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Amos Chapple Documents Life In The Coldest Village On Earth

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It might be winter where you live, but the cold that you experience probably doesn’t compare to this. New Zealand-based photographer Amos Chapple went on a two-day journey from Yakutsk, the coldest major city on Earth to Oymyakon, the coldest village on Earth. Oymyakon’s lowest recorded temperature is -67.7°C (-90°F) in 1933 while the average for January is -50°C (-60°F). Despite the intense weather, people have forged homes and lives in these places, and Chapple captures them in an unfiltered, documentary-style way. Just looking at them will send chills up your spine.

Residents of this extreme climate adapted to these conditions with little indoor plumbing. Vehicles that are outside heated garages must keep running to avoid freezing. And, their subsistence is meat because the ground is too cold to grow crops.

Chapple gives us some idea of just what this cold felt like, and he tells Weather.com “I was wearing thin trousers when I first stepped outside into – 47 °C (-52°F). I remember feeling like the cold was physically gripping my legs, the other surprise was that occasionally my saliva would freeze into needles that would prick my lips.” And for him, the hardest part of the experience was not the cold, but that his camera’s focus would freeze into place! (via Bored Panda)

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Asja Jung’s Brutal Ballerinas: Footballers Dancing In A Forest Of Green

asja jung drawing

asja jung drawing

asja jung drawing

asja jung drawing

Taking her football player series and combining it with a product usually reserved for the masses, artist Asja Jung has found a clever, new way to market her work. She has created a limited 40 edition set of calendars featuring tightly drawn renditions of NFL players. Admittedly not a big football fan, Jung first became intrigued with these brutal ballerinas when she patroned a local sports bar in her Queens, NY neighborhood. Images in the following day’s papers of Mark Sanchez, Eli Manning and Geno Smith grabbed her attention and she started incorporating the stills into her narrative. Another series which she had been working on just prior to finding the players, entitled “Neighbors”, placed subjects in an elaborately detailed background similar to a dense, tropical forest. Her thoughtful rendering produced a positive/negative space offset by vibrant color. The figures in these, which have included chimpanzees and reptiles, acted as buffer points to highly imaginative designs. Jung proceeded to use the same aesthetic in staging her football drawings. The dramatic nature of sport provided a rich source of information and the players soon replaced the creatures in “Neighbors”. To arrive at a final draft, dozens of studies were made, showing countless variations of mid-air tackles, high catches, scrimmages and close up personals. The finished drawings feature a nice balance between unique draftsmanship and mainstream accessibility. To date, pieces have been shown in the VIP section of Jets Stadium, and The National Art Museum of Sport.

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Improve Your Sexting With NSFW Emojis

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If you’ve ever wanted to sext using regular emojis, you might’ve found this prospect difficult. Well, sexting in pictures got way easier thanks to the new Flirtmoji, a visual language designed to empower people of all sexualities to communicate their desires, concerns, and of course, flirtations. The often NSFW icons include anatomically accurate genitalia, whips, chains, fuzzy handcuffs, and even some sexually-suggestive fruit. There are also special, specific collections like BDSMS, Snow Bunny (holiday appropriate), and Safe Sext.

Flirtmoji was created by a group of designers and developers whose mission is to give people playful, inclusive, and functional sex emoji. In an interview with The Verge, artist Katy McCarthy explains: “I wanted the Flirtmoji to be sexy,” she said. “Even if it’s not my thing, necessarily … it’s someone else’s thing and it’s sexy to them.”

Regular emojis are criticized for their lack of diversity, and McCarthy and her friends were cognisant of that when designing. “My friends and I are not accurately represented in emoji,” she said, “and it’s frustrating. And particularly with sex, we felt that it was so crucial that everyone feel sexually represented.”

You won’t find these emojis in the app store. Instead, via their website, Flirtmoji has a selection of free emojis as well as themed collections for $.99 each. So, whether you’re an avid sexter or not, it’s worth checking out their icons simply from a design perspective. They show just how much can be said with relatively little visual information.

