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Arts Visuels

Sketchtravel

sketchtravel

What a wonderful, brilliant, cool concept! Sketchtravel is a project that has taken one sketchbook around the world to 60 different famous illustrators, with the end foal of giving money to charity.

Each artists had one page to fill, and then they would pass it off to the next artist (all passes had to happen in person, no mailing, which is an interesting detail!).

And now that the book is filled, it is going to be auctioned off to raise money for the non-profit Room-to-Read, which focuses on child literacy.

Check out this trailer to see more. The animation is really clever!

Also, the website is awesome.

 

 

Arts Visuels

Yvette Van Boven’s Recipe Illustrations

yvette van boven

If I knew how to draw and stuff, I would make these for all my friends and family for Christmas. How sweet would that be? Ask them their favorite go-to recipe, illustrate it for them, and frame it! Voila! I would love to have a series of framed illustrations in my kitchen of my favorite recipes!

I looked around on Etsy and didn’t see anyone who offers this service. If you can draw, I advise you get on that hole in the market asap. You’ll be getting commissions til the cows come home, I can’t think how many blogs would love to feature that, and like, Martha Stewart Living magazine.

Yvette van Boven is the artist behind these illustrations above, that lead me on this whole chain of thought, and she has a new cookbook out that looks delightful. It’s called Homemade, and it’s a mix of recipes and diy how-tos for the kitchen, like how to make ice cream without an ice cream maker, and its decorated with her illustrations and photography.

 

Arts Visuels

Hiroshi Sugimoto: Lightning Fields

hiroshi

I am completely taken with these Lightning Series photographs by Hiroshi Sugimoto that I understand absolutely nothing about. I think that’s part of why I’m taken with them. The combination of art and science is so fantastic and intriguing and above my head, and the resulting photographs (are they really “photographs?” I don’t know. But they involve film.) are stunning.

Here’s how Wired Magazine describes the series and process: “Whether making ultralong exposures of movie screens or photographing museum dioramas to look like real scenes, Hiroshi Sugimoto has always used his camera to explore unseen phenomena — artifacts of time, light, the elements, and human perception. But for his latest project, called Lightning Fields, the award-winning photographer traded optics for electricity. He wields a Van de Graaff generator to send up to 400,000 volts through film to a metal table.

The resulting fractal branching, subtle feathering, and furry whorls call to mind vascular systems, geologic features, and trees. “I see the spark of life itself, the lightning that struck the primordial ooze,” Sugimoto says. Although some of the effects happen by chance, the artist does try to exercise control.

“I have a kitchen’s worth of utensils that produce sparks with different characteristics,” he says. “But there are many variables — weather, humidity, perhaps even what I had for breakfast — I’m never sure what influences the results.””

If you want to hear more about Sugimoto, from the man himself, check out this video from T Magazine. He doesn’t talk about this project, but he does say the phrase “cooked in my noodle” around 1:55 and it’s pretty great.

Arts Visuels

Street Art Round-Up

street art utopia

Awesome round-up by Street Art Utopia of the 106 best street art photos of 2010. (106… guess they just couldn’t stop at 100?) Check out the gallery for more, these were my favorites out of their 106!

A lot of the images in the round-up were by artists I’ve posted on previously– for more related posts, click the “street art” tag on the right of this post.

 

 

Arts Visuels

Collective Noun Posters

collective

How fun are collective nouns?? This seriesof posters were created by WOOP Studios (who are also the graphic designers of the Harry Potter series) to celebrate collective nouns, which are, as they put it, “one of the eccentricities of the English language.”

It’s true! How random that we have terms for gatherings of so many different things? Terms that you really rarely use, and actually never need, considering they all mean “group.” I love it! They’re so evocative! “Murder of crows,” “parliament of owls,” “charm of goldfinches,” “party of jays” … the bird ones are some of my favorites.

I think a collection of these posters (sadly there’s no collective noun dedicated to posters, or I would have used it!) would be so cute in a kid’s room!

Arts Visuels

Dancing in Public

ballerina project

Two photography projects for you today with a few things in common: professional dancers dancing/posing in public in NYC.

One is called The Ballerina Project (black and white photos above) and takes a more serious, emotional approach (aren’t they beautiful?), and the other is called Dancers Among Us and has a little bit more of a fun, humorous, Improv Everywhere feel to it, capturing dancers in normal street clothes surprising crowds with a sudden leap or twirl (that’s the technical term- twirl) (photos in gallery– mostly color).

 

Arts Visuels

Collodion Process Photography

collodium plates

Wow wow wow. Loving, adoring, and super impressed by the work of Daniel Carrillo, a photographer who is working using the archaic wet collodion plate process to take portraits.

Isn’t it amazing how the images above look like they should be super old, because you recognize the old-timey style, but the subjects let you know they’re modern?

