Archives for category: illustration

Oh, experimental typography… how we love thee. Perhaps it’s a case of design envy, or we’re just taken with pretty things in general, but when done well, experimental typography can stand on its own, out of context. This is definitely the case with the work of Hamburg, Germany-based motion designer/illustrator Alex Schlegel. Schlegel’s visual explorations on the typographic treatment for DirecTV’s Super Saturday Night lead to these impressive pieces. The forms, lighting, and textures achieved with Maxon Cinema 4D are not only purposeful but also beautiful. Designers can sometimes use such powerful tools gratuitously, but Schlegel’s steady hand and keen eye for composition and color elevate this client job for corporate giant AT&T to works of art.

Via Behance

You may recognize Perler beads from your childhood. or perhaps your children (or you) enjoy these tactile “pixels” today, whose novelty bucks the digital trend. One thing is for sure, these tiny fusible plastic beads have an appeal that transcends age and skill level. Romanian artist Claudiu Alexandru takes beading to a whole new level, having spent some 85 hours and 45,000 beads with little more than a pair of tweezers (and lots of patience) on his latest masterpiece. The result is quite something.

Via Facebook

In an effort to pay homage to some superb Italian design manifested widely through consumer goods, Italian-American designer Gianluca Gimini conceived this series of fictional co-branded sneakers. Looking at Gimini’s body of work, particularly this imaginative series, appropriately titled “Sneakered”, it’s clear that Gimini operates on a creative plane not easily defined. At a time when consumers (very broadly speaking) seem to be steeped in the marketing of nostalgia, Gimini capitalizes on that trend and also taps into a youth culture that holds footwear, specifically sneakers, in high regard. Think of it as an exercise in mashing up historical examples of excellent product design with a vehicle that has global youth appeal (sneakers). Brilliant.

Via Behance

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We have long commented on the convergence of history and art. They are intrinsically intertwined, reliant on one another in many ways. So when an artist turns the documentation and storytelling aspect of said junction on its head, we surely take notice. For his series The American Revolution Revolution, Denver-based artist Shawn Huckins masterfully juxtaposes early American portraiture with social media jargon. Thoughtfully conceptualized and brilliantly executed, Huckins’s incredible work succeeds on so many levels. And it’s also important to note that these are physical paintings, should Huckins’s artistic ability ever come into question. Huckins is a superb American artist who is clearly inspired by American Neo-Classical painters, as well as more contemporary Pop artists. In his own words, Huckins explains the series: “The American Revolution was conceived through an exchange of a few well-formed ideas communicated in person and by handwritten letters. Imagine what George & Co. could have done with the Internet. Or not. Technology influences how much we know and what we believe, as well as how quickly and intelligently we convey our ideas. But does how we communicate govern the value of what we communicate? The physical act of typing very fast on small devices has undeniably impacted spelling, grammar, and punctuation, encouraging a degree of illiteracy that has become the new social norm. As goes our grammatical literacy, do our social and cultural literacies follow?”

Via shawnhuckins.com

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When done well, reimagining movie posters (here and here and here) never gets old. Movie poster design presents a unique challenge to designers… it’s usually one of the first representations of a movie people see, so there’s a tall order to embody an often complex story with a single image. French designer and illustrator Flore Maquin is clearly up to that challenge. Maquin has a knack for designing movie posters extraordinarily well. We love her bold style, which is evident throughout her pieces. And she has a clear appreciation for typography. But it’s her genuine esteem for cinema that really shines through here. These creations feel like a labor of love, and that’s what makes them truly special. Well done.

Via flore-maquin.com

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It is said that art is often an honest reflection of societal issues at large. History shows that for centuries art has been a sort of barometer, documenting larger issues through the lens of the artist. This certainly holds true for the work of Italian artist Alessandro Rabatti. His series Facebank serves as commentary for the very uncertain financial state of the world today, with a humorous bent, of course. Rabatti alters iconic faces on currency (related posts here and here and here) from around the world, “disguising” them as fictional superheroes. Despite the seemingly fun nature of these pieces, Rabatti’s intent and message is likely much deeper. For one, by altering the faces of these historical figures to look like familiar comic book characters with a rich (albeit fictional) history of their own, Rabatti remarks on their economic and political status, looking to them as possible “saviors” of the global economic crisis. There is an implied trust in these figures, both real and fictional, so the dialogue Rabatti initiates with this series could really go on and on. Oh, and these works are just plain cool looking. From conception to execution, we’d say Rabatti has creative super powers of his own.

