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Art

A Miniature Landscape of Elephants Carved From the Tip of a Pencil by Cindy Chinn

July 1, 2016

Kate Sierzputowski

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Artist Cindy Chinn (previously) recently created a commissioned work for the California-based Epiphany Elephant Museum, a miniature graphite carving of a family of elephants. The piece, titled “Elephant Walk,” features the animals on the tip of a carpenter’s pencil alongside trees that are dotted to imitate foliage. To accurately carve the minuscule materials, Chinn utilizes a magnifying lamp and trinocular microscope. If you are interested in commissioning a piece, or would like to see her other carvings, she has works for sale on her Etsy store.

You can see more images of her miniature carved works on her Facebook, blog, and website. (via Twisted Sifter)

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Art Photography

Illuminated Portraits of Live Portuguese Man o’ War Captured by Aaron Ansarov

June 29, 2016

Kate Sierzputowski

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An ex-military photographer, Aaron Ansarov retired from the Navy in 2007, transforming his skills to create commercial work for magazines and focus on his own practice. Fascinated with marine life since his days growing up in Central Florida, his series “Zooids,” focuses on detailed images of Portuguese Man o’ War. Ansarov photographs the creatures on a homemade light table while alive, then immediately releases them back into the wild where they were found.

Once shot and the Man o’ War are returned, each image receives minimal manipulation, as Ansarov makes only slight adjustments to the photograph’s exposure, contrast, and vibrancy to highlight the vivid details of each venomous siphonophore. The completed works are otherworldly, appearing like alien illustrations rather than portraits, with deep blues, purples, and pinks unfurling in every direction. You can see more of Ansarov’s illuminated images on Facebook and Instagram. (via Fubiz)

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Design

Lovely Metal Animals that Wrap Around Your Finger by Michael Tatom

June 17, 2016

Kate Sierzputowski

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Starting out as a jeweler in a retail store, Michael Tatom began carving stone on the side in his brother’s studio. Tatom became fascinated with creating animal forms, especially the details needed to perfect each creature’s muscle definition. Tatom then moved on to casting the forms in bronze, and at the request of his wife started the online store of beasts and beauty. He has now transitioned to producing his animal rings, bracelets, and pendants nearly full-time and often takes requests for custom orders. A recent project gave him the chance to cast the shape of the rare pangolin in the form of a silver ring. You can see more of Tatom’s foxes, wolves, and cats on his Etsy. (via Bored Panda)

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Art

Hyperrealistic Paintings of Children and Animals Exploring Urban Remains by Kevin Peterson

June 8, 2016

Kate Sierzputowski

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Hyperrealist painter Kevin Peterson paints fairytale-like interactions of children and wolves, birds, and bears in scenes much different than the pastoral worlds of storybooks. Instead Peterson places the unlikely packs in distressed cities filled with decaying buildings and urban detritus. Despite the worn surroundings, the young girls in the paintings maintain a sense of innocence while they bravely explore the streets with their powerful compatriots.

“My work is about the varied journeys that we take through life,” explains Peterson in his artist statement. “It’s about growing up and living in a world that is broken. These paintings are about trauma, fear and loneliness and the strength that it takes to survive and thrive. They each contain the contrast of the untainted, young and innocent against a backdrop of a worn, ragged, and defiled world.”

The Houston-based artist studied at Austin College in Sherman, Texas where he received his BFA in 2001. Peterson is represented by Thinkspace Gallery in Culver City, California. You can see more of his work on their website and his Instagram. (via This Isn’t Happiness, Faith is Torment)

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Crafts Design

New Felted Toy Specimens by Hine Mizushima

May 31, 2016

Christopher Jobson

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When you think of cuddly stuffed animals made from textiles the top candidates would probably include teddy bears or bunny rabbits. Perhaps lower on the list would be squids, cicadas, and sea slugs, and yet Vancouver-based artist Hine Mizushima has chosen these unusual creatures as the the subjects of her wildly popular hand-creafted felt toys. Her one-of-a-kind plush critters have been displayed in galleries around the world and she’s turned many of them into prints which she sells on Etsy and Society6. You can see some of her latest work on Behance.

