Archives for category: Design

Art and design can be powerful tools to raise awareness and permeate public consciousness. Visual impact can often be more commanding than words alone. Ecuadorian artist Maria Jose Cabezas clearly knows this, and capitalizes on the ability of well-conceived, expertly executed imagery to convey a message. With a global culture steeped in preoccupation with physical appearances, Cabezas’s work here clearly has a place. She sheds light on sensitive issues that rarely get the attention they deserve, like anorexia and bulimia. In her own words, Cabezas hopes to “enlighten the consequences of the obsession with beauty.” This work could not be more relevant, and we really appreciate the merits of Cabezas’s work, not only artistically, but also socially.

Via Behance

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In much the same vein as the incredible work of Christopher Boffoli, Japanese artist/designer/art director, miniature photographer Tatsuya Tanaka’s playful take on macro photography is really memorable. Tanaka’s miniature dioramas, if you will, are almost like stepping into the mind of a young child, pushing his broccoli around the plate while his imagination runs wild. Tanaka says, “Everyone must have had similar thoughts at least once. Broccoli and parsley might sometimes look like a forest, or the tree leaves floating on the surface of the water might sometimes look like little boats. Everyday occurrences seen from a pygmy’s perspective can bring us lots of fun thoughts.” A key word here is everyday. Tanaka has actually committed himself to releasing one of these each day, a project aptly titled Miniature Calendar, and has been doing so since April 2011. Yes, everyday, folks. The body of work here is tremendous, and Tanaka’s perspective is fascinating. This is obviously just a very small sample of an incredible project that’s worth following. Just ask his impressive social media following: 35K on Facebook, 242K on Instagram, 88K on Twitter. Tanaka’s mission is simple: “It would be great if you could use it to add a little enjoyment to your everyday life.” We couldn’t agree more.

Via miniature-calendar.com

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We’ve all enjoyed colored pencils at one time or another, but few pull off the depth and richness when utilizing these basic tools as Ontario-based illustrator/tattoo artist Andrew Wilson. Wilson’s creations are not simply sketches, but carefully crafted works of art that would make a digital illustrator envious. We love that Wilson creates these pieces by hand, and is able to achieve such contrast and nuance, especially in the shadows and highlights. And we’re not alone in our admiration of Wilson’s tremendous skills. His social media stats speak for themselves… 94,000 likes on his Facebook page, and 53,000 followers on Instagram. We will definitely be checking back on Wilson’s growing body of work, just awesome.

Via Facebook and Instagram

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We are particularly taken with artists who revamp and re-envision everyday objects (here and here and here), giving new meaning to something very familiar. Berlin-based multi-disciplinary artist Sarah Illenberger is particularly adept at this approach, and we especially like her work involving food (which is reminiscent of the great Brock Davis). Illenberger’s conceptual and compelling work is not simply photography, but also art and design. Well known Berlin-based blogger Mary Scherpe says it best, “With a focus on analog craftwork using everyday items, Sarah is renowned for creating vivid, witty images that open up new perspectives on seemingly familiar subjects. Her ability to transform ordinary materials into complex and unexpected visual experiences has been utilized to develop concepts for clients from the fields of culture and business in several countries. In her aim to explore the fertile overlap between art and design, she’s collaborated with numerous photographers and artists, and filled exhibition spaces with self-initiated projects in Paris, Tokyo, and Berlin.”

Prints available here.

Via sarahillenberger.com

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Disney characters are often the subject of artwork in this particularly pop culture-centric moment in time (here and here and here), so it’s no surprise that someone has envisioned what Disney royalty might look like in “real life”. And that someone is Melbourne, Australia-based Finnish designer/illustrator/art director/photo manipulator Jirka Vinse Jonatan Väätäinen. The rise of live-action Disney fairytail movies in recent years has certainly increased public consciousness about these beloved characters, but Väätäinen depicts a much wider variety with astounding results. Gathering an assortment of photos online, Väätäinen digitally blends them together and manipulates them in such a way that looks natural and realistic. It’s an interpretation, of course, but pretty spot-on in our opinion. His work has been floating around the internet for years, and his newly released set of princes has regenerated interest in his excellent work. Just a sampling here, so be sure to check out Väätäinen’s site for the full collection. Magical, indeed.

Via jirkavinse.com

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While fashion and still life photography can be very straightforward, we’re always pleased when we see it take a conceptual turn. London-based Lithuanian photographer Aleksandra Kingo is particularly adept at elevating her work to art. Her personality shines through, and makes for some very compelling work. In her own words, her work is “feminine, a bit awkward and full of irony. She believes that photography should be personal and loves the possibility of creating any kind of world through her medium. Most of her work is based around people and their identities and she gains a lot inspiration from everyday life stories as well as popular culture.”

Via aleksandrakingo.com

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Only an immensely talented illustrator could accept a challenge from a friend, and adapt his style so masterfully. This was exactly the case with Russian illustrator/designer/art director Viktor Miller-Gausa. He never really earned his stripes as a cartoonist per se, but when a friend said he could not draw a caricature, Miller-Gausa honed his skills by creating incredible portraits for 31 days of both his friends, and familiar celebrity faces. Here’s a sampling of Miller-Gausa’s awesome work.

Via Cargo Collective

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As we’ve mentioned before (here and here and here), 3D rendering has come a really long way in recent years. With technology advancing exponentially, the world of three-dimensional work has gotten more real, to the point that it’s sometimes difficult to discern what’s computer generated and what’s actually real. This gorgeous series, GoldRush, by Slovenian designer Črtomir Just exemplifies that fine line. We all know that these items aren’t actually made of gold, but Just nearly makes us believe it. In his own words, Just explains, “Since the world is obsessed with everything that’s golden, I decided to make a fun 3D series that takes the popular ‘gold’ naming for a spin and tries to depict these products literally or how they would look like, if they were truly made out of gold.”

Via Behance

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It was almost a year ago that we posted about an incredible collaboration between Russian photographer Alexander Khokhlov, makeup artist Veronica Ershova, and floral stylist Mikhail Kravchenko. They have teamed up again for a series of striking photos entitled Bloomshapes and Illusions, where they explore photographic portraiture adapted from a variety of influences, such as minimalism and symbolism. They even employ an element of illusion in their work, which makes it that much more special. Particularly notable is their use of flowers, like their remarkable Marge Simpson piece. Here, they employ brilliantly white blooms with great success. The attention to detail and sheer artistry that goes into these photographs is astounding, as exhibited in the video below. We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again… can’t wait to see what they come up with next!

Via alexanderkhokhlov.com and YouTube

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