It’s not every day that we get a chance to be on ITV London news but if you live in London and kept your eyes peeled you may have caught us yesterday evening. ITV had sent their on the scene news reporter, Nick Thacher, to Brixton to do a report on how community groups who take care of their area can create lower crime rates and naturally we featured. Our mural of Lady Sulina that we did at the annual street party a couple of months ago was included as brightening up the area and reducing problem graffiti. ha! id-iom 1 world 0. Our mum will be so proud.
If you’ve ever wondered what happens when id-iom have a little time on their hands then look no further. We’re very pleased to announce our latest video collaboration. We’ve partnered with infamous intergalactic chef and sometime bounty hunter Bhuna Fett to produce this ‘Cooking with Bhuna Fett’ infomercial on behalf of Tesco’s and their new range of Bantha Milk.
We had to do an incredible amount of wrangling to get Bhuna Fett to agree to feature in our video. The amount of brown envelopes stuffed with galactic standard credits was incredible but then again what do you expect from a part time bounty hunter. After we’d paid Bhuna off we only had a 30 mins window in order to get all the footage we needed as he had some other urgent business to take care of.
So here it is. What you didn’t know you’d been waiting for…
Ah the power of the internet! Last week I was having a bit of a Youtube session when I came across a competitive eater by the name of the LA Beast who will eat just about anything. We first watched his cactus challenge video where, you guessed it, he eats a cactus. Whole. We then moved onto the ghost chilli challenge which brought tears to my eyes – as well as his. After perusing a few more videos we decided to check him out online. The banner on his Facebook page was looking a little pixelated so the muse demanded I create a new one for him as thanks for the amusement he provided.
Once I had an idea for the design it was all pretty straightforward except for the fact that I couldn’t find any decent resolution shots of his face in profile (which was required for my design). So there you have it. All that was left after that was to send it off to him and see if he’d get back. He did and it turns out he thought it was ‘awesome’. Everybody’s happy…
As a memento to our now demolished studio a good friend of id-iom came down to document our work at the ‘House of Pain(t)’ before it was razed to the ground. Here’s a new video he put together in the final days of the house. After watching this I’ve come to realise quite what a place we had. We just need another now…
You can also see the video that Spraying Bricks put together below:
id-iom is very proud to announce our first of two videos that were done so we could have something more of a permanent record of our now demolished studio building, The House of Pain(t). We had the Spraying Bricks crew around whilst we were doing one of the wall pieces and they had a chance to roam around and ask us a few questions. They have been doing a series of artist video’s and we’re definitely in good company with the likes of Smug, Inkfestish, Artista, Irony, Zomby and Reeps One. You can catch the rest of the video’s on their Youtube channel.
We are expecting to release our next video later this week so keep your eyes peeled…
With 2012 fast becoming nothing more than a memory we thought it best to glance backward before we turn our steely gaze to 2013. So today both members of id-iom are picking our favourite five projects from 2012 to pontificate about in the hope that more people will actually get to see them and appreciate just how amusing we really are…
So, in no particular order here they are:
Stand your ground
This is just one of the many pictures that I was particularly happy with that we did at the now demolished House of Pain(t). It was fantastic to have a space to work in where we could do what we want with no constraints where there were also no financial considerations. I think it just allowed us to work as freely as we liked and that led to some great work. I think this is one of my favourites as we used a stencil we had used once before and gave it a new lease of life. ‘Stand Your Ground’ definitely looked better in the flesh as the thread attached to both the gun and the door frame gave it a three dimensional quality that just doesn’t come across as well in the photograph. Gun crime and gun control are always in the news so this one always seems topical but is now no more than a pile of bricks…
A Groovy Kind of Earworm
For this little bad lad I have to look no further than my own write up:
There was an article on the BBC website the other day which put a name to an experience which i’m sure most people have endured. They are known as earworms (amongst other names) and it is when you get a tune stuck in your head that you just can’t get rid of. Sometimes you really haven’t got a clue how it happens to be bouncing round in your brain but the more you try to suppress it the worse it gets (see this article on the difficulty of killing earworms and the man who had one for five long years).