Introduced in the 1850s, the process was nearly extinct less than ten years later. It did remain in use for specific needs and in different forms through the 1960s, but the complicated process kept its use limited for obvious reasons (see below for more on the process). It’s also similar in a way to silver gelatin printing, but with the main distinction that wet collodion plates had to be developed immediately on the spot.  Sally Mann has used collodion process, but other than her work, I’ve never seen it anywhere else.

 

I’m so glad Carrillo (and I’m sure others who I don’t know about) are keeping this art alive, the images are SO beautiful!!! The amazing tonal range and short depth of field combine to create such a unique style.

 

Check out this video of Carrillo talking about his work and describing the process for more info:

 

Here’s a description from wikipedia of how it works, which hilariously starts with the phrase “The process is simple.”

The process is simple: a bromide, iodide, or chloride is dissolved in collodion (a solution of pyroxylin in alcohol and ether). This mixture is poured on a cleaned glass plate, which is allowed to sit until the coating gels but is still moist. The plate is then placed in a silver nitrate solution, which converts the iodide, bromide, or chloride to silver iodide, bromide or chloride. Once the reaction is complete, the plate is removed from the silver nitrate solution and exposed in a camera while still wet. The plate loses sensitivity as it dries, requiring it to be coated and sensitized immediately before use. It must also be developed while still moist, using a solution of iron sulfate, acetic acid and alcohol in water.

via WTF via Miss Moss

Arts Visuels

Conceptual Taxidermy

mathieu

This is admittedly weird, and I’m not totally sure what I think about it, but it sent me on such an involved train of thought that I wanted to share it with you and get your thoughts.

Mathieu Miljavac, who formerly spent 10 years doing detailed embellishment for the couture fashion houses of Paris, now creates “conceptual taxidermy.” He learned the art of traditional taxidermy, but then took it another direction, where the animals are not posed as they traditionally would be (like the bird above right), animals not usually preserved by taxidermy (like a house mouse), or in some cases, a sort of new animal is created using only some of the parts of the original animal.

That sounds so morbid and creepy, but the results are rather amazing looking, or at least thought-provoking, like that feather fluff ball with one foot, above left. What do you think? Too twisted? Disrespectful of the dignity and beauty of the original animal? (Btw, the animals all died natural deaths.)

This also reminded me of the great article Vanity Fair ran in 2008 after the fire in the famous Deyrolle taxidermy institution in Paries. If you missed that article and/or don’t know about Deyrolle, read the article. Especially if you’re creeped out by taxidermy, it will shift the way you view it. (Deyrolle was also the set of one of the parties in Midnight in Paris!)

Then also it reminded me of these photos taken of Deyrolle after the fire, which chronicled a bizarre “second death” of the taxidermied animals.

Ok and finally, to lighten the mood a little, the bird at top right reminded me of the “night time… day time!” bird at the beginning of the video below. My littlest niece and I watched this vid about 10 times in a row, and if there’s any metric for measuring silly humor…

Arts Visuels

Drive

drive

You know how when you’re in the passenger seat while driving on the highway, it becomes a total preoccupation to look at people in the other cars? (And then it’s really awkward when they look back at you? But you still can’t resist?)

Well, Andrew Bush cleverly turned that preoccupation into an photographic project, which he has now turned into a book. Most of the photos were taken in the early ’90s on the highways of LA (perhaps the best place in the country for capturing car culture), so in addition to being an awesome chronicle of people in cars, it’s also an interesting little time capsule of LA in the early ’90s.

Pretty amazing how the cars on the road have changed since then. Time flies, no? Looking at these made me feel old for the first time in my life. Also, why oh why are cars not still painted with those flat colors? I detest the current glittery (truly, look up close, they’re glittery), pearlescent paint colors on cars today.

 

This gent above was on the highway in Montecito– are you surprised? It’s so perfect. Check out his site for more photos, and for captions– the captions are occasionally hilarious in a very dry sort of way, often for the verb he chooses for “drive” to go with the person.

You can order the book here. [Via Swiss Miss]

 

Arts Visuels

Street Art + 3D + Band Poster

dry the river

To promote their new single, “Horses,” British band Dry the River teamed up with FOAM and Xavier Barade to make these 3D paper posters. Yes, paper.

In addition to being a brilliant promotional move and twist on the traditional poster, I also love that once “in the wild,” these function like 3D street art… something I haven’t seen too much of!

I loved these at first site, but three things made me love them more:

1) They are made of paper. 2) They were created using Google Sketchup. #1 + #2 means an awesome intersection of handmade, crafty, tangible, and cool tech tools. 3) They went one step further after creating them (they took 35 hours each) and installing them and made this video below showing them in their habitats and the reactions of passersby. #ilovevideocontent

With so much to love, the music was sort of an afterthought for me, but I do like the song!

Finally, how do I get my hands on one of these??

Via/more info here.

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