Having A Good Looking Website Makes A Difference For Artists

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We here at Beautiful/Decay see a lot of artist’s and designer’s websites and we know how important it is to have a great looking site. Making a good first impression is the difference between being featured on your favorite blog and getting your email chucked in the trash. That’s why we love Made With Color. Made With Color is an easy to use, affordable platform to build your website fast. You can try it free for 14 days, no credit card required, and you’ll be amazed at how quickly you can put your site together. You know you’ve been meaning to get around to building your site, and once you build it on Made With Color, you’ll wonder why you put it off for so long.

Try it today and get your mobile/tablet optimized site ready to share with your clients, fans, editors and collectors.

“The Dark Side of the Covers” Imagines The Other Side Of Famous Album Art

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Flickr user Harvezt imagines what the reverse side of iconic album covers would look like in their illustrative series, The Dark Side of the Covers. Taking famous works by Nirvana, David Bowie, The Beatles and more, the artist not only fills in the other half of well-known characters,  but creates entire worlds with a sinister-esque twist.

Harvezt’s additions to these albums make them more well-rounded and conceptually rich. Our new, second viewpoint enhances the story. On Dio’s cover for Dream Evil, we see the original image has a demon making the devil horn with his hands as he peers into a sleeping child’s bedroom. Harvezt’s reverse illustration reveals the the demon being cheered on by a crowd of supporters sporting their own horns.

With all of the thoughtful details that the artist put into these works, they pay homage to these influential covers. Today’s digital downloads don’t always place an emphasis on album artwork, and makes Harvezt’s series a tribute to a time when people purchased physical copies of their music. (Via Metal Injection)

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Jessy Lanza’s Smart Electro-Pop Filled Debut, Pull My Hair Back

Jessy Lanza performing at the Hollywood Palladium, April 1, 2014. Photo by Barry Belkin

Jessy Lanza performing at the Hollywood Palladium, April 1, 2014. Photo by Barry Belkin

Jessy Lanza has been quite busy lately. Not only has she just finished up a tour with Cut Copy, she’s about to embark on an even longer headlining tour of the US and Canada along with some festival appearances in Europe.

Still riding high from the great reviews she received from her fantastic debut album, Pull My Hair Back released late last year on Hyperdub, I was lucky enough to catch the Canadian singer perform last week at the Hollywood Palladium. Playing most of her new record, she entranced the early arrivals with her unique electro-R&B tinged sound that had the crowd swaying during her hypnotic set. Her beautiful, breathy voice matched with her catchy beats really strikes a nice balance that once you let in, you can’t help but to let it move you as the growing Cut Copy audience displayed during her set.

Jessy will be heading back on the road at the end of the month playing some Canadian dates, as well as some US dates before she heads to Europe. Any fans of electro-pop or R&B should make it a point to see her incredible live performance. Check out her video for Kathy Lee and grab tickets here for one of her upcoming shows.

 

Mark McCloud, The World’s Leading Collector Of LSD ‘Blotter’

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At 13 Mark Cloud tried acid in Santa Barbara, an experience that merited the epic summation: “I was blind, but then I could see.”

It wasn’t until then, around 1968, that acid imagery became popular and McCloud started collecting and cataloguing the many acid stamps he encountered.

“At first I was keeping them in the freezer, which was a problem because I kept eating them,” McCloud explained to VICE, “but then the Albert Hofmann acid came out, and then I thought, Fuck, I’m framing this. That’s when I realized, Hey, if I try to swallow this I’ll choke on the frame.”

Today, Mark McCloud is the world’s leading collector of “Blotter Art” (the fancy way of saying that he collects the small, stamp-like papers that used to transport acid, or LSD). McCloud’s collection, one that is bigger and more varied that those owned by the FBI and DEA, is now hanging in his Victorian home in San Francisco- a home turned museum that you should definitely visit!

Tristan Pigott’s Paintings Capture Social Awkwardness And The Male Gaze

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The painter Tristan Pigott heightens the drama of everyday awkward interactions by imagining the mundane in dreamlike ways; altering proportion and shape to express his subjects’ self-conscious anxiety, he constructs an uncomfortable world dominated by the uncertainty of twenty-something men and women. As they form their adult identities, Pigott’s subjects fret over their appearance and public behavior.

Alcohol, hip clothing, makeup, and grooming products cease to be superficial or incidental and are transformed into poignant markers of inner dialogues. Two female subjects abandon words, opting instead to communicate through their own physical presentation; one applies mascara in her skivvies, while the other furrows her brow at a magazine advertisement. An attractive persona is of the utmost importance; a seductive lip tattoo becomes the subject of another painting, and similarly, a lady is shown carefully eating a hamburger that perfectly coordinates to her outfit, sure not to spill on her blouse.

Further heightening the psychological importance of public surroundings and everyday objects, the artist plays with perception, placing an out-of-context wine glass here, a gravity-defying newspaper there. Similarly, a see-through table alters the hue of the legs below as harsh brushstrokes break the illusion of realism, and a man peers at his watch, his anxiety seemingly circumventing the laws of physics and allowing his body to float above ground.

