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Art Illustration

Detailed Graphite Hair Drawings by Hong Chun Zhang

August 23, 2017

Kate Sierzputowski

Chinese artist Hong Chun Zhang creates graphite drawings that replace everyday materials with ribbons, sheets, or swirls of shiny black hair. The works, titled Hairy Objects, are intended to be humorous while also a bit unsettling, allowing the beauty of hair to also repulse the audience when caught emerging from the spine of a book or the spout of a bathroom sink.

The surreal drawings also focus on her cultural identity, especially connections with her family in China, and her identity as a woman and sister. The hair represents a powerful life force, imbuing each piece with an aspect of herself.

In addition to graphite drawings, Zhang also creates ink paintings in the traditional Chinese fine style which requires applying ink from lighter to darker shades through eight successive layers. The technique is very realistic and time consuming, requiring years of specialized training. Hong studied at the Central Academy of Fine Arts (CAFA) in Beijing for four years, as well as learned from her parents who had a strong influence on her artistic style at a young age.

In addition to getting her BFA in Chinese painting from CAFA, Zhang received her MFA at the University of California, Davis. She currently lives and works in Lawrence, Kansas.

 

 



Art Illustration

Drawing With Shadows: Illustrator Guy Larsen Creates Portraits From the Shadows of Crumpled Paper

August 21, 2017

Christopher Jobson

In this brief video, London-based illustrator Guy Larsen finds inspiration in the shadow lines cast by a crumpled up ball of paper which he uses to draw a variety of distorted portraits. Being a talented artist makes this look easy, but it’s probably a fun exercise for anyone who wants to practice seeing things differently or to force a different illustration style. You can see more of Larsen’s work on Instagram and in his online shop. (via Colossal Submissions)

 

 



Art

Giant Dabs of Thick Oil Paint Captured as Hyperrealist Colored Pencil Drawings

August 16, 2017

Kate Sierzputowski

Australian artist Cj Hendry (previously) tricks the eye with her hyper-realistic drawings, works that recreate the appearance of thick swabs of brightly colored paint. To achieve the dimensionality and sheen of fresh oil paint she layers dry pigment atop colored pencil, accurately portraying the liquid medium’s viscosity.

The series, Complimentary Colors, is far different than the artist’s previous style, which for several years had been exclusively black and white. You can view pieces from her past and present, as well as a series of billboard-sized works, on the artist’s Instagram. (via My Modern Met)

 

 



Art Illustration

Elegant Dip Pen Illustrations Inside the Sketchbooks of Elena Limkina

August 7, 2017

Christopher Jobson

Moscow-based illustrator Elena Limkina fills the pages of her sketchbooks with detailed Baroque-inspired drawings of architectural elements, anatomical studies, and flowing calligraphy. She refers to the books as her “artist’s diary” and indeed each page is practically an artwork unto itself. Limkina works primarily as a watercolor artist and creates concepts for brands, interior designers, and magazines, but also sells prints in her online shop. You can follow more of her work on Instagram and Behance. (via My Modern Met, Lustik)

 

 



Illustration

New Pen & Ink Depictions of Trees Sprouting into Animals by Alfred Basha

July 10, 2017

Christopher Jobson

Italian illustrator Alfred Basha (previously) continues his ongoing project of fusing animal forms with the branches of trees. The popular illustrations have recently been turned into both shirts and prints and you can see more of his recent work on Instagram.

 

 



Art

New Sketchbook-Based Ballpoint Pen Drawings by Nicolas V. Sanchez

June 30, 2017

Kate Sierzputowski

New York City-based artist Nicolas V. Sanchez (previously) creates masterful drawings with only the aid of a few ballpoint pens, rendering unbelievably realistic portraits and still lifes in his many sketchbooks. Due to his precise application of highlights and shadows several of his works seem three-dimensional, such as the fruit bowl seen below which looks placed on the page and not drawn.

Sanchez is also a talented painter, working with oil to create blurred familial scenes on canvas or linen. You can see more of his sketchbook-based ink drawings, and browse his collection of paintings, on his Instagram and Facebook.

 

 



Art History Illustration

Download More than 2,500 Images of Vibrant Japanese Woodblock Prints and Drawings From the Library of Congress

June 14, 2017

Kate Sierzputowski

Thanks to the Library of Congress, you can browse and download high-resolution copies of more than 2,500 Japanese woodblock prints and drawings from the library’s online collection. The prints, most of which are dated before the 20th-century, were amassed from a large group of collectors, including notable donors such as President William Howard Taft and Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes.

Despite the diversity of genres and traditions represented by the library’s large collection, the most prolific works are ones created in the tradition of the Japanese art form of Ukiyo-e or Yokohama-e. Ukiyo-e was developed in the city of Edo (now Tokyo) between 1600 and 1868 during a relatively peaceful period. The subject and inspiration for many of the prints includes that of entertainment and leisure, such as scenes from kabuki theater and fashionable restaurants.

The style of Yokohama-e was built on methods of production from Ukiyo-e around the time that American naval officer Matthew Calbraith Perry (1794-1858) led an expedition to Japan in the mid-1850’s. New trade agreements between Japan and the West brought travers to the country, inspiring Japanese artists to capture tourists walking throughout the port city, and borrow images from Western newspapers.

You can see the entire collection of historic works on the Library of Congress’s website. (via Open Culture)

 

 

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