New: Blood – A Wild Strays Collaboration

For the uninitiated out there, first of all, welcome to my blog, thanks for checking it out!

And secondly, I am not just a graphic designer, I also like to dabble in music.

And by dabble, I mean, it’s like my main hobby…

I write a lot of music & lyrics for my band, The Wild Strays, as well as playing guitars (mostly Lead). We’ve been active for a few years now and it has of course had it’s ups-&-down, but we soldier on and attempt to release new music when time & budget allows.

Me performing with The Wild Strays @ The Foundry

Luckily for you, an attempt was recently made and so far could be considered successful. We have recently released a new song…

And here it bloody well is! 

Excuse the passive aggressive phrasing there, I’m just going for as many puns as I can bleed out (I can literally hear the tumbleweeds rolling across…).

So, anyway, we have a NEW song and it’s called… (Drum roll please) 


That’s right, now the title makes sense. The new also represents the process, because this isn’t just a straight up Wild Strays song, it’s actually a collaboration! The Wild Strays (Myself and Liam McCarthy) teamed up with up-and-coming pop singer, Jack Jordan, in an attempt to make a more Wild, more heavy version of one of this singles. 

And here it is! Followed by a little backstory of the project… 

The project was a bit of a surprise to us and also a bit of a challenge. 

Our friend, Kyle Sheldon, was tasked with working on another version of Jack’s Single: Blood, as part of a project that saw multiple versions of the song being created by different artists. You can check out Kyle’s awesome version on Spotify

Soon after, Kyle nominated us to do a heavier version of the song and Jack was all for it, so me and Liam got to work on our first official collaboration! 

We started with all the vocal tracks from Jack, all ready mixed, along with a backing track to use as a guide. We tried to build upon the track as if we were just jamming along to the song but we wasn’t quite feeling it. This was new territory for us, so admittedly, we wasn’t sure what we were doing (#Professionals). We decided on a different approach… 

Remove the backing track. Play as you go. 

Screenshot of the Blood project in Logic Pro X

It worked. Surprisingly. We actually recorded the guitars backwards, starting from a reprise of the chorus we opted for. By backwards, I mean we started with the last chorus and then proceeded to do the preceding section; with the Intro being the last part we wrote. 

I wrote and recorded the bass, rhythm & lead guitars. Liam wrote all the drums. We merged it together, re-iterated a few times, drank a lot of tea and many sleepless days later, we had a finished song! After some amateur-to-semi-professional mixing from myself, Kyle checked it out with his more adept ears and we finished by mastering it using LANDR

And well… You can hear the result! We hope you enjoy it 😊 

This is a Wild Strays first in so many ways: First new song in years (literally!), first official collaboration, first home-produced release and most importantly… 

The First New Wild Strays Record with The Incredible Liam ‘ElementalDrop’ McCarthy on Drums! 

Liam McCarthy performing with The Wild Strays @ The Foundry

So yes, we finally got Liam on record! And damn it, does he not sound incredible? He’s been a Wild Stray for 2 years now, so we are pleased that his style and ability can finally shine through our music. And I suppose this is a good time to mention that we ARE currently working on our new album. It’s called… 

Hope Isn’t Dead; It’s Just Missing In Action 

Check out our preview (with some more Liam on it) here… 

Talking about this record warrants an entire post, so I’m hoping to do a more dedicated update soon.

Until then, thanks for reading…

Stay safe, stay Greater Than Hate!


Return to Site

Black Widow (2021) – Arguably Short Movie Review (ASMR)

Content is king (or queen?). Apparently…

So in efforts to produce content for this blog, I needed to come up with some ideas as to what I can do. Especially since life isn’t overly adventurous at the moment due to the ongoing steady escape from COVID guidelines and the accompanying anxiety that hinders the more social interactions.

But I got at least one idea! And this is it: short movie reviews! Well, I say short but I’ve been known to ramble a little bit, so they may get lengthy sometimes!

Firstly, we need to lay down a few ground rules here. Or rather, ground guidelines. These will help ensure that I don’t just ramble on for 18 pages, ignore all other responsibilities, forget to turn the oven off, burn down the house, get screwed over by the insurance company and ultimately watch my life descend into chaos…

Ground Guidelines:
– Each post will be dedicated to one movie/show, unless I’ve seen multiple significant movies in a similar timeframe.
– The choices will be relatively new, whether that’s a new release or just new to me because I’ve never watched it before (like the Godfather trilogy… Yeah… Sorry… I’ll get there eventually…)
– Each review will be approx. 3-5 paragraphs, containing an attempt at objective opinion but undoubtedly tainted by personal bias, as is the nature of humans (and critics).
– Each review will have an ‘Apex’ moment that I consider to be the high point of the viewing.
– Each review will have a ‘…seriously?’ moment that I have chosen to be the most unnecessary part of the experience that makes me wonder why they bothered to include it… Like, seriously? Did they really need to do that to that person to make that thing happen?
– Spoilers will be tagged where possible, forgive me if I divulge too much outside of a tag though!
– Each review will have an arbitrary score out of 9. This is how many of my lives I would be willing to sacrifice to see the movie. Dramatic? A little, yes, but the score is about as relevant as points on an episode of WLIIA anyway.

