Haydn Symons

Sankofa Visual Identity – National Museums Liverpool

Hey guys! I have been busy over the last few months working on some new illustration and design projects! I’m happy to announce this commission for The National Museums Liverpool.

I created a visual identity for their exhibition The Sankofa: Connections and Collections. Sankofa is a word in the Akan language of Ghana that translates as ‘reach back and get it’. Which also refers to an Asante Adinkra symbol.

This project focuses on two collection areas identified as strategic priorities for National Museums Liverpool (NML); Transatlantic Slavery and its legacies and Black Social History/Black Diaspora (including Black maritime history).

Led by three of NML’s museums (International Slavery Museum, Museum of Liverpool and Merseyside Maritime Museum) and the Bristol Museums Galleries and Archives and the Wilberforce Institute for the study of Slavery and Emancipation (WISE) in Hull. Developed and delivered in collaboration with Anti-Slavery International, Black Cultural Archives in Brixton and community organisations in Liverpool, Hull and London.

The visual identity had to be spot on and work across multiple Museums (no pressure then!). I approached the project by creating a moodboard to help me understand the topic. Looking at different types of art and symbols to help guide me. Collecting symbols, colours to photography, this helped imagine powerful ideas in my head.

Akan symbols are rich, powerful and striking, and works to form a graphical piece. From here I created rough designs that appealed to their target audience, working with the Museum so they could see how the design was progressing.

I focused on three aspects within the visual identity, colour, shapes and tone of the piece. The Ghana flag was one of my main inspirations as I was developing the visual identity.

From rough designs, I developed one final design that myself and the client were both happy with. Communicating what the brief had asked in a creative way. The design incorporates colour from the Ghana flag, typography, and an Akan symbol.

You can find out more about this project on National Museum Liverpool’s website.

This was a great project to work on which I thoroughly enjoyed, and I hope you do too! Have a look below to see all my work and how this project developed. If you’re after any visual identity, logo, or illustration please do get in touch or visit my portfolio!

Many thanks for listening and visiting my news page today. You can follow what I’m up to on my Twitter, Facebook or Google + pages, I’ll really appreciate it if you do, and don’t be afraid to say hi to me! Many thanks again, and have a great day!

Sankofa Visual Identity Moodboard

Sankofa Visual Identity – National Museums Liverpool

Sankofa Visual Identity – National Museums Liverpool

Sankofa Visual Identity – National Museums Liverpool

Sankofa Visual Identity – National Museums Liverpool

Sankofa Visual Identity Rough Designs

Sankofa Visual Identity – National Museums Liverpool

Sankofa Visual Identity Final Design

The post Sankofa Visual Identity – National Museums Liverpool appeared first on Haydn Symons Illustration – News.

How Big & Inspiring Goals Can Solve Your Creative Career Problems

Do you want to level up your creative career?

Have a hunger to reach the career heights that you desperately want?

Alongside showcasing my new illustration work on this blog, from publishing, advertising to design commissions, I also publish monthly creative career tips and tricks, perfect for those of you who are thinking about getting into the creative industry, or those of who are already within the industry, who want some extra knowledge!

This is not to say that I have all the knowledge and expertise, and have worked with the biggest brands and companies (however this is something which I’m always working towards), but I do believe I can offer help and experience of being an illustrator to help you succeed.

Within this blog post you will discover how you can achieve and reach your goals, and help you turn yourself into a successful creative, from illustrators, graphic designers to fine artists. You will discover how big goals can actually help you succeed!

No goal is too big

Let’s think about some of the world’s greatest sports stars, Andy Murray for example.

He dedicates himself to his sport to refine his craft and skill, he is consistent with his training so he developes his body, and most of all, he practises his skill so is was at the very top level of tennis.

He has maintained this for a number of years, including 2 time Wimbledon and Olympic Champion, which is an incredible achievement.

You might be thinking, “but I’m not a world class athlete like Andy Murray, so this doesn’t apply to me. I don’t have his luck, his talent or the team which he has.â€

But why can’t this apply to you as a professional in the creative arts?

