Strong Island Co.

Art, Craft & Design

Strong Island Calendar 2015

You should all be well aware that over the last year we have been compiling a calendar using photographs submitted to us by you, the Strong Island readers. We are really excited by our 2015 edition, I didn’t think it was possible but the bar has been raised yet again!

The calendar again features photography submitted throughout 2014 from local photographers. The calendar is full colour printed A4 and folds out and hangs so that one side of A4 contains the month’s photos and the other side has a large format calendar perfect for keeping your important dates through the year.

£1 of each calendar sale goes to the Alzheimer’s Society Portsmouth based services. They are the UK’s leading care and research charity for people living with dementia and their carers.

The calendars are still only available as a pre-order from our online shop HERE. We are expecting to have them in hand by next Thursday. They are priced at £10 each if you collect from Strong Island Co, 12 Highland Road, Southsea. Postal orders cost £12 each and international postal orders cost £14 each.

I guess it’s about time we share with you some more of the amazing photographs which have been included this year.

Danielle Gridley
Danielle Gridley
Nick Weall
Nick Weall
Megan Barnes
Megan Barnes
Jay Hansford
Jay Hansford
Sam Brooks
Sam Brooks
Melanie Easthope
Melanie Easthope

Made with Hartt… Christmas Market

Portsmouth’s youth volunteering service Community Fusion are holding another Made with Hartt Christmas market at The Wedgewood Rooms on 29th November from 11am until 4pm.

The market has stalls from plenty of Portsmouth and Southsea’s finest creatives. There will be tea and cake (and beer at the bar) as well as live music. There are a couple of spaces available if you would like to have a table there. For more information please contact Jenna on or on 07582 919 091.

Entry is FREE so head on down for a bit of Christmas shopping for your friends and family, or even treat yourself to something nice.

You can stay up to date with all things Community Fusion via Facebook and Twitter @CommunityFusion.

Made with hartt

Christmas Contemporary Makers Fair

This weekend Aspex Gallery will be hosting their Christmas Contemporary Makers Fair. The event show cases a number of artists and designer-makers who will be exhibiting and selling their work.

After the success of the events back in February & August, Aspex will once again be handing over its main exhibition space to showcase some of the very best contemporary craft in the region, this time with a festive twist.

A full list of the exhibitors selected by Aspex is now available, and features some of the very best contemporary craft in the region, across a range of artistic media, including jewellery, ceramics, printmaking, glass, textiles, amidst others.


The full list of everyone involved:

• Mitzi Broadbent –
• Jo Calverly –
• Sylvaine Frouin –
• Anikó Gajdocsi –
• Bryony Jennings –
• Carly Mann –
• Catherine McGinness –
• Emma Nicol –
• Rachel Reynolds –
• Martin Snelling
• Marina Skia –
• Miesje Chafer & Malisa Sledmere –
• Melody Vaughan –
• Dan Wendes –
• Mary & Julia de Klerk –

Find out more by visiting

Sylvaine Frouin
Marina Skia
Bryony Jennings
Bryony Jennings
Mary & Julia de Klerk

Doodle Club by Chantelle Wyatt

We all do it, we all sit at our desks or on the phone and get distracted with a cheeky little doodle of something totally and therapeutically unrelated.

Doodle club has been no stranger to Portsmouth and many of us have popped along at one time or other. It is a great night which has a real community feel, bringing us all together to chat and scribble over a beer and some yummy food and what more could we ask for in the approaching chilly winter months.

I joined them for a catch up with organiser Kendal James of Eyecandy. It was great to see that the club is still going strong after it’s move from the now closed down Registry pub into the cozy Kings Street Tavern.

A long table of smiley faces worked on all sorts of cool and quirky sketches while Kendal updated us on what the club has been up too.

The guys have created a fabulous little colouring book with an aim to raise money for Community Fusion’s Youth Volunteer service. The service aim’s to benefit the local community and residents as well as all of the young people involved through improvement projects which include renovation, gardening, campaigning, painting and much more. What a creative and fun way to support a good cause!

Community Fusion also offers training within schools and higher education establishments to get active in their local areas and to have a say and make the place they live in what their community wants it to be.

It was also great to hear about the upcoming Christmas fair that is being organised by Kendal James with many doodle club goers attending to sell their lovely work. You can check out the fair on Dec 6th at the Kings Street Tavern.

Thanks Doodle Club and we can’t wait to see what you come up with next!

