Yan Wei is a Beijing-based artist with a style reminiscent of horror manga illustrators like Hideshi Hino, yet very much her own. Her ink portraits of children belong to a vision of Hell far more unnerving than any blunt pit of fire.
Sarah Bowman is a photographer based in Nanaimo, Canada, whose passion for portraiture and surrealist imagery has blossomed into this darkly beautiful series, entitled Maiden of Ravens. Made in collaboration with model/visionary Annalise Silverwolf, these images present a romantic, alternative world, wherein an ethereal goddess-figure stalks through the trees and underbrush. With sticks and grasses adorning her head and her forearms covered with what appears to be gauntlets of blood, she melds beautifully with the ominous environment, invoking the spirit of ravens — those beautiful and dark carrion birds that symbolize both life and death. The model’s pale skin and dark red dress add further to the series’ grimly alluring atmosphere. Sarah has done an excellent job accentuating the green and red tones, which highlight the ghostly and rain-wet beauty of Vancouver Island’s forests and swamps.
When I chatted briefly with Sarah about her photography and future projects, she expressed a burgeoning desire to collaborate with designers in the creation of fine art portraiture, as she is inspired by “whimsical, ethereal, and surreal creations.” As an artist, her utmost goal throughout all of her work is to “please [her] viewers and hope to overachieve their expectations,” while also “collaborating with models and […] mak[ing] them feel beautiful and extraordinary about their talent.” Given the depth, intricacy, and evocative power of Maiden of Ravens, there is no doubt that Sarah has indeed achieved and surpassed her creative and professional objectives. Follow her Facebook page and check out her website to keep up with her work as she continues to collaborate with more designers and models in the creation of surrealist, fine art imagery.
Additional credits: Annalise Silverwolf (model), Christine Boulet (hair).
I get a little nostalgic for summer when I see photographer Henry Busby‘s images in his short series Revere Beach. Located in Massachusetts, thousands of beach goers relax along its shores on hot summer afternoons. Busby captures this scene in a style that vaguely reminds me of Rineke Dijkstra’s portraits of swimmers, yet we the viewer are kept more at a distance to observe the subjects as anonymous moments. Check out the work and don’t worry, summer will be here soon.
Evan Nesbit lives and works in Nevada City, CA. He has just opened his first solo exhibition with Ever Gold San Francisco entitled Light Farming / Heavy Gardening. From the press release: “A recent graduate of the Yale MFA program, Nesbit’s recent body of work includes mixed media paintings, perceptual objects, sculpture and interactive “space blankets”. Through exploration of painterly materials, visual process and participation from the public, this new body of work will explore the imbrication of patterns and experience that structures ones vision, suspended in doubt, sometimes cured in paint. Through the use of constructed “space blankets”, Nesbit challenges the viewer to interact with this exploration by taking refuge beneath their comfort, only to be immersed in the stereoscopic images produced by pin hole camera effects.” The exhibition is on view through April 26th.
Moody, noir-esque street photography by Derek Corneau.
Instead of traditionally traveling the world, photographing the sights with a camera as he roams, Fabian Rook accumulates different snapshots via the comfort of his own home – with the help of his computer and Google. His photographic series is the result of entering key place names into his search bar and documenting where he ended up. By using the online digital tools of these search engines and satellite images to produce Fine Art, Rook is questioning the role of authenticity in image production and selling.
His photos are not dissimilar to those of landscape photographers Stephen Shore and Joel Sternfeld, but have a much different intention behind them, and another way entirely of being produced. Rook says this regarding his purpose:
“By reverting to the auto-produced landscape images taken by Google Street View and by not putting in an appearance of myself either as the author of an image or as an eyewitness, I highlight the meaning of the authorial and witness role in the production of photographic images.” (Source)
He not only exhibits Google-sourced landscape images as the finished project, but also superimposes elements from photojournalism and changes our understanding of what a place is. For example, he takes scenes of protesters from Iran and Greece and replaces them in a new setting of Sao Paulo. Or the street kids we see could either be playing together on the street, or running away from some authoritarian figure. Rook goes on to say:
“The locations and details converge and are exchangeable, while the pictures have the same variability and arbitrary quality that enables the user to switch continent in Google Streetview with a single mouseclick.” (Source)
His images are questionable and ambiguous, and this is his main aim – to point out how untrustworthy these sources are that we take at face value.
Art and design boutique Kittozutto (Yana and Jun) just recently updated their website with some brand new work! They’re the minds behind B/D shirt “The Web” (pictured above), which will be released this summer.
They combine fine art illustration with digital imaging, and the highly detailed results are often best seen in large formats. Women, fluids, and nature inspire their hyper-realistic yet surreal illustrations.