He wasn’t the world’s best when he first started out in tennis, and was an amateur early in his life. For this reason, we can’t excuse not setting big goals.

You, myself, everybody can set their sights on anything they want, and can achieve anything they want if the right level of hard work, intelligence, knowledge and sometimes luck is combined together.

You may be sitting there thinking “Ok, I got you, but how do I make this happen?â€

Well, it’s actually easier than you think, and here’s how!

Reach for the creative stars, literally!

When we set our goals, we need to make sure they seem impossible to reach.

They need to make you laugh with how crazy and far-fetched they appear.

For example, as a wannabe illustrator, one of your goals may be to have your own live television show that is broadcast around the world showcasing your painting skills, to millions of people, like the great Bob Ross. You might take this further and want to own a television company dedicated to your talent, which is bigger than BBC, NBC and ITV combined.

This might sound ridiculous, but doesn’t it give you a sense of something to work towards, that you can aim for? If you set yourself accountable, and aim for these goals, you will do anything in your power to reach them.

We need to aim as big as possible (the scarier, bigger and more ambitious the better), to make you strive for better things within your creative career, and make sure we work to our maximum potential to reach these heights.

I recently discovered this as it perfectly sums up why you should be absolutely dedicated to reach the creative heights that I know you can reach.

Your goal might be to be a full time freelancing graphic designer, which might not sound big and ambitious to you, but to some people this is a big deal. Whatever goal you think is ambitious and totally crazy, is great!

Micheal Hyatt has published a great blog post dedicated to setting goals which you will find helpful in your quest to level up your creative career.

Make Yourself Accountable

One way you can reach your creative career goals is to make yourself accountable.

By keeping your goals to ourselves makes you willing to fail and does not help you succeed.

Tell your family, your friends, your even your dog about your wild goals, and tell them that you want to become the best illustrator, graphic designer or fine artist of the world!

How Big & Inspiring Goals Can Solve Your Creative Career Problems

When Victoria Beckham was growing up, she wanted to be bigger than Persil Automatic, and she succeeded, so why not you?

Sure, other people may think this is ridiculous, but if you tell them your reasons, and why you’re doing it, they can become as motivated as you are to reach your dreams.

The great thing unbelievable goals is that it’s positive. You set this goal to keep yourself motivated, driven and focused on the bigger goal, and by telling other people about the plan can make them feel motivated and driven too – which is exactly what you want.

Tell everyone and anyone so you can to keep yourself accountable.

What Goals Should You Think Of? (Creative Career Wise)

Like I was stating previously, the bigger and grander, the better!

But how does this apply creative wise?

Let’s look at some examples.

If you’re a graphic designer, you might want to secure a full time position as an Art Director, however you can take this a bit further by wanting to own a graphic design company, and overseeing it all. Or as a graphic designer, you might want to become the world’s most famous graphic designer as your creative career.

If you’re an illustrator, one of your goals might be to become a freelance illustrator, that is commissioned by the biggest brands and companies. You can take this one step further by wanting to see your work on massive billboards, in galleries, or seeing your artwork on television.

You can see that I have added to these goals and made them even more inspirational. No goal is too big and by making it bigger, means that you strive for it even more. The more you invest and commit to these goals, the more focused and determined you will become.

What If I Become Unmotivated / Can’t Reach These Goals?

The most important aspect of this is to be positive.

If you are positive in your approach, then nothing can put you down.

Positive thinking doesn’t destroy dreams, it keeps them alive and turns them into reality. If you see yourself failing or not quite living up to these goals, this is ok! Errors and mistakes is all part of the journey, and shouldn’t put you off. No journey is straight forward, so keep at it!

How Big & Inspiring Goals Can Solve Your Creative Career Problems

You might feel it isn’t for you and it’s not working, but keep positive and always think about your reason why. Why are you doing this? Why are you working towards your goals?

Keeping this in mind will keep you focused and determined to reach your goals, however ambitious, because you can and you will get there!

What’s Your Ambitious and Crazy Goal?

Ambitious goals are only achievable if you put the hard work in, as it’s not going to magically appear in front of you. They are ambitious for a reason, and it tests you to make sure it happens.

