There’s something about the design of a cactus that is just plain intriguing – a mix of a modern architectural shape, sharp needles and paper-like vibrant flowers. Catherine Hope explores these qualities in her colourful photo study titled (much to my delight) ‘It’s a Bit of a Prick’. Sourcing unique examples from Columbia Road Flower Market in London, Catherine creates beautiful compositions of texture and colour that showcase the most dynamic facets of cactus. In addition to having an photograph adorn my wall, I would love a circular silk pillow featuring one of her gorgeous images. Follow Catherine’s study on tumblr for future cactus inspiration.
You may have seen the fantastic imagery of Ikea’s cookbook Hembakat Är Bäst created by brilliant photographer Carl Kleiner and stylist Evelina Bratell last year. The way the ingredients were presented in such modern blocks of colour was just sublime. What a way to imagine the components of cooking. The talented duo is back with another a strong overhead series focused on Ikea’s kitchenware. It’s a unique way to represent products and showcases the clean, uncluttered lines of Ikea’s aesthetic. I don’t know about you but I can see some strange faces emerging in those piles of plates and utensils… (p.s. I posted a couple of the original Ikea ingredient shots because, well, they are beautiful. I hope that prints are sold one day as they would look awesome on a kitchen wall!)
How awesome is that long shot of a studio desk? Thin slices of Mac computers, handwritten notes, strange snacks and Pantone guides – it’s design studio heaven. Oneighty Creative, a design studio in the UK, directed a series of shots in the hopes of “unveiling the process” of creativity and brand creation to their clients (as well as a piece of self-promotion). Photographed beautifully by Adrian Ray, I think that fantastic long photograph and the additional images more than capture the process, tools, steps and overall beauty of studio life. There is no design key on computers! Oh and Oneighty had a great description of the shot and goal: “[a] visualised physical timeline of our brand process which creates a sort of mad hatter’s tea party feel”. I really love seeing the desks and studios of creatives so I can only dream that this overhead photography approach to those spaces becomes an entire book one day…
You know those round nonpareil sprinkles that are liberally tossed about during holiday cookie decorating? Imagine meticulously placing 221,184 of them by hand using jewellery tweezers and a pixelating computer program. Are your eyes burning from that thought? Mine are! Canadian artist Joel Brochu was inspired by a previous project he created exploring the pointillism technique of applying small dots of colour to create a larger image and decided to re-create a photograph with sprinkles. Using a photograph of a beagle by Shingo Uchiyama, Joel needed just six colours of sprinkles (red, orange, green, blue, black and white) to create a surprisingly large spectrum of hues. It’s amazing how colour can be suggested and created with the right combinations and placement. Nonpareils are just 1/16 inch thick so 221,184 of them were needed to re-create the 4′ by 1.5′ photograph. Crazy, painstaking work that makes me wonder what Joel could do with a dozen cupcakes…
I can’t think of a music video that required more dedication to craftsmanship than this one for “In Your Arms” by Kina Grannis. This stop-motion spectacular was created over the course of 22 months by 30 people and required 1,357 hours of work. Oh and 288,000 colourful jelly beans! Sure, it would have been much easier to just employ some CGI and green screen magic but director Greg Jardin was adamant that every single one of the 2,460 frames be assembled by hand and shot individually. Insane, brain-exploded level of commitment to handmade design and crafting a true stop-motion piece. (I love the jellybean test pattern at the end of the video!)
The making of video is a must-watch. How great are those individually marked tubs of jellybean colours?
I am a sucker for unique and colourful food styling. It always amazes me how textures, patterns and colours of a recipe or food can really come to life with some great lighting and thoughtful detail. A stylist with ridiculous amounts of talent in that arena is Dietlind Wolf. I was reminded of his styling and illustrating skill when I saw the series above on seesaw. A wonderfully clever fusion of handsome food and beautiful ingredient illustration. I love this mixed media approach to food styling and photography as there are endless possibilities. Collage next? Or how about graffiti!?
I hadn’t really thought about it until today but it is quite amazing how many shades of brown you can achieve when toasting a piece of bread. For his series ‘Toasted’, photographer Henry Hargreaves created large-scale portraits of pop culture icons with hundreds of pieces of toast. The level of detail and eye for subtleties of hue are quite astounding. A glimpse at the level of work can be seen in the last shot where toasted crumpets are being meticulously arranged to create a portrait of Pippa Middleton. I may never look at a piece of burnt toast the same way again! (Bread toasted by Angela Barrow and Osvaldo Ponton)
(from top: Marilyn Monroe, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, John Lennon, Ringo Starr, Che Guevara, Jim Morrison and Pippa Middleton)
Photographer Alan Sailer seems to find endless objects to explode and the slo-mo results are always fascinating. I love this shot of glued together crayons bursting into a cloud of colourful destruction. It kind of looks like a crayon rocket to a land of arts and craft. To see more of these slo-mo shots, check out Alan’s Flickr account.
