Fun Makes Good in Perth City Centre

August 19, 2016 by Perthshire Creates

Eleanor Young is the creative talent behind the Crieff based homewares design company Fun Makes Good, known for their signature colourful and geometric designs.  Having moved to Perthshire nearly 3 years ago, Eleanor was keen to explore and discover what the local area had to offer for anyone interested in art and design.  Eleanor says:

I immediately fell in love with the Perth Museum and the collections.  I was really impressed with the range and variety of exhibitions (especially the Natural History section and the Crafts Council exhibitions) but couldn’t understand why fewer folk knew about it or visited it.

After discovering that friends who lived in Perth for longer than her hadn’t visited the Museum, Eleanor decided she wanted to change that and help draw attention to the amazing resource on our doorstep in Perth.

Eleanor was equally keen to see a creative network develop in the area and attended the open sessions, launch event and local network evening hosted by Perthshire Creates. Having connected with the network, Eleanor approached Culture Perth & Kinross at the start of the year with a proposal to create artworks which she hoped would help to promote Perth Museum & Art Gallery (PMAG) and the fabulous nationally recognised collections and help bring them into the public eye.

The timing co-incided with the establishment of the new trust Culture Perth & Kinross (CPK) and Helen Smout, Chief Executive of CPK was very encouraging about Eleanor’s idea and was keen to develop her proposal and to also include the AK Bell Library which is also part of CPK’s portfolio.  Eleanor says:

My proposal was to utilise the impressive columns of the original Marshall Monument and design a series of large exhibition/advertising posters to draw attention and engage the public with the unique collections held within the Museum, to challenge the austere nature of the building facade and to encourage admission to see the variety of exhibitions held at the gallery as well as promoting the Museum as an events space.  The designs would be bold, bright, fun, playful and include imagery inspired by the collections inside.

Eleanor suggested a series of creative collage workshops held in the Museum to run alongside the project, where the public could join in the process, be inspired by the Museum and help create pictures which would then help inform the final designs.

Free workshops were run in the Museum and the Library during May 2016, they were well attended and some great artwork was produced from participants of all ages.  They were encouraged to take their inspiration from the Museum collections, exhibitions and the books and heritage resource at the Library, to create fun, bright pictures using just coloured paper.

Ideas developed at the community workshops

Ideas developed at the community workshops

More images from the creative community workshops

More images from the creative community workshops

In addition Eleanor visited the archives of the Museum and Library and collected information in photographs which she then turned into paper collages, these are then added to the workshop pictures and formed the basis for the final banner designs.

paper collages copy

The Library banners promote the children’s library, lending library facilities and the Local & Family History archives.

AK Bell Banner Designs

AK Bell Banner Designs

The PMAG banners promote the natural history collection, the art gallery, the fact that PMAG is an events space for workshops and classes and also its social history exhibitions.

PMAG BANNERS FINAL DESIGN copy

PMAG Banners final designs

Reflecting on the project, Eleanor says:

It’s been a fantastic project to be involved in, I’ve loved holding workshops and working with the community, I’ve also enjoyed working on designs of this scale (over 6m for PMAG) and I’m delighted with all the positive feedback that the banners have received.  It’s lovely that people are enjoying the colour and pattern and see them as something bright and positive in the city.  It can be nerve racking putting work on such public display but so far people seem to be enjoying them and if it helps to promote these amazing FREE resources and get people through their doors, then the project for me has been a success.

To see more design from Fun Makes Good visit Fun Makes Good Facebook Page and www.funmakesgood.co.uk