Work hard on your portfolio, your networking, your skills, and you can reach your goals.

I would love to know what your crazy goal is that you have set yourself to maximise your creative career! Simply pop me a comment below, and I will be sure to comment back with what mine is too!

If you’re after more tips and tricks to help you with your creative career or just need a bit more motivation to get things done, check out my other blog post on how to think of creative ideas!

Many thanks for listening and visiting my news page today. You can follow what I’m up to on my Twitter, Facebook or Google + pages, I’ll really appreciate it if you do, and don’t be afraid to say hi to me! Many thanks again, and have a great day!

The post How Big & Inspiring Goals Can Solve Your Creative Career Problems appeared first on Haydn Symons Illustration – News.

June Sketchbook Update

Following on from last month’s sketchbook update, featuring landscapes, observational drawings and of course portraits (one of my favourite subjects to draw), this month is packed with even more to feast your eyes on!

My sketchbook gives me a good excuse to experiment with different ways of working, and I always make sure I carry my sketchbook around with me. Including those all important trips on public transport, an ideal time to draw! This month’s sketchbook update is no different.

With this sketchbook update I have been playing with the combination of coloured pencil and colour fibre tipped pens, and seeing what I can achieve with these two mediums.

I found the result very satisfying, creating an initial pen line drawing, which is intrigant, in contrast to the loose pencil marks on top of this. I enjoy the contrast that these two mediums make, being loose in my mark making one minute, and more refined and controlled the next.

In this sketchbook update you can see observational drawings and portraits of Billy Connolly, Eden Hazard, all the way through to Theresa May. These are usually produced on a daily basis, as I try and practise and refine my drawing skills on a daily basis, which has become an addiction over the last few years!

Away from drawing in my sketchbook, I have some brand new illustration work on my portfolio! I have recently worked with Mat Klicz on a creative collaboration of Animal Farm, a new personal illustration titled ‘A Single Bird‘, and have recently designed a new business card design for a global business builder.

I hope you enjoy this month’s sketchbook update! It’s been a good month in terms of sketching, which I have thoroughly enjoyed! If you like this blog post, do comment below or share it on social media with the links below!

Many thanks for listening and visiting my news page today. You can follow what I’m up to on my Twitter, Facebook or Google + pages, I’ll really appreciate it if you do, and don’t be afraid to say hi to me! Many thanks again, and have a great day!

June Sketchbook Update

June Sketchbook Update

June Sketchbook Update

June Sketchbook Update

June Sketchbook Update

June Sketchbook Update

June Sketchbook Update

June Sketchbook Update

June Sketchbook Update

June Sketchbook Update

June Sketchbook Update

June Sketchbook Update

June Sketchbook Update

June Sketchbook Update

June Sketchbook Update

The post June Sketchbook Update appeared first on Haydn Symons Illustration – News.

New Creative Collaboration: Animal Farm

Over the last few weeks I’ve been working on a new creative collaboration with Mat Klicz, a London based graphic designer, who is passionate about branding and packaging design, which you can see more of his work here.

We wanted to work on a project that was thought provoking, had a but of substance behind it, and something that we would both enjoy!

Racking our brains over a few Skype sessions, we decided to work towards the story of Animal Farm, by George Orwell, one of our favourite novels of all time. Our ‘styles’ are very suited to this sort of story, which was an important aspect in choosing the story.

With it’s connotations towards the Russian Revolution of 1917, Stalinist era of the Soviet Union and communism, we thought this would be a brilliant story to work towards. (By the way, if you haven’t read the novel – it’s a real classic which I highly recommend). If you want to find out more about the story behind Animal Farm, or want to find out more about George Orwell, see the synopsis and plot here or here.

After discussing the story between us and how we can come up with some sort of creative solution that showcases our design and illustration skills, we thought of the idea of creating a set currency designs, that reveals the main characters of the story – like the pigs of Old Major, Napoleon , Snowball, to Boxer the horse.

We decided on currency designs as we wanted to communicate what the currency would look like if they did take over a nation (or even the world), and how their dictatorship would spread across all forms of everyday objects – like money.

