Head / Hand / Heart is a not for profit series of inspirational talks and accompanying exhibitions by luminaries from the world of design and the visual arts.


The title derives from the assertion by Richard Guyatt, Professor of Graphic Design at the RCA 1948 – 1979, that every piece of great art and design is a product of the head (intellect), the hand (skill) and the heart (emotion, passion). Each guest is chosen as having been of particular inspiration to Paul Martin Studio.

The invited audiences comprise students, clients, business associates and friends of all ages. Not all who attend would necessarily be aware of the speakers and their activities, or get the opportunity to see them outside of London, but all leave inspired.

Alan Fletcher – a huge inspiration for countless students, practitioners and those who appreciate great design, made a major contribution to the profession over four decades and was the guest for the inaugural Head / Hand / Heart.

Design journalist Jeremy Myerson managed to perfectly sum him up:

“Alan Fletcher belongs to that élite international group of designers who have transcended the conventional boundaries of their craft. He has tackled every facet of design with a unique style and purpose, and no one else inhabits the world of ideas, of wit and ambiguity in graphic design in quite the same way. He has come to be seen as the man who took all that less-is-more, form-follows-function dogma and somehow found a way to, well, relax”.

George Hardie has worked for more than five decades as what he describes as a ‘jobbing illustrator’ making images for clients around the world. His most public work, along with commissions to design postage stamps, was carried out in the 1970s for and with the legendary design studio Hipgnosis. Projects for Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin reached huge audiences. George’s Robotic Handshake label for the shrink-wrapped Wish You Were Here (Pink Floyd 1975), has since been destroyed by some 16 million people worldwide, all anxious to open the package and hear the music. As part of a process he describes as ‘going amateur’, George’s book about hands – Manual – more a book of ‘graphics without clients’ than an artist’s book, provided the central theme for the second Head / Hand / Heart exhibition and talk.

In 2017, a major retrospective of his work – ’50 Odd Years’ was held at the University of Brighton where he had been made Professor in 1990.

Richard Seymour is one of the world’s best-known product designers. He has strong ideas about the role designers can, and should, play in forging a better future for us all. He also has a genuinely optimistic and positive view of the future, because he believes in the ability of the human intellect to visualise and articulate achievable answers to the problems that seem to be overwhelming us.

In his talk, entitled Optimistic Futurism, Richard said “It’s the designer’s job to fix things that don’t work properly. And you start by assessing what people actually need. Design is about making life better, and about giving people emotional satisfaction when they use a product”.

Quentin Blake, the distinguished and much-loved artist and illustrator, was Head / Hand / Heart’s fourth guest. Most famous for his quirky, award-winning children’s book illustrations, the exhibition Off the Page …and on the road to St. Pancras focused on his increasing tendency to move beyond book illustration to creating works designed for the walls of museums, hospitals and other public places.

William Pye has a career spanning 50 years, and is one of Britain’s foremost sculptors. His work, crafted usually in stainless steel or bronze and often featuring water as an integral element, is found all over the world, commissioned for public buildings, civic spaces, parks, private gardens and corporate workplaces.

Visitors to Salisbury Cathedral will be familiar with the font that he created as part of the 750th anniversary celebrations. His work Cedra can be seen at Woolbeding House, Midhurst and Alchemilla, (inspired by the plant of that name that has the characteristic of holding water within its leaves), in the garden area of the All England Lawn Tennis Club at Wimbledon.

David Gentleman is one of Britain’s foremost artist-designers and has worked in a range of media including watercolour, lithography and wood engraving – at scales ranging from the hundred-metre-long murals for Charing Cross underground station to postage stamps, coins and logos. His themes too have varied widely, from paintings of landscape and environmental posters for the National Trust to drawings of street life in London and protest placards against the Iraq war.