Words and photographs by Chantelle Wyatt






Win a Limited Edition Print with the My Dog Sighs and Midge Together in Solitude Art Hunt

My Dog Sighs and Midge have been busy beavering away getting ready for their collaborative exhibition Together in Solitude in the Coastguard Studios (the Old Coastguard Tavern), Clarendon rd, this Friday (14th Nov). To get everybody warmed up for the exhibition the two artists have have set up a Portsmouth based scavenger hunt with art around the city.

Four special, hand painted pages have been pasted up around Portamouth for you to find and take a selfie with. Any one finding all four pieces and uploading their selfies with each tagging @mydogsighs @thisismidge and the hashtags #togetherinsolitude and #TIShunt (in Instagram, Twitter or Facebook) automatically gets entered into the draw to win one of their limited edition screen prints! The draw will take place on Monday 19th November.

To find out more about the exhibition and the Together in Solitude art hunt visit the Facebook Event Page (please note this is a NEW Facebook event page). The artwork out in the city is shown below. Good luck!

My Dog Sighs and Midge Together in Solitude Art Hunt (1)

My Dog Sighs and Midge Together in Solitude Art Hunt (2)

My Dog Sighs and Midge Together in Solitude Art Hunt (3)

My Dog Sighs and Midge Together in Solitude Art Hunt (4)

New Strong Island Co Opens This Saturday!

Strong Island invites all our friends old and new to our new home in Southsea, opening this Saturday (15th November) from 10am. Strong Island at 12 Highland Road is a new shop and exhibition space, stocking all of the Strong Island Clothing Co range, a selection of high quality art prints, releases from Strong Island Recordings plus a collection of fine leather accessories from Raw & Auburn. We will also have monthly guest artists and designers selling their work too.

Our first exhibition in the space is a retrospective of some of the designs, projects and events we have worked on in our 6 year history. We’ll be having regular exhibitions throughout the year with shows by local and visiting artists, designers & photographers.

Strong Island Co, 12 Highland Road, Southsea, PO4 9AH.

We will be open every week on Thursday, Friday & Saturday from 10am to 6pm.

New Strong Island Co Opens This Saturday!

Russell Hardman x David Sharp – Embroidered ‘LongLive Southsea’ Patch

Designer Russell Hardman‘s work should be instantly recognisable to the people of Portsmouth and especially those who shop in Bored of Southsea. Russell’s awesome work includes the Portsea Island Apparel, Southsea Fest 2014/Longlive Coop Stage – Vintage Panini Poster and of course the LongLive Southsea Apparel.

Earlier in the year Russell collaborated with embroidery specialists David Sharp Ltd for the Printwear and Promotion Live event at the Birmingham NEC. The final product looks fantastic and sadly is a one off. You can however get your hands on the LongLive Southsea gear over on the Bored of Southsea website –

You can also find more work from Russell at

LongLive Southsea

LongLive Southsea 2

LongLive Southsea 1

LosDave Street Art Mural for Trojan Cars

Trojan Cars located on Francis Avenue in Southsea has an incredible heritage, with the site being Portsmouth’s oldest garage and going back many decades. Trojan also specialise in vintage cars with a constant collection of historic British and American cars, motorbikes and scooters, many of which you may have seen on the local streets and also featured in photography by local photographers. A little while back Trojan Cars commissioned Portsmouth artist LosDave to produce a huge mural covering the garage’s street facing walls.

The striking, colourful mural is now almost finished and is sure to catch the eye of people travelling through central Portsmouth. The mural itself contains elements in keeping with the the garage’s vintage cars & bikes with a rich, deep american sunset palette forming the backdrop, distinctly LosDave’s work on a huge scale.

Below are some photos from a recent visit to the mural.

LosDave Street Art Mural for Trojan Cars (1)

LosDave Street Art Mural for Trojan Cars (2)

LosDave Street Art Mural for Trojan Cars (3)

LosDave Street Art Mural for Trojan Cars (4)

All Aboard – A Show by MEGAMUNDEN

The insanely prolific Ollie Munden is set to pounce once again with his second art show this year following up the packed house ‘MEGAMUNDEN Show‘ at No Walls Gallery in Brighton showcasing his first publication ‘The Tattoo Colouring Book’. Local to Brighton but by no means unfamiliar with Portsmouth, Ollie is part of the internationally renowned local design studio ilovedust and treats Portsmouth very much as his second home.

Over recent years MEGAMUNDEN has immersed himself in tattoo art and culture which eventually led to the creation of ‘The Tattoo Colouring Book’ (now in it’s 90,000 edition) commissioned and published in 2013 by Laurence King Publishing. The book has over 100 pages of hearts, sailors, skulls, roses and alike, all drawn exclusively for this book alone. It’s seriously good. I’ve not had the courage to colour mine in yet though…You can buy your copy HERE

Continuing a very strong year for the publication and to round the year off nicely Ollie is holding the small, but visually packed, ‘All Aboard‘ exhibition at local tattoo studio ‘King’s Ship’ on Marmion Road, Southsea.

