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Scribble Artist Interview with Shetal Soni!

Profile-pic-1-300x221Scribble Town (ST): Oh my, all the things one can do! Shetal Soni moves from the sciences to the arts in the most graceful of ways. Her artwork and creative energy into the opening of Little Wing Shop gives so much inspiration for all.  It’s hard to say just a little about yourself, but let’s try!

Shetal Soni (SS): A little bit about me… well I’m someone who since childhood loved to draw and make things myself. I’m also a daydreamer and so although I’ve never formally studied arts or held a ‘proper job’ in that field (I’m officially a scientist :)) I have continued to feel the need to draw and make things in my spare time, believing that someday it can develop into something less private and a bigger part of my life.

ST: You daydream, but you also makes things come to life! What are you up to at the moment? I’m sure busy with Little Wing Shop!

SS: At the moment I’m trying NOT to read too much about Google Adwords and advertising!! 🙂 Sales and marketing are totally new to me so I’m trying learn about how to get my new Web shop seen. The designing and learning about production was an amazing journey, but there are parts of having a Business that are just not as ‘fun’ but nevertheless are important. I also have a day job, which has nothing to do with arts and crafts, but pays the bills and is stimulating the other half of my brain :).

IMG_8219-300x300ST: Who does the designing for Little Wing Shop?  There is a very particular look and the symmetry are so calming. I’d like to fall asleep to those designs, for sure! What inspires the designs?

SS: I started designing the patterns for textiles (initially without knowing they would be block-printed) while I was on maternity leave. Inspirations came from many things including parts of my old drawings, studying Indian tribal art drawings, Islamic geometric patterns and also from cellular biology! I have experience with Photoshop from work so I scanned my favourite ‘prints’ and started to play around with them, fascinated by the endless ways a single ‘form’ could be duplicated and arranged to create very different whole patterns. I did this for several months!! When you add colour the possiblities are endless! 🙂

ST: What is the production process like seeing that Little Wing Shop requires much creativity and attention from both Finland and India?

SS: Being a lover of arts and crafts I fell in love with the textiles (amongst other crafts) when visiting India as a child. The enormous variety of fabrics, colours & tones, weaves and means of decorating the fabrics was like nothing I had seen before. I have always been in awe. What I’m doing now is a teeny tiny part of that. Luckily the area where my grandma and family are from, Gujarat is still very rich in crafts and tribal arts so I was fortunate to be able to contact organisations from there and speak their language.

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ST:
Please let us know more about block printing.  It has such a beautiful outcome!

Block printing is one very common traditional method for decorating fabric in this part also and so was very familiar to me. It involves carving a pattern onto a wooden block to make a kind of ‘stamp’ and using this to print traditionally with vegetable dyes onto fabric. As the process is done by hand, by a person.. the prints can be applied according to the artists wishes and also used together with other blocks and colours. Traditionally the patterns can be very intricate, colourful and complex and the art is passed down generations. To learn you simply must go and ask to watch and learn from a ‘Master-printer’.

I have started with very simple designs in my 1st collection as I didn’t want to risk ‘making a mess’ 🙂 Working across continents was quite nerve-wrecking at times as I waited for the printer to send me the 1st photos of the trials or especially of the fully printed quilts or Duvets. What is great about block printing by hand is that even though the print is the same thing repeated, it looks slightly different every time the block is pressed down onto the fabric because the pressure can vary abit or one edge has abit more dye this time.. etc. This gives the whole print a much more alive and natural feeling than a machine printed pattern. Its the same in nature for example when looking at a field of grass or flowers, that’s why it feels nice to look at 🙂

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ST: Who encouraged you to be artistic when you were a child?  How did they encourage you?

SS: As a child I wasn’t particularly encouraged to draw, however my Father and Aunt were very skilled drawers so I first got interested when I saw them draw. I was quite shy and drawing and crafts was my way of having fun and expressing my self.  I made many toys out of cardboard boxes e.g. I fondly remember a puppet theatre and moving puppets for which I would make a play and perform for my family, forcing my little sister to ‘help’.

ST: Now I really want to try block printing! Any advice?

SS: Block printing can of course be tried by anyone!! That’s why its a craft that exists in many parts of the world and still continues. Try using a large potato cut in half (an adult needs to help with this) and cut a simple shape to make a stamp. Have a few plates of different coloured paints, dip your potato and stamp on paper/cloth. Try making different patterns using the same stamp…. there are no rules! e.g. a a triangle can be stamped in rows, or alternating (point up, then point-down), or even in concentric circles. Your imagination is the limit :). Have fun!

ST: Thank you, Shetal for sharing with us! Little Wing Shop is going to fly to great places!!

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Scribble Artist Interview with Kelly Blake!

Big Eyed Cat by Kelly Blake

Big Eyed Cat by Kelly Blake

Scribble Town (ST): We are so very happy to have the talented Kelly Blake with us! When I came across her artwork I could see how sensitive this person is to the world around us. From that, I just had to know more about her. What are you up to Kelly?

Kelly Blake (KB): Hi Scribble Town! I’m Kelly Blake and I live in the creative city of Bristol, United Kingdom. I’ve spent a long time studying throughout my life but I now feel I’m at the point where I have learned everything I felt necessary and I now feel confident enough to pursue the dream of producing my own art. I actually moved to London several years ago to complete a Masters in Production Design (movie art direction for anyone who is unsure) but after finishing and eventually moving back home I realised my true passion lies with illustration and creating my own individual artwork. So that’s what I’ve begun.

Normally when I produce some artwork there’s a reason why I’m producing it. The main factor behind all of my work is that I absolutely adore animals; it’s the common thread behind all art I create and I have a large array of artwork under my belt which (I hope) shows just how much I love all things fuzzy. At the moment I am focusing on publishing my very first adult colouring book called ‘Into the Wild’ and I’m working to raise the funds necessary to complete the project by producing my own Kickstarter campaign. If anyone is unsure of what Kickstarter is, it’s basically a crowd funding website where you launch a campaign and ask for the public to fund you. Imagine Dragon’s Den but will a billion different dragons! It’s going rather well at the moment so I’m doing everything possible to ensure I raise all the funds and so I’m able to complete the project successfully.

Please take a look at my Kickstarter campaign here so you can get a feel of the project.

ST: The concept is wonderful!  Is Into the Wild: A Coloring Book About Nature just for adults?  I think many people of all ages would enjoy seeing the pictures come to life.

KB: Thank you! I’ve initially created Into the Wild as a colouring book ideally for adults, but of course all ages are welcome to join in. The reason it’s for adults specifically is because the images are a little more detailed than perhaps some of the colouring books on the market today –even more detailed than most of the adult ones too! Each illustration is comprised of lots of different angular shapes/blocks and it’s only as you begin to colour each section that it reveals a hidden design within the image. Think of it as a slightly abstract and more challenging version of paint by numbers, but with the freedom to choose your own colour coding. It’s rather quite complicated when you get down to it so perhaps it might become a little too confusing for the younger audience; but of course they’re completely welcome to have a go!

