Canadian artist Annette Labedzki specializes in abstract figurative painting, but she’s also discovered the internet’s insatiable taste for the unusual and obscure with her Instagram account where she shares paint mixing videos. If watching paint dry is the most boring thing in the world, watching paint mix might be one of the more interesting things. For some of her clips Labedzki makes symmetrical versions, where the palette knife is obscured and everything seems to happen like magic. You can see more here. (thnx, kim!)
While working in the studio, paint is bound to drip, splatter, and brush up against an artist’s clothes, transforming a studio uniform into a chaotic collection of attractive mishaps. Designer Olya Glagoleva in collaboration with Russian artist Lisa Smirnova (previously) captured this look with an elegantly designed twist. All of the clothing included in their collection is embroidered in the style of Smirnova, with the markings of accidental paint drips and doodles adorning each of the jumpsuits, dresses, and smock-like blouses. The pieces are all one-of-a-kind, transforming the clothing into unique artworks that have taken nearly 100 hours to make. You can see more of Glagoleva’s designs with her line GO on her Instagram @go_with_olya, and more of Smirnova’s embroidery and illustrations on her own @lisa_smirnova. See more from this collection on Behance.
In a poetic twist of fate, end-of-life paintbrushes are whittled down and sculpted into artwork by San Francisco-based artist Rebecca Szeto. Tools that were once used to create artwork, now bear the face of female portraits largely inspired by women of the Renaissance period and other female figures of art history. Szeto, who previously worked as a faux finisher, uses her skill and background to create playful objects that question our notions of beauty and value; trash and treasure. “The slow and repetitive nature of whittling becomes a meditative activity,” says Szeto, referring to her ongoing series of Paintbrush Portraits. For Szeto, the build-up of paint layers helps define their ultimate form as she reflects “on the idiosyncrasies of each individual brush.” (Via Lustik)
Working from his studio in Alpine, Texas, artist Mark Lovejoy creates richly textured images of mixed paint, but although he’s somewhat secretive about his process, one thing is clear: they aren’t just photographs of mixed paint. The act of creating the color formations alone sounds more like an act of chemistry than art as he mixes resins, oils, diluents, waxes, and drying agents to create the gloppy textures you see here. Portions are then photographed, reworked, and reshot. In the end, we’re left staring at beautifully colorful images that exist somewhere between salt water taffy, Jackson Pollock paintings, and an alluring industrial accident. Whatever they are, Lovejoy is extremely proficient, cranking out several images each day which he shares on his website. Prints are available of every image. (via It’s Nice That)
This interesting blend of paint and typography by Warsaw-based designer Pawel Nolbert was created by photographing actual paint splatters and merging them with digital illustration techniques. Titled Atypical, he describes the series of posters as an exploration of the form and rhythm of letterforms “presented as half-realistic, half-illustrative figurative sculptures.” You can see more on his website, and prints are available on Society6. (via Illusion)
Old car factories had a harmful impact on the environment, releasing toxic chemicals into the air, land and water. But it wasn’t all ugly. Oddly enough, one of the by-products of car production was Fordite, also known as Detroit agate. The colorful layered objects take their name from agate stones for their visual resemblance. But instead of forming from microscopically crystallized silica over millions of years, Fordite was formed from layers of paint over several tens of years. Back in the day, old automobile paint would drip onto the metal racks that transported cars through the paint shop and into the oven. The paint was hardened to a rock-like state thanks to high heats from the baking process. As the urban legend goes, plant workers would take pieces home in their lunch pails as a souvenir for their wife or kids.
Since then, car production has modernized and Fordite has been rendered a relic of the past. Artisans have been using the colorful material for jewelry but it’s not a stretch to imagine a future when these pieces sit behind glass in a museum. The colors can also be used to judge how old they are because car paint was subject to different trends. In the 1940s cars were mostly black or brown enamel while the 1960s ushered in an age of colorful lacquers. (via My Modern Met, Fordite.com)