There is a cinematic quality to the work of the Canberra-based photographer Wouter Van de Voorde. Born in Belgium; Van de Voorde photographs the urban landscape and captures the mystery that exists within the surroundings of our everyday. His fragmented portraits of the world around him are steeped in atmosphere and they evoke a sense of emptiness and mystery.
Van de Voorde moved to Australia in 2008 and so he likes to view himself as a ‘photographer in exile’. He has become ‘the permanent tourist’ and in this role he captures a new world through his lens. Van de Voorde seems to be a photographer who meditates strongly on his surroundings, and it’s no surprise that with a background in painting his work carries a strong reflective nature in its quality. You can view more of his images online here.
Riccardo Guasco is an illustrator, painter and cartoonist who lives and works in the town of Casale Monferrato in the North-West of Italy. Guasco has worked in a number of fields over the years and is currently the professor of graphic design and computer science in his town. In the past he has worked as an Art Director for an advertising agency in Milan, as well as a cartoonist and illustrator for children’s books and numerous other media agencies and publishers.
Influenced by the likes of Picasso and Munari; Guasco has an amazing understanding of shape and form and I’m hugely drawn to the earthly tones in his work. His portfolio is brimming with a great variety of projects and I recommend you go check it out. Particularly make sure to look at the sketchbook section of his site which shows a terrific comic called ‘Due Ruote’ (Two Wheel), which he made back in 2007. Although in Italian, I spent a good long time gorging myself on Guasco’s amazing pen and ink work. It’s well worth checking out!
Over the last few weeks I’ve been listening to a lot of music from the label Shelflife Records. To be honest, I rarely go out of my way to listen to a particular label but Shelflife really seem to have an ear for great bands and the music which they put out is strongly inline with my own tastes in music. One could say that the labels main aim is to release records in the US from great foreign indie-pop groups and over the years they’ve put out music from the likes of The Radio Dept., Thieves Like Us and Acid House Kings.
In many ways this is all a kind of extended preamble to simply introduce you to a great song from indie-pop stalwarts Burning Hearts who hail from Finland. Released back in early 2009, the track Various Lives (above) comes from the bands debut album Aboa Sleeping. There’s something so effortless in the vocals in this song and yet I find it so enchanting and mesmerizing. Certainly there’s a touch of Stereolab about it and fans of the likes of Camera Obscura and The Magnetic Fields are bound to really like their sound. Much like a lot of the music from the Shelflife label there’s a gorgeous timelessness to what they do and, if you ask me, this kind of hazy indie-pop sounds just perfect at this time of year. You can check out more from Burning Hearts online here.
To tell the truth, I hadn’t seen too many images of the Bardenas until I stumbled upon these amazing photos of it by the Spanish architect and photographer Beatriz S. González Jiménez. The Bardenas is natural semi-desert in the southeast of the autonomous region of Navarre in Northern Spain.
This stunning landscape has been shaped over the years by erosion caused by water and wind, and González Jiménez captures the resulting canyons, plateaus and misshapen hills in all their beautiful forms and shapes. For me, the golden colors of the soil set against the saturated-blue of the sky look amazing, and Beatriz’s photos really capture the grandeur of these surroundings. You can find the complete set of photos online here.
Matthew The Horse is not a horse; he is in fact a regular man who lives in Leeds. Or, perhaps he’s not that regular of a man considering that he says that he’s a horse, but really who am I to nitpick when he draws such excellent work! I’m pretty much in love with everything in his portfolio and his work has such a great sense of fun and energy about it.
I love the picture of the fishermen above and I really like the way he uses the gentle color gradient in the background. His use of line and shape creates images that feel fresh and fun and there is something almost psychedelic in the way he draws these weird and wonderful characters. His images are at times quirky, often odd and sometime hilarious and they’re all the better for it. You can see more images online here.
Under the name of Hello Jenuine – Jen Collins draws, daydreams and drinks tea. She currently lives & works in Scotland where she illustrates, collaborates on projects and makes prints and zines.
I love the colors in her work and I particularly like the rough texture of them in her drawings. Her portfolio is filled with a variety of things and looking through it you’re bound to discover pictures of girls in knitwear and wonderful hand-drawn type. There’s also images of wild life, exciting adventures and many beautiful patterns. It’s an enticing world that she creates and one where I’d happily spend some time. Naturally enough, Jen also keeps an Etsy shop where you can buy all sorts of prints, postcards and zines. Check it out!
Ok, so about two months ago Toro y Moi released this really great video for the track How I Know and for some reason it went completely under my radar. The video features three guys who explore a haunted house in the middle of suburbia and it’s a hell of a lot of fun!
Directed by Jordan Kim; the video plays tribute to the goofy horror movies of the late 70s and early 80s and it also adds a healthy dose of Michael Jackson’s Thriller into the mix. Fans of cult horror films might also spot that Kim plays many nice homages to Nobuhiko Obayashi’s classic Hausu and this really adds to the crazy and fun nature of the video. The colors and lighting also really add to the vibe of the piece and they perfectly compliment the late 70’s synthesizer sound of Toro y Moi’s music. How I Know comes from the album Underneath the Pine, which I can imagine will easily be featured in Bobby’s list of Best Albums of the 2011 at the end of the year.
If Twitter has taught me anything it’s that designers love pizza. Every-other-day there seems to be a pizza party going on, or at the very least a ‘#pizza’ at the end of every deadline. When I saw that the guys at Tiny Showcase had collaborated with Jesse LeDoux and The Head Light Hotel in producing this crazy little pizza shop I couldn’t really pass up the chance of sharing it with you.
Called Famous Lou’s Pizza; the wooden model comes as a four-color screen print designed by Jesse LeDoux and has been laser-cut onto birch by Providence’s Head Light Hotel. It’s just a lot of fun and I really like the idea of combining screen-printing with wood. If you want to have your very own Lou’s Pizza you can pick up one from Tiny Showcase here.
North Carolina native Geoffrey Johnson has been working as a painter since 1995 after he completed a degree in Fine Art at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. There’s something very impressive about his work and his images carry a sense of reflection and solemnness.
Most of what he paints is done with an amazing monochromatic palette and I’m instantly drawn to his use of sepia tones (not to mention the striking pale blue of the top image). His silhouetted figures are shrouded in an air of mystery and the way he manages to paint large groups within the landscape of the city while still presenting a sense of melancholy only enforces the sense of mystery throughout his work. These paintings are both alluring and haunting and I’ve a great fondness for them. Johnson doesn’t have his own site but more work can seen online here.
How had I not known about the work of Scott Albrecht before? Scott is an artist and graphic designer currently working in Brooklyn. A few years ago he graduated from The Art Institute of Philadelphia and since then he has been making artwork for a number of exhibitions as well as creating some beautiful hand-drawn type. Words play a large role in his work and small phrases become moments for reflection and words become tangents for thought. His three-dimensional pieces are particularly striking and I absolutely love the way in which he uses wood throughout his work.
I’m really partial to Scott’s use of found materials; his old books, pieces of maps and discarded wood all add a beautiful texture that sits perfectly against the clean-cut nature of his work. Not only do these elements compliment his style but they also enrich his great ability with pattern, shape and color. Make sure to check out more of his work online by clicking here.