Firstly we took inspiration from Soviet Union and propaganda posters, and how this can inspire and influence us in our artwork in creating this Animal Farm inspired designs. This helped massively when I created the illustrations, and I got to work and created portraits of the main characters, and how they would look.

I conveyed the characters to look powerful, ruthless, who everyone should obey. Much like that of many dictatorships across the world, like North Korea for example, the leader is seen as ‘Godly’, and someone who everyone has to listen to.

Creating portraits using watercolour, gouache and then scanned digitally to form the portraits, I used a limited colour palette of reds, blacks, yellows, and blues for an adjacent colour, that is similar to the moodboards that we created – which you can see below.

These portraits were then edited digitally, and using Mat’s graphic eye, imported into his currency designs – to create “The Union Of Socialist Farm Republics”. Creating a £5, £10, £20 and £50 notes, these include an abstract and stunning interpretation by Mat, and we are super happy with!

We are going to professionally print and photograph these designs, which I can hopefully show you all soon. You can see our inspiration, the currency designs and portraits below, which is also on my portfolio if you want to take a closer look.

Thanks to Mat for working on this project, it was a complete joy working with you, and to the famous George Orwell for writing Animal Farm – one of my favourite authors!

Many thanks for listening and visiting my news page today. You can follow what I’m up to on my Twitter, Facebook or Google + pages, I’ll really appreciate it if you do, and don’t be afraid to say hi to me! Many thanks again, and have a great day!

New Creative Collaboration: Animal Farm

New Creative Collaboration: Animal Farm

New Creative Collaboration: Animal Farm

New Creative Collaboration: Animal Farm

New Creative Collaboration: Animal Farm

New Creative Collaboration: Animal Farm

New Creative Collaboration: Animal Farm

New Creative Collaboration: Animal Farm

New Creative Collaboration: Animal Farm

New Creative Collaboration: Animal Farm

New Creative Collaboration: Animal Farm

New Creative Collaboration: Animal Farm

The post New Creative Collaboration: Animal Farm appeared first on Haydn Symons Illustration – News.

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

Hey guys! How is everyone going? I have been working hard recently on some new commissions (oohhh!), that I am really looking forward to showing you all!

If you are new to my illustration work, from editorial illustration, gouache paintings to digital design, then do look at more of my work on my portfolio.

Whilst we all wait until I can show you these recent commissions that I have been working on, here is a taster of my May sketchbook drawing from the last few months.

I try and draw daily in my sketchbook to practice, develop my skill set, and look at new ways of working.

Sketchbook drawings have always played an important part in my work, as I use this as a base for any initial commission, and always comes with me wherever I go! Big up the sketchbook!

Landscapes, portraits and observational sketchbook drawings are what I’m particularly interested in when it comes to drawing in my sketchbook. I’m not too sure why this is the case, but I’ve always been fascinated by capturing and re-creating my environment.

However when it comes to my commissioned illustration work, from publishing, advertising to editorial illustration, I produce more imaginative pieces – which I have always found strange – but it seems to work haha!

Within this sketchbook drawing update you can see drawings using coloured pencil, graphite and pen, capturing Hampshire landscapes, portraits such as Mesut Ozil, Zlatan Ibrahimović (football seems to be a recurring theme) to Johnny Cash, and also self portraits.

I hope you enjoy this May sketchbook update, do let me know by commenting below or hitting up me on social media! You can check my new work on my portfolio, featuring a new logo design for a local client and a business card design! Until next time, see you on the other side!

Many thanks for listening and visiting my news page today. You can follow what I’m up to on my Twitter, Facebook or Google + pages, I’ll really appreciate it if you do, and don’t be afraid to say hi to me! Many thanks again, and have a great day!

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

May Sketchbook Drawing Update

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Business Card Design

I have been super busy over the last few months; working on posters, branding projects and various illustrations (that I will tell you about very soon), and have recently created this business card design for Sheila Lemon.