Surreal 'Goddess' Illustration by Kelly Blake

Surreal ‘Goddess’ Illustration by Kelly Blake

I originally came up with the idea because I know a lot of people who are very artistic but are not able to draw even the simple stick figures. I have received a lot of compliments for my artwork in the past (especially my abstract pieces) and it led me to think about creating something that enables other enthusiasts to produce something that they’re also proud of without feeling like they’re lacking the talent to do so. It’s also been a proven fact that adult colouring books are being used as a way to de-stress and calm your mind so why not hit two birds with one stone!

ST: That is so thoughtful of you to create something that includes all ages! When and how did you start illustrating and drawing?  Is there a piece of art that always inspires you to create?

KB: When I think back to when I actually began drawing I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t being creative. I’ll always remember at my earliest of ages in Primary School one of my paintings was framed and featured on the wall inside reception as an example of a ‘good piece of art’. Of course, when I look back at it now all I can see are the dodgy eyes and weird shape of Henry VIII’s head, but I feel like I wouldn’t have come so far without all the support and positivity of the people around me. It’s the constant reassurance of ‘that’s great’ or ‘wow!’ that really drives me to produce more and more art and to get better and better. Granted, there’s always a few pieces that make people think ‘hmm, how odd’ but as long as I create something that I feel I’m proud of, then that’s what pushes me to continue with my work. Who cares if 90% of the population dislike it, what’s important is that the other 10% can appreciate it.

Eagle Woodcut by Kelly Blake

Eagle Woodcut by Kelly Blake

There will always come a time when I think to myself ‘I want to do an illustration!’ and the ideas just start flowing, but for those times when I can’t get myself into the mood or I can’t feel any inspiration coming then I start to check out illustrations online to get some creativity flowing. Even things such as typing phrases or keywords into google can help immensely. It’s amazing how much variety of different artwork there is out there and it’s surprising how much inspiration you can get from looking at other people’s work. Pieces that I personally love to flick through include modern and quirky works by artists such as Michael Godard and Fabio Napoleoni, but someone who I look up to as a huge inspiration for my work itself is the work by Canadian artist Nicholas Di Genova. I love the way he mixes processes such as freehand illustration and digitally enhanced methods to create something rather surreal and unique; but very, very special. It’s him who’s helped me develop a signature style myself and I do feel that a lot of my work has a thread of ‘Nicholas’ running through it.

Big Eyed Lemur by Kelly Blake

Big Eyed Lemur by Kelly Blake

ST: What is the artistic process of your paintings?  For example, how did your Kinderschema series come about? Do you usually sketch first your idea?

KB: My Kinderschema Collection was originally inspired from an article which I read about cats. It basically went on to say that the reason we find cats big eyes and overly big features so adorable is because of what is genetically programmed into our heads at birth. This led me to research into the science of why the human brain naturally reacts to these traits and I came across a German term called Kinderschema. Kinderschema defines the 5 basic traits that lead us to believe an animal is adorable and these can include; a large head, a large forehead, large eyes, rounded cheeks, and soft body surfaces.  I then decided I wanted to explore some of these factors in my own work and I created an art collection of digital paintings showing us just how much we love all things cute.

When I have a rough idea in my mind of the art I want to produce, I normally go about creating a really quick drawing trying to communicate what’s inside my head. Sometimes this will turn out to be a really crude or basic sketch but I can normally see if the idea is going to work on paper. I’ll also look online and check out other artist’s work to see if this takes me into a different or more creative direction to ensure my idea will definitely look good on the page. I have found that with the majority of my illustrative art, I tend to keep working on a piece until I am 100% happy with it. My motto normally states, “the more ink on the page, the better” but there’s still a fine line between finishing and overworking a piece of art.

Lion Woodcut by Kelly Blake

Lion Woodcut by Kelly Blake

ST: What mediums and techniques do you work with?  Is there a method that speaks to you more than the others?  Why do you think that is?

KB: It’s funny because throughout all my growing years I’ve never been able to pinpoint exactly which field of the creative world I wanted to merge into. This means I’ve studied everything ranging from photography to sculpture, and illustration to video editing and I’ve spent a very, very long time working hard to develop some extremely valuable skills. Due to engaging fully in many of these different fields I now feel that I can make a strong decision as to which route to progress into further. This has meant that my artwork created in the past includes a huge range of different styles but I believe this does make me stronger as an artist. It means I’m capable of merging materials and thinking outside the box. If in the future I decide to create a half illustration-half sculpture, then I know that I require the necessary skills to do so. This means that despite my love for illustrative art, I’m not tied down to producing everything in 2D.

For example, I have recently finished a collection of woodcut prints which involve intricately cutting away small sections from a wooden block. This block is then rolled with ink and printed onto a paper surface. This gives a beautifully rustic alternative to simply using paint brushed onto paper.  This method contrasts nicely to the hand drawn illustrations from some of my previous collections, or to the bold look of the lighting installations that I have formerly produced from recycled materials.

At the moment I am concentrating purely on producing this range of surrealist animal illustrations to publish into my first adult colouring book; but I love that if I choose to, I am able to stop and produce something completely different at any given time. How I feel is that if you don’t have to tie yourself down, then why do it.

ST: When you are not creating, what do you like to do?

Big Eyed Owl by Kelly Blake

Big Eyed Owl by Kelly Blake

KB: Well, it’s actually funny that you ask this because I was thinking about this myself the other day. I’m currently working from my own studio at home and so I find myself working on projects throughout the majority of each day; quite often from morning through to late into the evening. I’m very dedicated to my artwork and it’s lucky that I really love what I do otherwise I don’t think I could stay so dedicated to working this hard. All I strive for is being able to maintain a well-balanced and happy life whilst spending a career doing what I love. When I actually do decide to take time off I quite like to get away from home and stay somewhere peaceful as it gives me an excuse to stop working and to clear my head. I normally spend a few days down at the sea or in the countryside with good company, and I find the calm atmosphere refreshes myself and sets me back up for busy days when I return back home. Also, archery, who doesn’t love a bit of archery? I fancy myself the Katniss Everdeen of The Hunger Games when nobody is looking!

ST: From a person who seems to appreciate their surroundings, I wonder who encouraged you to be artistic when you were a child?  Do you think being raised in the creative town of Bristol had an effect on you?