In this world where identities are malleable and uncertain, the male gaze is uncomfortably prominent. Where a man is shown to watch himself in the mirror, the women are seen with a subtle degree of voyeurism. In mixed company, women peer thoughtfully, even fretfully, at the viewer, where men seem to please only themselves, remaining blissfully unaware of onlookers. When the male subject is nude, his back and face are turned away, but breasts and glances of the unclothed female are directed outwards. Dominated by familiar social anxieties and uncomfortable sexual politics, Pigott’s imaginative public space is perhaps not as surreal as it might seem. (via iGNANT)

Anatomically Correct Body Art Turns The Human Body Turned Inside Out

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The best art strives to make visible the invisible, and the body painter Johannes Stoetter takes his work literally, seemingly turning his subjects inside out to reveal internal anatomy; with his vivid colors, he traces anatomical parts that linger below the surface of the skin, visually peeling away layers of his models’ body.

With each work, he digs deeper below the surface, moving from sinewy muscles to organs, and ultimately into the psyche of his subjects. He begins by staying relatively true to human anatomy, depicting detailed tendons and muscles in eye-popping red, yet throughout the series, the artist’s allegiance to science softens, allowing him to paint with more unrealistic, emotionally evocative hues.

Without discernible facial features, his models rely solely upon the apparent tensions of the biceps or the illusion of blood flow to express their identities, opening the door for Stoetter to experiment with non-literal anatomies. The placid woman is painted with the natural world associated iconographically and art historically with her sex, while a male model is shown as having a geometrical machine beneath his flesh.

Each landscape nurtures the perception of the body and heightens its beauty, and the painted bodies cease to be individual and come to represent the coherent, unchanging nature of humankind; in each of us, there ticks the same robot heart, flows the same river of blood. Though nude, the models are desexualized by the obscuring of their flesh, and we are invited to marvel at the organic majesty of anatomy, both physical and emotional. Take a look at Anatomy and more of Stoetter’s astounding work below. (via Lost at E Minor)

Ramona Zordini’s Eerie, Yet Sensual Photography

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Photographer Ramona Zordini creates images that tastefully and powerfully channel sexuality and eroticism between lovers and oneself. Zordini is interested in both showcasing pairs of naked bodies floating on murky water as they interact with one another and portraits of single bodies as they emerge from whitish liquids. Although Zordini’s sensual photography carries an undeniable sexual energy, they embody an aesthetic that resembles organic textures and lines, as well as a concepts (of love, sex and self-discovery) that are poignant and relatable.

In her recent series, Changing Time III, Zordini creates images of posing nude couples in a variety of positions that imply imitate moments. A man wraps his arms around a woman who curls up, head down, under water. In another photograph, a man with an undercut wraps his arms around his nude partner who faces upwards and appears to be pushing against a confining force. Their legs intertwine and one feels their desperation, their need to cling and hold on to one another. The aesthetic and composition of Changing Time IIIrepresent a clear development from the Italian artist’s previous engagement with the human form as beauty and sculpture, into a more nuanced interest in the body as communication.

Zordini’s earlier works, on the other hand, feature single bodies and complex colors and compositions; these are more intriguing and less straightforward that the couple shots.  In many of these photographs, a single female twists and contorts her body to reveal a breast, hand, or leg above the obscuring smoky surface. (via Hi-Fructose)

Hilarious, Touching Photos Of Dogs Dancing And Shaking

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Few images of dogs can capture the magical abandon with which they move and express themselves, but the photographer and animal care expert Carli Davidson has done just that with Shake, a delightful series composed of high-speed, freeze-frame captures of canines mid-shake. Each shot miraculously pinpoints the moment of release; a wakeful stretch, the passionate freedom from a wet, unpleasant bath.

The photographs are comical for the strange elasticity of skin and fur, which seem wobble and move according not to the laws of physics but to the emotional governance of the animals; blissfully, floppy puppy ears swing from tiny heads, as if to take flight from the body. Similarly, hungry, drooling lips express the subject’s uncontrollable excitement.

Within Davidson’s humor lies a beautiful reverence for the canine subjects. The miracle of the animals’ instinctual motion creates sweeping, mystical swirls across the frame; drool, fur, and flesh move in tandem. Eyes open wide with the ecstatic motion of loose skin, and a Komondor’s dreadlocked hair swirls about like Medusa’s wild snakes. After a bath, water droplets and strands of shedding fur compose a starry cosmic landscape, lit radiantly against a black backdrop.

From the Chinese Crested to the Springer Spaniel to the glorious mixed breed, these canine subjects engage in a frenzied and physical expression and enjoy themselves in ways humans rarely do; in viewing their images, we are invited to do the same. Take a look at the joyous images below, and check out the print publication of Shake here. (via Colossal)