Archives for category: Portrait

Having a close relationship with marketing at ESPN, we see (and create ourselves) lots of sports-related designs. We recently came across the work of a young Texas-based designer by the name of Nick Bascus. His growing portfolio as a whole has a very nice aesthetic, and he has a clear grasp of graphic design fundamentals like color and typography. But the work that really shines is Bascus’s series of low-polygon illustrations and posters featuring some current NBA stars. These killer designs hit all the right notes, from composition to color choices. Bascus could easily expand on this series with great success, and we honestly hope to see his work on the pages of ESPN The Magazine (nudge, nudge… @espnmag) someday soon.

Via nickbascus.com

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In honor of National Coffee Day, we thought it fitting to showcase an artist who (subtly) uses the magical brown elixir to make art. Maui-based mixed-media artist Alessandra Maria creates beautifully detailed, dark and delicate portraits using little more than a pencil, black ink and gold leaf on coffee-stained paper. Inspired by Austrian symbolist painter Gustav Klimt, Maria’s haunting life-like portraits evoke fantasy and mystery with intricate details set on an eerily enigmatic surface achieved through the coffee’s dark brown grounds. There are even religious overtones in these thought-provoking masterpieces. Maria’s work is simply beautiful and poignant.

Via alessandramaria.com

For most artists, the palette knife is used for mixing paint, and in conjunction with brushes for applying paint. Tehran-based artist Salman Khoshroo eliminates brushes altogether. He applies thick layers of oil paint to his (massive) canvases with an arsenal of palette knives with such deliberate precision. Not only does Khoshroo have a deep visual understanding of the human form, but his sense of color is truly astounding. For an application process that seems so heavy-handed, Khoshroo remarkably uses color in clever and sometimes subtle ways as to establish cohesion in these borderline abstract works. We’d love to see a Bob Ross-style process video by Khoshroo… We find his method and resulting work equally intriguing.

Via salmankhoshroo.com

LEGO bricks are no longer just plastic construction toys, they have permeated all facets of pop culture lately… showing up on the silver screen, in video games, on clothing and even fine art. Classically trained Italian artist Stefano Bolcato has had such a penchant for the timeless toys since childhood that he began using them, and specifically the yellow minifigures, as subject matter for years. Recently, Bolcato took this a step further by reimagining classic paintings with LEGO figures in his series titled People. From Andy Warhol’s legendary Marilyn Diptych to Frida Kahlo’s Self-Portrait with Thorn Necklace and Hummingbird and Leonardo da Vinci’s Portrait of an Unknown Woman (La Belle Ferroniere), Bolcato’s oil paintings are fun and approachable. We’d love to see him expand on the series…. The possibilities are endless.

More LEGO art here and here and here.

Via stefanobolcato.com and Instagram

What do you get when you unite a talented, young, rebellious artist with discarded artwork? Renaissance paintings that demand a double-take, for one. French artist Blase, aka Blasepheme, has artistic skills rooted in time-honored techniques. But his subversive sense of humor will not allow him to simply restore flea market finds. Blase does much more than that… he scours sales and brings old paintings back to life with fresh concepts and often satirical touches. Some may question a lack of respect for artists who came before him, but Blase can rest easy knowing that he is in the business of resurrecting these otherwise unwanted works, and giving them relevance. Proved by this very post… we’re talking about said paintings from some 3,600 miles away over the internet in 2017! Blase’s work is nothing short of badass, and we applaud not only his artistic prowess but also his defiant spirit.

More artistic renegades here and here and here.

Via blasepheme.com

Creative duo Michelle Maguire and Kelsey McClellan, otherwise known as Terrence Caviar, are a stylist and photographer team, respectively, whose latest project marries some of our favorites: color, series, and of course food. At its core, Wardrobe Snacks explores thoughtful pairings of various colors and textures. McClellan’s closely cropped photos perfectly capture Maguire’s monochromatic styling, all while touching on a familiar scenario: eating on the go. In their own words, Terrence Caviar describe the series in their own words: “Wardrobe Snacks was inspired by diners lacking the luxury of being seated at a table: Michelle’s stepdad who rests his sandwich on his thigh (hell with a plate!) in between bites while he blasts an action movie on his TV; a commuter cramped up on a crowded bus retrieving an item from a bag or pocket; a lunch-breaker on a park bench eating from her lap. They’re informal — perhaps even a bit awkward — spaces as far as eating is concerned, yet the diner always appears to be comfortable and perfectly satisfied with his chosen snack, almost zen-like.” Prints available here. More conceptual photography posts here and here and here.

Via terrencecaviar.com

Some could argue that our Commander in Chief would be better suited for monarchy than a democracy (Jimmy Kimmel certainly thinks so, here). But the tomfoolery of New Jersey-based designer and Photoshop extraordinaire Michal Krauthamer is just that. Photoshop shenanigans created simply for your amusement. Krauthamer’s ongoing series TrumpQueen is not about political commentary, but simply a fun exercise in Photoshop face swapping. And Krauthamer does it masterfully, we must acknowledge. Go ahead and laugh. It’s okay. Really. Here are some of our favorites.

Via michalkrauthamer.com

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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Italian photographer Dan Bannino is a consummate storyteller with a particular penchant for still life and commercial photography. Much of his work could just as easily find a home on a gallery wall as in the pages of a mass market magazine, like National Geographic, Harper’s Bazaar, Elle, Cosmopolitan and many others. With his terrific Power and Food series, Bannino explores the eating habits of powerful and influential people from around the world. In our celebrity-obsessed culture any glimpse “behind the curtain,” so to speak, is valued. A look into the private lives of public figures, no matter how brief or inconsequential, makes us feel a little closer to them. Bannino’s series capitalizes on that curiosity, with his vibrant and arresting images. We particularly love his compositions and bold style. In his own words, Bannino states, “If you’re a fast food aficionado or a pizza freak, you have more in common with Mr. Donald J. Trump, and Pope Francis himself than you ever imagined. Check out some of the most unexpected food patterns of the world’s leaders, and you’ll never eat the same way again.”

Via danbannino.com

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We’ve looked at double exposure photography many times before (here and here and here), but we’ve never seen analog work quite like this arresting series, Jarred & Displaced, by Finnish photographer Christoffer Relander. We often marvel at artists who choose more traditional or “old school” methods of art making, which is the case with Relander’s striking photos here. Rather than capturing his photos digitally, then quickly bringing them into Photoshop for manipulation, Relander takes to the dark room to work his magic. While each composite is brilliant by its own merits, Relander’s process somehow makes his work that much more precious. As if pouring his heart into these very personal photographs was not enough, Relander also collaborated with fellow Finnish photographer and filmmaker Anders Lönnfeldt on a simply exquisite short film about this project, which is a true work of art in and of itself. In his own words, Relander discusses this mysteriously beautiful ongoing project: “For over a year now I’ve been collecting landscapes in jars using analog double exposures—in this project I have realized a childish dream. I play with the idea of being an ambitious collector; conserving my environments into a large personal collection. Most landscapes are from where I grew up, in the countryside in the south of Finland, where my roots still lie. Separation anxiety to my childhood is simply what absorbed me into this project.”

Via christofferrelander.com

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