Cat Woodcut by Kelly Blake

Cat Woodcut by Kelly Blake

KB: To be honest, whilst growing up I’ve always considered myself a bit of a nerd. While there’s nothing wrong with being a nerd, it meant I perhaps didn’t get out as much as I should. Instead, I spent a lot of time studying and working hard throughout school and I always made sure I put everything into getting my grades as high as possible. Whilst this is obviously extremely important, it does mean I probably didn’t get as much creative influence from the city as I should have. Bristol is known as a hugely influential artistic city and I live amongst some huge pioneers of the art world. This means I was very self-dependant whilst studying and I would love to say that a certain someone was the reason for me producing art today but I don’t believe anyone really was. Sure, I had people who supported me and pushed me along but I feel confident in saying that I was the one in the driving seat of my own artistic career and hopefully this will continue for a long, long time.

ST: Any tips, advice, or ways of encouraging our scribblers? 

KB: My greatest piece of advice would be to create art that YOU love and do it for yourself and for nobody else. There’s been quite a few times in my life that I’ve produced something that the masses don’t like but the minority do. I could have succumbed to produce what most people out there would deem as ‘good art’ but then what’s the point in creating it if it’s not for yourself; then you become one of those people who have their passion turned into a chore and may become quite resentful. If I were given a penny each time someone called my work too-weird, odd, or simply had a lack of faith that it would be well received then I’d have a pretty full bank account by now. Don’t ever let someone tell you that something isn’t good enough because simply put, art is perspective and if you feel that something is to be proud of, then wave that proudness-flag up high and display your work for others to see! I guarantee you there are people out there who will absolutely adore it. Don’t give up and show those people just how creatively talented you are. 

If you wanted to check out some of my work that’s available on the market at the moment, please take a look at my website here at: dustlesssoul.wix.com/dustlesssoul

You can also purchase any artwork from my Etsy shop at: www.etsy.com/uk/shop/DustlessSoulCreation

ST: Thank you, Kelly, for sharing so much valuable creative information with us! I’m sure your Kickstarter campaign will go great and your artwork will continue to inspire us!

Wolf Woodcut by Kelly Blake

Wolf Woodcut by Kelly Blake

Scribble Artist Interview with Pieter Van Eenoge!

Scribble Town (ST): Oh the colors! Oh the design! How beautiful, charming, and exquisite they can be! I’m of course talking about Pieter Van Eenoge’s work!  We are lucky to catch up with him as he is busy illustrating and creating visual images for our eyes to play with.  Pieter, how do you spend your days and can you give us a sneak peak on what you are up to these days?

'Joris Jan Baas' - poetry poster

‘Joris Jan Baas’ – poetry poster

Pieter Van Eenoge (PVE): Hi, I’m Pieter, an illustrator living in Bruges, Belgium. I spend my days painting for magazines, newspapers, ad agencies, corporations and publishing houses, renovating our 80 year old house and playing with my wife, two sons and two cats.

Right now I’m working on the cover of the spring issue of Dutch Weekly Vrij Nederland and a new picture book that hopefully will be ready by the end of the year.

ST: Your illustrations are wonderful!  In your portfolio I see a combination of personal, illustration, and editorial work.  With your personal work, where do you come up with your images for your illustrations?

PVE: I keep a little notebook where I write down ideas and possible titles and draw some quick sketches. Or I use a rejected idea for a commission that I thought was better than the final illustration. Most of the things that inspire come from everyday life, images I see around me, graphic design, art and artist behavior, masks and costumes and opposites like good/evil, darkness/light, beauty/ugliness,…

Antverpia, acrylic on paper, 2013

Antverpia, acrylic on paper,
2013

ST: Any themes you are fascinated with?  For example, what is your Antverpia painting about?  Maybe it has something to do with Antwerp?

PVE: For the Antverpia painting I had the idea of making graphic combinations with the ghost Sus Antigoon, a famous Flemish comic character, and a woman in burqa. They both share the same visual characteristics and I thought they would team up perfectly. But there is also a second layer where I criticize the growth of right wing politics in the city of Antwerp where there is a large muslim population. Trying to live together is the only solution and the efforts should come from both sides. Antverpia is also the name of Sus Antigoon’s ship.
alkj
'Will play for pay' - self promo poster

‘Will play for pay’ – self promo poster

ST: How does it go when you are given an editorial job?  For example, in your painting Fox Hunt I can imagine that it had to do with horses and hunting. What is the process like in working with the client?  Does it help to read what the article is about in order to come with an image?
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PVE: ‘Fox hunt’ was made to accompany a very funny article in Departures written by Jane and Michael Stern about Michael’s recent passion for fox hunting in Connecticut. I was completely free in what to paint, but it obviously had to depict people on horses and dogs chasing a fox. But apparently fox hunting is more about presence, posture and poshness than actually catching the fox itself, so I left the latter out of the painting. I focused merely on showing the speed and elegance of the ritual.

Reading the article isn’t always necessary, but sometimes when it’s about very abstract issues like finance and economics it can be rather helpful.
alkj

ST: You are from Bruge, but grew up in Cologne and now are back home.  Both places are absolutely beautiful and very well know for their architecture and the art!  How have these historical places influenced your artwork?  Is there a lively arts communities in these places?

Bruges city game

Bruges city game

PVE: I lived in Cologne until I was 14, so I can’t say it had an influence on my work. I don’t even remember it as a beautiful city, but I guess that has more to do with the interests of a teenager 😉

Bruges on the other hand is very attractive and an ideal environment to live in (although I live just outside the city walls). It is rather small and easy going and that is something I need for my ease of mind. Yes, there is art on every corner of the street and the few museums are packed with masterpieces from the Flemish Primitives to the Flemish Expressionist. There are a few elements that unconsciously leak into my illustrations like color and shape, but I can trace those influences back to other illustrators I like, so I think it has to do more with taste than influence.
alkj
ST: The book of Illustrated Dreams looks wonderful!  Please let us know more about this project.  Do you illustrate people’s dreams?
alkj

PVE: The book of illustrated dreams is an ongoing project by Mexican artist Roger Omar, where he asks illustrators from around the world to illustrate the dreams of children. There is a Flickr page with all the contributions: https://www.flickr.com/photos/rogeromar/sets/1835379/
alkj

'When we pollute the ocean, we pollute ourselves' - ad campaign for Surfrider Foundation

‘When we pollute the ocean, we pollute ourselves’ – ad campaign for Surfrider Foundation

ST: That’s a great idea!  What is the last dream you remember?

alkj
PVE:
Last night I dreamed about a school with an Olympic sized swimming pool on top and students celebrating the last 100 days of the school year. And everybody was taller than me. Do you have any idea what this could mean? 😉
 alkj

ST: Oh wow!  Perhaps your dream is projecting one of your son’s feeling about the school year coming to an end.  Soon summer vacation start.  Or maybe you want to go back to school.  Only you are the master of your dream, Pieter!When you are not drawing or creating, what do you like to do?
alkj

