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October 6, 2013

Hi, How Are You



Today I want to introduce (to those who may not be acquainted) the art and music of Daniel Johnston. I was first introduced to his music and then subsequently his artwork when I was a teenager through the soundtrack to the movie KIDS. I immediately fell in love with his music and art. Later I moved to Austin, Texas a place where Daniel used to live. In the center of the city there is a big mural of one of his characters that is now iconic. A frog looking creature with snail like eyes that states Hi, How Are You. It now adorns t-shirts for the city of Austin and is almost like a mascot for the city. So you can kind of say he is a home town hero of mine.



A manic depressive and schizophrenic both his music and art are filled with emotion and with his work you get a direct look into his mind. His art is so pure and child like. Resonating with me in a way few artists have. One of my biggest influences and inspirations, his obvious passion and drive for his work are something that really struck a chord with me. I admire anyone with such drive. Despite any obstacles he has, he has been unrelenting in his pursuit and love of art. I hope you enjoy his music and artwork as much as I do and can draw inspiration from him. I highly advise checking out the documentary about his life The Devil and Daniel Johnston. Read on

October 1, 2013

The Wonderful World of Mutants



Last year my wife and I spent a year living in Seoul, South Korea. Before leaving the states I did some research and tried to find artists and creative people to connect with. I came across the artist known as Junk House on Flickr. A street artist, illustrator, and sculptor whose bright colors and organic shapes molded into funky characters that immediately grabbed my attention. I also have a background in graffiti and street art and thought she would be the perfect person to contact. She ended up being super friendly and one of the best friends I could have made while living in Seoul. We collaborated on many projects with her group the Seoul Urban Art Project. A collective of street artists both from Korea and abroad as well as photographers and videographers who get together to plan and put up work all over Seoul (filming and photographing it all).

She's one of the most hard working artists I've ever had the pleasure of meeting. Constantly collaborating with different companies in Korea you can find her work all over Seoul. From murals and street art, to paintings and sculpture work, to the collections of doodles she has on her website, I think you'll love her imagination and fun world of mutants and creatures.


September 19, 2013

For The Wit Of It



You want to know what I like about Michelle Last's illustration style? It's not pretentious or overly complex. Instead, it's always witty. And if you read her blog, you'll discover that such a description fits her personality perfectly. Visit her Flickr feed for plenty more goodies.

Oh, and as an aside: If you haven't joined our Flickr group, do so. It's one of the first places we check for talented artists like Michelle.


August 23, 2013

Tumblr of the Week: Emmi-Riikka Vartiainen

This week's Tumblr is Emmi-Riikka Vartiainen, an illustrator from Finland, whose Tumblr is filled with woodland creatures and Japanese school girls. Her drawings remind me of the fairy tale picture books and anime shows of my childhood - a time when everything was simpler.





July 31, 2013

The Work of Kymia Nawabi



I first met fine artist Kymia Nawabi at her graduate thesis show while we were both students at the University of Florida (we later became roommates when I first moved to New York). I was immediately drawn to her large scale mixed media work, filled with texture, disfigured bodies and limbs, swirling around in a controlled chaos. The pieces felt like surreal dreams or memories, deeply personal and sometimes bizarre or disturbing.

Kymia's latest work continues to explore new narratives and mythologies with expertly rendered figures, beautiful lines and intricate detail. I'm constantly blown away by her skilled use of different mediums, her drawing ability and the conceptual nature of her work. Her talents were on full display in 2011 as winner of Bravo's reality competition show "Work of Art: The Next Great Artist", resulting in a solo exhibition at The Brooklyn Museum. You can find more of Kymia's work at www.kymianawabi.com.


July 25, 2013

Drawing with Carly Jean Andrews



Carly Jean Andrews is an illustrator and artist based in Brooklyn, New York. We've been friends for a decade now, and I've watched her drawings and artwork evolve and grow throughout that time.

When I look at someone's art, I usually judge what's in front of me, the skill involved in making a specific piece, or the concepts and ideas behind it. I sometimes forget about the thousands of drawings, sketchbook pages, and hours spent defining an original style and point of view. Having followed Carly's work for the past ten years, I see that time and commitment in everything she does. She draws more than anyone I know, and it's evident in her confident linework, unique portraits and exploration of color and figure. These are some of her most recent drawings, and they remind me how your art can change and progress through years of constant practice. I look forward to seeing how this work continues to evolve over time.

For more of Carly's art (some NSFW) go to http://carlyjeanandrews.tumblr.com/


July 19, 2013

The Daily Battles of Mu Pan

Mu Pan is a New York based artist who creates some of the most visually rich work I've ever seen. I was lucky to meet him earlier this year and got a chance to talk about his process, while also getting a glimpse into two of his sketchbooks. Each page of these books can stand alone as a work of art. As a whole, they represent a daily exploration of his life, thoughts, and experiences melded with historical events, cultural icons, symbolism and epic conflict. Mu's art is his life's work, and he's fully committed to pushing it to its farthest limits. There's a lot to see in his paintings and drawings, so make sure you visit his website and blog to fully enjoy the scope and detail of it all.





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