After thinking about this for a while and realising how mildly annoying earworms can be we thought it our civic duty to respond by trying to create an earworm of our own using the medium of art. And being cheeky little tinkers we thought we’d do our best to get the hugely underrated 80’s megastar Phil Collins back into people’s consciousness by forcing his 1988 version of ‘A Groovy Kind of Love‘ into as many people’s brains as possible! We are not yet experts in the field but we’re hoping that as the hoarding is blue and we mention the word blue (which is written in blue – how cunning!) this will create some kind of cognitive resonance in viewers’ heads whereby a genetically modified supercharged earworm will be created.
Ideally the song will launch automatically and start playing in your head before you can do anything about it – and hopefully be trickier to get rid of than the auto-popup screens you sometimes get when visiting dodgy websites. It’s what advertisers attempt to do every day (but they have a more nefarious agenda) but our only regret is not knowing how well the whole project will work…
The Lady of the Lake
I really thought that ‘The Lady of the Lake’ would really get us some positive attention. Even now I’m proud of all the work I had to go through to get this done. No one will ever know that there were fake jewels stuck to the handle or that I’d made a special concrete filled bucket so the sword would stay upright. Not to mention how cold that water was and the rather strange look I got from the one man watching who was sitting on a bench quietly drinking a can of Special Brew. From my write up:
It is said that when storm clouds gather over England and dark days lay ahead then the Lady of the Lake will rise from her watery resting place bearing Excalibur – to be taken by a pure-hearted champion for the people (or perhaps it’ll just be taken by the council).
Well, with Greece on the blink, Portugal up the swanny and Italy on the ropes it would appear that the time is upon us…Good people of England take cheer for now Excalibur is here it will all be sorted post haste!
My favourite thing about ‘Cliff was visibly upset’ was the video editing. You’ll just have to watch it to see what i mean. After much debate and the consideration of far more serious titles (such as ‘Tears are the noble language of the eyes’) we finally decided that ‘Cliff was visibly upset…’ was the one to go with. As these rock faces are in a position where they are subjected to the worst the weather can offer for many months of the year we thought it a suitable title.
Lord of the Concrete Jungle
‘Lord of the Concrete Jungle’ was the result of us biting of more than we could chew but (thankfully) eventually managing to come good. We blithely agreed to do a 5.5m x 2.6m canvas to adorn an upstairs wall at the Electric Social without quite realising how large that would be and the fact that we didn’t have a space big enough to work on it in. Cue much head-scratching and some fun logistical fixes to get it all done.
Just priming the huge canvas took long enough never mind painting the background, cutting stencils and projecting. Anyway it took a while longer than expected but we finally managed to get it finished and drop it by the club with a feeling of relief. I believe they had a tricky enough time mounting it and getting it up on the wall but I think that was only to be expected with this billboard sized monster…
To tell you the honest truth i had a lot of difficulty picking my favourite stuff from 2012 and that’s not because i didn’t know what i like but because the other half of id-iom truly confused me whilst i was picking them. I thought he was going to group everything that we did at the House of pain(t) together but alas he has not so some pictures that i really liked aren’t on the list. Never mind, maybe you could take a look yourself and see which ones you like best.
To start my list though i suppose i should do it chronologically and start with my favourite piece from earlier in the year and work back, it is a round up after all, so here goes.
This piece is called ‘We are all fools for love’ and was completed at the Upfest spraypaint festival down in Bristol in around June of 2012. Apart from the fact that we had a lot of feedback from this piece, my main reason for picking it is that it was the start of a looser drawing style that i’m still trying to perfect. That said the 3D lettering adds a certain something to it as well which i really enjoy. Pretty and pink, what more can i say!!
This picture in my opinion is a bobby belter, it just pleases me and i like it even more due to the fact that it was done on a whim whilst i was trying to get ready for Sand, Sea and Spray (more on that in a bit as that involves my next choice). The picture came about because like any artist knows things can sometimes get off track. There i was in the studio trying to get stuff sorted yet the only thing i end up doing is painting a picture that no one will see apart from on the internet. In a weird way that makes me happy as i realise i’m not just painting for others or for money but to entertain myself and that means i picked the right profession.
