Spotlight On: Place in Print

This week, I asked Ed Povey to tell me more about Place in Print, the design studio responsible for the lamp post banners you can see all over Herne Hill and SE24, and a lot more besides. He’s often to be seen at the Herne Hill Market and now operates from a studio on Havelock Walk in Forest Hill.

What is Place in Print? Can you tell me a bit about your business and what inspired you to start up; was it a specific place or building?

Place in Print is a design studio and retailer specialising in locally-themed art prints and gifts. The majority of our products are designed in-house, but we also collaborate with other designers on exclusive collections.

I first started the business with a friend of mine under the brand name South London Prints. We tested the water with a few different designs at one of the first Sunday markets at Herne Hill back in 2012, we soon moved in to our first studio just the other side of Brockwell Park. Before starting this business I was working as an urban designer, creating public spaces, which is probably why there is a strong architectural focus in many of my designs.

How did you end up collaborating on the Herne Hill banners that have livened up the area so well? That must have been an exciting project to come up with ideas for?

The Herne Hill Forum approached me with a view to using some of my designs on lamp posts around Herne Hill. We mocked up a couple of ideas which were shown to the local traders as one of a number of different options for things that could be put on the banners. Fortunately I was given the go-ahead and set about creating or adapting 18 different designs in total. It was quite exciting to see them put up after months of working on the designs from my studio, and great to see that they are still around now. As a result of the Herne Hill scheme, I’ve also created designs for lamp post banners around London Bridge too.

An example of one of the banners created in 2015 for Herne Hill and SE24.
This is one of my favourites, when I first saw it I had fun working out which local businesses are featured.

You’ve just taken part in the Artists’ Open House element of the Dulwich Festival, was it a successful couple of weekends for you?

I had a great time at the Artists’ Open House. I’m fortunate to have a studio on a quaint cobbled street in Forest Hill called Havelock Walk. We are a community of 20 or so artists and designers, and so the Open House weekends are always a really great community event with loads of visitors walking down a normally very quiet street. It’s quite nice to have to just open the studio doors, rather than lug around lots of heavy market equipment!

Havelock Walk in Forest Hill, where Ed’s studio is.

Do you have a favourite product or a bestseller?

One of my newest designs is a view from above Tower Bridge towards Canary Wharf, called “Rooftops of East London”. It was a real labour of love, so is definitely one of my favourites at the moment!

As for bestsellers, we have quite a unique map of London that is made up of all the city’s postcodes — I think people just enjoy trying to spot where they live!

What are your plans for the future?

I say this every year, but this year is the year that I manage to venture beyond South London! It’s very hard to find time to work on new designs, particularly for areas that I don’t know so well. However, I’m determined to see how the designs go down north of the river, and perhaps even outside London!

Do you have a favourite place to go to in Herne Hill, or any recommendations?

Brockwell Park has got to be one of South London’s best parks. I love the rolling hills and variety of features and activities across the Park. I’m also a bit of a fan of miniature railways, and you can’t beat a £1 return ticket on the Brockwell Park Miniature Railway! Perhaps a lesser known highlight would be the South London Botanical Institute, which is on the road to Tulse Hill; a hidden gem!

I couldn’t finish without a picture of Johnny, Ed’s “studio hound”, with whom he shares his studio!

Thank you Ed for taking the time to answer my questions, I’ve long been a fan of South London Prints. I really like the distinctive style and quirky feel to Ed’s work, especially the street typography maps. Have a look at his website here for his products, and all the various others that he stocks.

For more like this, have a look at my other blogs here, or please check out my Twitter, Instagram and Facebook pages.