Nowadays, as more and more people express sexual desires through non-verbal, electronic communication, Flirtmoji is valuable. It’s a straight-forward, explicit, and fun way to have clear communication about this important topic. (Via Bustle and The Verge)

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Natural Stained Glass Windows: Bing Wright’s Captivating Images Of Sunsets In Mirrors

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New York artist Bing Wright has a clever way of creating something simple and visually striking. For his latest series Broken Mirror/Evening Skies, he has photographed various sunset scenes in shattered mirrors, resulting in beautiful, understated images akin to stained glass windows. The images are full of calming blues, glowing yellows, haunting greys and ferocious reds. In this way Wright really is a photographer painting with light.

While more abstract than some of his earlier works, the composition carries a narrative that enables the viewer to collectively experience the beauty of the sunsets the artist has captured, while facilitating an individual interpretation of the emotion they imbue. We are presented with pictorial images, fragmented and in disrepair – a reminder that everything beautiful is flawed and imperfect. Bing’s signature large format lends these images symmetry and exact composition, giving them a majestic quality. (Source)

Fascinated with the subtlety of changing weather patterns, landscapes and seasons, Wright is known for his poetic photographic series. His past work includes Greyscapes (very bleak, but not bland, views of nature’s tones of grey), Wet Glass (a close up series of droplets and drips on panes of glass), and Windows (a series that narrates the passing of time through the same one window).

Wright has gravitated slowly toward an aesthetic based around reflections, mirrors, silver tones, and foil. He has photographed silver bits on mirrors, mirrors on mirrors, and now simply has captured his surroundings in mirrors. But don’t let the simplicity undersell the elegance of this sunset series. The combination of a violently broken mirror and the tranquility reflected in the shards, has a surprisingly enchanting effect. The charm of these works lie in the juxtaposition between these two worlds.

(Via Design Crush)

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Pleasure In Ink: The Erotic Illustrations Of Apollonia Saintclair

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Apollonia Saintclair explores pleasure, intimacy, and sexual expressivity through erotic illustrations. From tangled hair, to parted lips, to the minute contours of the erogenous body, her masterful line work captures desire in detail. Her illustrations go far beyond titillating us in the conventional sense, however; with writhing tentacles and zippers embedded in flesh, many of her images are simultaneously arousing and unsettling. By conflating eroticism with elements of horror and the grotesque, she reminds us that sex and death are familiar lovers, and that desire so often involves a daring venture across boundaries into darkness and radical difference.

For Saintclair, the artistic process begins in her own erotic imagination. “I work compulsively,” she explains. “I depict stories that I myself find very arousing, and I have a strong need to cast my fantasies in a beautiful frame.” Most of her works emerge from images “ingested once and digested over time”; when they finally manifest themselves on a blank page, she infuses them with her own observations and desires. She strongly values graphic quality, treating each drawing as “one more step in a long apprenticeship” towards technical perfection. Her fastidious control of her medium makes her work intimately precise — and subsequently, highly provocative.

The ability to share and connect with others through her work is very important to Saintclair, and she has garnered an impressive following on Tumblr. “The enthusiastic response from an unexpected, unhoped audience made me suddenly realize that I was maybe doing something important [for] others,” she writes. “I’m very pleased to see that most fans — among them many women — have absolutely no doubts that what I do is an artistic approach of sexuality and not blank pornography.” Her art is an intriguing journey into desire, and all curious readers are encouraged to visit her page and check out the rest of the images after the jump.

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Innocence Lost: Probal Rashid’s Striking Profile Of Underage Workers In Bangladesh

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Documentary portrait photographer Probal Rashid captures the dark side of labor in his recent series Innocence Lost. Profiling the underage workforce in Bangladesh, his candid snaps focus on children who must earn what little money they can in order to provide for their families. The jobs range from brick-chipping, construction and refuse collecting, and are all low-paid jobs. The minimum age for employment is 14 years of age, but because a majority of the work is carried out in small factories, workshops and on the street, laws and guidelines are almost impossible to enforce. This means that some labor is even unpaid. Rashid explains more about the situation:

Children are paid less than adults, with many working up to twelve hours a day. Full-time work frequently prevents children from attending school. Long hours, low or no wages, poor food, isolation and hazards in the working environment can severely affect children’s physical and mental health. (Source)

The portraits of the children are simple, stark and striking images situated in their place of work. Surrounded by the objects they manufacture, you can get an accurate sense of just how long the children labor away for. All framed similarly, and as close ups, the hardships they experience are evident in their faces.

