Artist and illustrator Jason D’Aquino draws incredibly small illustrations inside of matchbooks. His muse is frequently pop culture itself, with numerous references to horror films, famous artworks, pulp fiction magazine covers, and even human anatomy. If you happen to be in New Orleans D’Aquino has work available at the Shop in the French quarter, and he’ll also have work at Art Basel Miami through Red Truck Gallery. (via juxtapoz)
Freelance artist Ramon Bruin has been working on some fun 3D illusion drawings, here are three of my favorites. You can see a bit more of his work over on Facebook, and if you liked this also check out the work of Nagai Hideyuki. (via my darkened eyes)
Two weeks ago I was fortunate to spend a few days in Grand Rapids, Michigan at ArtPrize 2012, a sprawling international art fair featuring over 1,500 installations by more than 1,700 artists in venues throughout the city including the Grand Rapids Art Museum, the Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts, as well as countless art galleries, cafes, sidewalks, and even smack dab in the middle of a river. The entire affair centers around popular vote that determines ten winners (a maximum award of $200,000) as well as several juried awards. You can see the 2012 winners here. It was a great trip and I saw more art three days than I’ve seen in person in the past year.
One of the most outstanding artworks I encountered in Grand Rapids was this gargantuan drawing on exhibit at the GRAM by artist Chris LaPorte who attended the New York Academy of Art and now lives and works in Michigan. By day he works as a caricature artist, having drawn some 85,000 portraits over the last 18 years, but he also spends significant hours in his studio where he labors over gargantuan life-size pencil drawings, one of which actually won the top ArtPrize honor back in 2010. This latest work, City Band, began when LaPorte discovered an 80-year-old photograph of his grandfather’s high school marching band while rummaging through his mother’s basement. The photograph is somewhat blurry and damaged with age, but he decided to use the piece as inspiration for a drawing that now spans 13 x 26 feet and was drawn with over 100 2H pencils spanning roughly 1,200 hours of drawing time.
It’s important to note that City Band is not a photo-realistic interpretation of an old photograph, a suggestion that’s often made by other who describe LaPorte’s work. The ratio of photo to drawing is 1/540 meaning that the quality of the original image was so poor in relation to the scale of the canvas that the vast majority of details came from the artist’s head as he worked. In that sense the drawing becomes a sort of historical fiction, where LaPorte added myriad details, stories, and patterns all of which center around a theme regarding the unrelenting passing of time, a sort of visual rhythm that pulses through the entire piece.
I urge you to watch the video above by filmmaker Mary Matthews to learn more about the artwork and you can see many more photos over on his recently updated website.
Before an email arrived in my inbox this week I was completely unaware that a polyhedral panoramic perspective drawing was a thing, but apparently is, though a quick google search comes up with nothing. But I’ll take artist Rorik Smith at his word and just enjoy the incredible effects achieved in his disorienting illustrations that are drawn with graphite pencils on-site without aid from photographic reference material or digital manipulation. Smith seems to introduce polarized coordinates at random locations in each drawing and then bends the perspective of the surrounding areas to match. If that makes any sense. Love these. See much more in his portfoio.
UK-based illustrator Carne Griffiths creates these striking portraits with uncommon mediums such as tea brandy, vodka, whiskey, graphite and calligraphy ink. His drawings most frequently explore human and floral forms, as says he’s “fascinated by the flow of line and the ‘invisible lines’ that connect us to the natural world.” The four pieces above are part of a limited edition postcard set just released by Griffiths, each of which comes in a fancy custom-illustrated, wax-sealed envelope. He also has a solo show at Ink-d Gallery in Brighton that closes this Saturday. (via behance)
Michigan-based author and illustrator Mark Crilley has been working on a series of “realism challenges” on his YouTube channel. In his third installment he tackled the realistic drawing of a torn playing card. Pretty incredible. (via boing boing, thnx brian!)
Nope, not a photograph. This is an amazing portrait drawn by 29-year-old Portugal-based attorney Samuel Silva (he says art is just his “hobby”) based on a photograph by Russian photographer Kristina Tararina. Silva’s medium of choice is standard Bic ballpoint pens on paper and this particular portrait uses eight different colors, taking some 30 hours to complete. The drawing went gangbusters on Reddit last night and Silva fields a number of questions about his work over on deviantART. You can see many more of Silva’s drawings here.