I hadn’t done much Photoshop work for a while having adopted Snapseed on my iPad and phone for most colour correction and editing. But I’ve been thinking about what my next ‘Fly‘ avatar might be and while running through town in the rain on Thursday I had an uncomfortably wet stop at a road crossing. That was it!

The Crossing

Below are a couple of the original pics and then the Instagram‘d versions of the final pieces. Time seems to be ever more precious so I haven’t spent a long time on these – I can see a few things that I’d like to fix but think of them in the ‘sketchbook’ category.

Hope you like them!



Mock the Taskbar

Mock the TaskbarA new infographic inspired by a variety of slow PCs I’ve had to use over the last few years.

This is not scientific research!
It’s an easy hit and a bad pun (partly borrowed from Adam and Joe)… so, Windows users, please do not take it personally ;)


Share and share alike…

First rule of social media..?!Share and share alike


I’m thinking that this might make a good Tshirt design along the lines of the mock-up below… any comments or interest?

Have your say…


The the impotence of proof reading


I don’t know about any of you Graphic Designers out there but the greatest challenge I ever face with a print job is getting the client to take responsibility for the proof reading – not that they don’t want to do it, just that they don’t know how!

The number of times they’ve glanced across the page, “This is perfect, just what we need..!

Er, that’s great, good – but are the contact details correct? Is that how you spell your name? Should the, er, the email address have a dot?

Yes, Yes, Yes!” comes the reply, that is until the printed copy arrives.

So how do you solve the problem?


I’ve tried explained it face to face.

I tried a special signature that I use on emailed proof copies (which includes all the details that should be checked and double checked before signing off the artwork). 

I even tried including deliberate mistakes to gauge whether the coffee was being thoroughly checked. Then I could go back with a legitimate scare and say “You better check this through again!”

The problem is it’s a lose – lose situation for the designer. It’s the clients responsibility to check but if a mistake appears it was still ‘your’ mistake.

So, now I have the solution – this it what I’m sending to clients from now on: The the Impotence of Proofreading

You just know I’ve made a mistake here somewhere, right?

PS: For the record I once had Pubic Relations printed on 25,000 leaflets :\

iPad – therefore iLearn


Over the past 18 months I have had many opportunities to use the iPad as a learning tool and information on Playful Communications: learning and training services can be found here.

As a combination of camera, audio recorder, note-pad and presentation tool I initially thought it would be useful to me but more and more I’ve been finding apps that have supplied me with ideas for great learning projects both at home, in classrooms, colleges. I have been able to use the iPad2 to great effect as part of the Living Communities project based at Perth Museum and Art Gallery and with so many tablets out in the professional world there is huge scope now for corporate training.


Mobile devices are offering amazing creative opportunities. With the advent of the 69p ‘app’ accessibility to software is unprecedented.

While these apps are not considered industry standard in the way that Adobe Creative Suite might be, they are offering genuine, valuable insights into industry processes. In fact, the immediacy of touch screen technology coupled with intuitive software can be a superior experience to the desktop and mouse, identifying a new way of working for the near future.

There are of course already professionals in the field whose tool kit consists of a ‘well app-ed’ mobile device. Journalists, bloggers, vloggers, social media amplifiers – the early adopters of these tool-kits have been the winners in recent years.

Many of the learning opportunities that Playful Communications offer are designed around the iPad. As an Apple user of 20 years the iPad was a natural purchase.


We also find iOS apps to be very stable. As participants often download the apps we have taught them to use, we want to be confident that the applications we advocate are safe and fit for use.

So while iOS is our platform of choice Playful Communications are also open to, and experienced in, using other devices on alternative platforms (Windows, Android, etc). 

In most cases the applications we use have a counterpart or similarly available application that will do the same job. If you use other products and would like workshops or training in those areas then please contact us to discuss.

Playful Competition – RARA Showrooms

I received this Tweet a few hours ago:


Power of social media, blah, blah, blah…

Basically, as you can see from the thread above, I saw RARA’s add on Twitter for their new series of Valentine cards and it struck me that they could turn it into a little competition. To their credit, (I mean the effort put in as opposed to listening to me…) they liked it, ran with it and turned the idea around in a couple of days!

It’s what Playful Communications are all about!

So, what are you waiting for..?! Get over to their Facebook page and join in!