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An Interview with Jessica Fok

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We caught up with Jessica Fok, Blick Resident and one of Belfast Design Week’s volunteers to chat about the upcoming event PRESENT: Paul Ryding taking place at Root & Branch’s Roastery on Saturday 8th June.

 

Tell us a bit more about yourself and the upcoming event you’ve organised?

In my 9 to 5 I work in corporate communications but for the past three years I’ve been volunteering with Belfast Design Week to help organise design events across the city. I really enjoy coordinating and event planning so instead of waiting for Design Week in November I decided to organise some smaller fringe events to take place in the lead up to the festival itself.

PRESENT is a new series of design talks and the dream is for it to take place seasonally across Belfast. The first PRESENT event will take place on Saturday 8th June at Root & Branch’s Roastery where we’ll get to enjoy a talk from the incredible illustrator Paul Ryding.

 

What is the concept behind PRESENT and what inspired it?

PRESENT was simply born out my interest in design and my love time spent in good company. The name derived from its duality. On one hand it represents the state-of-being that we want guests to experience during the event and being completely in present in the moment with no distractions. Meanwhile in a more literal sense, the event is a platform for creators and makers to present their work to a captive and curious audience.

I was very excited to work with fellow Blick Hill St resident, Ciaran Hurson, who designed the branding for the event series. Hurson is a typographic lead, branding agency and I’m a huge fan of Ciaran’s work. After a couple of quick strolls between our own spaces in the studio, Ciaran developed a unique brand identity for PRESENT that would clearly articulate the event’s simplicity while simultaneously complementing an example of our speaker’s work.

 

What should people look forward to at the event?

The coffee is a great start. We’re very lucky for Root & Branch to kindly be hosting this event in their cool new Roastery space in East Belfast. As well as getting to sample a cup of their signature filter brews, we’ll also get to hear from Root & Branch founders Ben Craig and Simon Johnston on their approach to specialty coffee – from sourcing to roasting.

Our headline speaker is professional freelance illustrator Paul Ryding. I first heard Paul speak a few years ago the Design Dinner at Belfast Design Week in 2016 and was fascinated with his work so when it came to organising this event, he was the first person who popped in to my mind. Paul specialises in portraiture and looks to focus on the narrative that each face can communicate unintentionally. Some of his clients have included the Wall Street Journal, Die Spiegel, The New York Times, Buzzfeed, Harper Collins, Empire Magazine to name a few.

Finally, people should look forward to meeting other folks in Belfast who are interested in design and creativity. We’re hoping PRESENT will provide people with an opportunity to get to know each other and establish a connection with someone new.

 

Who should attend the event?

The PRESENT series is for everyone. We want to welcome people who have a design background, as well as those that aren’t familiar with design or illustration at all, to join us.

 

Where can people get tickets?

Tickets are available at getinvited.to/present/paul-ryding-illustration.

 

