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May 29, 2015

Ola Szpunar: Summer Sunlight

I recently returned from a trip to Texas where the days were unexpectedly filled with clouds, rain, and chilly temperatures. When I saw Ola Szpunar's "Summer" series, the images matched what I had thought my trip would look like: scenes of warm, sun-drenched indoor and outdoor settings. You cannot feel any other season besides summer when observing these pictures, not only from the sunny glow emanating from each scene. I see myself as the girl standing near the sink in a bikini top and black pants, coming in from the pool to take a break from the sun.

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May 22, 2015

Elena Chetverik: Hide and Seek

I have to let my emotions get the better of me on this post: I LOVE this series. I don’t understand everything that is going on in this game of hide and seek, I don’t know what happens when each character is found. Why are they wearing animal masks? In what kind of world does this take place? The viewer is left to either answer these questions, or leave them unanswered.

There’s a balance between beautifully illustrating a scene and telling a story. This series by Elena Chetverik allows the two to meet in the middle. The story exists but is not defined. The people are over-large, awkwardly positioned, the setting rough and unfinished and yet both have more character than had they been drawn down to the last detail. Elena’s style is so much her own: her shading haphazard, her lines imperfect. I love it all.

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May 21, 2015

Sketchcraft

Crystal balls, ouija, magic circles… Is this a sketchbook or a spellbook? Emma Black pulls art and occult together in a hypnotic style. There’s something in the cryptic imagery that makes it come off more spiritual than spooky. Again and again I find myself mesmerized by her ritualistic repetition of geometric patterns and shading in thin, straight lines. Her series of animal sketches has the same magical undertones, where in pencil she draws the natural, then adds an element of the unnatural in red. It’s a compelling sketch style that’s simplistic and mystic. 

You can follow Emma Black on instagram to keep up with her witchy business.

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May 20, 2015

Coloring Book Interview Series, #15: Nigel Sussman

Let's talk about Nigel Sussman. Most of his art is equal parts mechanical and wacky, a combination that never fails to amuse me. His drawings can seem like an overload of details at first glance, but once your eyes start following the assembly line of industrial parts you’ll see how fun the flow can be. Read on to find what Nigel has to say about his fantastic artwork AND see how he colored in his own page from our third volume.

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May 19, 2015

Javier Ordaz: Women in Black

Javier's Instagram and website are filled with black & white sumi ink illustrations painted with a thick brush. The bold strokes and deepness of the black makes the images feel as if the ink is still wet on the page. Many of his images have a dark, slightly sinister feel to them, but a series of portraits caught my eye. Javier has painted a series of women in loving detail while still maintaining his gestural, loose style. The series makes me wonder who these women are, and what part they played in Javier's life.

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May 18, 2015

Barcelona, 365

I'm in the mood for some sight-seeing today. I took a quick tour around Barcelona through the sketchbook of Òscar Julve. He is an illustrator from Spain who challenged himself to draw his city for an entire year. Barcelona, 365 is the well-chosen titled for his blog. I really enjoy seeing artists set specific motivational challenges for themselves to get sketching, even if it's an idea as simple as doodling your way through your hometown. It's easy to get caught in the details when sketching something right in front of you, but Julve's talented hands stick to creating rough sketches out of thin lines that evocatively capture the ambiance of Barcelona's corners.

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May 13, 2015

Hop, Hop. Fashion, Baby.

Have you heard of Fifi Lapin? She's an international it-girl, style guru, and fashion icon who posts photos of her outfits online. She has collaborated with well-known designers who love her look and been featured in fashion magazines - even praised by Vogue as "an unlikely - but powerful - fashion force." What sets her apart from the rest of the fashionista world? Well, she’s an illustrated bunny.

Fifi Lapin's blog exists to answer the question, "What shall I wear today?" Most days she posts drawings of herself wearing opulently stylish outfits that she takes straight off the latest runways and red carpets. Fifi's posts sometimes include cute little updates on the globetrotting fashion adventures of a fabulously spoiled hare-ess. It’s a ridiculous and clever spin on fashion blogging! From now on, you’ll never want to read a blog that isn’t written by a rabbit again. (For the record, I am a Holland Lop and I am typing this with my fluffy paws.)

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