Sheila Lemon is a Global Business Builder from Hampshire, and I was asked to create a business card design that promotes her business, her brand and the lifestyle that she can help many people achieve. Working closely with Sheila to create a business card that is eye catching, visually stunning and unique.

I wanted to incorporate warm colours, and effectively sum up what Sheila’s brand is all about in one design. Tying in visual elements of the lemon (that is at the heart of her brand – if you have a great Surname like ‘Lemon’ you might as well milk it!), I illustrated this alongside a eagle, which represents ‘Forever Living’, which is at the core of her business.

Like every commission that I receive, I worked closely with Sheila to create a business card that she will love, and she wanted a clean and simple business card design that makes a powerful impact. As a result, the front of the business card highlights a distinctive quote that perfectly represents her business – “The best way to predict your future is to create it”.

This is situated against a clear orange background, and encourages people to look at exactly what Sheila is offering, and welcomes people into the business card.

This was a very fun project to work on with Sheila, and I’m really happy with how it has turned out. Below you can see the finished business card designs and illustrations, and you can view this project which is brand new on my portfolio! I hope you like it!

Many thanks for listening and visiting my news page today. You can follow what I’m up to on my Twitter, Facebook or Google + pages, I’ll really appreciate it if you do, and don’t be afraid to say hi to me! Many thanks again, and have a great day!

Business Card Design

Business Card Design

Business Card Design

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Dance 4 Fitness Logo

I have recently been asked by a local dance company to produce a brand new logo design for the start of their new dance term. This emerging company, that focuses on all forms of dance to keep adults fit (from tap, ballet to hip hop), approached me as they want to take their brand to the next level.

As the company wanted to communicate all these different forms of dance, I had to think about how I could get across this integral part of their company within the design. After brainstorming and sketching in my sketchbook, I ended up with dancing silhouettes that fill a heart shape. The logo can be used as a whole, or the heart can also be used by itself (without text), especially on merchandise in particular – which I think it would look brilliantly.

Working from a limited colour palette of three complimentary colours of blue, gold and a yellow-gold, I wanted the logo to communicate a sense of fun and enjoyment that anyone can experience if they attend one of their dance sessions – getting away from the cliche of fitness in particular.

I developed the idea for this design within my sketchbook, and illustrated the final artwork using Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator.

I’m really happy with how this design has come out, and I hope you like it too! This logo design is also live on my illustration portfolio (which showcases my illustration, design and various other work), which you should certainly take a look at!

Do let me know what you think of this logo design for ‘Dance 4 Fitness’ by commenting below, I had a ton of fun producing it, leaving the client extremely happy to use, advertise and promote their new logo to the world!

Hope you like it!

Many thanks for listening and visiting my news page today. You can follow what I’m up to on my Twitter, Facebook or Google + pages, I’ll really appreciate it if you do, and don’t be afraid to say hi to me! Many thanks again, and have a great day!

Dance 4 Fitness Logo

Dance 4 Fitness Logo

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New Landscape Canvas Painting Commission

I have been super busy producing lots of illustrations and designs for local clients recently, which I’m really enjoying! I will tell you about these commissions soon, as I have recently finished a logo design for a dance school, and I am very near to completion for a hangbag logo design too.

Not only am I commissioned for illustration services, but also design services too, which is ace! This is usually in the form of logos, leaflet designs to website designs for local clients. I love expanding my creative knowledge and skills, and this is a great way for me to expand my horizons!

If you would like to see more of my design work within my portfolio, do take a look.

How This Landscape Canvas Painting Developed

From what you can see below, I have recently been asked to paint a landscape canvas painting for a local client to myself. Starting with watercolour and setting ‘a base’ for the painting, I then painted the whole of the canvas with gouache; a medium that I love to paint with. The landscape shows the setting of the customer’s favourite view from one of their holidays, and I am really pleased with how it has turned out.

Using a limited colour palette of blue, red, brown, green and yellow, this A4 sized landscape canvas painting incorporates architecture, the boiling sun and the glorious sea. The images below showcases the entire canvas and some juicy details for you to get your teeth into!

If you would like to see more of my landscape canvas paintings, do check out my portfolio, filled with lots of canvas paintings and landscape paintings.

