Illustration

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Art Illustration

Shadowy Geometric Shapes Rendered with Meticulous Crosshatching by Artist Albert Chamillard

May 4, 2020

Grace Ebert

All images © Albert Chamillard, shared with permission

Tucson-based artist Albert Chamillard (previously) spends hours, if not days or weeks, crosshatching cylinders, sliced cubes, and three-dimensional arrows. Rendered on vintage ledgers and graph paper, each geometric shape relies on the density of the artist’s pen markings to create works that appear to stand straight up off the page.

Chamillard describes his process as absorbing, often occupying him for hours at a time as he meticulously draws line after line. “A much longer process is developing the drawing in pencil first so it looks ‘right,’ meaning it fits within the page and balances the shape and looks like it belongs there,” he says. “Composition is a huge part of my work, and if it doesn’t fit on a page correctly, I won’t bother finishing it.” Despite being non-representational, the works also hold information like a diary or journal. “When I’m drawing, I thinking about everything else in my life, and usually title them in a way that conveys that snapshot of time for me, so I can look at my older drawings and know roughly what was going on.” The artist hopes to convey the necessity of devotion and patience in creative work. 

Each monochromatic drawing has a meditative and hypnotic effect, and Chamillard’s fascination with light and shadow began in 2017 when he started rendering three-dimensional shapes. Since then, though, he’s shifted his intention. “I am currently focused on drawing fabric, specifically folded fabric, and translating it into drawings using the same crosshatching technique I’ve been using 6 or 7 years,” he says. “I’m also experimenting with larger drawings comprised of multiple sheets of ledger paper.”

Often sourcing his materials from thrift stores and yard sales, the artist tells Colossal it hasn’t been as easy to obtain old notebooks in recent years. “They have since become much more difficult to find, so I rely on Etsy if I want a specific one, and I’ve also had the benefit of strangers on Instagram sending me ones they find (If you have an old ledger you want to see go to a good home, please contact me!).”

To see more of Chamillard’s volumetric drawings, and perhaps to share some of those papers you’ve got piling up in the attic, head to Instagram.

 

 

 



Art Illustration

Gears and Dials Rendered in Intricate Drawings of Gem-Encrusted Insects by Steeven Salvat

April 30, 2020

Grace Ebert

All images © Steeven Salvat, shared with permission

French artist Steeven Salvat (previously) cloaks his beetles and butterflies in an elaborate armor of rotational gears, jewel-toned gems, and muted stained glass. He tells Colossal that the heavily adorned insects merge his passion for nature, history, and science. They’re “an ode to exceptional craftsmanship and luxury houses. I want to showcase a full range of beetles species wearing some highly detailed goldsmith work, gemstones, mechanical gears, and luxury watch dials—in the style of entomologists’ studies,” Salvat says.

The artist soaks each piece of his 300 gsm watercolor paper in black tea before rendering his ornate pieces with a combination of watercolor, China ink, and white ink. “The smallest piece took me more than 30 hours of work, painting and drawing thousands of black lines with 0.13 millimeter Rotring pen,” he writes.

Salvat has two more insects currently in the works and plans to exhibit a few at DDESSIN 2020. Follow the ongoing series on his Instagram, where he also shows progress shots and deeper insight into his process. Check out his available prints in his shop.

 

 

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Art Illustration

Iconic Marble Sculptures Tattooed with Inky Backdrops and Floral Motifs by Fabio Viale

April 27, 2020

Grace Ebert

Viale’s Laocoön. All images © Fabio Viale

Italian sculptor Fabio Viale inks his marble reproductions of iconic sculptures with heavy scenes of ancient stories, swirling waves, and foreboding clouds. Each vine, flower, and dragon-based composition is settled on a darkened backdrop that tends to envelop an entire back, leg, or shoulder, triggering an uncommon amalgam of material and form.

Viale doesn’t paint the marble but rather infuses an arm or chest with color and pattern in a manner that’s similar to tattooing a human body. He collaborated with chemists to refine the blended technique and said that “not surprisingly, each natural material has its strong personality and difficulties connected to it.”

In an interview with designboom, the sculptor spoke about merging art history and what he terms the “‘criminal tattoo,’ imbued with symbols and representations that derive from artistic imagination.” Viale says that by reproducing classical works rather than creating his own busts and marble statues, he’s able to better understand the original artist and the sentiments behind the iconic pieces.