PVE: Go for a run with my wife, watch a movie, read comics and look at art, do some carpentry. And this year, yes, it has to be this year, I’m going to finish that shed in the garden so I can start playing the drums again.

alkj
ST:
 How encouraged you to be artistic when you were a child?  Did you ever think you would become an illustrator?
 alkj
PVE: Probably like most artists I was always the one who could draw best as a child. But that doesn’t make you an illustrator, I didn’t even know that it existed. So I studied graphic design instead. It was only in art school when I discovered the work of my teacher Ever Meulen that I decided to become an illustrator one day. After graduation I worked as a graphic designer for a few years and became a full time freelancer in 2003.
alkj

ST: The teachers we have always make such a huge impact on us.  Which artists inspire you to create?

 alkj
PVE: I waste too much time on blogs so the things I see there definitely influenced my work in the last years. I’m a big fan of great painters like Matisse, Van Dongen and Hockney but recently I fell in love with a lot of Scandinavian artists like Kustaa Saksi and MVM. They make completely different things than I do and that pushes me to evaluate my work and try new ways of painting. The changes are, like a child growing up, hardly notable and that’s the way it should be.
 alkj
ST: It’s the little things that count.  Any tips for us, Scribblers?
alkj
PVE:
– When it comes to art, as a kid, never question yourself. As a grown up, always question yourself.
– There are no ugly colors, only ugly combinations
– If you see something good, keep your eyes open. If you can’t say anything good, keep your mouth shut.
 alkj
ST: Thank you Pieter for all your positivity and insight!  Now we go back to drawing 🙂  Check out Pieter’s website for more inspiration at http://www.pietervaneenoge.be.
'I can't work like this!' - cover for Das ZEITmagazin design issue

‘I can’t work like this!’ – cover for Das ZEITmagazin design issue

A Lee Hodges Activity!

Make some characters from old toilet rolls, give each roll a white coat base first and then sketch out the shape, then fill it in with colour, this could be acrylic or poster paint. They could be animals or maybe a group of characters from a circus (imagine an acrobat troupe all on top of each other) or a jazz band. I’m going to make a Mariachi band!

Lee Hodges is full of amazing ideas!  Check out his website at http://www.leeho.co.uk!

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Published by Andi Thea, on April 5th, 2015 at 9:06 am. Filled under: Arts & Crafts,classroom,Collage,Design,Drawing,Featured,Illustration,kids,Music Tags: , , , , , , , No Comments

Scribble Artist Interview with Lee Hodges!

Goulash Disko festival - This was for a festival in Croatia. The brief was pirates, donkeys and tropical feel…This also led to an album cover of the same image, I have it on my shelf!

Goulash Disko festival – This was for a festival in Croatia. The brief was pirates, donkeys and tropical feel…This also led to an album cover of the same image, I have it on my shelf!

Scribble Town (ST): Here we have a beautiful collection of splashes of colors that speak to you in all sorts of sounds and languages! Lee Hodges knows how to make images fun and lively! He is an illustrator/artist, and as he so eloquently puts it is “based in the temperate climes of south west Uk.” Let’s see what he is up to these days.

Lee Hodges (LH):  I’m luckily very busy at the moment (so I hope it lasts!), I have been working at creating a series of posters for kids activities for the RHS gardens, a few editorials too. I have been creating a lot of gig posters for music nights (including my own) and album covers, plus some really big jobs which I can’t tell you about right now…just keep looking…all in all I absolutely love it.

ST: Nice!  Well, you are keeping me on my toes with all the good stuff that you are making!  Your illustrations are wonderful.  Your posters alone make me want to go to the events!  What’s the concept development process like for you when designing posters for these places?

Panama Cardoon - Hasta La Wiggle An album front cover for Panama Cardoon, the music is very latin, tropical feeling, so I went for a Jaguar roaring, coming out of the jungle!

Panama Cardoon – Hasta La Wiggle
An album front cover for Panama Cardoon, the music is very latin, tropical feeling, so I went for a Jaguar roaring, coming out of the jungle!

LH: Thanks, that’s very kind. It’s often the title or subject matter that gives me the ideas, for my own gigs I create my own title or subject matter, which is great fun. For other peoples gigs they usually have a subject and title which then inspires the imagery. For the Spring party poster that was inspired by the Jamaican ghosts called ‘Duppies’ and a particular editorial job I did recently about them, so I thought I’d channel the imagery and ideas into the Spring Party, which has a Tropical theme. I usually chuck on some great Tropical tunes to get in the mood as well!

ST: Ah that makes perfect sense- take inspiration from words to images and vice versa.  When designing your illustrations do you first sketch in pencil?  What is your artistic process?

LH: Yea, I generally squiggle in pencil and develop them from there, adding in colour as I go along, sometimes if the idea is really clear I just jump in and create a finished piece without sketching!

ST: Just go with your gut! Your images have a special feeling to them- like I want to touch them and I’ll find paint all over my hands!  What mediums do you create in?

Mexican-Night-of-the-dead-ball-2014

Day of the Dead Poster – This was for one of my own big nights which we do every year, this idea was to capture the music and feel of the festival and the night.

LH: Funnily enough, it’s predominantly digital, my aim however is too make it look as un-digital as possible, but I use a drawing tablet and try to create a screen – printed, warm feel to my images, that have a fun, vibrant edge to them. I am working more and more at applying these techniques out of the digital realm however, which is how I started.

ST: How did you get started with illustrating?  Was this what you had always set out to do?  So curious about your path!

LH: I have always drawn and been very creative, it was and is my first love. Being an artist is right at the very core of who I am, it’s just a question of channeling all that creativity in the right direction. I have been illustrating for the last few years but it’s only recently that I have decided to give it all of my focus and I’m loving it. I am a very curious person so I have tried and experimented with many different mediums over the years, including film design/animation. It’s important to try new things and experiment with your work, by doing that you are able to apply something unique to your work.

ST: So lovely to hear that art is your first love.  You two belong together!  Who are some artists that inspire you?  What about them do you like?

LH: I like lots of different artists for different reasons…I have always loved Picasso for his versatility and sheer output of images! I love street art, particularly Os Gemeos, when I was in Argentina and Chile, most of the pictures I took were of street art! I often go through phases of liking different artists or something I see of theirs jumps out at me and inspires me, I really like Eduardo Munoz Bachs the Cuban poster artist at the moment.

The-Bellman

The Bellman – This is one of my images from the Hunting of the Snark. I have tried to make this fun, colourful and intriguing…It is illustrating the line – “The Bellman himself they all praised to the skies – Such a carriage, such ease and such grace!
Such solemnity, too! One could see he was wise,
The moment one looked in his face! ”

ST: When you are not drawing or creating, what do you like to do?  Any games you like to play?

