No time to blog

! so so busy!

have a look at this flyer for now and we’ll follow up with a more in depth piece soon *promise!

flyer for a Petting Zoo screenprint exhibition

DUM-DUM STRATAGEM Exhibition – The Corridor Gallery, Brighton – September 2015

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Misc : Bank Holiday News

Well there are still plenty of things to tell you about that have happened this year but there is a little urgent matter preventing me from spending too much time blogging – Petting Zoo is off to take part in Flatstock 49 in Barcelona at the Primavera Sound Festival and what’s more, just like the LOOP piece we did last year, we’re cranking out an edition for a couple of very cool bands : Cheatahs and Unknown Mortal Orchestra!

So yeah lots of printing to be done before we board the plane on Wednesday!

What with this being a Bank Holiday Weekend however we thought it well worth your while to quickly hop on here and tell you about some cool arty things going on …firstly, between midday and 5pm this weekend there is an Open Studio at the Zoo’s shared space at North Star (Brighton) *click*

…and secondly we are very proud to announce the first (hopefully annual) Pie & Vinyl Poster Show (Portsmouth) *click*

pie & vinyl poster show flyer

Click to enlarge.

If you’ve not heard of Pie & Vinyl give ’em a google and read the raving reviews and applause – such a great and indeed, award-winning establishment.

posters from Mexico Argentina USA UK Ireland The Netherlands Germany France all in this exhibition

Just a small selection of works in the show – Click to enlarge.

go check it out! …here’s a map to get you from the station to the Guildhall and then to Pie & Vinyl for a cuppa and some shopping perhaps.

map to the exhibition and cafe / shop

Click to Enlarge

so you see… the Zoo really has been very busy – there’s still more to tell as well, but that’ll have to wait till we get back from Barcelona! Woop!

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Gigposter : God Damn

Here’s another print we did at the close of the year – at the very excellent Drill Festival.

If you weren’t aware, this Black Country duo (a trio in fact, once a bandmate recovers from car crash injuries) who signed to the excellent One Little Indian are very, really, very, extremely, very loud!

During a God Damn gig, one cheery but mighty and lumber-limbed guy (Ash) gives you the impression that he’s probably smashed 3 drumkits to smithereens before breakfast – while the other (Thom), also upbeat and jovial, has double or triple amped his guitar and is nimbly triggering Monstergut Tremor pedals, all the while howling like some chieftain in the midst of bloody battle…

Yeah – that loud.

We needed to make a poster that expressed this simple matter of volume level in a manner as raw and simple as the band’s dangerous buzzy sound (so actually kind of in a brutish, ill-mannered manner) …here it is below – we hope you like

go damn screenprinted gigposter by Petting Zoo

God Damn, Drill Festival, Brighton, UK – Screenprint, 3colours, including 2 subtle blends & metallic ink – A2, limited edition*

There were two shows in all, at Sticky Mike’s Frog Bar supporting Big Business and then at The Green Door Store (amongst many bands we personally didn’t find as visceral or exciting).

check this and imagine having to go on stage after

Do buy their album if, like me, you get a kick from hearing what dangerously buzzing valve amps can do. The link to do that is here : http://www.indian.co.uk/site/artists/god-damn

…and don’t hesitate to paypal £15 to pzprints@gmail.com if you want one of these big noisy posters to explode on the wall of your digs. Include another £5 postal if you are outside Europe – thanks.

As ever, that’s an introductory offer that will end as stocks diminish to a slim flat-file happy stack – and though I can’t recall the edition number as I type, that won’t be long.

(*edition number will be checked and updated in an edit soon)

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Gigposter : Esben & The Witch 2014 (Process : And…ZipToTheEnd)

“It’s been a hard day’s night and I’ve been working like a dog”

So, hello 2015… it’s been a hard 6 months, and the Zoo is going to try and catch up with you now – blog followers, I apologise to you, not so much for the long cold absence you have endured, but for the onslaught of posts we are about to thwack your inbox with!

(“yeah right” – unlikely it seems, I know)

So to kick off we better address the last mission we were on – the cliffhanger we have so cruelly left you dangling on, the Esben & The Witch wolf print. Let’s just say that everything went well regarding the actual printmaking. There was much mucking around with different colours which was fun – and fun was in order on such a cold cold winter night…

photos of Petting Zoo Prnts & Collectables' studio process

Clockwise from top left : A positive used to expose one of the screens. An inked screen ready for washing. The drying rack stacked midway through the job. A birds eye view of the inkpots.

We ended up printing loads (blame a little December tipple) and definitely went a little brighter with the colours than originally intended – but still – the multi-variant edition  came out nice.

screenprinting with Petting Zoo in Brighton's North Star Studio

Clockwise from Top Left : Examples of base colour-ways hang while we print. The final screen. “Go on then my son, one more soft lager for me, cheers”. The rack fills as the job is completed.

But things couldn’t go well entirely – not on a print we chose to document and publish in  stages – Live.

Of course it couldn’t. WE KNEW IT COULDN’T

finished esben and the witch gigposter

Esben & The Witch, The Lexington, London – Screenprint 4-5 colours (many variants) – A2, several editions of 12 to 30

The Zookeeper got a proper chill just nights before the show – it was snowing, no accommodation plans were in place and trains were being cancelled willy-nilly…

…so the posters never made it to the show. -Gutted.