Now this picture was painted at Sand , Sea and Spray up in Blackpool on what had to be one of the worst weekends to paint outdoors without any shelter. It was absolutely chucking it down but that didn’t stop us from getting this piece finished in between rain clouds. I won’t bore you with our tireless struggle against our implements and the weather but suffice it to say it was tough. Paint was spilled. Stencils were ripped. Words were exchanged. We had to make the best of the situation.
Now for this piece i’m just going to use what we wrote on the original posting of the image as i think it says exactly what i’m trying to say now. I have to say though that although this piece is really quite simple, i think it has an elegance which i really appreciate.
Did you know that a group of tigers is known as a ‘streak’ or ‘ambush’. Which is probably a fitting name for them because by the time you’ve noticed them I reckon they’ve either streaked past or ambushed you. They are the largest of the big cats, the third largest land carnivore (after the polar bear and brown bear) and are surely the epitome of danger and grace. I’m no expert but i’m pretty sure William Blake was thinking similar thoughts when he put pen to paper with his poem, The Tyger:
Tyger Tyger, burning bright,
In the forests of the night;
What immortal hand or eye,
Could frame thy fearful symmetry?
Now didn’t William Blake just nail it with that? i think so.
I’ve added this piece because this is a continuation of where the sketchier, looser style that we showed in the Upfest piece has taken us, I love the found wooden board too. Now i just have to make sure that all those hours sketching over the last year don’t go to waste, so expect to see some more stuff in this vein i think.
And i suppose i couldn’t round off 2012 without mentioning this bad boy which took us ages to make in a very cold basement early last year. As we’d never done anything like this before it was definitely a labour of love but i have to say i think its pretty special.
You’ve seen pretty much all we have to offer at the House of Pain(t) – but not quite everything. Today we have a round up of all the stuff that hasn’t fitted in elsewhere. We’ve got some wheatpastes, stencils, bits of cardboard and a bit of wall…
My least favourite bobbleheaded creature has to that stupid dog from the Churchill adverts. If i’m honest I’ve got little in the way of explanation for this piece or why he has what appears to be a bobblehead other than the wall was there and needed painting on. Not everything in this world can have a purpose…
Mupan flexing his muscles. Just a little.
Mupan has bigger muscles than you without even flexing. You know it and he knows it. Now on your way…
One too many
We all know the feeling (well, Team id-iom certainly does) of having just one drink too many in pursuit of a good time. The main problem is the more you drink the less self control you have – just when you need it most. Ah well, at least it’s the wekeend soon enough.
Strange Facts #11 Siegfried and Roy once stayed in the House of Pain(t) (back when it was a normal house) and their tigers stayed with them in the basement. This was a warning sign above the door. And the male tiger always wore a hat. And that’s a fact. Or at least that’s what i was told…
We’re a little late for Movember but this gentleman is not the kind of man who only has a moustache for a month. No, siree. His is a permanent fixture and he’s proud of it.
I never really read superhero stuff as a kid
The funny thing about this piece is that i did read superhero stuff as a kid. Ha! Hey, irony, try that one on for size! I have a huge treasure trove of comics stashed away at home, an almost encyclopaedic knowledge of comic trivia and have even worked at a comics publisher. So there. Anyway, i digress.
I’m not sure if you will have seen a film called Super (which i quite enjoyed – maybe i should start doing film reviews too?) but the girl in this picture reminds me of his female sidekick Boltie (played by Ellen Page).
I’m a mole and I live in a hole
How on earth this mole seems to be climbing out of a pot that wouldn’t even fit him in I have no clue. Suffice it to say the mole was sat in the basement and needed a new home before we moved out.
