Ten Questions 023 – Chad Wys

November 24th, 2011 by Mat Dolphin

Born and based in Illinois, Chad Wys is a ‘visual conceptual artist, designer and writer’. His work covers a number of mediums including digital manipulation, painting, sculpture and mixed media, and his interest is largely focused around the deconstruction and appropriation of pre-existing images and objects. His work explores ways of finding a new meaning within the art he finds by altering and playing with what’s already there. After coming across his work on sites such as Ffffound and Behance, we got in touch with Chad to see if he’d be interested in answering our Ten Questions. Luckily for us, he was.

Read on for an insight into the thought process, concepts and inspirations that go into Chad’s work.

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Ten Questions 022 – Simon Birch

November 17th, 2011 by Mat Dolphin

Simon Birch is and artist based in Hong Kong. Working mainly in large-scale, figurative oil paintings, his recent direction has included installation and film. Past exhibitions have been held throughout the world including at London’s Haunch of Venison Gallery and Tokyo Museum of Contemporary Art. With more recent shows in Hong Kong, such as ‘Laughing With A Mouth Full Of Blood’ and a large-scale collaborative exhibition entitled Hope & Glory. Filling the 20,000 square feet of ArtisTree Exhibition Space in Beijing’s Taikoo Place, the installation took the viewer through a metaphysical world, or ‘conceptual circus’ and saw Birch working alongside a broad range of collaborators including artist Stanley Wong, photographer Wing Shya, British music producer James Lavelle, filmmaker Eric Hu, designer Douglas Young, architect Paul Kember, actor Daniel Wu and Beijing-based artist Cang Xin. Birch’s work explores the concept of ‘universal ideas of transition, the ambiguous moment between an initiation and a conclusion, the unobtainable now and the future, inevitably crashing towards us’.

His work has been featured and reviewed in many international publications, including Artforum, The Guardian, The International Herald Tribune, Time Out and the New York Times. He was kind enough to take some time out and get involved with our Ten Questions series.

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It’s Nice To Be Nice

November 3rd, 2011 by Mat Dolphin

We don’t do games. We don’t mind the odd game of Kerplunk or bout of Twister, but when it comes to consoles and losing 5hrs pretending to be a sniper we just switch off and would rather talk to another human being or open up a good book. Same too for apps on our wonderful handheld smartphone device thingies. Angry Birds passed us by and that was that. No biggy. We’ve got better things to do on the tube.

But then our friends over at ustwo caught our eye. They’ve been busy working away for ages developing a neat little app called WhaleTrail. Now, we’re all for promoting and supporting our friends, but the game is actually very good. Coming from self-confessed non-gamers that’s quite a thing. So no hard sell, it’s just a really good game and we recommend you checking it out. It’s 69p so you can’t go wrong. Buy it here.

It’s nice to be nice. Keep reading…

Guest Post – Bernadette Jiwa » Why Are Designers Hiding?

November 1st, 2011 by Mat Dolphin

When we meet clients for the first time they’re often quite surprised to find out how long we’ve been established and how many people actually work here. It happens all the time, and even comes from other agencies within the industry too. “Really???” is a common reaction. People’s perception of Mat Dolphin is based on a number of factors. Our creative work, the brands we’ve been fortunate to work with, the exposure we’ve had, our twitter presence, this very blog etc. all go together to paint a picture, and one that is apparently bigger and louder than we are. So why don’t we just be more open about it all? The vast majority of design agencies these days share what they want to be heard or seen. Like well oiled PR companies, they carefully control what the world finds out about them. But that’s kind of missing the point. What makes agencies unique is the people that work there. Designers constantly encourage brands to be open and honest, yet hide behind the typical designer ‘cool wall’.

We’ve been talking about this topic for a while, but the original train of thought came from Bernadette Jiwa ‘brand and business catalyst and verbal designer’ who we regularly chat with on Twitter. She questioned why we at MDHQ portray ourselves in the way we do and it got us thinking. We were going to write a blog post about it but thought who better to write a post than Bernadette herself.

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