“Fast becoming a time-capsule of the area”
The Streets of Brighton – Kensington Gardens is an artwork 5 months in the making. Depicting the eleven streets streets above and below Kensington Gardens in the North Laine, it is a geographically accurate representation of the area. Everything is hand-drawn, from the chimney pots to the shop fronts, and from the street art to the trees. It was a real labour of love! The only thing not hand drawn are the people which I superimpose then stylise in, and that can include you.
As my barber recently said to me (Trafalgar’s Barber Shop, they have a copy of my print up and are very good)… “This is fast becoming a time capsule of the area.” The street art in Kensington Street now has been replaced with flats, the Astoria on Grand Parade at the bottom has been demolished, and a handful of the shops have since changed hands or been repainted. The artwork was completed in 2012 and demonstrates how dynamic and ever-changing a city Brighton is
Working from hundreds of photos I took of the streets of the area I then created the ink line drawing shown above. This was then scanned and the colour and detail drawn in using a graphics tablet. At the end I swore I would never draw another tile so long as I lived!
I wanted to fill the streets with Brighton residents, so approached the local newspapers The Argus and the Brighton and Hove Independent. They both ran stories calling for residents to send me photos of themselves and the streets very quickly got filled.
Offering a bespoke service to personalise a copy actually came as an afterthought. After the print was made people kept emailing me to see if they had missed the boat to be in the original, and were then disappointed to find out they had. To negate the disappointment I offered to make them a one-of-a-kind print, with themselves in it. People loved this and it evolved to be the most popular way of purchasing a copy.