Adorable Animal Characters Crafted Out of Felt by Cat Rabbit 

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Textile artist Cat Rabbit sews fabulously dressed animals from felt, crafting characters as diverse as kindergarten-bound lambs and a star mathlete rabbit. Each of her designs is completely made by hand, creating each work without a preconceived pattern. In addition to designing one-of-a-kind characters for her Etsy, the Melbourne-based artist also illustrates children’s storybooks with her sculptures, collaborating with her friend Isobel Knowles under the name Soft Stories. Cat Rabbit posts new works and commissions on her Instagram and Tumblr. (via The Creator’s Project)

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Rebirth: Artist Manabu Ikeda Unveils a Monumental Pen & Ink Drawing Nearly 3.5 Years in the Making 

Rebirth, 2016. Pen & ink, 13 x 10' (300 x 100cm). Courtesy the Chazen Museum of Art.

Rebirth, 2016. Pen & ink, 13 x 10′ (300 x 100cm). Courtesy the Chazen Museum of Art.

The 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami in Japan was one of the most devastating environmental events of our time, with its overall impact rippling across the globe for years to come. But just as stated in Newton’s third law—for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction—so too did the people of Japan respond to the magnitude of the destruction in an effort to rebuild their country anew as captured in this staggering new artwork by Manabu Ikeda titled Rebirth. Starting in July of 2013, Ikeda toiled away on the 13 x 10 foot piece for 10 hours a day inside a basement studio at the Chazen Museum of Art in Madison, Wisconsin. He finished work just last week.

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Manabu Ikeda at work.

A video posted by Colossal (@colossal) on

At its core, Rebirth depicts a tree rising from the debris of the tsunami as enormous waves crash nearby, but a closer inspection reveals thousands of tiny details, the individual stories of anonymous people, plants, and animals as they fight for survival and try to return their world to a semblance of order. Ikeda says that in his work he seeks to replicate the beautiful chaos of life that rarely fits a simple linear narrative. Instead, everything crashes together and interacts in unknown and unexpected ways, an idea that applies directly to his process as he often doesn’t know what each day will bring as he works inch by inch on the near endless canvas before him.

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Rebirth, detail.

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Rebirth, detail.

While Ikeda sketches broad details in pencil on the canvas beforehand, he primarily works with pen and acrylic ink using various forms of cross-hatching and brushwork to fill areas so dense with details, the true nature of the artwork isn’t revealed until staring at it from only a few inches away. Mountains of vehicles, gnarled tree branches, and train tracks sit tangled at the base of a tree, and flower blooms comprised of umbrellas and emergency tents fill the sky above. Everywhere a collision of humankind and nature, for better or worse.

“My goal is to faithfully express my view of the world in my composition, but I don’t intentionally depict detailed images,” he tells the Chazen. “Because I see details when I observe things, rather than the whole, I find pen and ink to be the best tools to express how I see them.”

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Rebirth, detail.

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Rebirth, detail.

Rebirth, detail.

Rebirth, detail.

Rebirth in progress.

Rebirth in progress.

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Rebirth in progress.

Ikeda’s time spent in Madison wasn’t without its own adversity. The artist dislocated a shoulder in a downhill skiing accident which rendered his dominant hand temporarily useless. Unable to stop work for very long, Ikeda began practicing with his other hand and after 3-4 practice drawings continued work on Rebirth unfazed.

Rebirth will be on view only briefly at the Chazen Museum of Art through December 11, 2016. If you’re anywhere near the midwest, this is well worth a trip and I strongly encourage you to stop by. You can explore it for over 30 minutes and still not see everything. You can also read more about it on Wisconsin Life.

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Manabu Ikeda at work, still from Clayton Adams.

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Manabu Ikeda at work, still from Clayton Adams.

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Ikeda Manabu’s first attempt at drawing with his non-dominant hand after a skiing accident.

Film and stills courtesy Clayton Adams.

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Colorful Everyday Scenes Illustrated on Vintage Sheet Music by ‘People Too’ 

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Alexei Lyapunov and Lena Ehrlich are the two members of People Too, an illustrative team from Novosibirsk, Russia that draws elaborate scenes on pieces of sheet music. The colorful works capture both pastoral and urban landscapes, detailing vignettes of people fishing, dancing, and commuting. Musical notations from the songs are often incorporated into the illustrations—notes becoming steps, hills, or trunks of trees.

You can purchase the pair’s altered sheet music on Society6, as well as see a greater breadth of their illustrative portfolio on Behance. (via Lustik)

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A Fun Experimental Claymation Short by Alexander Unger 

Swedish animator and sculptor Alexander Unger runs a popular YouTube channel where he shares sculpting and animation tutorials. Sometimes he shares fun short films that link together ingenious little animation experiments like the ones you see here. Definitely turn up the volume a bit, the sound really adds a lot. You can see more of his work here. (via Sploid)

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Elegant Dimensional Renderings of Animals and People by Maxim Shkret 

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Moscow-based illustrator Maxim Shkret conjurs the flowing hair of people and the tangled fur of beasts in this lovely ongoing series of digital illustrations. Mixing a unique method of 3d modeling with carefully applied shadows, each piece evokes the form of a paper-like sculpture. You can see more on Shkret’s Instagram.

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Geometric Light Installations by Nicolas Rivals Bathe the Spanish Countryside in Red 

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As part of his project La Línea Roja, Paris-based photographer Nicolas Rivals constructed bright red light configurations installed outdoors while on a trip through Spain. Each temporary piece was captured in a series of long-exposure shots that reveal an unusual juxtaposition between fabricated objects and the natural world. You can see more from the series on his website and Instagram—and if you liked this also check out James Nizam, Barry Underwood, and this short film from 3hund.

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La Linea Roja

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La Linea Roja

La Linea Roja

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La Linea Roja

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