Taker of pictures.
Sunbul Akhtar – carver of prints, drinker of coffee, taker of pictures and haver of all the feels. I work as a publishing associate by day and print by night, hence the drinking of coffee. My prints are inspired by my daytime self – the books I have read, the colours I’ve seen, the sights and smells of a busy inner-city Lahore street on a hot summer day (it’s like nothing else, for real!). I have a lot to say about my prints, more than Instagram may allow so I use this site to explain the whys and whats to you. Take a look at my throw backs below for more on me.
Another reason I print at night is because I am a single mother. My daughter’s nickname is The Cat and I’m likely to reference her a lot on this site. When she’s asleep I find that time is my own, without the responsibility of being both mother and father and so, I print at night.
Some of my posts are reviews of products on the market, and places where you can find them in the UK. I’m hoping that these posts will encourage you to take up printing and start your own journey. Then you can blog about it and I’ll subscribe to your blog 🙂
Check out this post on carving tools, if you’re thinking of taking up my trade there’s some tips on what to buy.
One time I was walking into Waterloo Station from Waterloo Road and a pigeon landed on my head and just paused there before flying off again. And I acted like it didn’t happen.
It remains one of the funniest things I’ve seen on TV when Simon Amstell said, “in your face, capitalism” on Never Mind the Buzzcocks. His delivery is always on point, and this phrase had a profound effect on me. I may even have carved this on a table in Damascus once, an indie cafe that was so different to the chain stores I had known in London.
One time I was at an exhibition in the Musée d’Orsay and I was looking down, trying to read the programme while walking around when I walked straight into a wall and hurt my face. Again, I acted like it didn’t happen.
Throw back to the time the cat got nits and gave it to me and then I gave it to her and she passed them back to me and so we had itchy heads for about a year.
This one is long winded so bear with me. One time I had a really bad, prolonged headache so I took one of the cat’s toys, it has a sucker at the bottom which I put on my forehead to alleviate some of the pressure. It worked a little but what it also did was draw blood into a perfect circle on my forehead in a dark purple bruise that lasted a really long time. I had to go to work looking like this. Literally. On public transport.
Throw back to 2019 when I bought my fringe. My fringe is a clip in and I love it. It’s a shame I didn’t have it the time I gave myself a big, purple circle bruise on my forehead.
So, I was tying my laces on Baker Street once and moved my shoulder bag behind to keep it out of the way, but it slid down while I was in position and locked itself behind my legs and it took me a really long time to bend in a way long enough to slip it out. So, yeah, I looked like this for a few moments. In public.
So, I was in Fez with the cat when we visited a tannery. It was the beginning of summer and the guy there was proud of the use of pigeon faeces in treating the hide, because it’s old school and organic, but you can imagine the smell. Then he hands out a massive plate of mint so I was like, “Cat, look at this, score!” and we began eating the mint. I only found out afterwards that the mint is handed out for people to smell to mask the scent in the tannery. So, I don’t know whose nose had been in that plate the cat and I properly finished.
Crying on the Northern Line. It happens.
I have a lot of underground stories. One time I thought I got herpes on my face from the underground (because I had to hold on to the bar the morning of ) and so I used cold sore cream all around my mouth to treat it. But it just got worse, the skin broke open and it was oozing. I didn’t go to the GP for three months, thinking the cold sore cream would eventually work. On my birthday I treated myself to a trip to the GP whereupon I was told it was eczema that had become infected and was prescribed a miracle cream that immediately corrected it. But, get this – the cold sore cream has ammonia or something so I had bleached skin in the shape of Homer’s mouth (of Simpson’s fame) around my mouth for a few weeks.
I was sitting on the tube and got up briefly to hand the cat something, she was sitting opposite me, but I miscalculated the distance of my seat and fell back onto the floor and not my seat.
This is for all the times my natural body shape has been confused for being pregnant and I’ve been offered a seat on the tube. It’s happened three times and I’ve accepted it once, and sat down in such a way as to confirm to all witnesses that I was indeed pregnant when really I just enjoy eating.
From 2002 I went to every stop the war demo, I held placards and chanted.
I always take the north entrance from Cabot Square to Canary Wharf station. If you enter from the second set of doors it’s a straight walk on to the down escalators taking you to the station platform. This one time I went through the second set of doors and dashed for the escalators but something felt off. It’s usually a routine, through the doors, a few paces and then a jump onto the escalator and start walking down. Except this time something was off – the escalator had been switched so I jumped on but was going backwards and people were coming up and I didn’t know how to balance with my bags and turn around to get off. I did it eventually and didn’t make eye contact with anyone until I got to London Bridge.