It is a meeting between life and death, between the sacred and the profane. A combination, the relationships between these two sets, results in a solid bond that creates energy: The preconception we have of classical beauty and the hardness inherent in a certain type of criminal tattoo provoke gasp and wonder.

In comparison to the original Roman sculpture, Viale’s Laocoön is missing one boy on his right side. The main writhing figure is covered from mid-thigh up to his neck and down to his forearms with dark illustrations that include the seven deadly sins in “The Inferno,” which was painted by Giovanni da Modena in the 15th Century. Both the sculptor’s “Venus de Milo” and pair of hands are covered in code often found marked on Russian inmates.

To follow Viale’s work that fuses art history and more contemporary ink-based illustrations, head to his Instagram.

Viale’s Laocoön

Viale’s Laocoön

Viale’s Venus de Milo

Tattooed Venus of Canova

Tattooed Venus of Canova

 

 



Art Illustration

Technicolor Animal Portraits Inked in Watercolor Tattoos by Sasha Unisex

April 24, 2020

Grace Ebert

All images © Sasha Unisex

Based in St. Petersburg, artist Sasha Unisex often begins a bold tattoo concept by painting a prismatic wolf or a cherry blossom-speckled origami crane with watercolor. She fills arrangements of stark shapes and precise gradients with crimson, cerulean, and tangerine hues. When the tattooist recreates her inky animals and florals on her clients’ bodies, the chromatic foxes and cats—which sometimes are outfitted with a plaid hat and pipe—look strikingly similar to the original watercolor paintings.

The artist often shares details about her travels and process, in addition to comparisons of her various wolves, cats, and lions, on her Instagram. If you’re not quite ready to commit to a permanent companion, though, Unisex offers temporary tattoos, prints, and apparel in her shop.

 

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History Illustration Science

A Natural History Compendium Catalogs Albertus Seba’s Exotic Specimens through Exacting Illustrations

April 20, 2020

Grace Ebert

All images © Taschen, shared with permission

Packed with careful illustrations of striped snakes, preserved creatures, and now-extinct animals, Cabinet of Natural Curiosities is one of the most impressive natural history compendiums of the 18th Century. Spanning nearly 600 pages, the new edition from Taschen features the work of Amsterdam-based pharmacist and zoologist Albertus Seba, who was a renowned collector of natural life. He commissioned the meticulous illustrations in 1731 that he then published into four, hand-colored volumes. The new Cabinet of Natural Curiosities catalogs these original drawings of exotic specimens in a single text and features writing by Irmgard Müsch, Jes Rust, and Rainer Willmann. Grab your copy from Taschen’s site.

 

 



Art Illustration

Sprawling Pen Illustrations in Sketchbooks by Mattias Adolfsson Incite the Wild and Absurd

April 17, 2020

Grace Ebert

All images © Mattias Adolfsson

Mattias Adolfsson’s (previously) impeccably detailed illustrations demonstrate his propensity for a controlled frenzy that borders on the chaotic but never quite passes the threshold. The Swedish artist creates fantastical drawings of city blocks, bizarre collections of writing utensils, and intricate menageries of deceased animals that merge science fiction, whimsy, and the absurd. While some of the muted artworks feature a central narrative, like the sea-bound ship below, each of his incredibly intricate pieces are impossible to consider with a single glance, in part because they cover the entire sketchbook spread. For more of Adolfsson’s sprawling illustrations, visit Instagram or Behance, and head to Etsy to add one to your own collection.

 

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Design Illustration

Mischievous Monsters Smirk and Grin in Fuzzy Alphabet Collection by Jose Arias

April 13, 2020

Grace Ebert

All images © Jose Arias

Lima-based graphic designer and illustrator Jose Arias has created a wacky cast of typographic monsters ready to cuddle you in their serifs and ascenders—Monsters Inc. meets the alphabet. Often smirking or baring a couple of teeth, Arias’s letter-based characters sometimes come adorned with coiffed hair, a gold crown, and a pair of headphones. Each has an alphabetic shape that’s formed naturally by their bodies or when they jump into the air, open their mouths, or stick out their legs.

The illustrator created the project that’s “full of hair and cuteness of characters” as part of the 36 Days of Type challenge, which asks creatives to share their conceptions of letters and numbers. Head to Instagram or Behance to check out the rest of Arias’s mischievous collection.