Rashid is a long time advocate of the people of Bangladesh, India, and Nepal. He captures the unspoken side of local life, spirituality and economy in those countries. His past series include Faces In Black Oxide (a further exploration into the workforce, this time in the iron oxide manufacturing industry); Life, Death and Salvation in Varanasi (about the pilgrimage to the Ganges); and Faces of Climate Survivors (portraits of some of the 154 million Bangladeshi who have been affected by natural disasters between 1990 and 2009).

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Andy Piedilato’s Visceral Paintings Of Shipwrecks Teeter On The Edge Of Abstraction

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Using abstract expressionism as muse, Brooklyn painter Andy Piedilato plays off visceral emotion. With unyielding imagination, he reaches a place between here and another, a type of painter’s purgatory, where ship wrecks float in brick shaped waves on huge panoramic canvases. Intertwined with vast metaphors, the ship motif was first inspired when a friend built his own boat. The idea stayed with Piedilato and he started thinking about how a handmade vessel would fare at sea. Soon he was painting parts of boats with a technique he had already acquired using bricks. This completely changed his purely abstract canvases.  Paintings that were once finished in a day were now taking a month to complete. Before, the focus was not so much on a thing but a moment. This produced dozens of messy works which concentrated on sole mark making.

Today, his painstakingly tedious process uses a technique which paints around hand taped sections of canvas, allowing the tiny brick shapes to form into pictures. The results are flatter and less heavily impastoed. There’s a translucency present, especially in two recent works called “Red Sail” and “Sea Snail.” Both over 10′ wide, they exude a Japanese scroll effect making them slightly more watercolorish. This might account for the large amount of white in the background, thus opening up a new path for Piedilato. His present state of mind, is that of an artist who’s been asked to paint ‘smaller’ by potential dealers to encourage more salability. His refusal has allowed the paintings to get bigger and weirder, adding more aura to his increasing cult hero status.

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The Radical Portraiture Of I Must Be Dead Challenges Conventional Representations Of Identity

I Must Be Dead - Photography

I Must Be Dead - Photography

I Must Be Dead - Photography

I Must Be Dead - Photography
I Must Be Dead (Mckay Jaffe) is a Pheonix-based photographer who challenges conventional representations of identity through experimental portraiture. Rich with narrative and exploding with color, his works are consistently enrapturing and unsettling, in that they collide sensuality with horror, beauty with death. The faces of his bizarre models are intensely expressive, and usually obscured in some way, such as with paint, masks, and/or deep shadows. Breaching the line between fantasy and reality, his works are evocative yet alien, begging the question: “is this real?” Some of Jaffe’s work comes from the Burning Man festival, where he captures subjects befitting to his oeuvre: people actively inhabiting alternative identities and lifestyles.

On the I Must Be Dead Facebook page, Jaffe’s tongue-in-check biography reveals his counter-cultural approach to art and societal expectations. He claims that he has excelled in “unprofessional photography since 1845” and has won “5 Nobel peace prizes,” poking fun at conventional understandings of “success” and thereby marking his work as subversive. “Being human is a program,” Jaffe wrote to me, when I inquired about the social commentary present in his work. “You are designed to act and feel relative to the life you are given.”

For him, the “way out” of repressive structures is to test the possibilities of identity. Life is an evolving, experimental process; as Jaffe writes, “[You must] learn to learn, learn to grow, learn to accept, learn to see things from the other side, learn to laugh, learn to love, learn to live your life.” His photographic ventures into the realms of beauty, intensity, and absurdity are very much part of a learning process — one in which the limits of selfhood are explored in the development of an open self-understanding. (Via Beautiful.Bizarre)

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