A Full Spectrum of Waves Course Through Warren Keelan’s Aquatic Photography Edited With the HP ZBook x2

February 12, 2019

Colossal + HP


Whereas many people see the world’s water-covered surface as a monolith, photographer Warren Keelan (previously) makes a living seeing the ocean’s constant changes, day to day and even moment to moment. Keelan, who is based in New South Wales, Australia, suits up in neoprene to capture ocean water from inside, above, and below. In Keelan’s luminescent photographs, the aquatic environment is framed by glinting sunlight, crashing waves, and glimmering rainbows.

The photographer captures a range of macro and micro shots, detailing both the tiniest bubbles emerging at the water’s surface and the grand scale of tall wave walls. Keelan then brings his treasure trove of fieldwork back to his studio and gallery to fine-tune each photograph, ensuring that it captures the fullest version of the moment he experienced in the water. For his most recent photographs, we equipped Keelan with an HP ZBook x2 to see how the workstation’s innovative structural design would support the artist with his post-production process.

“In order to produce my best quality work, I require a computer that is not only fast and reliable, but a system which provides a professional viewing platform for image editing and processing,” Keelan explains. “I have used many HP laptops, monitors and peripherals throughout my career as an ocean photographer, and I can honestly say the new release HP ZBook x2 is the most powerful and versatile digital darkroom I’ve worked with.”

“The combination of its 4K LED-backlit touch screen and powerful Intel i7 processor makes it the ideal workstation for Adobe’s Lightroom and Photoshop. Until now, I’d never used a tablet-style device for my gallery workflow, but since I switched from touchpad-and-mouse to ZBook’s touchscreen-and-pen combination, my editing has become significantly faster. The HP ZBook x2 is a game changer for me as a photographer and image creator.”

Though the artist is lucky to have easy access to the ocean, he also embarks on further-flung adventures to capture aquatic moments. This fall, Keelan headed to the Kingdom of Tonga, an archipelago of islands in Polynesia, to capture the majesty of humpback whales in their natural environment. Keep an eye on his Instagram to catch glimpses of his larger-than-life trip. Keelan also offers prints of his photographs in his brick-and-mortar gallery (don’t worry, he ships worldwide!).

Learn more about the HP ZBook x2 at hp.com.






This post was sponsored by HP. 





Mysterious Worlds Collide in Justin Peters’ Digital Collages Created with HP’s ZBook x2

February 8, 2019

Colossal + HP

German artist Justin Peters (previously) uses the wide world of photography to create unique composite images. Peters’ dreamy creations play with scale and proportion, mixing human-sized objects like jellyfish and surfboards with the monumental: moons take the place of beach-side campfires and whales breach above foggy mountain ranges. The prolific 23-year-old artist has been sharing his fantastical digital collages since 2016 on Instagram, and the world took notice of his work this past summer, with his creations ricocheting around the internet.

Thematically, Peters frequently combines disparate elements from the natural world, with a particular focus on celestial imagery. He shares with Colossal that he incorporates these outer-space elements to help visualize the vastness of human imagination. Peters describes his creative process as working on multiple pieces simultaneously, as he looks for similarities between objects and how components could realistically work together. Whereas many collage artists use strong juxtapositions to create metaphorical contrasts, Peters creates a subtle sense of magical realism by seamlessly integrating the various elements in his images. Professionally, Peters works exclusively in digital media, describing it as the way of the future, though he also experiments with drawing and photography in his free time.

With his focus on digital media and particularly Adobe Photoshop, we asked Peters to take the new HP ZBook x2 for a test drive. The artist shares, I have always used a Wacom graphics tablet, but what I love about the ZBook is that it combines the best features of a powerful laptop and a graphics tablet into one device. You can use it in so many different ways!I also really appreciate the flexibility it provides me to work wherever I want away from my desk, or to stand up and continue working after many hours of sitting down.”

The ZBook x2’s versatility allows Peters to work quickly and efficiently, without switching between different devices. “My editing process requires a great deal of control over objects, and using the Wacom pen directly on the ZBook’s matte display rather than a separate tablet feels great and makes my edits even more accurate. I use many shortcuts in Photoshop, so being able to access these using the buttons on both sides of the detached tablet makes my workflow even faster. The ZBook x2 really is a complete package for creative artists.”

You can see more of Justin Peters’ recent work on Instagram.

Learn more about the HP ZBook x2 at hp.com.

This post was sponsored by HP.




Artist Maude White Counts on Squarespace to Showcase Her Stunning Papercut Artworks

February 5, 2019


Photos by Maude White unless otherwise noted

Artist and self-described craftsperson Maude White (previously) captures gentle moments of beauty and grace in her meticulously detailed paper cut artworks. White has worked in paper for the last several years, first exploring her signature medium with simple silhouettes and popup books. The New York-based artist now focuses on the organic forms of female portraits, flowers, and birds. “Every piece I create has its own identity,” White explains. “The knife, and me, and the paper are all in a dialog together, all talking and getting along. The last thing I do is cut it out of the surrounding paper. It comes alive, or is born, and we meet each other for the first time. It’s a completely living thing apart from me.” 

“When I first started cutting paper it was not a career,” White explains to Colossal. “That’s really the way to approach anything, to do it for the joy of it and use it as a way to learn.” By sharing her work online with a Squarespace portfolio site, the self-taught artist has been able to reach a worldwide audience and find success. In addition to her gallery-ready original papercuts, White has partnered with Abrams Books and Paralax Press to release two books—Leading with Love and Brave Birds—that bring her artwork and message of uplift to life.

She shares that the methodical and meditative practice of cutting paper has been a healthy way to express her desire for order and control. In shaping her online presence as an in-demand artist, White explains that it’s very important to her to share this sense of safety and wellbeing with others: “I like all of my work to be comforting or a safe space. Beauty is a form of love. Creating something beautiful allows people to experience love when they look at it.”

