All posts filed under: Features

Say Hello to Boom Saloon

Having freelanced quite a bit in the wonderful magic world of indie magazines, keeping ad-free photography and adventure magazine Wildland Mag afloat, I was genuinely excited when I was let in on a new project idea. About a year ago, I met (then) twitter acquaintance Rachel Arthur for a chat and it felt like two magazine minds instantly clicked. We talked about the way media, journalism and the publishing industry shifted in the past years, old powerhouses falling by the wayside and how indie magazines have taken over bigger and bigger chunks of traditional readerships with exciting new content and financing models. And so we spoke about boom saloon, a new adventure she was scheming with friend and designer Jamie Smail.  At its core sits a beautifully printed magazine full of inspiring stories by a collective of international contributors, seeking to spur a movement, a wave to democratise creativity for good. As part of every issue, boom saloon selects a social project to support and champion creativity in underprivileged areas. It’s about taking young creatives by the hand, nurturing their raw talent …

Spot On: Jake Wood-Evans

‘My process isn’t one where I know it’s done when it’s done. It really is just accidental and cause it’s about discovery I don’t know where it’s going. I’ve got to let it go where it wants to go, really’, says Jake Wood-Evans as he carefully skims a layer of paint off the canvas, exposing a character of mysterious features. The Hastings-based painter currently got his first UK solo exhibition coming up at one of my favourite art spaces in London, The Unit. As ever, these guys definitely have got a knack for great, innovative artists.  Jake’s haunting new body of work he’s created for the show – appropriately named ‘Subjection & Discipline’ – is inspired by his deep and lasting affection for the Old Masters of Baroque and the emphasis on beauty and craftsmanship. Setting out to catch the spirit of the era, he excavates layers of oil and reworks the motifs and atmosphere of the original 18th century paintings before giving them a new, dark and brooding, lease of life. But now listen to the man himself …

‘Fixed It’: Obscured Portraits by Henrietta Harris

Henrietta Harris is a super-talented Auckland-based illustrator and painter, who already left her mark on the art world with exhibited works in places like Tokyo, London, New York or Miami’s edition of Art Basel. Her signature portraitures depart into the surreal with faces sometimes obscured and misplaced by the clean sweep of a brush stroke – something you can see in her cool new oil painting series ‘Fixed it’. Absolutely amazing, isn’t it?   henriettaharris.com @twitter @instagram @facebook

Cover © Fabienne Rivory

Croisées by Fabienne Rivory

Creating something excitingly new often means questioning common perceptions, mindsets and practices. For her long-time project ‘Labokoff’, French artist Fabienne Rivory explores the interactions between photography and painting, the interface of the real and the imagined. Just recently, she released a new, vibrant set of works – a series called ‘Croisées’ that’s as dreamy and poetic as her earlier creations: Beautifully mirrored reflections of eerie landscapes shot in b/w-tones are brought to life with bright watercolours, ink and gouache. A fusion made in heaven, as it seems. labokoff.com @twitter @facebook  

Back in Time: Reviving an Analog Classic

My record collection is a rather humble one. Old rock and blues classics of my dad’s sit side by side with newer music darlings I’ve acquired over the years and now seem to win the upper hand against the rarities. How often have I been telling friends, strangers, co-workers, even family that vinyl has made a fearless, yet (to most) unnoticed comeback? ‘It’s probably just another wave of nostalgia that comes with that hipster surge. It’ll be over soon enough, you’ll see’, was a typical, well-meant answer. Funny enough, the numbers soon did prove the opposite. After surpassing CD sales for the first time and vinyl releases by both underground bands and mainstream artists regularly hitting the stores, nobody doubts the format’s stirring return. So who’s next? The tape cassette? I heard rumours a few years back that it’s on an upswing too. Cassette Store Day and all. But a proper return like its resurrected predecessor? Well, if we can believe the National Audio Company, the last cassette factory producing the magic magnetic tapes in the U.S, it’s here to stay once again. Watch the intriguing Great Big …