I would love to hear what you think of this painting by commenting below!

Many thanks for listening and visiting my news page today. You can follow what I’m up to on my Twitter, Facebook or Google + pages, I’ll really appreciate it if you do, and don’t be afraid to say hi to me! Many thanks again, and have a great day!

New Landscape Canvas Painting Commission

Landscape Painting

New Landscape Canvas Painting Commission

New Landscape Canvas Painting Commission

New Landscape Canvas Painting Commission

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New Barbers Logo Illustration

Hey guys! I’ve been super busy recently illustrating new canvas paintings, working on a creative collaboration as we speak, new commissions in the pipeline, and this logo design / illustration that you can see today!

Alongside my traditional way of working with gouache, watercolour and digital enhancements, I also produce more digital pieces.

Designing logos, leaflets, all the way to publications, I love the cross over of design and illustration.

How This Logo Illustration Developed

I was recently asked by a client to produce a logo design for a local barbers, who were looking for an alternative logo to other barber logos you see today.

Working only with black and white within this logo illustration, I firstly started the project within my sketchbook, sketching ideas, concepts and brainstorms. After a lot of development work, I sent several versions back and forth to the client before I illustrated the logo digitally (which means the client is happy, and also strengthens how the logo overall).

Using Adobe Illustrator as my main base, this logo illustration showcases strong shapes, communicates exactly what the client wants, and is going to set them apart from other barber businesses out there. The logo features a pirate skull, pirate’s bandana, a barber’s razor down the bottom and a bushy long beard.

I’m really happy with how this project turned out and I thoroughly enjoyed the whole process. Below you can see the final artwork in all it’s glory, and the logo in front of a few coloured backgrounds.

Many thanks for listening and visiting my news page today. You can follow what I’m up to on my Twitter, Facebook or Google + pages, I’ll really appreciate it if you do, and don’t be afraid to say hi to me! Many thanks again, and have a great day!

New Barbers Logo Illustration

New Barbers Logo Illustration

New Barbers Logo Illustration

New Barbers Logo Illustration

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June Portrait Sketchbook Update

Hey guys! I’ve been working very hard lately on some new illustrations – from commissioned work (that I’ve just finished, which I can show you soon!) and a creative collaboration with a designer friend of mine, which is really exciting. I’ve also got a few illustration commissions in the pipeline, so it’s all hands on deck at the moment!

For a while now I’ve been featuring my sketchbook drawings, showing you guys what I get up to away from commissioned work. From portraits, landscape illustrations to concept development, my sketchbook is the place where I can produce what I want, which is why I love it so much! I try and draw everyday without fail, which has improved my drawing exponentially as time has gone on.

A subject that features a lot within my sketchbook is portraits that I’m highlighting today. Drawing celebrities who are in the news, from football stars, politicians, to musicians. Drawing popular culture is something close to my heart, and I love drawing stars that are on people’s lips.

Who’s Featured In My Portrait Sketchbook?

Today I’m presenting well known folk like Muhammad Ali, Maria Sharapova to Jeremy Corbyn. With most of these drawings, I have used colouring pencil. I’m attracted to this medium as I can practice my colour theory, whilst drawing at the same time – killing two birds with one stone.

I hope you enjoy these drawings from June’s portrait sketchbook, let me know what you think of them by commenting below! I’ll love to hear from you to find out what you think of this latest portrait sketchbook!

Many thanks for listening and visiting my news page today. You can follow what I’m up to on my Twitter, Facebook or Google + pages, I’ll really appreciate it if you do, and don’t be afraid to say hi to me! Many thanks again, and have a great day!

June Portrait Sketchbook Update

June Portrait Sketchbook Update

June Portrait Sketchbook Update

June Portrait Sketchbook Update

June Portrait Sketchbook Update

June Portrait Sketchbook Update

June Portrait Sketchbook Update

June Portrait Sketchbook Update

June Portrait Sketchbook Update

June Portrait Sketchbook Update

June Portrait Sketchbook Update

June Portrait Sketchbook Update

June Portrait Sketchbook Update

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