Via alessandrorabatti.com

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We have a thing for series, as you might have noticed from many of our posts. And serial projects, in which artists produce artwork for a specified stretch of time, whether it be daily or weekly or monthly, are some of our favorites (here and here and here). We recently stumbled upon 36 Days of Type, a yearly open call inviting designers, illustrators and visual artists to share their view on the letters and numbers from our alphabet. Originally conceived by Barcelona-based designers Nina Sans and Rafa Goicoechea, this creative initiative has literally generated tens of thousands of entries, and is now in its third year. The work of Belgian designer Mario De Meyer caught our eye, and led us to a virtual treasure trove of typographic wonders. For the 2016 edition, De Meyer dove head first into his varying letterforms, producing a variety of beautiful designs, each worthy of standing on its own. De Meyer’s imagination seems boundless, integrating depth and a terrific sense of color into his compositions. We’re looking forward to seeing what De Meyer whips up for 2017!

Via Behance and 36daysoftype.com

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Welp, UK designer/illustrator/artist Christopher LaBrooy has done it again. His mad CGI skills continue to amaze us. LaBrooy is a master manipulator, creating surreal digital compositions that defy logic and reason (previous posts here and here). Aptly titled simply 911, and set in what appears to be picturesque Palm Springs, LaBrooy pays homage to the iconic 1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RS in this incredible series. What we love most about LaBrooy’s work is that he elevates his adeptness in Maxon Cinema 4D beyond gratuitous rendering for the sake of rendering, to thoughtful and awe-inspiring artwork. Gearheads may shudder at the sight of a dozen otherwise pristine Porches partially submerged in a pool, but that’s precisely what LaBrooy seems to strive for: an emotional response to his digital work. As far as we’re concerned, mission accomplished (again).

Via chrislabrooy.com

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One mint Porsche 911 Carrera RS #porsche #porsche911 #bendy #animation

A post shared by Chris Labrooy (@chrislabrooy) on

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We feature fan art (here and here and here) from time to time… we are all about equal opportunity, and certainly feel there’s a place for such creativity. While some in the art community discount fan art because it is based on someone else’s original content, we are from the camp that believes fan art, though not necessarily a complete original expression of the artist because it is derived from already existing content, is a creative expression nonetheless. Fan artists add their own individual style, which is intrinsically expressive and unique. One such case is that of Montreal-based artist Dada, who has a clear penchant for Disney stories in particular. She draws familiar Disney characters not necessarily to mimic them exactly, but to present them in new and distinctive ways. Dada’s latest series merges beloved Disney heroes with their often maligned counterparts. Her drawing skills are impressive, and we love the process videos she often posts on social media. This nod to a very open and unfettered process of art making is certainly in the spirit of Disney, and just reinforces the sense that we all share a love and admiration for their wondrous storytelling. What fun it is to see these clear juxtapositions of good versus evil. Well done.

Via Instagram

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Believe it or not, for being such a simple, uncomplicated product, Lego has some particularly clever and thought-provoking advertisements (here and here). Already three years old, this campaign celebrating 55 years of the Lego brand is basically a series of 55 visual riddles, fittingly featuring little more than the iconic bricks. The great minds at Swiss agency Cavalcade are behind these fantastically clever designs, which, much like Legos themselves, inspire a great deal of imagination. We must admit, we’re still struggling to solve many of these, but it’s so satisfying having solved the ones we did. Answer key to the few ads featured here at the bottom of this post. No peeking, try to figure them out for yourself!

Via Behance

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Answers (in order of images): Yellow Submarine, Alice in Wonderland, Three Little Pigs, Purple Rain, Jaws, Spider-Man, The White Stripes, Hunger Games, Four Weddings and a Funeral, Bob Marley and the Wailers, Goldilocks and the Three Bears, Jackson 5, King Kong, Titanic, Stairway to Heaven, I Walk the Line, The Beatles, New Kids on the Block, Little Red Riding Hood, Clockwork Orange, Men in Black, Rolling Stones

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