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How Sketcheasy is connecting creatives through print

Buttercrumble Sketcheasy newspaper for creatives

Collaboration came naturally to identical twins Chloe and Abigail Baldwin. The creative sisters launched their design studio, Buttercrumble, in 2016  – the same year they both graduated from the University of Leeds – and have since taken on playful projects for the likes of Anthropologie, John Lewis and Fred Aldous.

Sketcheasy is their new "guerilla zine" with confessions from creatives – to find the 50 copies of the newspaper hidden around Leeds, readers had to follow scavenger hunt-style clues on social media. “We wanted the paper to be accessible to all and ‘discovered’ rather than bought," they told Creative Review. "By keeping the newspaper free, we were able to distribute it in ‘secret’ locations around the city in order for people to find them."

We asked Chloe and Abigail to tell us more about the project and how they're connecting a community through print.


What was the inspiration for Sketcheasy?

Sketcheasy was inspired by conversations we'd had with creative freelancers, students and professionals. Everyone had a story to tell about their experiences within the industry – whether those be good, bad or ugly.

Why a newspaper?

The newspaper was a vehicle for the confessions from creatives. It's accessible for anybody to pick up and read at work, in a cafe or on the train. Our design challenged the traditional appearance of a newspaper to grab attention and compel strangers to read.

Sketcheasy is presented as a series of letters from creatives. Letters are often written to be read by just one recipient, and we wanted the newspaper to feel personal – to invite writers to share their wisdom with aspiring creatives and industry experts in an intimate way.

Buttercrumble Sketcheasy newspaper for creatives

What was your favourite part of creating Sketcheasy and what was the most challenging?

We loved designing Sketcheasy. It gave us the opportunity to experiment with typesetting, image-making and layout all within one publication. It was wonderful to inject a cheeky and fun voice throughout the newspaper.

The most challenging aspect was coordinating all of the content before our print deadline. We invited 6 contributors to get involved so we had to manage, curate and edit each story to achieve the result we were aiming for.

Buttercrumble Sketcheasy newspaper for creatives

Which 3 tools were indispensable to the project?

The internet, the Adobe Creative Suite and, of course, Newspaper Club.

The internet is an amazing tool for communicating with a large audience. We were able to keep in touch with contributors and share Sketcheasy across social media.

We create much of our work digitally using Adobe software. We still love and embrace traditional methods but software like Illustrator and InDesign enables us to create flexible and crisp designs that truly capture our vision.

Finally, Newspaper Club was helpful and supportive of the project and enabled us to turn our concept into a reality. Seeing design work in print is one of our favourite parts of the job.

What sort of response have you had to Sketcheasy?

We have had a 100% positive response to Sketcheasy. Some readers even sent us messages saying that they have newfound energy and creativity. It is amazing to see.


Can you tell us about any upcoming projects that you're excited about? Is there another issue of Sketcheasy in the works?

Recently we've been collaborating with John Lewis to illustrate within their flagship Leeds store. We enjoy drawing people, so it's great fun to do this spontaneously within a retail environment. Live illustration is something we will continue to do throughout the next year.

As for Sketcheasy, we've had many readers ask if there will be another issue and many want to contribute ideas. It's lovely to find that it has sparked the imagination of others. Watch this space!

And last but not least: Where's your favourite place to read a newspaper?

We always read a newspaper when travelling on the train. It's a great opportunity to reflect on both local and world events. Once our journey is over, we can leave the newspaper for the next person and pass on the enjoyment.

Newspapers are a fast, flexible way to share your story. Print runs start at 1 copy.

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