LH: I like to take my imagination on long walks! Generally being anywhere near the sea, up and around the wilds of the South west, I love the raw energy of the coastline especially Cornwall, which is where I am from.
I love watching films too, weird and wonderful films, short ones, long ones. I also run a club/arts night which entails making props for the gigs, crazy interactive inventions and most importantly DJ-ing, I Dj quite a lot and run a Radio show every two weeks.

ST: I can hear the music in your illustrations too!  Who encouraged you to be artistic when you were a child?

LH: Well, no-one really gave me direct encouragement, it was just something I did, loved and kept at, supported by words of encouragement when I had shown my work to my parents.

ST: Well, now you have a whole fan club supporting you! Scribble Town and beyond :).  How is your project of illustrating Hunting the Snark coming along?  You are right- Tove Jansson’s version is great!  What are you hoping to bring into your pictures?

The Jub Jub Bird - Another one of my ‘Hunting of the Snark’ images, this is the Jub Jub bird. This is the line from the book - “As to temper the Jubjub’s a desperate bird, Since it lives in perpetual passion:Its taste in costume is entirely absurd—It is ages ahead of the fashion:

The Jub Jub Bird – Another one of my ‘Hunting of the Snark’ images, this is the Jub Jub bird. This is the line from the book – “As to temper the Jubjub’s a desperate bird, Since it lives in perpetual passion:Its taste in costume is entirely absurd—It is ages ahead of the fashion:

LH: It’s a great and crazily surreal book, it’s almost an artists dream to illustrate! It’s a little on hold at the moment as I have been busy with other work, being a personal project it has been put to the back for a bit. I’m hoping that I am bringing  my own interpretation to it, imagining it with a colourful south american twist, almost like lost explorers discovering a strange land….

ST: I’m looking forward to seeing that in the future!  For now, any last minute tips for our Scribblers?

LH: Tips – Experiment, play – make a mess! Use your sketchbook as a scrapbook too, fill it with colour, ideas. I love to listen to music when I work, it really helps you get into the mood! Think out of the box…!

ST: Will do! The mess in on. Everybody, have a look at Lee Hodges website at http://www.leeho.co.uk.  Thanks so much Lee!

Tropical Pressure festival - A poster for a Tropical music festival in Cornwall. All hand written type, as a lot of my work is, it adds a personal touch and holds the image together. I like to think of the type as an image too, letters that bounce and jump around in the image.

Tropical Pressure festival – A poster for a Tropical music festival in Cornwall. All hand written type, as a lot of my work is, it adds a personal touch and holds the image together. I like to think of the type as an image too, letters that bounce and jump around in the image.

Scribble Artist Interview with Kenneth Michael Zeran!

"Abstr Action"  Acrylic Paint on Canvas  48 in x 48 in  121.92 cm x 121.92 cm  1980

“Abstr Action” Acrylic Paint on Canvas, 48 in x 48 in,
121.92 cm x 121.92 cm, 1980

Scribble Town (ST): From one medium to another, Kenneth Michael Zeren is an artist that portrays an array of ideas and concepts. Always surprising and always thought provoking his works make you think of all the possibilities.  Ken says, “I am a creative person whose journey brought me to the realm of Fine Art.” Indeed he is!  Ken, what are you up to these days?

Kenneth Michael Zeran (KMZ): At the moment I am creating a glass work that is an element within a larger ongoing project (14 pieces) involving different mediums.

ST: Wow this sounds like a huge project! Your artwork ranges from painting to printmaking to new media. Is there one that you are more drawn to?  What is one of your favorite styles and why?

KMZ: I am more drawn to original painting because it is distinguished in our replicating digital world. I don’t have a favorite style because I am constantly evolving. Collectors want an artist to be defined- to use the same style. I have always felt that is boring. After you have done something it is done.

"Family Portrait"  Serigraph on American Etching Paper  Silkscreen Ink with Gold Medium  21 in x 50 in  53.34 cm x 127 cm  Offset Poster Edition Released for Bicentennial  1976

“Family Portrait”, Serigraph on American Etching Paper, Silkscreen Ink with Gold Medium, 21 in x 50 in,
53.34 cm x 127 cm, Offset Poster Edition Released for Bicentennial, 1976

ST: You’re right! We develop as persons along with our ideas, so working with different mediums seems so natural. How do you figure out which medium to use for your concept?

KMZ: Choice of medium is important because ‘it does the talking’. It is all about concept. If it is cerebral then representational control is the focus. If emotionally driven, then losing control to find it in the process.

ST: Since we are talking so much about evolutions I wonder what has been your artistic path.  What is the first memorable piece of art you have made?

"Twilight Zone Man"  Video Frame  1980

“Twilight Zone Man”, Video Frame, 1980

KMZ: My artistic path started in film production. While it was/is rewarding it is a medium that is quickly consumed. I am more interested in lasting permanence, as in Fine Art.

My first memorable piece of art was creating football uniforms with crayons on thin cardboard and covering with wax paper and using an iron to melt the crayon color.

ST: Even your first memory has you mixing mediums and combining techniques!

You have made portraits of important figures such as Salvador Dali and Andi Warhol.  What role do these artists have in your life?  How do you choose the people you would like to make a portrait of?

KMZ: Having spent time with these artists allowed me to take a ‘reading’. I experienced the natural essence of them. I was able to perceive things that have not been expressed in media accounts. Such experience has played a role in my life- call it authenticity. Knowledge of the core that led to new ways of expressing the human condition. I choose portrait subjects based upon social relevance and the result of an engagement of my own perceptions about what makes the individual function. If it is a commission, I process the subject in a very conceptual manner- looking for the edge. Whoever the subject, my interest is to place them in an unresolved state so the viewer keeps coming back.

"Oh Picasso!", Homage to Pablo Picasso, Serigraph on Strathmore Bristol Paper, Silkscreen Inks, 30 in x 40 in, 76.2 cm x 101.6 cm,  1974

“Oh Picasso!”, Homage to Pablo Picasso, Serigraph on Strathmore Bristol Paper, Silkscreen Inks, 30 in x 40 in, 76.2 cm x 101.6 cm, 1974

ST: When you were younger who encouraged you to be creative?  Also, what triggers your imagination?

KMZ: As a child, my brothers (2) and I were beneficiaries of our superlatively talented mother. She cared for and involved us in everything. I have always had an active imagination. Perhaps it was spending an important part of childhood handicapped and relying on imagination.

ST: When you are not drawing or creating, what do you like to do?

KMZ: I am always in a mode of interaction with the intent of ‘sparking’ living creatures.

ST: You are a sparker! I would say so too. What is something that you have recently seen that amazed or sparked you?

KMZ: Something I saw recently that was amazing was driving through central California in the middle of the day with the sun blotted out by dust storms severely limiting vision – brought about by drought -a visit to the ‘dust bowl’ of the 1930’s.

ST: You just described a very beautiful vision. I imagine the sky to be very shiny and sparkling from the flying sand.

