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Dillon Utter Paints Gritty Portraits Of Individuals Often Overlooked

Dillon Utter, Painting

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URBAN DECAY

Dillon Utter, Painting

Based in New York, figurative artist Dillon Utter has a penchant for portraits. With a strong focus on urban decay and everyday encounters with others, Utter presents intimate portrayals of people we would otherwise look right past, such as tenants, workers, drifters, and the elderly.

Particularly influenced by his small hometown in upstate New York, Dillon uses real-life experiences as inspiration for his genuine—and often gritty—portrayals:

Binghamton’s rich history and urban decay create an ideal backdrop for my portraits. The city once flourished with industrialization and major manufacturers. Many of these industries are now in ruins and have left economic hardships for the area. I use my street photography as reference for my paintings. This allows me to capture people at a more intimate level, revealing more about them and myself.

While some of his portraits possess titles that reference the scene itself, such as The Corner, Dog Days, or Cold Afternoon on Court Street, others—like Lonely Child and Wounded—poignantly describe the individuals portrayed and focus entirely on their plight.

Unidealized and true-to-life, Dillon Utter’s portraits are unquestionably compelling and exceptionally intimate.

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Haley Jane Samuelson

Maybe it’s the compromising poses or the petite models but Haley Jane Samuelson’s beautiful photos remind me of Black Swan for some reason. Not sure if they’ve been published yet but  this series would make a great book or set of postcards.

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Bela Borsodi’s Balloon Caricatures Pose For The Camera In These Ridiculously Cute Portraits

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Bela Borsodi - balloons

Bela Borsodi - balloons

Bela Borsodi - balloons

Bela Borsodi is a prolific image maker. And not only does he make brightly colored, cartoonish images by taking photos of balloons wearing funny costumes. Since 1999 he has been taking photographs of still lifes full of humor, optical illusions, weird proportions, color play, and whimsical objects. His work may look like child’s play, but his clients have included Vogue Russia, Bloomingdales, H&M, Puma, Target, Hermes and Swarovski. His hilarious campaigns feature sunglasses casually draped on blocks of cheese, faces made out of folded clothes, outfits worn by invisible people and masked figures juggling shoes. The Austrian photographer says:

I love making things and putting things in an unusual context incorporating various visual languages coming from art and graphic design–eroticism is also a fascination of me that I love exploring. (Source)

Borsodi has a knack for turning the plainest things into something surreal and wonderful. By simply styling, or suggesting a few details, he can animate mundane objects into jovial caricatures. Add a wig to a balloon and it is no longer an inflated bit of latex, but now it is suddenly transformed into Marge Simpson. Or add a few brooches and faux fur to pink balloon, and we go from a child’s party to a drag show. Or another one: just fasten a tie, a belt, wrap on sunglasses and place a pile of string on a strangely shaped balloon, and we now see a boss trying to party on Casual Friday. Borsodi goes on:

Often when you only change the context of things you can find new meaning. Or you add something to an object or you take something away from it. Or you put it upside down. All this can change it – a glass put upside down loses all its original function and becomes just a “thing”. (Source)

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Thomas Allen’s Pulp Fiction Pop-Up Photographs

Always Fascinated by pop-up books, Thomas Allen displays an infallible talent for the creation of the illusion of three dimensions, using old pulp fiction books as the subjects for his sets.These books tattered covers and yellowed pages are not mere objects to display on a shelf, for the artist but a prodigious inventory of actors and scenes, just waiting to be directed.

Allen patiently cuts out the figures, freeing them from their two-dimensional state: the actors are then raised from the covers and come alive thanks to skillful use of lighting and the camera’s lens. Bent and positioned, the scripted drama is staged, bringing to life the stories written and not written in the books that act now as the stories stage.

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Skinner, A Graffiti Legend?

 

Painter of demons and all around good guy (and goofball) Skinner recently relaunched his website with literally hundreds of delicious and frighteningly good drawings, paintings, and illustrations. To celebrate the site launch Skinner also decided to make some hilarious videos talking smack, crossing out wack taggers, and telling ya’ll why he is the illest graffiti legend out there. Once you watch the full video after the jump you’ll be asking yourself “how come this guys not included in the Art In The Streets show at MOCA ?”

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A Letter from the Editor…

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Dear Beautiful/Decay Readers-

We’ve had some exciting news as of late- we’ve recently wrapped up Book 3, which was quite a task, compiling hundreds of reader submissions from around the globe. Book 1 has already sold out, and Book 2 is nearly there. This month, we also released our latest apparel line for Spring 2010 , of which many styles are already sold out. We’ve also watched our online readership more than triple in under a year. So, whether you are a B/D subscriber, B/D Apparel t-shirt wearer, or avid B/D blog reader, we’d like to thank you for your support of Beautiful/Decay!

We’d also like to take a minute to encourage you to subscribe to Beautiful/Decay. It’s one of the best ways to stay up to date with the creative world, for inspiration, and in return support us and the emerging artist community! By now, you’ve seen the quality, attention to detail & design that the new and improved B/D book has to offer. You know that every book in the limited edition series is lovingly hand-numbered, and stocked full of special artist giveaways and personal touches. From hand-drawn covers to signed silkscreen poster inserts, we strive to make each and every copy of Beautiful/Decay a unique, collectable art & design sourcebook.

You’ll also know by now that instead of cramming our pages full of advertising, we dedicate B/D entirely to the continued support of emerging artists.

So please- subscribe today. We rely on you, the subscriber, to support not just Beautiful/Decay, but the community of up-and-coming creatives from around the world!

Thanks for all your support- expect more surprises to come!

Sincerey,
Amir H. Fallah

Editor-In-Chief

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The Slicing Sun Light Sculptures Of James Nizam

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Artist James Nizam calls photographs documents of ‘light sculptures’.  For the series he captures the sun and manipulates it into various ‘structures’.  Using precise cuts into the exterior of the house, small mirrors mounted on ball joints, and studying the movement of the summer sun Nazam was able to capture these images.  A synthetic fog emphasizes the concentrated beams of light, making them almost palpable like floating fluorescent light bulbs.  See photos of Nizam preparing the house after the jump.

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Toyin Odutola

 

Toyin Odutola’s arresting drawings map every curve, line, and pore on the human body.

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