Weekly Inspiration: Springtime & Succulents.

Hello! This is a weekly(ish) feature where I share my photos with you. I carry my camera everywhere, and I constantly take pictures of things that excite me. Prepare to see lots of colours and patterns through my lens.

Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour-march2015-09 Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour-march2015-02Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour-march2015-04 Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour-march2015-03 Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour-march2015-05 Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour-march2015-06 Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour-march2015-08 Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour-march2015-10 Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour-march2015-12Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour-march2015-11 Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour-march2015-13Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour-march2015-01

Spring is the season where my camera gets the most action. It’s as though my creative brain comes out of hibernation as soon as the days start getting longer (hallelujah!). Last week I went to my favourite plant nursery and perved on all the beautiful plants. Along with everyone on Instagram and their dog, I do like a succulent or two…but I’m also partial to sherbet-orange petals and rainbow coloured leaves (the last two came home with me, and posed with me for a selfie). #YAYPLANTS

Blogstagram: The week in Instagram Pictures.

Hello! If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll know that I’ve had a very colourful few weeks! Spring is coming and it’s a total relief to see the days  getting longer. Flowers are appearing, as is the sun and the blue sky. Hell-freaking-yes. All this colour and light has put me in a the mood for drawing and decorating, so I’ve been filling up my sketchbook with doodles and filling up my house with patterns and flowers. And, of course, I’ve been packing Retroviral mug orders…which never gets old! Here are a few recent Instagram snaps.

Helena-Maratheftis-blogstagram-march2015-15Helena-Maratheftis-blogstagram-march2015-10Helena-Maratheftis-blogstagram-march2015-05Helena-Maratheftis-blogstagram-march2015-06Helena-Maratheftis-blogstagram-march2015-08Helena-Maratheftis-blogstagram-march2015-03Helena-Maratheftis-blogstagram-march2015-02Helena-Maratheftis-blogstagram-march2015-14

Continue reading

Christmas Gift Guide: The Science Wishlist!

Hello! I have put together a collection of cool/beautiful science-themed goodies which make A+ Christmas presents. These items are mainly inspired by biology and natural history, and I’d be very happy to find them underneath my Christmas tree. Scroll down for a list of books, clothing, jewellery, artwork, home accessories and stationery. There’s stuff for kids, stuff for grown ups, pretty things and simply badass things. Enjoy!

thefty-science-wishlist-1

1. 3D printed bracelet, inspired by Radiolarians. By Nervous System. £52.35

2. The Universe is Under No Obligation to Make Sense to You, art print by DangerDust. £13.09

3. Mitochondria Greeting Card, by Anatomically Correct Greetings. £2.78

4. Natural History Illustration butterfly brooches, by Blings to Pay the Bills. £5.69

5. Melatonin molecule necklace, by Cherryloco Jewellery. £15.oo

6. Anemone clutch bag, by Saskia Pomeroy. £45.00

thefty-science-wishlist-2

7. Petri Dish Paper Coaster Set, by Proton Paperie. £9.82

8. White Blood Cell (basophil) plushie, by ButterflyLove1. £10.47

9. Fluid Earrings, inspired by ammonite fossils. By Nervous System. £13.09

10. HIV Retroviral Mug, fine bone china, by Thefty. £9.90

11. Herpes Retroviral Mug, fine bone china, by Thefty. £9.90

12. Rabies Retroviral Mug, fine bone china, by Thefty. £9.90

13. Moorland Botanical Sweater, by Masha Reva x SNDCT. £78.53

thefty-science-wishlist-3

14. Endangered Bee Board Shorts, by Riz. £90.00

15. Animalium: Welcome to the Museum. By Katie Scott and Jenny Broom. £15.49

16. Sex, Drugs & Rock n Roll, book by Zoe Cormier. £12.99

17. Set of White Pencils with Purpose, by Newton and the Apple. £6.50

18. Dinosaur Santa Christmas card, by Thefty. £1.75

19. Anatomy Tee, by nonfictiontees. £9.81

Happy shopping!

 

Art + Neuroscience = Art Neuro

This weekend I attended Art Neuro, a four day extravaganza exploring the overlap between art and neuroscience. As you’ve already seen, the crossover between art and science is one of my favourite topics, and I was looking forward to spending an afternoon immersed in it. The Saturday session began with a brief – and incredibly colourful – introduction to the evolution of the brain in both animals and humans. We learnt about the structure of brains and neurons, and got fired up for the screen printing session we’d take part in later on.