We’ve got one final wall to show in the next day or two then we’ll hopefully have some demolition porn and then the House of Pain(t) will be no more. We will also have the video that the guys from Spraying Bricks shot that should be out before Xmas and also a little video for posterity that we shot ourselves (when it’s finally all edited together). Bring on the next condemned building…
Below are previous articles from our House of Pain(t) series:
There we were thinking we’d taken up just about all available wall space at the studio when we moved a set of shelves to reveal yet another bit of pristine wall lurking behind them that was just asking to have some paint thrown at it. This new bit of wall was facing Tell Tale Signs that we’d painted last week and we decided that she could do with some company. As they are on opposite walls and the lady from Tell Tale Signs has a surly look and a red nose we thought we’d give her counterpart a nice blue nose so they can some kind of Liverpudlian stare-off until the bulldozers move in…
So there we were working in the studio when a call comes in on the id-iomphone. A swift conversation reveals that Halfords is in need of our assistance as they are having a photoshoot with Tinchy Stryder for their forthcoming ‘BMX sessions‘ promotion and they need some urban style graphics – pronto! A brief confab later and – POW! – we have a design idea which just needs a little fleshing out. Following some rabid computer work we manage to come up with our design which, after just a modicum of tinkering, is then quickly approved:
The next step is to get it all ready to be sprayed. As is often the case with these types of job there’s a strict deadline – and it’s looming fast. No problem. We pull out the patented ‘id-iomscalpel’ and it’s all taken care of with a minimum of fuss. So far so good. Then all we need are a few cans of ‘Halfords orange’ and we’re good to go. We need to make it down to Skaterham (in Caterham! Ha! Get it?) for the ungodly hour of 7am (I usually only see this hour when going on holiday) but with the team down to one man down there’s no time to waste so I need to get there on time.
The design had to be sprayed a couple of times – indoors first in case it rained (really? in British summer time? Surely you jest?) and then outdoors as well (the light is much better apparently – when it’s not raining). It was all done and dusted in a couple of hours and then Tinchy showed up to do his thing. Apparently his name comes from the fact he’s tinchy (that much I can verify) and that he used to love the arcade game Strider (I can verify this to be a classic game). The final PR pics (and video) are below. So there you have it. Another case sorted. London can sleep safe again…
As a small addendum I can’t believe that after watching the video back to myself that no-one has ‘suggested’ I get myself a hair cut. Thanks very much my so called friends…
Hmmmm. How to explain Stormbird. I’m not really sure if any explanation I can give can adequately describe our thought processes when creating this stop-motion epic. The ‘storyline’ just kind of suggested itself. It’s probably easier to explain it’s conception than how we developed such a monster. It came about when we had id-iom’s good friend Dave over from LA for a while. He’s known for doing a bit of video production/editing so after consumption of a few beers down at the studio we (stupidly) decided that a short stop-motion video might be a good idea. It wasn’t. After over 2600 shots over the best part of a week in the freezing cold basement making just one tiny adjustment after another we were close to death by exposure but were finally able to call it a wrap.
There is plenty of footage which ended up on the cutting room floor that will hopefully never see the light of day as it’s more than a little weird and would probably emotionally scar any viewer for life. And all that took long hours of standing around in the cold that i’ll never get back. I bet the Aardman animation studios are all cosy and warm. If i’m ever to attempt anything like this again I’ll be making sure it’s warm outside or we have such mod cons as central heating…
Anyway, once principal photography was finished we realised we needed some musical accompaniment befitting of such a creation so we put out the call and came up with 3 very different soundtracks. The first version will probably not play in certain countries on youtube as The Man probably has certain copyright issues as it features tracks that are already out there but that’s where our other versions come in as both feature an original score which should play internationally no problem. The other video’s will follow this in short order and we’d really love some feedback on which one people prefer (so watch this space)…
What else can we say about the video apart from the fact that it features anthropomorphic spray cans, the Graffiti Removal Squad (first featured here), sharks (one of which is gay but we had a hard time portraying that!), Tom Selleck (although I like to think he’s in his Thomas Magnum persona), a fireball (from Streetfigher 2 obviously) and, of course, the plucky little robin a.k.a the storm bird in Norse mythology.
Finally, whilst I like to think our video has a certain naive rustic charm there are those who treat the subject with a little more professionalism. So for those who haven’t seen it here’s a little link to a much more polished creation featuring light stencils by our good man Pahnl.