Your painting are generally very abstract?  What are they about?

"Turning Point", 48 in x 60 in, Mixed Media on Canvas

“Turning Point”, 48 in x 60 in, Mixed Media on Canvas

KMZ: My paintings are physical and masculine with heroic pursuit. It’s a two way process. It’s communication. I make a move and the paint informs. It’s about the paint. (Impressionism was all about the paint itself).  Losing control to gain control. It is high wire and on a edge and you can lose it in an instant- it is intense.

ST: I feel that your paintings are so different from your recent “Turning Point”.  What prompted you to make this painting?

KMZ: “Turning Point” is about the subject of sports and, as such, requires ‘familiarity’. Sport is all about uniformity. My longtime friend LeRoy Neiman coined the ‘look’ of sports painting and I kept this is mind when creating “Turning Point” so the masses could relate. I did the painting because it is of a major subject in Seattle culture and history. The role of Fine Art is to permanently capture such moments. Of course, I live in the Seattle area.

ST: Your painting does capture that excitement and ecstatic energy that comes from winning!  I’m starting to get the feeling that you are a football fan because your first memorable artist moment was creating football uniforms. Any last golden pieces of advice for us Scribblers?

KMZ: My advice to ‘Scribbler Nation’ is trust yourself with the unique natural gifts only you have. Use them with the power of innocence. Use yourself!

ST: From ‘Scribbler Nation’ we give you a big Thank You, Ken! That’s beautiful advice! Scribblers, have a look at Ken’s website for more inspiration, http://www.kennethmichaelzeran.com.

"Dali!"  Serigraph on Arches Paper  Silkscreen Inks and Gold Metal Medium  22 in x 22 in  55.88 cm x 55.88 cm  1974 (Re-released in 2010)

“Dali!”, Serigraph on Arches Paper, Silkscreen Inks and Gold Metal Medium, 22 in x 22 in, 55.88 cm x 55.88 cm, 1974 (Re-released in 2010)

All about Ice Art!

Ice is an amazing medium used to create sculptures. Believe it or not ice sculptures have been around for a very long time. Although they are not common, ice sculpture’s elegant qualities make these pieces uniquely powerful. The first time they came to use was in the 1600’s in China. In this time, they would create lanterns made out of ice for dark winter nights. They would first fill buckets with water and would wait until the water was frozen. Next, they would pop the bucket shaped ice cube out of the bucket, dig a hole in the center of it, and put a candle in it. This became very popular in this time and people not only used these lanterns at night, but also used them as decorations in the home and would display them in carnivals.

Photograph by Kim Iverson – Courtesy Ice Alaska: World Ice Art Championships

Photograph by Kim Iverson – Courtesy Ice Alaska: World Ice Art Championships 2013.

The first monumental ice sculpture was created by Russians in 1740. It was commissioned by the Empress Anna and designed by Piotr Eropkin. Although there is no picture of it today, this ice “palace” was magnificent. It not only featured a palace made of ice blocks, but also an ice elephant which linked to pipes that sprayed water out of its trunk, ice cannons, and ice cannons balls. In 2000, a replica was created in the first International Sand and Ice festival at Saint Petersburg. It was made at 980 square feet and 21 feet tall. Here is a picture of the replica of Anna’s ice palace.

Festival of Ice Sculpture at Peter and Paul Fortress in St. Petersburg, Russia

Festival of Ice Sculpture at Peter and Paul Fortress in Saint Petersburg, Russia

Today much of the ice sculpting takes place in arctic areas, for example, Alaska. Sculptors prepare ideas all year in hopes of winning the World Ice Art Championships, which take place every March. It includes over 70 teams competing against each other from all over the world. The crowd gets into it as well with about 45,000 audience members cheering them on. This years WIAC begins February 23rd and lasts until March 29th. This event provides the competing sculptors with the largest natural ice blocks in the world! This gives them all a fair chance to bring their A game when sculpting their amazing masterpieces. Definitely put this event on your bucket list, it’s quite a site to see! Click here to see more pictures of the 2015 ice art pieces.

Published by Andi Thea, on March 10th, 2015 at 1:43 am. Filled under: adults,Design,Event,Featured,Uncategorized Tags: , , , , No Comments

Scribble Artist Interview with Nannona!

valo_boy_snorkel_nannnonaScribble Town (ST): What’s happening over there?  Oh it’s a Forest Party!  Let’s go there!  Life can be so adventurous especially through the eyes of Nani Brunini aka Nannona.  I’m ready to enter a world of bright colors, bright minds and big smiles!

Nani Brunini (NB): Hi, I’m Nani and I’m a professional doodler.

ST: Where are you located and what are you up to these days?

NB: I’ve been living in San Francisco since 2011. I’m originally from Brazil, but my husband and I have been abroad for about 12 years – Germany, United Kingdom, Finland and now the US.

Right now I’m working on my portfolio – mainly updating my website and social media. That’s the side of becoming an illustrator that I’m learning more about – if you want to stand out and get the cool jobs, you have to make sure your online presence is as good as your portfolio. It’s a lot of work, but still fun. Oh, and I also can’t go too long without drawing, so I’m always doodling and experimenting with new things – new pens, new styles, new themes, etc.

ST: I think your website it looking great!  Your illustrations are beautiful and whimsical! I love your play on words and image. For example, your illustration titled ‘FINGER FOOD – ice cream’ is made of fingers! It took me a second to see that those are nails, but when I did, I made a little chuckle : ). How do you come up with these word/image games? How did you think to draw fingers as ice cream?!

092_icecream_doodlers_nannona

NB: How I get to fingers as ice creams and running burgers, I guess it’s more of a matter of “why not?”. Why draw a house with a regular roof if I can put a gigantic flamingo hat over it?! That’s a lot more fun. Pens, pencils, brushes, cameras and etc are super powerful tools – you can do whatever you want with them. So because I have all that freedom, I like to stretch my sense of reality and play around with unexpected possibilities.

Now, about the names, they are really funny and several are my husband to blame. He’s the king of puns, so I always come to him when I need some clever wordplay.

ST:  That’s a great way to approach creativity.  Just ask ourselves, “Why not?”  How did you get started with illustrating? Who encouraged you?

NB: I just looove drawing! It’s something I often do when I want to relax or when I need to understand something. In school, for example, I made so many sketches for biology, geography and chemistry classes. I even drew some historical personalities to help me remember where they were from, why they were important, etc.

