édouard Lanctôt-Benoit. I knew it was going to be super special before the gameplay started and it informed me that it “is an interactive experience for human beings between 5 and 105 years old. Maybe it lasts six minutes. Maybe it lasts forever.” Then it asks you to pretty much abandon your mouse. Abandon my mouse?! Are you crazy?! But you do, because you trust it. And then you’re in the forest and the game says to you: “Go on, make your way. Stop to see the smallest things. No one’s waiting, no one’s keeping score.”

  35. Waiwaipang-main2-int

    Is there something in the water at Brighton? Everyone from the Graphic Design and Illustration course seems to leave with a confident streak of joy and happiness, and humour that you just don’t get from a lot of other students. Classic example here in Wai Wai Peng, a 2013 graduate who soaks up all the positive vibes in the world and sneezes them out as cute (but not too cute) pencil and ink drawings. Simple though some of her drawings seem, a closer inspection of abstract pieces such as Drift and the intelligence and skill of Lamenting the end of Olympic speed skating action suggest true draughtsmanship. I just love it. Jeez I could look at them all day. Maybe I will. See you in a bit.

  36. Studio-audience-lemon_list

    Welcome to a rather exciting brand new season of Studio Audience. We’ve got fun new visuals by the talented Guy Field, a somewhat catchy new jingle from illustrator, animator and music-maker Paul Layzell, and we’ve generally had a little bit of a “spruce.”

  37. Kimkyuho-main-int

    Kyuho Kim’s a graphic designer from the Republic of Korea whose work is an explosion of colour and type nerdery. He doesn’t give much away on his site, other than his clear obsession with typography in all its forms. From posters made entirely out of typewriter lettering, to layers upon layers of words forming abstract images, Kyuho’s portfolio is as fascinating as it is varied. We were first drawn in by his Dublin project, which is the kind of simple, fun poster you just don’t see enough of these days. Fun, games, typography and colours aside, Kyuho knows how to work to a brief – his Great Gatsby book cover is beautifully informed, and his Zigzag typeface is killer. Oh, and he’s only 22!

  38. Inezandvinoodh-fourfiveseconds-int

    Maybe it’s because I spent all day Saturday watching Beatles documentaries, or maybe it’s because I’m feeling emotional and loving after a big lunch, but this is great. If you had told anyone five years ago that Rihanna, Kanye and Paul would team up with fashion photography powerhouse Inez and Vinoodh to create a music video, no one would have believed you. But, it’s happened. Sure Brandon Stosuy from Pitchfork just referred to it on Twitter as a GAP commercial, but I think maybe it’s stronger than that. When the collaboration was first announced I expected them to accompany it with a mindbendingly expensive blockbuster video à la Justin Timberlake’s What Goes Around…Comes Around complete with a car chase. But no, it’s stripped back, fashionable, kinda soppy and watchable. Well done Inez and Vinoodh, you’ve made this almost farcical musical trio somewhat more believable.

  39. Brechtvandenbroucke-the-fame-main-int

    Brecht, after five years of admiring your work I can happily say that I can spell your name without looking. And I can tell you that even though I’ve spent years admiring the skill of your painting, I can finally say that I think I actually get it. Over time, Brecht’s erratic artworks have become increasingly crowded with characters, pop culture references, logos, and his trademark long-limbed creatures.

  40. Emilystein-tobago-main-int

    From the talented woman who brought you photographs of teenagers going nuts in mosh pits and kids blowing bubblegum comes a new and somewhat more reserved series entitled Tobago. Emily Stein headed out to the tiny, remote Caribbean island with her camera and snapped a small series in a bid to create a portrait of the young people who reside there. The collection is cheerful and informative: from the charming school uniform donned by the teenage girls, to the cool cereal packaging on the shelf of a supermarket – each photo oozes a bliss only found in the carefree period of adolescence. It’s a succulent glimpse into a place you may well never get around to visiting, and more proof that Emily is a rising star in the photographic world.