Silent Quarter by Tim Lane

Back when I spoke to him last year, Bristol-based illustrator Tim Lane already hinted at getting his hands on an ambitious new challenge that draws on his colossal art book project ‘Anima Mundi’. And he certainly did not laze about for long and hurled himself into a wonderfully dark short story project called Silent Quarter. Featuring a combination of writing and drawing, the fragmented narrative unfolds as a spiritual journey through the mind of an old mask-maker and barber as he comes to the end of his long life of love, service, ceremony and creativity. With its open and playful structure – think of beautiful fold-out artworks augmenting the text vignettes – Silent Quarter winds along different threads and leaves the reader with various forms of interpretation, as they’re exploring a world of reality and delusion: “From the magic of creativity and the powerful transformative effects of: masks, haircuts and thunderstorms – to the intense personal experience of: loss, the endurance of love and the importance of memory. It ranges from a seemingly solid sense of a community, a family, an ancestry …

Alma Haser: Cosmic Surgery

As much as any kid, I was fascinated by its colours and patterns, mysterious reflections, interplay of objects that kept dancing from one mirror to the next, vanishing and re-emerging, over and over. No wonder, I instantly fell for Alma Haser’s ‘Cosmic Surgery’, which plays with the concept of the kaleidoscope in a brilliantly smart and yet refreshingly different way. The London-based photographer creates her eye-catching surrealist pictures by photographing her subject, printing multiple copies of the sitter’s face and folding them into beautiful origami structures. Eventually, these are placed over the original photo and replicated on film. The results are captivating – if only slightly disquieting – otherworldly portraits that certainly invite you to look twice. In fact, already last year Alma toyed with the idea of turning her award-winning photo project into a pop-up book to help visualise her origami designs in actual 3D. ‘I thought it was a shame that the viewer only got to see the images as flattened origami structures,’ she wondered. So with the help of the creatives behind Stanley James Press, she produced …

Melanie Gilligan: The Common Sense

‘Technologies change us – our attitudes, our behavior, and our bodies’, Melanie Gilligan observes with downright honesty. How new media and technology takes our daily lives into a stranglehold – with all its good and bad implications – has always been something that fascinated me. Are we still in control or are we turning into a meaningless, remote-controlled mass? Who are we or pretending to be behind an invisible mask? What does self-fulfilment and social interaction mean in our day and age? The versatile mixed-media Canadian artist, who works with video, performance, text, installation and music, incessantly asks said questions as part of her creative projects. Similar to previous works ‘Crisis in the credit system’ (2008) and ‘Popular Unrest’ (2010), Gilligan’s futuristic multi-episode drama series ‘The Common Sense’ delves into the effects of political and economical struggle on the individual and the collective as well as people’s ultra-dependence on technology. The experimental narrative of Phase 1 introduces us to a future technology called The Patch, a sort of prosthesis which makes it possible to directly experience the physical sensations and feelings …

Illustrated film goodness: Delve Weekly

One of my favourite mags and absolute movie-go-to source undisputedly is Little White Lies. Well-informed writing, fabulous reviews, sleek design and each issue accompanied by a beautifully illustrated cover for the next exciting, upcoming film release. If only they’d release an issue more often than just every two months. Maybe I’m just being greedy here, but in the meantime, a cool newsletter service luckily dropped in my lap that comes in with a fresh idea to celebrate film week-by-week. Probably still flying a bit under the radar of many, Delve Weekly is the brainchild of London-based creative agency Human After All (who co-founded Little White Lies, btw) and recommends one new film that’s most worth watching at the cinema, bite-sized to our inboxes every Friday. And aside from a well-rounded review by the likes of Peter Bradshaw or Karen Krizanovich and a bunch of intriguing links that compliment the weekly feature, delve also offers a pretty tasty treat for design lovers like me: Alternative poster designs. Once the panel of critics decides on a feature they deem unmissable, the studio bucks up and tracks down just the …

Spot On: Chris Delorenzo

Sometimes it doesn’t take more than a few simple line drawings, striking patterns and elaborate geometry to create something incredibly expressive and graphic designer Chris Delorenzo certainly has the artworks to prove it. Playful, witty and fueled by his love for literature, poetry and cinema, his practice is all about crafting a visual narrative that invites the observer into a different reality or questions the very one we live in. Once an art director for Saatchi & Saatchi in NYC, the Massachusetts-native works as an in-house design weapon for clothing brand ‘Johnny Cupcakes’, juggles with brand design, logo, typography and editorial work and yet finds time to chase some pretty cool personal projects. If anything, check out the Be Brave Podcast he co-produces, which features interviews with young people who made a name for themselves in the creative industries and has Chris’ quirky style written all over it. Oh and have a look at his ongoing ‘Nude with phone’-series, which is, well, pretty hot right now. @Instagram @Twitter @Dribbble