Naturally there will be a selection of prints available to purchase as well as 2 new screenprints and 1 very special customised piece too. If it’s anything like the Praying Hands from the Brighton show you’re in for a real treat.

We are also super stoked to see local businesses and brands endeavouring to keep the cultural side of this city moving forward and this latest exhibition held at King’s Ship is no exception. Owner of King’s Ship, Aaron Willett, is no stranger to the illustrative style MEGAMUNDEN delivers in his work. With many years experience under his belt and with a great love for all pieces Japanese and Traditional, the King’s Ship is the perfect venue for ‘All Aboard’.

This may be the first exhibition to be held here but they are really keen to offer the shop space up to artists to exhibit and sell their artwork. If you’re interested please do get in contact at

Opening night for ‘All Aboard’ is on the 7th November from 7-9pm with free beer supplied by local micro brewery ‘The Brewhouse and Kitchen’. With all these excellent people in place to make this happen it will sure to be a very successful night. Strong Island will be in full attendance and we look forward meeting the usual crowd and catching up, as well as meeting some new faces too.









Platform Graduate Award 2014 Shortlist Announced

The Platform Graduate Award, now in its third year, showcases and mentors the very best of young and emerging artists. The Award nominations come from five public galleries in the South East region working together as part of CVAN (The Contemporary Visual Arts Network) South East. The 2014 gallery partners are De La Warr Pavilion, MK Gallery, Modern Art Oxford, Turner Contemporary and our own Aspex Gallery.

Nominated by Aspex Gallery is Samuel Lloyd from the University of Chichester.

His artistic practice is described by Aspex as ‘involving the playful manipulation and recreation of surfaces on collections of found, often mass produced objects, reappraising the recognisable relationship between their form and function through the addition of his hand-crafted, highly textured, sealant skins’.

The winner of this year’s Award will be announced at a Special Event on 1st November being hosted in Aspex and will receive a 12-month bespoke programme of professional development from the five participating art galleries as well as a £2,500 bursary towards further development of their practice.

Aspex will be announcing the winner of the Platform Graduate Award here at Aspex this Saturday. The award will be awarded by Peter Heslip, the Director of Visual Arts at Arts Council England and the Lord Mayor of Portsmouth. The event kicks off at 5pm with a presentation at 6pm followed by an drinks reception – including some locally brewed “Sexton” ale courtesy of Brewhouse & Kitchen. For more information contact Aspex by telephone on 023 9277 8080 or email

Nostalgia. copy

Samuel Lloyd_Deflated series. (Untitled) Stack. copy

Schism. copy

Next »


The Tricorn

It’s fair to say that we all loved The Tricorn outside of it’s it intent. A classic example of people reinventing architecture far beyond it’s original purpose. This short film doesn’t delve too deeply in to the many uses and inspirations The Tricorn had to offer, but it’s still a nice watch.

“An imaginative portrait of a futuristic concrete experiment of a shopping centre (‘the ugliest building in the world’ according to Prince Charles), built in the 1960s coastal town of Portsmouth, England. Loved or loathed, it developed a passionate cult following of artists and skateboarders but has now lost the battle for life.”

Directed by David Ferrone and Martin Fickling.

Created Local – Cat Vaughan

Cat from the Inksquatch collective has some of her prints available for purchase in The Southsea Gallery on Albert Road. They should be in and ready for sale this weekend, 3rd July. Some nice little illustrations as always. Go and grab a local bargain.

Vintage Photos

Adam Wintle recently uploaded to his blog loads of photos from an old book about Portsmouth passed down to him by his dad. Some of the photos in the book are incredible, be sure to spend some time having a good look through, below are a few examples:

Old Portsmouth

I found this photo of Old Portsmouth shot form The Spinnaker last night. I don’t think I’ve seen it shot from this angle before. It almost looks like another town at first glance. Some great details. Cricket in full swing, all the catchers traps on the roof of the fish market, enjoying a beer at The A Bar, Lawn Bowls, all on a cracking sunny day. Click on the image for full size.

Photo – eNil

Local Photographer – Matt Shaw

Louise from the Girls Who Ride crew gave us the heads up on the amazing photos of local photographer Matt Shaw, including some great images on Portsmouth, some in HDR too. Be sure to take your time going through Matt’s Flickr and here are a few to wet your appetite:

Strong Island Clothing Co.