H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-01 H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-02 H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-03 H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-04

Before dipping into the screen printing, we grabbed a drink and explored the Exhibition. Pairs of artists and scientists explored a variety of topics, from aging and dementia, to brain tumours, what it’s like to be a scientist, and the beauty of brain cells under the microscope.

H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-12 H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-06 H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-07 H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-08 H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-09 H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-10 H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-11H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-19H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-20H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-21H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-22H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-05

Finally, we all got to try our hand at screen printing, under the guidance of textile designer Zeena Shah. Zeena showed us how to print (sort of) like pros, and we all came away with crisply printed brainy tote bags and cushion covers…as well as a sense of accomplishment.

H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-14 H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-16 H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-17H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-15 H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-18H-Maratheftis-ArtNeuro-13

All in all, it was a thought-provoking afternoon of creativity and discovery. I’m looking forward to the next Art Neuro event.

Blogstagram: The week in Instagram pictures.

Hello! Happy Halloween! It’s been another busy week at Thefty HQ! Apart from being up to my eyeballs in mugs, I’ve also been up to my eyeballs in…eyeballs (see below). And pumpkins, and monsters, and zebras, and mugs. Did I mention mugs? It has been a good week in real life, and of course on Instagram. Check it out:

Thefty-Blogstagram-Halloween-625px-004I decorated a very Theftyish pumkin in Retroviral style.

Thefty-Blogstagram-Halloween-625px-006Snacking on (gummi) eyeballs while working at my desk. They taste pretty good, AND they contrast nicely with my lipstick. Win-win.

Thefty-Blogstagram-Halloween-625px-003I love the Hendrick’s gin packaging design: Vintage-style illustrations, gold foiling, and insects in ballgowns. YES. I approve.

Thefty-Blogstagram-Halloween-625px-001Mugs and monsters in the office. (This is how most people have reacted to my Retroviral mug collection.)

Thefty-Blogstagram-Halloween-625px-005A Halloween vignette including my boyfriend’s zebra mask.

Thefty-Blogstagram-Halloween-625px-002And yeah: PUMPKINS! 

What are you doing for Halloween?

Blogstagram: The week in Instagram pictures.

Hello! What a week it’s been! As you may have noticed* I finally launched my first ever collection of illustrated mugs. Woohoo!

The collection is called Retroviral, and is as retro and as sciencey as it sounds. So many lovely people have already ordered mugs online, and I’ve been up to my eyeballs in bubblewrap and boxes. I love it! Parcels have already been dispatched to Hawaii and Las Vegas and other far flung locations. (My mugs are clearly leading a more exotic life than I am.) Here are a few of my Instagram photos, documenting a week of the best kind of chaos:

Helena-Maratheftis-thefty-blogstagrams-OCT2014-011

Helena-Maratheftis-thefty-blogstagrams-OCT2014-008

Helena-Maratheftis-thefty-blogstagrams-OCT2014-004

Helena-Maratheftis-thefty-blogstagrams-OCT2014-007

Helena-Maratheftis-thefty-blogstagrams-OCT2014-010

Helena-Maratheftis-thefty-blogstagrams-OCT2014-002

Helena-Maratheftis-thefty-blogstagrams-OCT2014-009

Helena-Maratheftis-thefty-blogstagrams-OCT2014-003

Helena-Maratheftis-thefty-blogstagrams-OCT2014-006

Helena-Maratheftis-thefty-blogstagrams-OCT2014-001

Helena-Maratheftis-thefty-blogstagrams-OCT2014-005

In case you’re wondering: Of course I made time for technicolour tea parties and bouquets of lilies despite the madness. Those are the things that keep me sane. Here’s to another good week (and yes, I know it’s Wednesday!).

 

* Ahem – If you’ve managed to miss my constant posting, I salute you.


WEEKLY INSPIRATION: Happy New Year!

Hello! This is a weekly feature where I share my photos with you. I carry my camera everywhere, and I constantly take pictures of things that excite me. Prepare to see lots of colours and patterns through my lens.

Happy new year! My 2014 began with disco balls and dancing dinosaurs, good friends and good times. We celebrated with a party in my flat, where the dress code was over-the-top glamour. As expected, there were plenty of tuxes and sequinned dresses, but there was at least one person in a dinosaur onesie (including a gold bowtie, naturally).

Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolourNYE2013-09I took the opportunity to go full neon-kitsch with the decorations, opting for silver streamer curtains, pink flamingos, rainbow tablecloths and fluoro cocktail glasses. Too much going on? PAH. #MoreIsMore #MaximalistForLife

Below is my Vasilopita, which is a traditional Greek New Year’s Eve cake. It is traditionally a plain sponge cake, and I obviously felt the need to add chocolate and colourful sprinkles.

Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolourNYE2013-03

Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolourNYE2013-05

Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolourNYE2013-04I got a disco ball for Christmas, which is pretty much a lifelong dream come true (I wish I were joking). The gnome was also a gift – he came plain white, and I spray-painted him because that is the sort of thing I do. Gnomes aside, I was very excited to wear my rainbow sequin dress for two reasons. Firstly, it is a rainbow sequinned dress. Secondly, it was given to me by my elderly neighbour who used to wear it in her youth, so it’s extra special to me.Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolourNYE2013-17

Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolourNYE2013-06

Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolourNYE2013-08

Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolourNYE2013-12

Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolourNYE2013-10As you can see, I wasn’t lying about the dinosaur onesie. Turns out dinos have all the moves, as well as a taste for champagne.

Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolourNYE2013-13 Continue reading

Weekly Inspiration: Autumn becomes Winter.

Hello! This is a weekly feature where I share my photos with you. I carry my camera everywhere, and I constantly take pictures of things that excite me. Prepare to see lots of colours and patterns through my lens.

I was lucky enough to get out of the city last week, just in time to catch Autumn turning into winter at Longleat. In the woods, there were lemon-lime and sherbet coloured leaves peeking through layers and layers of milky fog. We went for morning walks and found frogs under logs, mushrooms in the dirt, and spider webs soaked in dew.

Helena-Maratheftis-weeklycolourwinter-15

Helena-Maratheftis-weeklycolourwinter-02

Helena-Maratheftis-weeklycolourwinter-08

Helena-Maratheftis-weeklycolourwinter-13

Helena-Maratheftis-weeklycolourwinter-09I am a big wimp when it comes to the cold, but I was very pleased that I got myself out of bed and pulled on my wellies (and my thermals, and scarf, hat and gloves..and duck down vest under my big coat. Sigh. )

Helena-Maratheftis-weeklycolourwinter-11

Helena-Maratheftis-weeklycolourwinter-12

Helena-Maratheftis-weeklycolourwinter-16Meanwhile, back at the ranch, the light was yellow and the sunsets were off the hook:

Continue reading

Beetles! Alfred Russel Wallace’s Specimens.

Hello! Welcome to my Beetles! series. I am the behind-the-scenes photographer in the beetles department at the Natural History Museum (aka the ‘Coleoptera section of the Terrestrial Invertebrates Division’). The collection is an enormous jewel box of six-legged beauty, and I’ve got plenty of photos to share!

For the last few months, I’ve had the incredible job of photographing Alfred Russel Wallace’s type specimens from the NHM beetle collections. I was so honoured to be able to see his specimens up close, to handle them, and to scrutinise his tiny hand-writing with my very own eyes! 50 of my Wallace photos are featured on the Natural History Museum Flickr page, and you can see them there in spectacular high-res glory!

Helena-Maratheftis-Wallace-beetles-NHM-small

If you have any interest in science or the natural world, you’ll want to look Wallace up. Wallace was not only Charles Darwin’s co-publisher, he was also an intrepid explorer, a gentleman, a badass and a beetle geek. For these reasons, he easily makes it into my list of All Time Heroes.

November 7th marked the centenary of Alfred Russel Wallace‘s death. To mark the occasion, a statue of Wallace by the sculptor Anthony Smith was unveiled at the Natural History Museum. I was lucky enough to be there, and I listened to David Attenborough, Bill Bailey and Richard Wallace (Alfred’s grandson) say some very inspiring words. (If you haven’t already seen Bill Bailey’s A+ series of documentaries about Wallace, check ’em out here!)

Helena-Maratheftis-Wallace3

Helena-Maratheftis-Wallace2

Helena-Maratheftis-Wallace1

I like that the statue depicts Wallace in his prime: all dressed up in field gear and brandishing a butterfly net with a  look of wonder and delight on his face! He may be looking up towards a shiny beetle, but I reckon we can all look up to him.

To see the full set of beetle photos, click here.