I actually decided to leave the corporate world and dedicate all my time to illustration rather recently. I studied Fine Arts a long time ago, but along the way I fell in love with design and human behaviour. I worked as design strategist for big corporations, thinking and presenting concepts for products that could be developed in 5 or 10 years. I only came back to drawing when I moved to the US – when I came here I had a “spouse visa”, which didn’t allow me to work. It was very difficult, but since I had a lot of time on my hands, I started to make drawings for my nephews and nieces in Brazil. I got my work permit a year later, but I couldn’t go back to my old life; I was once again addicted to my colorful pens!

forest_nannona

ST: One things leads to another and it seems that drawing will never leave your path.  What’s your process for creating these illustrations? What kinds of techniques do you work with?

NB: A lot of what I do is hand-drawn with pens – ink, gel, paint, chalk, calligraphy, Sharpies, etc. I find them easy and unfussy.

Most times I have no idea what the end result is going to look, or even what the drawing is going to be about. I usually start with something I want to experiment with – a new technique, a different pen – and then one shape leads to another.

In the case of “Finger Food“, for example, I was fascinated with interlaced objects at that time. The first doodle I made for that had actually nothing to do with fingers, nor food – it was some kind of psychedelic city being invaded by worm-like creatures; those later became some sort of interlaced soft serve ice cream, which then became an ice cream full of interlaced fingers and so on.

No matter how many plans I make beforehand, the drawing always end up changing, even if a little bit, when it’s on paper. It’s quite cool to see how it develops and what it becomes in the end.

ST: Everything is connected so why not intervene that in our drawings?  I can see that nature inspires you and gives you loads of ideas! Your Bizarro Fruit poster is testament to that. Please let us know a bit about this project. Mmm how do you think Witchfinger Grapes tastes like?

Print

NB: My goal with the Bizarro Series was to bring attention to nature’s weird, beautiful and unexpected diversity. I started it because I wanted my nephews and nieces to be more curious about what is out there. I want them to know that “C” is for “cats” and “cows”, but it’s also for “cassowaries”, “capybaras” and “cuttlefish”. I want them to ask questions and try new things.

During the making of the Bizarro Fruit poster, for example, I ended up trying some fruit that I had not seen before, like mangosteen, rambutans and horned melons; the latter by the way tasted a bit like a cross of a banana and a melon to me! I haven’t tried witchfinger grapes yet, but they certainly look delicious.

ST: Who are some artists you get inspiration from?

NB: I get ideas from a huge number of people and sources. Lately I’ve been fascinated with traditional Japanese illustration, some Brazilian graffiti artists and psychedelic advertising from the 60s. What a mix, right? 🙂

ST: Your Doodlebomb series is great! How do you choose your magazines to bomb? What are you hoping to say with them?

doodlebomb_nannona_snake1

NB: The doodlebombs originally started as lettering practice to me. I had a bunch of magazines that I didn’t know what to do with, so they became an inexpensive way for me to make mock-ups. I could of course do that with Photoshop or Illustrator, but I do prefer having my real-life pens and brushes.

The texts on those doodles come from all sources – sometimes it’s what I’m listening on TV or some lyrics in my head… I might make them more meaningful later, but so far, I’m more interested in seeing the letters as visual patterns.

ST: I guess the bombs can come from the explosion of ideas we get sometimes.  It really feels like that for me!  Any last tips on creativity? Can you give any advice on how one can express themselves or develop their ideas?

NB: To me, art is about making things intriguing and interesting; not necessarily beautiful or accurate. It’s completely irrelevant if what you do looks like the real thing or not; what matters is why and how you express your ideas. I had some teachers in art school that told me I couldn’t draw and I was silly enough to hear them. It took me 10 years to unlearn that.

I think the best advice I can give is to cultivate your curiosity, experiment a lot and challenge conventions. Go crazy and remember that everything is possible on paper!

ST: 1, 2, 3, go crazy with a pen, marker, colored pencil, crayon, anything you can find and color away!  Thanks Nannona for being such an inspiration!

018_Ballerina_nannona

 

 

 

Published by Andi Thea, on February 3rd, 2015 at 10:06 am. Filled under: adults,Design,Drawing,Featured,Illustration,Scribble Artist Interviews Tags: , , , , , , , , No Comments

Getting Started with Paper Mache!

 Papier Mache Sculptures by Shirley Hintz


Papier Mache Sculptures
by Shirley Hintz

Are you feeling crafty? Well, of course you are! Why not make something fun and easy that will leave you wanting to create more and more? The good ol’ Paper Mache technique allows you to build your own creation and develop any form or shape you can imagine! Starting in 1725, paper mache as a craft was first experimented in Europe. It began as a low-cost alternative to creating sculptures. It has developed successfully to this day and continues to be one of the most popular creative methods to explore.

In essence, the process is quite simple. First you need a pile of newspaper. You can form the inner piece, or frame of your paper mache object by simply folding a bunch of newspaper together and taping it to develop the shape you want. The frame can also be made of wood or chicken wire. From here you rip up newspaper into strips. Next you must coat your pre-built object with the paper mache paste. There are several different ways you can create this paste. The way in which most people make it is by mixing water and glue together. Another way is by mixing flour and water together. Either way your paper mache will still come together, so it’s really your choice whether you want to choose the glue or flour!

http://www.instructables.com/id/Anglerfish-mask/

http://www.instructables.com/id/Anglerfish-mask/

After your paste is stirred and ready to go, you then dip each piece of ripped newspaper into the paste. You then begin to place these pieces of wet newspaper onto your object one by one, filling up all the spaces and building your masterpiece. Although it can get a bit sticky, paper mache is always worth the mess! It can take a while for paper mache to dry. Best thing to do is to wait 24 hours and continue working on it the following day before adding anything extra to it. Once your paper mache dries, you can paint it the way you want!

Dan Reeder is an artist that takes paper mache to the next level.  He is a paper mache artist from Seattle, Washington. He is known as “Dan the Monster” for his exquisite work and has been creating these pieces for over four decades. He was given this name because of the article written about him in 1982. Without him knowing, his mother sent his work to the Seattle Post Intelligencer’s “People” section of the Seattle newspaper. From the newspaper many heard of his amazing work and were astonished by what he was able to come up with. Here is also a 360 view of his artwork in his own studio! Click the link and click again on ‘Auto Rotation’ on the bottom right hand corner.

Check out this video about one his great paper mache dragon trophies. Enjoy!

Published by Andi Thea, on January 29th, 2015 at 12:44 pm. Filled under: Arts & Crafts,Design,Paper Art,Uncategorized Tags: , , , No Comments

Scribble Artist Interview with Martina Miño!

Animals playing in the water

Animals playing in the water

Scribble Town (ST): Martina Miño, an artist from Quito, Ecuador, combines theory and the practice of art through her collages.  Her work challenges the viewer to create their own interpretation from her mix of images and text.

Martina, where are you located and what are you up to these days?

Martina Miño (MM): Currently I live in Helsinki, Finland. Moving away from Ecuador has given  me a lot of new inspiration and material to explore the media that I currently work with. At the moment I make physical and digital collage and writing. I feel very curious about where the limits lie between the meaning created by the word and the meaning created by the image. The juxtaposition of ideas and different media interest me because I can build meaning through contrast and through the close exploration of fragments.

