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September 17, 2015

Handwritten Inspiration

inspirational typography doodle

Need a daily tonic of motivation? I highly recommend the works of Eugenia Clara, an Indonesian artist with a major in Engineering who says she makes possibly more than a thousand doodles per year. Not only is Clara’s bright lettering filled with inspirational phrases, but the idea of making a doodle out of whatever words are coming to your mind is great for filling up a blank page when your creative well is running dry. Her art is simple and consistent, yet filled with personal intimacy and liveliness that typography can sometimes lack. I formed odd little connections to the artist’s emotions with each piece because Clara’s images include blurbs (which sometimes get very detailed) about what she was feeling when she wrote it. It pulls me in to know why certain words or quotes occurred to the artist. Certainly a richer experience than seeing generic positivity without any human context, if you ask me. 

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September 15, 2015

Monochrome Minimalism

Korean artist Daehyun Kim, AKA Moonassi, has mastered the art of elegance in simplicity. His drawings made with pen, marker, and ink are an exploration of his own identity over the years. He says, “There is no specific background or theory about the drawing. Each drawing is created based on my daily thoughts and feelings.” A simple explanation to match his simple art style." The concept of each drawing is something personal to the artist, because only he is aware of what state he was in when he created each piece. We could never know what it’s truly about. Even so, the series does not alienate the rest of us. It’s easier to become immersed and connect with what you’re seeing when you accept that you don’t need to search it for meaning.

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September 11, 2015

Getting Sketchy Over Black and White Portraits

fashion model doodle

I’m enamored with Teo Codina’s spunky embellishments to photographic portraits of women. Her sketchy patterns stick to roughly drawn lines and shapes scattering over plain white backgrounds like artistic confetti. Well-chosen blocks of color over the model’s faces bring to life clipped images that were monotone before Codina’s sketchy patterns worked their inky magic. It’s a fun contrast between the stoic photographs, airbrushed to perfection, and Codina’s light-hearted doodle style running amok over them. To see more of her graphic designs and illustrations, follow @artistica on instagram!

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September 8, 2015

Unsettling Black And White Dreamscapes

There are two types of reactions to seeing the grotesque: turning away or moving in closer. I am the second type, which is why I’ve spent so much time staring at Nicole Sofia’s illustrations. Bold and delicate shading coexist skillfully in this Argentinian artist’s warped dreamscapes. Versatile lines create a sense of gesture and motion overflowing with a raw sensuality that unsettles you with its fleshy, malformed anatomy. Manifestations of bodily insecurities, perhaps. If you follow Sofia’s linework closely you can appreciate what unusual paths the pencil took to create her own version of human(ish) forms in darkly oneiric settings.

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September 7, 2015

Delicately Drawn Women with Fierce Beasts

drawn girl with wolf

The lines Andrea Hrnjak draws are so gentle and light, these images seem to be the definition of ethereal. Glamorous girls in fashion editorial poses caress wild beasts with a softness that casts predators in a loving light. As an animal enthusiast myself, I found these images instantly relatable on a personal level. They visualize a strong connection to the wild, spiritually or emotionally. The women look empowered by their majestic companions too. Just like the animal she intertwines with, each one holds herself with the silent confidence that beautiful beings may also be fierce in their nature. Which animal do you channel your power from?

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August 6, 2015

Logging On: The Unconventional Lumberfolk of Jay Dart

No two beards are drawn the same in the illustrations of Jay Dart. He is a Canadian artist whose drawings give us a peek of men at work in the wilderness with bright beards and magical tools. Explosions of color in the snowy white landscape of Dart’s imagined world create a sense of fun, friendship, and magic in the middle of nowhere. A childlike whimsy in the colors and patterns contrasts playfully with the hardened austere stereotype we have come to expect from bearded manly men. Dart’s unconventional lumberfolk exist in a frosty place where work is play and the natural overlaps with the magical.

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July 24, 2015

Scrapbook Meets Sketchbook

I went to eat at a friend's swanky restaurant recently, and he stopped me when he noticed I started my meal without touching the lemon wedge on the rim of the plate. He explained that the lemon is an important finishing touch to the flavor, and the chef leaves the wedge there so that you can feel included in the preparation of your food. I thought of this just now, as I was looking at Mall Licudine's illustrations. There's a sense of purpose in the way she photographs her finished works with the tools she used clearly visible in the periphery. I found myself examining the clutter of her workspace and looking back to the drawing to figure out where she used what in the picture. This gave me a surprisingly clear mental image of the artist at work and the steps she took to construct specific pieces, almost making me feel as if I was there during the creation. It's an unusual experience that doesn’t happen for me often! 

Her sketchbook drawings have dates incorporated into the art, which makes me wonder if this is a form of journal. Typography in the illustrations is often inspirational or emotional in subject, which suggests something therapeutic for the artist. There’s also a nostalgic aspect which comes from using snips of patterned washi tape to add elements of collage into the sketches. A scrapbook made of sketches instead of photos? You can follow Mall Licudine's instagram or tumblr to see more.

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