A day devoted to honouring, remembering and the red poppy. Lest we forget…
A day devoted to honouring, remembering and the red poppy. Lest we forget…
Whoa – a long and unexpected break from colour posting this week. Let’s just say I departed for beige territory but I’m happily back in happy hue land now! I spotted these gorgeous shots styled and photographed by one of my favourite creatives, Dietlind Wolf , and realized yet again why I love poppies. The crispy scarlet-red and that mysterious blue-purple shade of black makes one smashing combo…
Spanish photographer Lola Guerrera created her series ‘Nebula Humilis’ in the deserts of Mexico and I love the juxtaposition of harsh, neutral rock formations and soft, vibrant plumes of coloured smoke. The red image really feels like a magical volcano, don’t you think? (p.s. I am a huge fan of this coloured smoke movement in art. Take a look at my other two postings on the subject here and here).
Watching the Oscars and its red carpet of fashion has to be a high point of February. What colour trends emerged victorious on Hollywood’s biggest night of the year? I would say winter white was the runaway style choice. Other trends focused on various shades of red, blue, green, neutral and gold. I can’t remember an award show with less black! To be honest, I was a tad disappointed with Oscar 2012′s sartorial showing. I guess I just loved the fashion of last year’s show and wasn’t overly enamoured with many of the dresses selected this time around. That being said, I loved Emma Stone’s raspberry-crimson Giambattista Valli, Michele William’s coral-red Louis Vuitton, Penelope Cruz’s blue-grey Armani Privé, Tina Fey’s deep blue Carolina Herrera, Viola Davis’ emerald Vera Wang, Maya Rudolph’s plum Johanna Jonson, Cameron Diaz’s buff Gucci, Octavia Spencer’s white Tadashi Shoji, Meryl Streep’s golden Lanvin and Milla Jovovich’s sparkling Elie Saab. There were plenty of fashionable gents (and a mini-trend of navy tuxedos) but my very favourite was Christopher Plummer’s dapper midnight blue tuxedo complete with black trimming and a handsome Order of Canada pin. Now that’s true style. What was your favourite?
There seems to be two sides to the red and pink debate – those who believe the colours clash and should only be featured together on Valentine’s Day versus those who believe the colours are meant to appear together in brilliant harmony all year long. I am firmly in the second camp but more so when the vibrancies of the hues match (I don’t love soft pastels and bright red together as much although there are plenty of examples of them combining handsomely). Crimson paired with fuschia or perhaps scarlet intertwined with magenta – I love when the boldest shades of red and pink meet. They pair so beautifully in nature so why not fashion, interiors and design? Love the combination with pops of other hues such as camel, emerald, pure white, saffron or royal purple. Oh, the possibilities of a red and pink pairing… What do you think? Do the hues clash or work together?
German artist Frank Hülsbömer has a portfolio overflowing with intriguing studies of colour, form and rethinking everyday objects. Some of my favourite pieces are his tapestacks. Have you ever seen a stack of tape look so artful? I love the reflections he plays with (especially in that blue and foil image). My other favourite is his “Extroverted Disco Ball” and “Introverted Disco Ball” pairing. The idea is so very clever and witty. A long time fan of the mirrored spheres, I can honestly say I will never look at a disco ball the same way again. (p.s. how beautiful would that black matte “introverted” ball look in a white loft with bold pops of colour? Sigh. Back to daydreaming…)
I love bright coloured paint jobs so these photos more than made my day. I love the feature wall completely saturated in one vibrant colour including coat hooks, radiator and shelving. I also love the idea of colour splashed randomly and artfully up one wall. Who says you ever have to paint your walls in a traditional fashion?
