Archives for posts with tag: compelling

British artist Nick Smith speaks the visual language of a true contemporary artist. His work is thoughtful, compelling and current. Seemingly inspired by 8-bit graphics of his youth, Smith recreates recognizable paintings from a variety of famous artists using little more than a brilliant sense of color and some custom Pantone Color Chips. Though the work he’s recreating employs broad ranges of color and is often very detailed, his pixelated reinterpretations are still remarkably recognizable. True to Smith’s attention to detail, he does not use standard Pantone chips, but rather customizes them with specific names that relate to the artwork they comprise, adding another layer of dimension to these already impressive works.

More pixelated work here and here and here.

Via smithandstuff.com and Instagram

In his latest project, HI-RES, Madrid-based artist Rómulo Celdrán explores the convergence of digital art and fine art through sculpture. Celdrán’s analytical curiosity is especially intriguing for designers like us, who are constantly analyzing, consciously or subconsciously, the visual qualities of otherwise mundane objects all around us. These large-scale, visually arresting creations are really something. Not only is it compelling to look at three-dimensional pixelation before your eyes, but Celdrán uses these works to comment on the role 3D computer modeling now plays on visual perception. In his own words, Celdrán discusses the project: “Just as photography did with the two-dimensional still image and film did with the moving image, the current digital technologies that are used to generate 3D image models are revolutionizing the way we look at reality, understand it and relate to it. Whether it is the world of 3D scanning, photogrammetry, 3D design or any of their multiple forms and applications (technical, medico-scientific, recreational…) the 3D digital model shows us a reality beyond reality, a hyper-real reality.”

Via romuloceldran.com

The old adage goes, “beauty is in the eye of the beholder.” Munich-based photographer/artist Nick Frank’s series Farbraum, which translates from German to “color space”, is a look at otherwise mundane sights through the eyes of a gifted visual artist. In this terrific series, Frank literally extracts colors from these images, and brings them to the forefront in compelling new ways. Frank’s sense of color and composition are quite masterful. In his own words, Frank describes the project: “What is beauty? A rusty street lamp which has not lit up a road in a while. Buildings made out of prefabricated concrete in the middle of nowhere. Faded drainage pipes covered with rust and dust. Farbraum offers evidence that beauty is indeed in the eye of the beholder. Everyday objects perceived as ugly by society are suddenly moved into a new light by extracting colors – and even more: by leaching and overlapping colored accents of the motif it gains an additional dimension. The color stripes with the isolated main color and four secondary colors of the image finally show a greater variance within the image: the variance of depth. Objects turn tangible and vivid.”

Via nickfrank.de

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Not speaking to strangers is a lesson learned early and practiced often, but this fascinating ongoing photography series flies in the face of such prudence. Mumbai-based photographer Jay Weinstein attempts to break down barriers during this particularly vigilant time in world history, one smile at a time. Aptly titled “…so I asked them to smile”, this minimalist photography project explores the smiles of strangers, and how facial expressions truly transform perceptions and soften even the most hardened of appearances. Weinstein captures strangers in two different poses: one without a smile and one while smiling. See for yourself… with no other context (Weinstein does not provide life stories, names, occupations, confirmed religions or ethnicity), it’s striking to see how a simple smile can humanize a perfect stranger. Weinstein describes the genesis of this compelling sociological experiment in his own words: “December 2013. I was on a photography trip to Bikaner, in the deserts of Rajasthan, India. Near the busy train station, I saw a man I wanted to photograph. I hesitated. The look in his eye and his stony, stern face intimidated me. It’s always that moment of hesitation that kills a shot! I ended up avoiding him and photographing other subjects until I heard his jovial voice, “Take my picture too!” Camera lens focused, my finger poised to fire. ‘Smile’, I called out. And he was transformed. His face radiated warmth, his eyes sparkled with a humor I had completely missed. Even his posture softened. I knew then what my next project would be. So I asked them to smile was born. I wanted to document the effect of the human smile on a strangers face.”

Via soiaskedthemtosmile.com

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We feel one of our fundamental responsibilities as designers is to employ our creative resources to help communicate and disseminate messages for public good, when possible. The right visuals can be powerful and in this instance, also quite beautiful. Commissioned by German environmental advocacy group Robin Wood, ad agency Grabarz & Partner collaborated with some clearly talented folks from Berlin to Bangkok to create this compelling series of advertisements illustrating the destruction of nature and wildlife around the world. Anchored by a clever concept, the execution here is spot-on. With the use of double exposure (other examples here and here), these compelling ads feature an animal and its natural habitat threatened by destruction. We love the composition and endless details of each piece. Just excellent all around.

Via Behance

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It’s no surprise that we’re big fans of photographer Emily Blincoe (previous posts here and here). Blincoe splits her time between Austin (ampersand) Nashville, creating some compelling photography, that’s both thoughtful and fun. A quick look at her typographic ampersand series, now several years old and aptly titled “This Ampersand That”, is long overdue. We eat up (pun intended) series of this nature. Photography (ampersand) typography… is there anything better?

Via Tumblr

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Traditional painterly techniques combined with a modern graphic sensibility makes for some very compelling work. American-born, Berlin-based artist James Bullough’s body of work is the perfect example of this striking juxtaposition. Bullough has a penchant for realism, but also employs a masterful geometric style that sort of fractures his compositions. And his sense of composition is at the heart of what makes his work so effective. Not only does Bullough produce more standard size paintings and drawings, but he also works in a much larger scale to create killer murals. Bullough cites a wide range of artistic influences, and adapts them beautifully. His notable technical skill paired with his appreciation for urban graffiti converge in a perfect storm. We are in awe.

Via jamesbullough.com

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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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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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You may already be familiar with the work of contemporary American artist Scott Blake. Blake’s work is not only visually compelling, but also engaging and usually interactive. Some of his most prominent works involve bar codes (aptly called Barcode Art), which fittingly mock consumerism and the increasing societal dominance of big data. Blake has a clear love of technology, and uses it in incredible, sometimes controversial, ways. His “Chuck Close Filter” which emulated a technique made famous by the celebrated artist, for instance, was shut down by Close himself, citing jeopardy to his livelihood and trivializing his work. We are not even scratching the surface of Blake’s growing body of work, nor are we doing it much justice. Be sure to visit Blake’s site and take it all in first-hand.

Via barcodeart.com and YouTube

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