I think that’s enough rul- I mean, guidelines. So, let’s get into the first review…

Black Widow

Movie | 2021 | PG-13 | 2h14m | Cinema

Director: Cate Shortland
Starring: Scarlett Johansson, Florence Pugh, David Harbour, Rachel Weisz

This movie was a long time coming and fell victim to the COVID curse of delays, so it would be really easy to argue that Black Widow missed its window to be an important movie within the MCU, especially considering the character’s fate in Avengers: Endgame kinda spoils the ‘ending’. It stands to reason then, that we should isolate BW from the canon a little and rate it on its own merits. And unlike other MCU movies, there is a lack of superheroes in the more ‘super’ sense of the word, so naturally this suggests a more grounded affair than previous outings and is displayed more in the form of a female-fronted action flick. Imagine Jason Bourne mixed with Fast & Furious 8, adding splashes of the MARVEL humour and a much tighter wardrobe.

The plot is the usual affair: bad things are happening, so good people who think they are bad but aren’t really, need to do some debatably bad things to stop the bad people and prove they are actually good to the other good people who misguidedly think they might be bad. Rest assured, the film itself is nowhere near as complicated as that sentence and should be easy to follow by even the most casual of viewers. This simplicity isn’t bad though, the formula has worked for this many years, they may as well stick with it; Afterall, superhero Hollywood is performing well at box offices and capturing our attention accordingly.

BW introduces us to some new characters in the form of Natasha’s sleeper-cell-agent family, with a standout performance from Florence Pugh as the adopted sister, Yelena Belova. There is a great balance of family values & ‘love comes in many forms’ tropes throughout and Pugh adds so much charm to the franchise that I’m confident she can carry it into the future.

Scarlett Johansson’s swan song in the MCU may not be a necessary addition for the franchise but it is certainly an enjoyable one. Value has been added to the character and new players have been successfully introduced to continue her legacy of ‘that badass chick that carries the Avengers’. Plus, as a standalone action flick, it’s got great choreography, epic set pieces and big explosions; so, win-win(-win) right?

Though not an original concept, I thought the opening credits sequence was amazing. The spy movie like graphics & editing, combined with a surprisingly good rendition of Nirvana’s Smells Like Teen Spirit just worked perfectly to set the tone for the rest of the movie.

In a world of superpowered beings, aliens and robots, the bar for this is set quite high. That said, Natasha Romanoff is by all accounts, human and therefore should not be able to just get up and walk away from a 1000ft fall surrounded by explosions.

A great, albeit unnecessary addition to the MCU canon, with the character getting some well-deserved spotlight and the baton being successfully passed on.

So that’s it for my first review! I’ll admit, originally this was going to be a collection of reviews each month but with the amount of media I consume on a weekly basis, it’s hard to pick that which is worth reviewing. This way, I can post more frequently on a more ‘as and when’ basis.

So, until my next one… (probably The Suicide Squad. Spoiler: It was awesome!)

Thanks for reading…

Stay safe, stay Greater Than Hate!


Return to Site

Dawn of a New Era

So here it is, finally ‘finished’. Well, nothing is ever truly finished with me but considering what this website has evolved from, I’d say this was a great place to start.

A Little Introduction…

Welcome to! I’m Grace Hale, the designer & creator of all things you can see on the website. I’m a UK Based Freelance Graphic Designer & Musician that has finally decided to step out into the world and share my skills with its populace.

This website serves as my ongoing portfolio, showcasing my work, my skills and just anything that I’m passionate about. It’s my little slice of internet that purely exists to display a little bit of my own vanity, in the hopes that people will appreciate what I can do or who I am. Which, in turn, I hope helps me expand my own personal brand and offer some value to the world.

What Happens Now?

Now that there is a solid foundation for the site, with a place to show my artwork, a place to learn who I am, a place to contact me & a place for my hopefully witty ramblings in blog form; I can now officially make my skills available ‘to hire’. will by its nature, remain a work in progress. With the hopes that it continues to evolve as I do. So forgive me if certain features are broken, restrictive or non-existent; my web development skills are quite amateur at the moment and I’m constrained by the WordPress themes and toolsets.

I hope what is displayed is enough to admire and think, ‘Wow, I’m going to ask this Grace person to design my logo for my new futon painting business and alternative-rock-opera concept album!’

Of course, that is just an example and not the extent of my skills, so feel free to contact me regarding any design work you desire and we can look into it! As a fairly new designer in the professional sphere, my prices are somewhat reasonable and I’m eager to work on new projects!

Without Further Ado…

So that’s it for my first official blog post! A brief introduction to my newly launched site and business venture! I plan to regularly post further content from blogs, design work & of course, music; so check in every now and again for the latest in my ongoing crusade into the professional, self-employed world!

Thanks for reading…

Stay safe, stay Greater Than Hate!


Return to Site