I have posted about the work of Elisa Strozyk before or, to be more specific, gushed about her incredible talent for wood design with a fabric-like soul. I was visiting her website a couple of days ago and spied these spectacular Coloured Wooden Rugs. Elisa attaches dyed wood to a fabric base and the result is a dreamy wooden textile. These beauties have only fueled my daydreams that Elisa will one day open a shop of her work. I would be more than happy to camp out for a few days in order to nab one of these gorgeous carpets…
The 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month marked the end of World War One and is now a day when countries around the world honour those who gave the ultimate sacrifice, those who served and those who continue to serve. It is a holiday unique to every nation but in Canada and many Commonwealth countries, Remembrance Day is a memorial wrapped in vibrant red. Why red? For the symbol of Remembrance Day itself – the poppy. Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, a Canadian artist, doctor and solider, wrote the now iconic poem “In Flanders Fields” in 1915 as he processed seeing the bodies of so many fallen comrades intermingled with the bright red poppies that now marked their graves. The poem was published shortly after and spread across the world. Its first two lines, “In Flanders fields the poppies blow/Between the crosses, row on row” inspired the use of poppies as a symbol of remembrance. The blooms are sold each year to raise money for Veteran services and worn as a promise to never forget those who served and continue to serve.
I didn’t mean to turn this post into a rambling history lesson (although I have been asked by many a tourist what the red flower is for!) Overall, Remembrance Day is a day of honour, reflection and red. The poppy is an enduring symbol of gratitude and I am always struck by their beauty and meaning. Combined with the colours of military ribbons and uniform neutrals, it is a day of poignant colour palettes and a vivid poppy red that ensures we always remember. The image above of lights is of Vancouver’s war memorial in Victory Square Park and is a piece of local art I really love. Eleven lights based on WW1 helmets encircle the memorial and, when lit at night, always feel like a hauntingly beautiful tribute to all of those we lost and are beyond thankful to…
One of the things that amazes me the most about colour is how easily it can convey a message or emotion without any words required. This horrifyingly clever Preparation H advertisement by Shawn Couzens and Gary Ennis is the epitome of that quality. The brilliant placement of glowing red doesn’t need a single world to get the (rather painful looking) point across.
Love illustrator Lucie Sheridan’s ‘Prolonged Daschund’ print. Available in blue and red, this long whimsical weiner dog is just plain happy-inducing. Couldn’t you see he/she as a children’s book character? Running across countries, wrapping around landmarks – there is no shortage of tall tales this happy daschund dog could get up to.
“Where Does Red Begin and Where Does it End” by artist Spencer Finch is an intriguing piece of watercolour art I happened to come across. It is “a study of the margins of the color red documenting its gradual shift between orange and violet.” Such an intriguing concept of wondering where the boundaries of colour are. Many times, one person’s ‘red’ is another person’s ‘orange’. When you stare at this piece, where does the red begin and end for you?
UNA is the official wine of the 150th anniversary of the unification of Italy. Combining 20 wines from native grapes, UNA highlights the rich history of Italian wine as well as expressing “the true spirit of Italy, the love for their land, the expertise, art and industriousness of its people”. Italian studio Cibic Workshop designed this packaging that begins with a gorgeous locking box made from ash wood, a popular tree throughout Italy. The bottle shapes are meant to reflect a man and woman with the masculine red merging a classic Italian flask with an iconic Bordeaux bottle and the feminine white showcasing a redesign of classic clear Italian wine bottles. A handsome and luxurious package design that puts a modern spin on Italian history. One of my favourite details? How the key ribbons match the pops of colour on the bottles!
I love the idea that a bee and a ladybug would passionately argue over who has a better graphic pattern. Another fantastic illustration in Lim Heng Swee’s Doodle Everyday project. (I previously posted about his whimsical clouds doodle.)
Coloured smoke bombs exploding in nature seems to have become somewhat of a photography trend lately. While there are plenty of images and techniques out there, I don’t think many compete with the stunning work of artist Filippo Minelli. Filippo’s ongoing Silence/Shapes series features brilliantly coloured smoke against peaceful almost generic nature backdrops. The final result is spellbinding scenes with striking juxtaposition of colour that I could stare at for hours. Hoping there are prints of these gorgeous photographs available soon or I might have to continue researching smoke bomb building!
(thanks for the link Catriana!)
Vancouver origami master Joseph Wu is one of my favourite artists and his new piece, A Tear for Japan, is yet another beautiful paper creation. This piece is a work in progress and you can watch it evolve here. Just as it is, I love the simplicity and strength evoked. Showing a tear shed for Japan but also a symbol of hope as the tear is small in comparison to the powerful and bright red rising sun.
LOOK BY COLOURred, crimson, scarlet...