Another day in the life post for you today, and another member of team Just A Card! Introducing illustrator, screen printer and all round lovely person, Kaylene Alder...
It’s a printing day today!
I wake up at 6:00am to my 8 month old, Nora, gurgling in the next room. I get us breakfast while my husband, Mark, makes me the first of many coffees. We both have toast, eggs and figs this morning. I shower, get us both dressed and pass Nora to Mark so I can grab the things I need from my home studio and run out the door. The studio is a bit sparse at the moment, as we moved recently, but I’m getting it together a little at a time.
Once I arrive, I have a quick chat and catch up with the lovely Soni, who runs the studio, and then I get down to business. Today I’m printing some postcards that I sell in packs at markets and in my Etsy shop – believe it or not, I’m gearing up for Christmas! I expose my screens and set everything up ready to go. Then I take a little break for more chats and to check my phone and have some water. I’ve learned the hard way that screen printing requires my full attention and I’m a little sleep deprived these days so I have to triple check everything.
Once I’m printing, everything moves pretty quickly and I get into a kind of ‘zone’. It’s a magical process to be able to reproduce your own drawings almost exactly in such a visceral way and I love it! The printing goes smoothly and I even coerce one of my fellow printmakers to take a few snaps of me in action. I’ll print the boxes for the packs next week. I take the cards across the lot to the print finishers with the industrial guillotine – it is super handy having them there and saves me loads of time (and swearing) with a scalpel.
Back on the bus to Penge – more music / emails, catching up with the news from the Brixton Design Trail where I have some huge illustrations in the street gallery and replying to requests for possible commissions.
I meet Mark and Nora for an afternoon coffee at Alexandra Nurseries – my favourite spot in Penge. We go for a stroll around Crystal Palace Park, say hello to the dinosaurs and then head home to get Nora bathed and ready for bed. She’s asleep by 7pm and we have a quick dinner before I retire to my studio to work digitally on a condensed version of the Brixton artwork that I’m planning to print and sell online and in a local gallery, Studio 73, that has some of my other work.
I add a few things to the ‘to do’ list I keep on my phone – it never seems to get shorter! I check social media once more before bed, making sure I’ve done a daily tweet about the Just a Card campaign as I’m part of their support team. I finally fall into bed at 11pm, head buzzing with new projects and feeling happy to have ink under my nails.