ALEX MAY HUGHES

01/01/2018

"I AM HAPPIEST WHEN I HAVE GONE THROUGH THE WHOLE DAY WITHOUT SMASHING ANYTHING!"

ALEX MAY HUGHES IS UNIQUE 27 YEAR OLD, WHO HAS FOUND HER NICHE IN THE ARTISTRY OF SIGN PAINTING. THE LONDON BASED ARTIST WORKS WITH GOLD LEAF AND GLASS. HUGHES FIRST GETTING INTO THE CREATIVE INDUSTRY WHEN SHE DECIDED TO STUDY TYPOGRAPHY AT THE LONDON COLLEGE OF COMMUNICATION, GRADUATING IN 2012. HUGHES WAS INTRODUCED TO SIGN PAINTING THROUGH A PROJECT WHILST SHE WAS AT UNIVERSITY, WHICH SHE BASED THE PROJECT ON SIGN PAINTING.

 

AFTER GRADUATING HUGHES WENT ON TO AN APPRENTICESHIP WITH AN ESTABLISHED SIGN PAINTER PETE HARDWICKE, WHERE SHE LEARNed VALUABLE TECHNIQUES WHICH ALLOWED HER TO GROW HER OWN STYLE AND HER LOVE FOR SIGN PAINTING GREW FROM THEN.

 

HUGHES HAS HONED IN HER TALENTS, WORKING WITH USING METALS AND PAINTING IT INTO GLASS, MAKING HER CRAFT MORE UNIQUE AND SORT AFTER IN THE INDUSTRY. HAVING WORKED FOR MULTIPLE BIG NAMED COMPANIES, CAFÉS AND STORES.

MORE RECENT, HUGHES HAS DONE THE COVER FOR STYLIST MAGAZINE. THE DESIGN SHE PRODUCED WAS FULL OF COLOUR, GIVING A TROPICAL VIBE, WHICH IN TURN PERFECTLY MATCHED THE GIN CAMPAIGN AND ARTICLE IT WAS DESIGNED FOR. ANOTHER PROJECT HUGHES HAS WORKED ON WAS DESIGNING THE PALM VAULTS SIGN. THE SIGN ALONE DRAWS PEOPLE TO THE CAFE,. THE NORTH LONDON CAFE IS NOW "INSTA WORTHY", WITH MANY VISITORS GOING JUST TO GO AND TAKE PHOTOS OF THE SIGN AND AESTHETICALLY PLEASING INTERIOR.

 

HUGHES HAS ALSO DESIGNED SIGNS FOR TESSA METCALFE, WHICH IS A JEWELLERS BASED IN LONDON. ALSO WORKING WITH PENGUIN BOOK COMPANY, RE DESIGNING THE FRONT COVER FOR THE BOOK COLLECTING "THE HELP".

SOME IMAGES OF ALEX'S FAVORITE WORK SHE HAS CREATED, MOST IS COMMISSIONED WORK. THE USE OF GOLD ACCENTS IN HER WORK IS VERY APPARENT AND IS A REALLY BEAUTIFUL FEATURE.

SIGN PAINTER + GLIDER

HOW DID YOU GET INTO SIGN PAINTING AND GLASS GLIDING?

I STUDIED TYPOGRAPHY AT UNIVERSITY AND DID A PROJECT ON SIGN PAINTING, ONCE I HAD LEFT UNIVERSITY I GOT AN APPRENTICESHIP UNDER AN ESTABLISHED SIGN PAINTER AND MY PASSION GREW FROM THERE.

HOW IS YOUR PERSONALITY REFLECTED IN YOUR WORK?

I TRY AND KEEP IT PLAYFUL AND A LITTLE TONGUE AND CHEEK.

WHAT DO YOU LIKE AND DISLIKE ABOUT THE CREATIVE INDUSTRY?

IT'S NEVER DULL AND ITS ALWAYS FULL OF INSPIRATION, BUT IT CAN BE COMPETITIVE AND DISTRACTING AT TIMES.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE SIGN YOU HAVE PAINTED?

I REALLY ENJOYED PAINTING THE LARGE WHITE GOLD DRUNKEN FISH WITH PEARL SHELL SCALES AS IT WAS REALLY UNUSUAL, BUT I KNOW THAT A LOT OF SIGNS I PAINT MEAN A LOT TO PEOPLE AND THAT IN TURN MEANS A LOT TO ME.

HAS THERE BEEN A DEFINING MOMENT IN YOUR CAREER?

I DID THE COVER OF STYLIST MAGAZINE WHICH WAS A GREAT JOB, THE TEAM WERE REALLY OPEN TO IDEA'S, I ALSO DID A BOOK COVER FOR PENGUIN WHICH WAS A DREAM COME TRUE!

YOU DID A PIECE FOR STYLIST, CAN YOU TELL US HOW THAT COME ABOUT?

THE ART DIRECTOR HAD SEEN MY WORK ONLINE AND APPROACHED ME IN AN EMAIL TO SEE IF I WOULD BE INTERESTED, I JUMPED AT THE CHANCE!

WHAT IS THE BEST COMPANY YOU HAVE WORKED WITH?

I WORKED WITH WANRER BROS. RECORDS HAVE BEEN REALLY GREAT, THE PIECES WERE BASED ON LYRICS FROM ARTISTS THEY MANAGE.

WHEN GROWING UP DID YOU KNOW WHAT YOU WANTED TO DO?

I WAS FAIRLY GOOD AT PICKING A GOAL AND WORKING TOWARDS IT. ITS OKAY TO CHANGE THAT GOAL BUT ITS IMPORTANT TO BE AIMING FOR SOMETHING. I REALIZED I LIKED SIGN PAINTING DURING MY FINAL YEAR AT UNIVERSITY.

 

WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR BEST EXPERIENCES WHILST YOU HAVE BEEN?

MEETING NEW PEOPLE AND LEARNING IS ALWAYS THE BEST ELEMENT OF SIGN PAINTING, THERE'S A REAL COMMUNITY SPIRIT.

IN 10 YEARS WHERE DO YOU THINK YOU WILL BE AND WHAT DO YOU WANT TO HAVE ACHIEVED?

THATS HARD TO SAY, I HOPE I'M STILL DOING A JOB THAT I LOVE AND MAKING PEOPLE HAPPY, THATS ALL I WANT TO ACCOMPLISH.

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LAST UPDATED: (29TH MARCH 2018)

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