Archives for category: Design

It’s been a while since we featured the work of Los Angeles-based design and illustration studio DKNG (previous posts here and here). Since we had just looked at some stellar minimalist bird illustrations, we thought DKNG’s dog breed illustrations a fitting followup. Design duo Dan Kuhlken and Nathan Goldman were commissioned by Golden Doodle “lifestyle brand for dog lovers” to illustrate ten of their favorite dog breeds, which were eventually used for some rad swag aimed at dog lovers. The results are terrific! We love DKNG’s bold, clean style.

Via dkngstudios.com

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Minimalism is often just the right treatment for getting to the essence of a visual identity (previous examples here and here and here). And that is precisely the case with Minneapolis-based designer/art director Tony Buckland’s project, Birds of Minnesota. You don’t have to be into ornithology or bird watching to appreciate this work, there’s an aesthetic appeal that stands on its own. Buckland’s objective is to “edit the defining characteristics of each bird down to the absolute minimum without losing the essence of the bird.” And he achieves that brilliantly. An ever-growing collection of prints available here.

Via birdsofminnesota.com

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Initially drawn in by typographic papercraft, we quickly realized the portfolio of Lobulo was a treasure trove if dynamic designs. Splitting time between London and Barcelona, Lobulo Design is actually just one man: Javier Rodríguez García. His penchant for working with paper has gained him much respect, and even a viral following online. The well-produced short videos he posts on social media give a nice behind-the-scenes glimpse at Lobule in action, feeding that central hunger for all-access documentation (see some below). The intricacy of Lobulo’s work is striking, and his sense of color and space outstanding. We especially appreciate work that is outside of our comfort zone, and this certainly falls into that category. Just awesome.

Via lobulodesign.com

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On this Earth Day, we thought it appropriate to feature work that promotes that trendy buzz word: upcycling. In other words, reusing objects that would otherwise be discarded in such a way as to create something of higher quality or value than the original. In this case, it’s the inventive work of UK photographer Dan Tobin Smith. For his project entitled The First Law of Kipple, Smith basically collected a very wide array of rubbish, then painstakingly chromatically arranged it with such attention, that he achieved pleasing gradients from color to color (no Photoshop filters here, folks). And we’re not talking a handful of objects, but thousands upon thousands. What’s this peculiar word “kipple”, you ask? It’s actually a fictional word that was coined by science fiction writer Philip K. Dick in his 1968 novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep (the film adaptation was Blade Runner), and is used to describe useless, pointless stuff that humans accumulate. It’s sort of odd even saying it, but Smith’s creative display of such junk is quite beautiful and thought-provoking. This project certainly appeals to our own nerdy desire for order and color harmony.

More chromatic-centric posts here and here and here.

Via dantobinsmith.com and Instagram

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Nostalgia is a prominent theme in art and design… simply a reflection of the human experience and human nature in general. We’ve seen it take many forms time and time again. Our latest find is a “bit” unexpected (no pun intended). Taking larger-than-life personas of rap and hip-hop artists, and minimizing them into pixelated 8-bit graphics may seem counterintuitive in this age of lifelike 3D avatars and such. But curiously enough, it works. This ever-growing collection of 8-bit characters is the brainchild of young UK artist A.Mulli (aka Adam Mulligan). A.Mulli’s low-res portraits pay homage to vintage arcade games like Street Fighter and Donkey Kong, imagining current hip-hop artists and rappers and other famous figures through the lens of a 1980s arcade character. Below are a few of our favorites. Keep ‘em coming, A.Mulli!

Via Instagram

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We’ve seem many artistic mediums, but never something quite like this. Some of the most recent works by artist Dino Tomic (aka AtomiccircuS) resemble chalk, but its actually… wait for it… ordinary table salt. Based in Norway, by way of Croatia, Tomic painstakingly arranges salt granules in such away that he achieves stunning variations of tone, giving these incredible Game of Thrones portraits an incredibly realistic feel. His beautifully intricate mandalas are also pretty remarkable. There’s simply no denying Tomic’s gift of visualizing his compositions, then slowly building them with his bare hands. And his 270,000+ Instagram followers would surely agree. Try to refrain from yelling at your screen when you reach the 1:07 mark in the video below. Now you can’t say you weren’t warned.

Via Facebook

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Serial projects, that is, ones that are repeated at daily intervals for a set period of time, are really an exemplification of self discipline and ferocious creativity. One such example is a project called 100 Hoopties by Detroit-bred, Los Angeles-based designer and cyclist Jenny Beatty. While completing a masters program at SVA in NYC, Beatty spent one hundred consecutive days immersed in her two loves: design and cycling. Beatty exercised her stellar design skills and unending creativity while reimagining iconic pieces of artwork using only scrapped bicycle parts. In her own words, “The idea came about very serendipitously. I was living above a bike shop that was going out of business, and would walk past coming home every night to a sidewalk filled with left over “junk”. One day I came across a pretty much new set of mustache handlebars with butchers basket and snapped the gem up for future use. The bars/basket sat on my landing for the next 5 months – taunting me to do something with them. When the time came to submit our ideas for 100 days – I tried to think of something that would summarize my life of cyclist and graphic designer. As I was writing out my thoughts, I kept trying to find ways to use this basket and handlebars but it wasn’t until I started thinking about taking it apart that the magic happened.” Magical, indeed. Here are a few of our favorites.

More serial projects here and here and here.

Via 100hoopties.com

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In an effort to come full circle in recognizing the very polarizing Common Core testing in New York over the past two weeks, we bring you another “math meets art” post. This time it’s the work of Venezuelan architect and illustrator Rafael Araujo, and his very technical approach to capturing the mathematical brilliance of nature. With simple drafting tools (pencil, ruler, compass, protractor), Araujo takes much pleasure and pride being unplugged from technology while exploring three dimensionality (yes, without the aid of a computer), which can take up to 100 hours to create a single complex composition. We cannot wrap our brains around how one would even begin to approach this, so needless to say, we are in complete awe of Araujo. As are the thousands of backers who contributed to his Kickstarter campaign to publish a book of his work, which began several months ago with a goal just over $20,000. Araujo has since raised over a quarter of a million dollars to date, with the help of Sydney, Australia-based husband and wife team Melinda and Andres Restrepo. The Restrepos were so taken with Araujo’s work online, they approached him about creating a book. Capitalizing on the growing popularity of “adult coloring books” (c’mon, not X-rated, but those touting supposed “stress relieving” patterns), the project to publish the Golden Ratio Coloring Book is forging ahead. When you look at the sampling of Araujo’s work below, just keep in mind that they are all done by hand. Simply breathtaking.

Via rafael-araujo.com

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Movie buffs rejoice! While we certainly love movies, we are more excited about this incredible series of posters from a design and conceptual perspective. German multidisciplinary design studio Stellavie, in collaboration with illustrator/artist Julian Rentzsch, hit the mark with this superb series of prints paying homage to some of the foremost movie directors in history. Each piece features the director’s portrait as the focal point, with an array of references from some of their impressive body of work. Each composition is quite beautiful with really thoughtful details, and we especially love the traditional movie credit typography incorporated into each layout. Each edition is limited to 200 copies each, and they are signed and numbered, and printed with museum-quality inks on textured, acid-free cotton paper (available for purchase here). Fantastic work on may levels. Bravo.

More killer movie designs here and here and here.

Via stellavie.com and julianrentzsch.de

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