ST: It’s from these juxtapositions and created cut together contexts that your collages are such good story instigators!  The titles seem to play a very important part in your artwork.  How do you play with text and image?

MM: The titles of the collages play a huge role for the building of sense of many of my projects. The presence of the title not only portrays the collages as narratives but also gives tools for the audience to access them. The use of both the word and the image allows me to explore the permanency of ideas through their immateriality. Through the collages I wish to reflect upon the randomness and awkwardness our reality is built on.  The projects may tell and inhabit recognizable stories and settings that we can explore in a new way through our own subjectivity.

The void in inside you.

The void in inside you.

ST: Your titles really set the stage for the image, but in the end, we perceive them so individually with our personal histories. From an image comes one thousand stories! How did you get started with creating collages?

MM: My involvement with collage has been part of a very long process of exploration. I have always felt attracted to writing and the thing I enjoy the most about it has been to create questions. I have always felt uncomfortable expressing definite truths or closed answers through my texts because for me truths are completely subjective and answers are in many cases temporary.  Many people use images to support the meaning of a text and its understanding, but I realized I wanted to do just the opposite. I wanted to create a void and an opening to portray narratives of uncertainty. I have a great passion for the universe of images as well and how our world works through their appropriation. We live overexposed to a huge amount of images that work as instigators and ask for a reaction. The interest I have had in creating the collages has probably started when I realized the power of the fragments and how could I create meaning through the juxtaposition of incomplete ideas.

ST: What’s your process for creating these collages?  Do you feel that the images you find inspire you or do you have a story you want to tell and then you seek the images you need to support that?  What prompted you to create “You Never Come Around Anymore”?

You never come around anymore

You never come around anymore

MM: The process of creating a collage normally  starts when I overexpose myself to a huge amount of images through the internet, magazines and through my own camera. In most situations I get initially inspired by an element I might have found in a particular picture that interests me. This can be a facial expression, a texture, or the feeling I get when I look at it. From that point on I start to think why do I feel this interest and how can I emphasize it. Inspiration comes from feelings and situations I can’t understand and through which I try to portray that state of confusion or strangeness. The characters of the collages come most of the time from my camera while the landscapes and surreal backgrounds are created with the help of the internet. In the cases of all the works the title is created in the end of the process, and its based on the general feeling I get of the finished image.

In the case of “You don’t come around anymore”, this collage was initially inspired by the background which is the moon. This setting was perfect to represent the sense of loneliness inside an unexplored feeling. Space portrays for me a fascinating but hostile and asphyxiating setting, where life and love are impossible, and death almost certain.

ICE: FLESH

ICE: FLESH

The building of ICE:FLESH was also very interesting for me because I guided this collage through the exploration of the sensuality of textures. This collage seeks to explore the physicality of sensations such as the carnality of love and the coldness hidden inside a flame of passion. Another project that opened new horizons for my work was “Rushing Somewhere, Going Nowhere” and “Ups..” Through these collages I used some important narratives from video-games. Even though everyone understands that the video-game reality is fictional I focused in certain behaviors that are replicated in our society such as the lightness with which some pull off the trigger as they press Enter in their computer keyboard.

ST: From 2D a 3 dimensional world comes to life! What tools does one need to start collaging?

MM: For me, and indispensable condition that has allowed me to explore the world of collage is to de-attach myself from the preconceptions of reality and accept the fact that our subjective realities are always in a transformative state. It is also important to believe in the value of imagination, most of the ideas that are created through imagination are not conceived in a rational way but many gives us amazing ideas  to express the way we appreciate life and the world. As I said before I work through physical and digital collage. The wonderful thing about physical collage is that it is born from waste, for example, the old magazines we don’t use, old books and newspapers. This wasted images and texts carry a historical weight of the contexts they used to belong in before and that makes them even more interesting for a new use.  In the case of digital collage my main tool is Photoshop. The feature that attracts me the most about digital collage is that it exists only in a virtual world which makes them accessible only through the use of technology. These are exposed to a virtual audience that is very unknown to me. This gives me the sensation of creating something in a reality I do not control, trust, or will ever understand completely.  The results achieved through physical and digital collage create very different results from each other, but a thing is very important for me to maintain in both of them is the feeling that each fragment comes from a different context and its relationship with the other elements is uncomfortable but existent.

Rushing Somewhere. Going nowhere.

Rushing Somewhere. Going nowhere.

ST: Here we have subjectivity again; one persons idea of garbage is gold for another.  The images you have found in the trash are now being used to create more stories.  I find comfort in that nothing is always something.  Your artwork proves that too.

Who are some artists you get inspiration from?

MM: I get inspiration from some collage artists, assemblage artists and photographers. Gabriele Beveridge and Wangechi Mutu are a great source of inspiration for me. I feel inspired by them because they have been able to make interesting statements about femininity and have transcended the bi-dimensionality of collage with the use of unexpected and interesting materials that linger through the poetics of the assemblage. In the future I would also like to  work with three dimensionality because it would give me the opportunity to have more contact with the physicality and real texture of objects. Another artist I get inspired by is Roger Ballen, through his white and black photographs he transmits “complex meanings through simple forms” which is something I would also like to attain through my work.

ST: I am sure you are full of creative tips. What are some of your secrets?

MM: Some tips for collage making!

Lagoon

Lagoon

Paper, scissors and glue is all you need to start collaging! These following tips can make your experience more enjoyable:

– I normally work with spray glue, because it doesn’t wrinkle the paper and gives you flexibility of movement of the pieces for a while until it dries. It is better to use this glue in the exterior due to its strong smell, or wear a mask during its use.
– Canson paper is a good option for doing collage, its texture is thick enough to resist the humidity of the glue.
– Collage is not only about cutting and pasting. Drawing and writing can also bring you interesting results.
– Organize the pieces in the paper without glue first and manipulate the pieces as little as you can, especially if you work with newspaper because its ink might spread.

Some tips on creativity an ideas!

– If you want to get inspired you can think of a story you would like to tell through your image!
– Sometimes it can be helpful to imagine one of you favourite fictional characters and build their world or explain their life through the images! This will introduce to another worlds and realities.
-You can also imagine your life in another country or another planet and build the landscape, create the animals, imagine weather etc.
-Trust you imagination, anything can be possible!

ST: Thank you, Martina! You have been a great inspiration for many! Please have a look at Martina’s blog to see more of her artwork at http://martinamino.wordpress.com. 

Gabriele Beveridge Untitled 2012 Magazine pages, glass, frame, spray paint 84 x 42 cm

Gabriele Beveridge
Untitled
2012
Magazine pages, glass, frame, spray paint
84 x 42 cm

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