Bringing art into the digital age, designer and website developer Paul Elkington is pushing the boundaries.
Having worked as a web developer for a cruise company and then as a freelancer, Paul took the plunge and opened his own shop, New Media UK, in Port Solent last month.
He explained: ‘I wanted to be my own boss and have control over my design.
‘You usually get restricted if you work for someone else. In the shop, people can interact with me.
‘A lot of studios are hidden away and you don’t get to speak to the person you are building a website for.
‘Clients can come in and talk about their business with me.
‘They know their business better than me, so it’s great that we can speak face-to-face about what it is they need.’
In his small retail unit in The Trading Post, the white walls are lined with black and white framed pieces of Paul’s digital artwork.
‘It’s a way of being able to express myself, especially with digital artwork,’ he said.
‘I wanted to bring that to the masses. It’s a way to bring people in and see the creative side of me.
‘The hardest thing for me is finding a way of bringing these two things together.’
Paul, who studied as an undergraduate and postgraduate at the University of Portsmouth, says he has worked on branding his work to try and bring his website building closer to the digital art side.
Now he is working on a new project, using photos to create individual, one-off pieces at a customer’s request.
‘I do photography but what seems to be the main area is people bringing their own images and I create a piece of unique artwork for them.
‘People seem to like having their own images because they can choose something they like.
‘If someone has a particular hobby or if they are interested in something, I can create a piece of artwork to suit that. The price depends on how much work I have to do.
‘With the other pieces of work I create, I only print 10 copies of everything.’
His current pieces are centred around a sound and vision theme. He will soon start work on pieces inspired by Portsmouth’s landscapes.