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Illustration

PolyWood: Toy Animal Concepts Rendered in Polygons by Mat Szulik

May 11, 2016

Christopher Jobson

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Sometimes it seems long gone are the days of kids sitting down and playing with simple wooden toys, trading tactile objects for screens and buttons. Freelance illustrator and 3D artist artist Mat Szulik straddles the two worlds of digital and physical in this fantastic series of conceptual wood toys based on digital polygons. Titled PolyWood v1.0, the series of 8 creatures are all digital, using wood textures mapped to Szulik’s geometric illustrations. I can’t imagine how something like this could be produced or carved from actual wood, but they’re lovely to look at regardless. (via Behance)

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Art

Edouard Martinet’s Masterfully Sculpted Animals and Insects Made from Bicycle, Car, and Motorcycle Parts

April 25, 2016

Christopher Jobson

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Robin. Bronze, one of an edition of 12 copies, 22 x 32 x 18 cm. LEGS: springs , pieces of costume jewellery; BODY: children’s tricycle fender; FEATHERS: hood ornament of a Citroen; WINGS: petrol tank plates of a 50s motorcycle Monet-Goyon, bike chain guards; TAIL: car part, motorcycle decoration; EYES: marbles; HEAD: two seed scoops, ornaments for bike lights; BEAK: autoscope part, bike ornament.

French artist Edouard Martinet assembles faithful interpretations of birds, crustaceans, insects, and other creatures with countless objects from discarded bicycles, cars, and household objects. A bicycle pump forms the abdomen of a dragonfly, windshield wipers serve as the legs of a fly, or the metal logos of a bicycle manufacturer are layered to create the dense scales of a fish. All the more incredible considering Martinet never welds or solders his pieces, but instead uses only screws or fasteners, selecting only the perfect components that “fit” each assemblage like a puzzle. From Sladmore Contemporary:

What sets Martinet’s work apart is the brilliant formal clarity of his sculptures, and their extraordinary elegance of articulation. His degree of virtuosity is unique: he does not solder or weld parts. His sculptures are screwed together. This gives his forms an extra level of visual richness – but not in a way that merely conveys the dry precision of, say, a watchmaker. There is an X-Factor here, a graceful wit, a re-imagining of the obvious in which a beautifully finished object glows not with perfection, but with character, with new life.

Martinet will open a new exhibition of work at Sladmore Contemporary in London starting May 5th, 2016.

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Dragonfly, 115 x 54 x 80 cm. ABDOMEN: bicycle pump; THORAX: four bike rear lights, two small car lights, big upholstery tacks , gas cap, ball furniture casters; HEAD: two old bike headlights, inside round sunglasses, shoe tree parts, parts of a daisy wheel for typewriter (hair from the mouth), under the head parts of acetylene bike lights; LEGS: tubes, bike cable guide, wing nuts, cream chargers; WINGS: umbrella ribs, fencing wire, aluminium metal mesh.

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Dragonfly, detail.

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Fly, 47 x 40 x 27 cm. LEGS : windshield wiper arms, bike brakes, bike chains, small typewriter parts; HEAD: motor vehicle rear light; PROBOSCIS: car hood hinge; ANTENNAE: ski boot fasteners; THORAX: motorbike headlight; On the top : 50’s kitchen utensil. WINGS: the glass is set in a windscreen brush holder, the wing ribs are made with soldering wire; ABDOMEN: motorbike headlight, part of ceiling lamp.

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Fly, detail.

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Sardine, 25 x 70 x 11 cm. BODY: Moped chain guard covered with multiple bicycle logo badges; HEAD: Solex front fenders, car bumpers. EYES: Flashlights; GILLS: Car door parts, bicycle chain guards. TAIL: Motorbike exhaust pipe; FINS: Cake tins.

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Sardine, detail.

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Black Swift, 45 x 20 x 17 cm. LEGS: springs, pieces of costume jewellery; BODY: silver sauce jug; WINGS and FEATHERS: petrol tank plates of a 50s Villier motorcycle, bike chain guards, scooter decoration; TAIL: car decoration; EYES: metal balls; HEAD: one seed scoop, bike headlight; BEAK: dental forceps.

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Black Swift, detail.

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Praying Mantis, 104 x 50 x 74 cm. ABDOMEN: bike fender, car ventilator and ski boots fasteners; WINGS: rear lights of a Peugeot 404; HEAD: two moped indicators; TOP FORELEGS: car mirror handles, ham slicers, nutcracker handles, spaghetti tongs; FOR ALL THE LEGS: the ends are parts from bike brakes plus a bit of bike chain; THE OTHER LEGS: windshield wiper arms, aluminium tubes; THORAX: car bumper, car mirror handles.