Jess Tobin…keep an eye out

23 Jul Jess Tobin…keep an eye out

Yesterday an old couple from Texas made their way into Bread & Bones and settled in for a coffee on our new sofas. Simple folks for the bible belt, we spoke about all the neutral inoffensive things like the weather, their plans for their holidays in Ireland, the recovering economy and then bang, lil Martha hit me with ‘What does “I will in me hoop” mean?’… I heard a few prayers being uttered on the way out the door. This all came about thanks to new artwork that we’ve just hung (below) from the exciting up and coming artist Jess Tobin aka Novie. A small price to pay for having her artwork on our walls!

Explosion Jan Feb 2015Hoop

We first came across Jess’ work in Charlie’s on George’s Street, and as is the way at 4am in Charlie’s, I fell out the door in a drunken state of determination to find out who had put together the brilliant mural (which is definitely worth a diversion up George’s St to see). In a similar vein (without the drunken bit) Novice also fell into street art a little bit too… “I have always had a great appreciation for it but got into it through having a go of spray paint with the young people that I work with. I’m a Youth Development Officer by day. Once I tried it out I loved it. Having started to experiment with it and simultaneously getting involved with Evolve Urban Art who asked me if I’d like to paint at a graffiti jam (I was terrified) I grabbed that opportunity with both hands and have kept painting since. My street art name is Novice because I’m so new to it.”

By Inobsession 2

Maybe novice by name but when it comes to her reputation, Dublin’s artists can’t speak any higher of  her artwork. Sketchy Inc. was in with us last week dropping off some of his own prints and was delighted to be hanging his stuff side by side with Novice – he has his own plans to get Jess to paint a mural in his back garden. Similarly Will St Leger was in with us yesterday, busy planning a range of art installations, as he always is! He said “I remember seeing one of Jess’ pieces, I can’t remember where, but as soon as I saw it I’d really wanted to get her involved in the project.” The project being the Walls of Equality project.

Photo By Martin O Brien

An incredible piece up by the Bernard Shaw, the mural became the centre of attention after it was defaced in the run up to the vote. Not one to be kept down though, it was fixed up almost instantly and well, the rest is history. “I was so happy and honored to be part of it and to get show my support for the Yes campaign in a creative and very visible way.”


With that, Jess has plenty more lined up… “I’m lucky to get to paint again at the up coming Release the Pressure Jam in Derry. And have a fun collaboration which has that just come up with two inspirational and talented make-up artists, Makeup masters. I’ve also done artwork for a single but I’m not sure what the release date is yet.”

If you check out Jess’ website right here you’ll find a huge range of styles and different types of work, as alluded to above, although the common theme throughout seems to be the face. “I love great photographs of strong faces. Generally I like to work on capturing a feeling from the expression on a persons face, the depth of their character and what might me going on behind their eyes. Fashion photography, the edgy, gritty, often high fashion style appeals to me. I suppose like most people I draw what I want to in the moment, and I guess I very often lean to a fashion illustration style that has a dark side… drawing in pencil is what is doing that for me at the moment in the studio. That and the large scale work. I love going to a wall painting all day, its very liberating to just have that one huge creative thing to do for hours.” 


Aside from in Bread & Bones, The Jam Art Factory and Jess’ website you can also find her work nestled in among works from The Blind Elephant Collective in The Bernard Shaw or with the Minaw Collective, a female streetart collective. Check em both out – doing great stuff.

Both of Novice’s piece are available for purchase in Bread & Bones so if you like what you see drop in or drop Jess a line.

My section of a colaboration wall with Vents Dublin

“As a creative person I will always be experimenting with new ways of working – some will work others won’t but that’s the fun and the challenge, I think it’s good to challenge yourself a lot.”