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Process for Help Ink, “The Love You Make” August 13th, 2012

I’m really pleased that Drew Carson from Help Ink contacted me and asked me to work on some art for their great project and shop. Help Ink is a collaborative project, using the sale of premium and exclusive art to help charitable organizations and individuals around the world. I’m so happy to be part of this project and know that sales of this print will help Smile Train, an international charity that provides cleft palate surgery to those in need, as well as providing training to doctors in the region. Clefts are a major problem in developing countries where there are millions of children who are suffering with unrepaired clefts. Most cannot eat or speak properly, aren’t allowed to attend school or hold a job, and face very difficult lives filled with shame and isolation, pain and heartache. Their clefts usually go untreated because they are poor – too poor to pay for a simple surgery that has been around for decades. Every child born with a cleft anywhere in the world has the opportunity to live a full, productive life.

Please check out Help Ink and buy some art from their great selection of talented artists and the other charities they help support. For this print a 12 x 16″ digital print is $15 and a 18 x 24″ giclée print is $40.


Help Ink Charity Poster - by Jacqui Oakley

Help Ink Charity Poster - by Jacqui Oakley

Help Ink wants their artists to work with a general theme of “doing good/helping others” and to play with lettering within their art. I had a hard time finding an inspirational quote that spoke to me. Many can be so obvious and trite. I wanted to go with something that was interesting, spoke of giving and felt true to me, so why not look to the Beatles? The quote I used is from the Beatles song The End from the album Abbey Road, “and in the end, the love you get is equal to the love you give,” Hopefully I won’t get in trouble for this! Paul: it’s all for a good cause…

This piece is filled with symbols of prosperity: pomegranates, kingfisher birds, narcissus flowers, kumquats and last but not least, bees. I painted this at 19 x 25″ (far bigger than I usually work) which was actually really fun (although not that fun when it came to scanning this bad boy).


The Love You Make - Fundraising Art by Jacqui Oakley for Help Ink

The Love You Make - Fundraising Art by Jacqui Oakley for Help Ink

Next stop, stripes. Had to have a steady hand for this stage.

The Love You Make - Fundraising Art by Jacqui Oakley for Help Ink

The Love You Make - Fundraising Art by Jacqui Oakley for Help Ink

Lately I’m working by stenciling shapes and then inking line work on top. I really enjoy the play this encourages within my work, always having an element of chance when peeling off the ‘Friskit’. This project required layers of back-and-forth with stenciling, free-hand painting with acrylics and brushing on ink line-work. In the shot below you can see the lettering I cut out and was about to stencil. I was thinking about doing a hand-lettered script for this project but thought the image would have less impact that way, so instead I went with the classic typeface Futura and drew it out so it would have a little of a human touch to it. I was so worried I was going to mess up the whole thing but thank goodness it all worked out! Phew!

The Love You Make - Fundraising Art by Jacqui Oakley for Help Ink

The Love You Make - Fundraising Art by Jacqui Oakley for Help Ink

The Love You Make - Fundraising Art by Jacqui Oakley for Help Ink

Of course the stenciling never turns out exactly how you want it, so I spent some free handing some areas and then outlining some of the letters so they would stand out better. I wanted the letters to be readable but not to be the first thing that pops out to the viewer. I was hoping all the shapes would blend in a visually interesting manner. So here’s a closer look at the final:

The Love You Make - Fundraising Art by Jacqui Oakley for Help Ink

Help Ink charity poster - art by Jacqui Oakley

"The Love You Make"- Help Ink fundraising poster - art by Jacqui Oakley

Please check out Help Ink today, buy some art and spread some love. They have tons of great art available in lost of different sizes and even have some mounted on plywood.



10 Responses to Process for Help Ink, “The Love You Make”

  1. Meg says:

    Jacqui, this turned out amazing and I love the Beatles quote! One of my favourites. All that hand-painting is mighty impressive!!

  2. Eric says:

    Awesome work Jacqui! Must’ve been brave of you to stencil those letters right on top of your painting. Also, have you ever thought about recording your painting sessions? Would love to see some of those!

    • admin says:

      Eric, thanks so much! I was really scared when adding the letters. Luckily it all worked out! I have been considering recording one of my painting sessions but I’m afraid I feel to shy right now. I’ll have to work up to it! I’m happy you like that idea though. I’ll try and build up the nerve soon!

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  4. Megan says:

    Thank you for sharing that! That was fascinating to see! I love behind the scenes peeks into an artist’s work process…love the final product just as much!

    • admin says:

      So happy you liked it Megan. Thanks for the lovely comment. I’m so pleased to be part of this project and I’m happy other people are enjoying it too.

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  6. Joni Cooper says:

    Wow, this piece is beautiful! Did you paint the original on textured paper? It almost looks like a wood grain surface?

    I think the mounted poster at the end is actually on a bamboo cradle?
    Just beautiful!

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