White shares that creating her website on Squarespace allows her to feel assured that her website stands up to the finesse of her artwork. “I like things to look the same, flow together, and stay consistent. I love black and white. I like having control and knowing exactly what i’m looking at and what i’m going to get, and it’s always going to look beautiful.”

Ready to set your portfolio site apart? Head to Squarespace.com for a free trial and when you’re ready to launch, use the offer code COLOSSAL to save 10% off your first purchase.

Photograph by Laura Glazer; hand-cut paper by Maude White; reproduced from Brave Birds, Abrams Image, 2018

AdvertisementThis post was sponsored by Squarespace.



Classes Begin January 28 at the School of Visual Arts Division of Continuing Education

December 17, 2018


photo credit: Svetlana Jovanovic

From one-day workshops to semester-long courses, take the opportunity to immerse yourself and be inspired. If you need advice or have questions, our information sessions begin Tuesday, January 8th. Visit sva.edu/continued/events for details.

Courses are available in:

For advice on courses, visit sva.edu/ce/course-advice. To register, visit sva.edu/ce/registration-details.

About the School of Visual Arts
School of Visual Arts has been a leader in the education of artists, designers and creative professionals for seven decades. With a faculty of distinguished working professionals, a dynamic curriculum and an emphasis on critical thinking, SVA is a catalyst for innovation and social responsibility. Comprising 6,000 students at its Manhattan campus and 35,000 alumni in 100 countries, SVA also represents one of the most influential artistic communities in the world. For information about the College please visit sva.edu.



New NYC Museum Teams Up With Library of Congress for Animation Competition

November 26, 2018


Lloyd J. Harris Pies by Rocco Navigato, 1947

Poster House is a new museum dedicated to the global history and design of posters. Before launch, they are partnering with the largest library in the world, The Library of Congress, to highlight important pieces of poster history. Choose one of 31 posters from the Library of Congress “free to use and re-use” collection, and animate it in any way you can imagine, bringing new life to these poignant historical vignettes. The competition is open to absolutely everyone: professionals, students, and dabblers alike.

Twenty winning works chosen by a panel of design legends will populate the museum’s storefront in Manhattan leading up to its grand opening. Winners will also receive free museum membership, their names shown alongside their work in the museum’s window and all social/PR/web publicity, and the chance for a mentorship hour or portfolio review from one of our esteemed judges. For complete rules, regulations, and image options see posterhouse.org. Submissions due no later than December 31!

WPA / Rumor by Vera Bock, 1939

TWA / New York by David Klein, 1956

Keep Your Teeth Clean by an Unknown Artist, 1936

Chocolat Klaus by Leonetto Cappiello, 1903




Top Graduate Design Programs that Anticipate the Future

October 1, 2018


Design is a powerful tool for change. At Parsons School of Design in New York City, graduate students use design to tackle the world’s most complex challenges from a human-centered perspective. Through focused training, experimentation, and exploration, they combine multiple disciplines and harness their creativity to create a more just, better-designed world.

Check out these highlights among Parsons’ 17 master’s programs in which students apply design methods to specific fields:

Data Visualization
Apply design to data. In this one-year program, students combine design with computer science, statistical analysis, and social consciousness to turn information into insight. Graduates are able to distill and display data that shapes decisions, policy, and change across professional sectors.

Design and Urban Ecologies
Apply design to the streets. Transform cities by redesigning urban processes alongside the communities that live there. Gain a broad understanding of urban development and pursue projects that transform community organizing, public space, housing, infrastructure, and more.

Lighting Design
Apply design to darkness. Explore the relationship between lighting and human experience, sustainability, and social impact, with a solid foundation in the intellectual, aesthetic, and technical dimensions of light. Option to combine with studies in Architecture or Interior Design.

Strategic Design and Management
Apply design to business. This program uses design tools like ideation, prototyping, and collaboration to develop new business models and organizational designs. Graduates are equipped with strategy, management, and entrepreneurship skills needed to lead the 21st-century global economy.

Apply design to fiber. Students in this program explore the unlimited applications of textiles and the potential to unite craft & digital technology. Graduates are prepared for diverse creative and professional opportunities related to textiles in fashion, product design, interior design, research, fine arts, and hybrid fields.



The Universe Contemplated in Taos, with Sound and Light, at PASEO 2018 (Sponsor)

August 20, 2018


Artist Cristopher Cichocki works on Circular Dimensions

The PASEO nighttime art festival emerged in 2014 as a platform to present installation, performance and projection art on the streets of Taos Historic District. Taos, New Mexico is a town with a long-standing reputation as an art destination and is arguably one of the oldest art colonies in the United States, founded in 1898. The town itself was established in 1615 and is adjacent to the thousand-year-old Taos Pueblo. Combined, Taos is perhaps an unlikely site for a new media art festival, focused this year on the cosmos, however the community has embraced the event.

At the PASEO 2018, local, national and international artists will present immersive and participatory art installations that harness art, science, and technology to explore the idea of “Space” –both outer and inner space– through multi-sensory experiences. The nexus for the festival will be the Space Cloud in Kit Carson Park, an inflated 8,000 sq. ft. pavilion designed by Espacio La Nube of Madrid, Spain. Within the Space Cloud, the park and throughout the adjoining streets of Taos, 18 art interactions will engage the community with thought-provoking and playful experiences for public sharing. Pre- and post-festival workshops and parties are planned.

Learn about the 30 artists who are part of this year’s festival.

The PASEO 2018 is slated for September 14 and 15, 7–11 pm.



A Colossal


Animal Multi-Tool