I just got back from checking out the undergrad show at UCLA Design Media Arts, and I was impressed with a lot of the work, but there was one young artist that really stood out to me: Canon Call. Call’s work is largely comprised of illustration on found materials, and the sincerely charming thing about these little disruptive doodles is their ability to build upon the image they are layered on top of in order to develop a dialogue around pop-culture and society at large. The best part of the work is the hidden irony behind the naming of each piece’s source file… each JPEG on his site is titled “dontsteal.jpg” or “dontcopythis.jpg – and various other alterations of that phrase. Genius. The work itself feels like a weird mashup of pop art and a surrealist exquisite corpse of sorts. I am very much looking forward to watching Call’s work develop.
Mexican artist David Sauceda creates highly detailed illustrations. Primarily using ink and paper, he constructs his compositions from innumerable finely controlled lines. His portraits pictured here, literally depict the inside and outside of a person. The series is titled Membrane, referring to the outer body as opposed to an inner psychology. On this idea of a membrane Sauceda states:
“This project explores the concept of identity as a membrane, intangible and invisible, outside the physical body, being the filter of information between the environment and the individual’s psychological self. The membrane is in a constant state of change and adaptability, leading to the development of an identity.” [via]
Andres Guzman is a Peruvian artist based in Minneapolis, Minnesota and also 1/3 of the art and music collective STEAKMOB. He’s an artist I’m surprised we haven’t already featured before. STEAKMOB is a loose crew of creatives who do everything from design to sounds to illustration. They invite anyone who is their creative to work with them in their space (an attic studio). “We just love to make stuff for the eyes and the ears,” states Andres. Which I think to “the T” describes Andres perfectly. He has always been drawing and experimenting, trying out new techniques and mediums to further expand his artistic vision.
Andres is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to his sketching ability. He never ceases to have new journal entries to share of ladies and heated Midwestern narratives, a vast portfolio of hand-drawn typography, and a keen sense of nailing portraiture. Andres is currently working on a music video animation for Tame Impala, and working with Colonel Blimp UK. I included more illustration samples than the usual after the jump because he has so many golden pieces on his tumblr and his other blog! All of his portfolios are worth your time to check out and contemplate.
The figurative drawings and paintings of Pasadena based artist Ching Ching Cheng are remarkably captivating to me. She uses members of her family often as subject matter but continually chooses to portray them in a conceptual way embracing different ways to illustrate a memory of that person in her past more so than the realistic representation of them. Ching uses sculpture and installation mediums in her work, such as her vintage polaroid and mm camera sculptures made of found books & maps. Each camera sculpture has tremendous amounts of character to them feeling to me as if they are alive beings or the “true” soul of whatever camera they are embodying. Ching’s work is thoughtful and personal slivers of her life past and present. Her primary influences include nature, and psychology.
Illustrator, graphic designer, and artist Jordan Speer created his own action figures (or at least illustrations of them.) Recreating the familiar packaging of childhood toys, Speer fills each one with a unique figurine. While nearly nostalgia inducing, each toy is also slightly sinister featuring warnings such as “slightly toxic”, “forbidden”, and “highly illegal”. Speer’s figures are enigmatic characters, unfamiliar and unwilling to reveal much beyond their name and accessories. Which would you collect?
Brendan Danielsson‘s portraits are wonderfully ugly. Though each piece incorporates the image of a sole person, there is plenty of conflict. The pieces easily explore ideas of beauty and ugliness; they are at once sensual and repulsive. While appearing almost alien each portrait is somehow still strangely familiar. Danielsson is able to portray each ‘character’ as clearly part of a larger hidden narrative.
If you can’t pull your eyes away from Brendan Danielsson’s work, make sure to check out the Beautiful/Decay Book: 9. The book features the paintings and drawings of Danielsson along with many other artists, designers, illustrators, and writers.
Kaitlyn Jeffers is an independent graphic designer based in NYC. She is a recent graduate of Fashion Institute of Technology with a BFA in Graphic Design and English Literature minor. I thoroughly enjoy the experimental nature in her portfolio and her humor that she exhibits. She has already dabbled in editorial illustration, book design, and has freelanced at Sesame Street Workshop! Here is a portion of what Kaitlyn wrote to me about herself and her work that I particularly enjoyed:
“My ethnic makeup is 1/2 Irish-American 1/2 American Indian, which I incorporate into my work a lot. Sometimes my work, specifically the collage pieces, functions as a vehicle for resolving some internal conflicts. Sometimes I create things just to work out ideas. Sometimes the sketches and rough process material is more visually engaging than the end result.”
Chris Fowler‘s work is curious and complex with depth and brightly interwoven colors. His portfolio demonstrates two primary focuses; people and surreal landscapes. His non-descriptive unusual lands are captivating to me purely by his color choices and how he adds zigzag courses, nooks, and abstract crevasses that lead only to the imagination. I am a big fan of The Human Project he created of little long-limbed creatures finding there way into orbs, slightly reminding me of something you would see under a microscope. Check out more of Mr. Fowler’s work after the jump.