#blickstudios on
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Instagram post 2151592073558808379_295518986 Lunch break in the Cathedral Quarter. Love working in this part of our city!
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Instagram post 2150351237198321252_295518986 #thetimeisnow life after university event tonight in Black Box Belfast key takeaways for creative graduates - it's not an easy journey , keep building your creative & technical skills, don't be too hard on yourself, say yes to opportunities, network & just get started
Instagram post 2150225652228757071_295518986 Cathedral Quarter holding the charm... whatever the weather!
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Instagram post 2146534546907388553_295518986 The Time is Now // Life After University
Date : 8th October
Location : The Black Box
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We are excited to introduce our final panellist @niamhxcunn  who is a Belfast based creative.
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Niamh is a Belfast-based Creative who is currently working as a Creative Producer at Mammoth Branding Agency.
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Although she studied Animation at Ulster University, she found herself drawn to working on set whether it was with Fashion or with Film/Television.  This allowed her to make connections and work with brands as a Creative Director, Stylist and Model to create content for social media platforms.
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Instagram post 2146522697562419124_295518986 The Time is Now // Life After University
Date : 8th October
Location : The Black Box
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We are excited to introduce our fourth panellist Alice Kearney who is a graphic designer & illustrator based in Belfast.
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"I’m Alice Kearney, a graphic designer and illustrator living in Belfast. My work is usually a good blend of both crafts. After I graduated from Graphic Design & Illustration in 2017 from Ulster University, Belfast I’ve worked full time in design studios and I also freelance on the side.
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Music is a big inspiration for me as a lot of the work I do is for the NI music scene. I work with a lot of emerging musicians and regularly brand Oh Yeah Music Centre events such as the Northern Ireland Music Prize and the Sound of Belfast festival. I wanted to take part in the discussion as graduate life can be a bit tricky and hopefully, I can help out another creative trying to navigate the world post-uni."
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Book your space today at https://www.blickstudios.org/events/the-time-is-now-life-after-university/
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#paneldiscussion #storytelling
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Instagram post 2145969183333296990_295518986 The Time is Now // Life After University
Date : 8th October
Location : Black Box
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We are excited to introduce our third panellist Mark Fenning who is a Lens based artist and Digital Media Assistant.
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A graduate from the Ulster University, he attained a First-Class Honours degree in Fine Art (2013) and a Master with Commendation in Arts Management from Queen’s University Belfast (2017).
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His art making practice explores photographic printmaking techniques, photography, polaroid and alternative photographic processes.
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His artwork is inspired by representations of masculinity in fashion and film.
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His Masters research examined creative employment pathways and he feels this panel will be a great discussion from different perspectives of the creative industries.
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Book your space today at : https://www.blickstudios.org/events/the-time-is-now-life-after-university/
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#paneldiscussion #panel #conversation #storytelling #belfast #creativeindustries
Instagram post 2145106086544697970_295518986 Little stretch of the legs was well timed in between the showers in the Cathedral Quarter today!
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Instagram post 2141572703352869824_295518986 Where are the light nights going already?!
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Instagram post 2141429763846488942_295518986 Join us for our first Share 6 event of 2019 – “POWER” over @belfastdesignwk on the 4th of November from 7:30 - 9PM in our Belfast Design Week Hub.
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We’ll be joined by 6 creative industry speakers who have all stepped outside of the usual patterns in their specialist areas to come up with new and exciting ventures, to think creatively or change paths entirely.
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The theme for this year for @belfastdesignwk is ‘POWER’ and the word has its intricacies have so much sway on our personal and professional lives. Power can be seen as positive or negative.
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Power can be a constant struggle or it can be delicately shared. Power can be a responsibility that some of us wish we had, or a stronghold we wish others didn’t. Its dynamic is an integral part of the design industry today, and it is why we’re excited to be exploring this theme for Belfast Design Week 2019.
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Our speakers are:
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Lucinda Graham / @lucindaggg_
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Rachel O’Grady /
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Liam O’Neill / @liamonetwo
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Hannah Sharp / @hannahlizsharp
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Melanie Wiggins / @melwiggins
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Jamie Baird / @jamiebeardillustration
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#events #belfastdesignweek #power #creative #empowerment #belfast
Instagram post 2139993802080228401_295518986 Busy day of meetings and errands in the Cathedral Quarter so far. Love this part of our city... even on the greyest of days!
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#walktowork #belfast #lovebelfast #cathedralquarter #CQBelfast #northernireland #explorebelfast #explore #discoverni #trekkingni #niexplorer #travel #graffiti #wallart #art #artist #artwork #painting #design #creative #city #nidesign #cityscape #belfastcreatives #citylife #urban #photography
Instagram post 2139968897393559087_295518986 @womenfolk.co & Blick Shared Studios & @creatingaspace have teamed up to create a unique interactive event with a panel of female design entrepreneurs based in Belfast talking about their experiences as a female entrepreneur , the journey in the design industry and how they have crafted their business up until this point. The panel will be taking place on the 5th November during @belfastdesignwk
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The phrase ‘The Time is Now’ came from noticing a change within Belfast within the creative scene. We love that there is a rush of women in design that are inspired to pursue their creative dreams. .
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There will be a panel of four female designers from different design disciplines and backgrounds discussing their perspective of achieving success within the design industries. We will be asking the panellists to share their story of how they built their businesses and what the realities they have faced in the midst of creating an entrepreneurial lifestyle.
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Book your space at Blickstudios.org
Instagram post 2139201445055334038_295518986 We are delighted once again to be involved with @belfastdesignwk now in its 5th year. Belfast Design Week is a collaborative festival, last year there were more than 100 individuals, small businesses and organisations involved in over 60 events throughout the week. The festival is a great celebration of Belfast as a creative city. There is currently an open call for people/businesses to get involved with this year's festival, if you have an idea for an event, are interested in volunteering or submitting an article you can get all the info here http://belfastdesignweek.com/
Instagram post 2136307233603442912_295518986 What a morning! ☀️ A little detour was called for on the way to our Cathedral Quarter studios
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#walktowork #belfast #lovebelfast #cathedralquarter #CQBelfast #ireland #northernireland #explore #travel #graffiti #wallart #art #artist #artwork #painting #design #creative #city #nidesign #cityscape #belfastcreatives #citylife #urban #autumn
Instagram post 2135677884973868880_295518986 Lovely peaceful Wednesday here in our Hill Street studio
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#cathedralquarter #belfast #northernireland #belfastcreatives #sharedworkspace #sharedstudio #workspace #coworking #creative #creativeindustries #design #nidesign #explorebelfast
Instagram post 2134439374883376928_295518986 -- NEW FREE WORKSHOP-- Pitching with @timtendo. Learn how to communicate your business idea and get people excited about your creative business. Wednesday 23rd October 6.30pm - 8.00pm. Limited places
https://www.blickstudios.org/events/blick-academy-pitching-workshop/
Instagram post 2131336993530373739_295518986 Definitely a day for staying put in the studio!
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#cathedralquarter #belfast #northernireland #belfastcreatives #sharedworkspace #sharedstudio #workspace #coworking #creative #creativeindustries #design #designer #art #artwork #artist #wallart #nidesign #explorebelfast
Instagram post 2130566333094774766_295518986 We recently caught up with Ronan Lunney interviewing him on his time in Blick after being here 5 years!
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He speaks about what he has learnt in business, how the Blick space has been beneficial for his business and top tips for people just starting out! To read the full article visit https://www.blickstudios.org/blog-posts/ronan-lunney-farewell-blog/
-We are also excited that he is facilitating a 4 Week Squarespace course starting tonight! He will be covering the foundation of what you need to create a website on Squarespace! To book your space today, visit https://getinvited.to/blick-shared-studios/blick-academy-squarespace-course/
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.#coworking #workspace #creative #belfast #deskspace #sharedworkspace #creativeindustries #creativeentrepreneur #startup #creativespace
#blickstudios
Instagram post 2130496273772954643_295518986 When you can create in a beautiful environment, inspiration hits and everything clicks.
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Our Malone Road studios always shines light, even on those hard full days.
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Always find your light! Today is one of those beautiful days!
Instagram post 2129828232236000981_295518986 Lovely day for meetings in the Cathedral Quarter
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#art #design #belfast #belfastcity #instabelfast #lovebelfast #northernireland #ireland #discoverni #explorebelfast #visitbelfast #belfastart #city #cathedralquarter #insta_ni_ #architecture #CQBelfast #themac