I am officially obsessed with this gorgeously neon inspiration shoot on Brooklyn Bride (especially that balloon photo). The goal was to highlight how a modern wedding could use neon to accent white and neutral bases and the results are full of vivacious colours and gorgeous styling/photography. Neon is not a typical wedding hue so it is quite thrilling to see this twist on things. I’m thinking this idea, from fashion to paper goods to decor, could be used for any event or photoshoot. I already have some interior design ideas inspired by this fantastic shoot. I also think I need to buy some fluorescent painter tape and paper. Honestly, how can anyone hate neon? It is colour palette bursting with pure joy!
What a beautiful album cover and inside photography for French artist Ornette. Personally, I think any great art project ends with hands that look like that. I would be so intrigued to see an entire book or editorial done in this style featuring music icons like Madonna, Elton John, Prince or Lady Gaga. It would be stunning! Kind of makes me want to try a new “look” tomorrow too… Design and art direction by Leslie David, photography by Gregoire Alexandre and make-up by Anthony Preel.
Most Fashion Weeks are a glorious parade of one runway show after another but I always look forward to seeing how some designers buck the trend and do something unique. New Zealand label Twentysevennames did just that when showed their Autumn/Winter 2012 line in an exhibit of Guy Coombes photographs. The concept kind of reminds me of that wallpaper/shirt scene in Garden State. What a brilliant way to highlight the patterns of the collection and stand out from the crowd. I hope Twentysevennames creates an entire lookbook of these fabulous photographs. I’m starting to think fashion should be sold alongside matching wallpaper…
Ursus Wehrli is a Swiss artist made famous by his Tidying Up Art books that re-arrange famous works of art into tidy sets of painting components that feel like infographics dedicated to how art is created. I love the direction of his new book The Art of Clean Up as Ursus organizes common objects or everyday scenes into orderly parts and colour palettes. Have you ever looked at pine branches or alphabet soup in such a fascinating way? I have always stared at parking lots and thought about the colour order that could be created so I love how Ursus made a scene of colour theory out of such an everyday place. The book comes out next month and I can’t wait to see what other things have been “tidied” by Ursus’ clever mind. Organizing never looked so good…
I love fashion editorials. A perfect fusion of concept, design, art, drama and story. They are like mini films bursting with gorgeous fashion. A few months ago, I started to realize that a lot of my favourite editorials were by a handful of photographers. Sølve Sundsbø, a Norwegian fashion photographer, is definitely at the top of that list. His work is so imaginative, so dramatic and always full of magnificent sweeps of colour. I recently read an interview where Sølve describes his work: “If I’ve got a style, it’s that I’ve got no style.” I love that his work is always fresh and that each “film” is a unique take on fashion. Working for every major fashion magazine as well as clients like Yves Saint Laurent, Dior, Alexander McQueen, Gucci and Hermès, Sølve’s photographs often look like the product of technology and digital retouching. In reality, Sølve crafts his photographs with old-fashioned techniques and principles like shadows and light, hand-painted film and meticulous detail to composition and styling. His talent breathes new life and imagination into the world of fashion. Add to that an incredible eye and love for hue and you can understand why Sølve is a true colour hero!
How stunning is this photograph by Oleg Gordienko? Such a gorgeously leafy tunnel feels like proof that trains really do head to magical lands (à la Harry Potter). I can’t seem to find any information about this special spot other than that it is in the Ukraine. If you know more, please let me know!
Paper-Cut-Project is an Atlanta studio overflowing with paper craft talent. These wigs are just some of the 20 paper pieces they created for Kate Spade’s Lillian Bassman collection window displays. Both the wigs and collection are inspired by the famous 1961 Bassman photograph, “A Touch of Dew” featuring windswept model Lisa Fonssagrives behind the wheel of a convertible. Such chic, modern and strong paper design with a true sense of motion, I wouldn’t mind having one to display as art. Those ponytails. Oy. The wigs are on display in Kate Spade store windows in New York so if you see them, please send a photo my way!
In this vibrant series, brilliant artist and photographer Carl Kleiner explores the endlessly alluring golden ratio. Upon first glance, it is easy to think these are computer generated images but “Golden Ratio & Friends” is actually a set of still-life photographs crafted in paper. Fantastic colour palettes, bold patterns, the beauty of the golden ratio – Carl never ceases to amaze me with his talent! (see the whole series here)