That is why we will never publish a process thread again (unless the process has already been completed and the poster delivered) …that is why the blogstrike began and that, reader, is why this is all your fault.

Ok – I guess not – but seriously – its May! its nearly Primavera time! and the Zoo has a done a bunch of exciting things that we want to tell you about, so let us out of the doghouse – please.

dog ate my homework

The ZooKeeper has guilt issues OK!

*Please note that the band did receive their share of these prints and have taken them to Berlin where they now reside and record. We are buddies I am proud to add and the Zoo is permitted to sell our share of these prints … but what with there being so many different variants, it’s going to be a headache to sort everything out for online sales – so either get one from the band, or from me in person, or if you’d like a random one thrown in a tube – then paypal pzprints@gmail.com just £15 (add £5 for postage beyond Europe)…

…do include your street address in the window when prompted or we can’t get you your tube!

Thanks and happy new year.

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Gigposter : Esben & The Witch 2014 (Process : Seps)

OK – here we are at the last stage before hitting the studio… each stencil has been prepared by separating the colours ready to be printed out as positives (these will probably be tinkered with too – a little scuff of hand-painted ink on the fur most likely and a snip here and there).

We’ve put together a simple animated gif to show how each of the colours will go down through the screen stencils (and in the order that they’ll printed in) …still playing around with colours and opacity – the only colour that is a cert is the first creamy shade and it’s quite unlikely that the penultimate colour (the keyline) will be a straight black.

animated gif showing the colour separations of a screenprinted gigposter

A demo showing how the colours will stack on our upcoming EATW gigposter

Not sure if there will be photos uploaded and blogged about for the next stages before the gig on the 29th – but we will be continuing this process thread for your delectation/dismay as soon as we’re able… can’t help fretting that the finished piece will be a mess compared to these pre-print shots – we are NOT the best printers in the world and are learning every day – but it should come out pretty close

…you can’t get better at something without trying and doing though hey?

Enjoy your holidays folks – stay warm!


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Gigposter : Esben & The Witch 2014 (Process : Comp)

Continuing on with this harebrained plan – here is the next stage, the comp. This is where we end up when all the Shift, Squint, Re-Size, Shift, Squint, Shift part of the process is pretty much done… a lot of the dusting and colouring is done too and there’s just a little Separating/Splicing left to do. The colours will no doubt change – this’ll be a good print for doing different colourway versions of actually – so  look forward to that!


Comp preview of an Esben and the witch gigposter that Petting Zoo is working on

Head shifted, tail reversed – she looks a bit more comfy now.

As you can see, we ditched the flight case and made the she wolf (inspired by Esben’s ‘No Dog’) as big and strong as we could in the A2 composition. The new album was recorded by Steve Albini in a simple stripped down way to convey a sound that was tempestuously heavy in places while fragile in others – we kinda wanted to do the same thing with this print – nothing fancy or gimicky, big and strong and simple. We are toying with one extra focal detail that may well make it in – a locket …we’ll see.

Those colours are gonna change by the way – we just showed a near monochrome version here – we seriously hope we can get nice strong opaque irises like that though.

Fingers crossed everyone – hopefully there will be some shots of the print looking something resembling this in a couple of days!

Once again it’s time to get a sweet black tea on the go – cheers!


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Gigposter : Esben & The Witch 2014 (Process : Sketch)

Petting Zoo has landed the opportunity to get a poster done for EATW’s last gig of the year at London’s Lexington – quite a significant gig too (for reasons I’m not sure I’m allowed to announce)…

Anyhow, the zookeeper has been trying to be good and crack on with the work the past few days but has been strangely restless and in all honesty, not especially productive – SO! to spur things on, to add a little pressure to the mix, it has been decided that we’d uncharacteristically publish some milestone phases of the poster’s creation process! like, way before we’re nearing completion – this is dumb!

The idea is that if the thrill of showing off the odd key phase of the edition’s production isn’t exciting enough, then at least the dread of publicly screwing up should ensure a job well done – we hope *gulp*

so here is the very first initial sketch – scruffy as hell and anatomically uncomfortable… great! who thought this was a good idea?

sketch of a wolf for an esben and the witch poster by Petting Zoo

Rough beginnings – don’t worry, we’ll make it work – oh sh*t oh sh*t!

Essentially the process is / will be for this : Splat, Scratch, Scan, Shift, Reshape, Shift, Colour, Dust, Scratch, Re-Dust, Subtract, Seperate and/or Splice and Save…

…there may well be another round of Splat, Scratch, Scan and there almost certainly be a truckload of Shift, Re-Size, Shift …Squint… Shift, Re-Size, Shift going on but we thought we’d omit all that from our list there because we didn’t want it to, y’know, get silly…

…this by the way is the bit before we get to the studio and start mucking about with screens and ink, just to be clear – there will be some Scuffing and Snipping going on there and we wouldn’t that to confuse you at this early stage ok?

Right it’s probably time to bite the bullet, press “publish” and get a sweet black tea into the bloodstream – yikes!


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