digital

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Art Photography

Hundreds of Collaged Photographs Form Rich, Botanical Worlds by Artist Catherine Nelson

August 21, 2020

Grace Ebert

“Pachira,” 59 x 59 inches.  All images © Catherine Nelson, shared with permission

A decade ago, Catherine Nelson compiled hundreds of photographs of barren, snow-covered landscapes and autumnal forests for her project Future Memories 2010. The Australian artist, who lives and works between Ghent and Amsterdam, recently revisited that series to create a new body of work with similar world-building techniques. “With the tumultuous events of 2020 still unfolding and the undeniable links to the destruction of the natural world by mankind, it felt timely to return to the themes from that series, which talk about our planet and the importance of protecting what we have,” she says.

Composed of photographs captured during three years and across four continents, Future Memories 2020 spans “from the lush, tropical flora of Costa Rica and Far North Queensland and the fertile, volcanic mountains of the Azores, to the rolling hills of the Greenland tundra,” Nelson writes. Many of the orb-like digital assemblages feature thick brush and foliage around the outside, while the less-populated centers appear to bulge out. The organic spheres hover effortlessly against a cloudy backdrop, highlighting the rich colors and incredible diversity of every environment. Each piece serves as a reminder that “it is in the flourishing variety of the local that the fate of the world resides,” the artist says.

Nelson’s work is on view through September 22 at Michael Reid in Sydney and will head to Gallerysmith in Melbourne early next year. Those unable to experience the complexly assembled worlds in person can see more on her site.

 

“Cubali,” 59 x 59 inches

“Sarapiqui,” 59 x 59 inches

“Terra Nostra,” 59 x 59 inches

“Tortuguero,” 59 x 59 inches

“Tropic,” 59 x 59 inches

“Tundra,” 59 x 59 inches

“Cartago,” 59 x 59 inches

 

 



Art Illustration

Vibrant Digital Portraits by Artist Alexis Franklin Emphasize the Nuances of Emotions

August 3, 2020

Grace Ebert

All images © Alexis Franklin, shared with permission

Dallas-based artist Alexis Franklin considers her digital renderings a reinvention of the expected. “I’ve always seen the world through a filter that brings vibrance and excitement to things most people wouldn’t notice, and that’s something that I really want to have come across in my work,” she says of her expressive paintings. Through facial expressions, gestures, and color, each work highlights the nuances of the subjects’ experience, personality, and mood.

A church videographer by day, painting is Franklin’s side-project and one for which she’s received an influx of attention in recent days. She illustrated an affective portrait of Breonna Taylor, who was murdered by three Louisville police officers in March, for the cover of O, The Oprah Magazine. The two-decades-old publication has only ever featured Oprah Winfrey. This isn’t the 24-year-old’s first high-profile cover, though: she also created a powerful rendering of Anita Hill for Time earlier this year.

Franklin often shares time-lapses of her paintings-in-progress—which you can watch below and on YouTube and Instagram—that document every step of her process. “I tend to stay in the present with my work. I don’t really imagine where it’s headed,” she writes to Colossal. “I just let each project be what it is, and then I move to the next one with fresh eyes. And I’m very grateful that each project continuously seems to find me!” (via Kottke)

 

 

 



Illustration

Exquisite Digital Illustrations by Maxim Shkret Render Tousled Manes and Ruffled Feathers of Fantastical Creatures

July 31, 2020

Grace Ebert

All images © Maxim Shkret, shared with permission

Based in Moscow, artist Maxim Shkret (previously) renders animals’ coats with refined details, presenting a horse’s mane or crow’s feathers through distinct, sinuous pieces. Appearing three-dimensional, Shkret’s elegant renderings capture the flowing qualities of fur and feathers. Each digital illustration has a strict color palette, and although some creatures maintain realistic shades of browns and black, others take on a whimsical quality with blush and magenta features. To explore more of the illustrator’s digital projects, head to Behance and Instagram.

 

 

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A post shared by Maxim Shkret (@shkret) on

 

 



Animation

A Nondescript Character Sheds Suits of Fur, Bubbling Liquids, and Gnarly Wood in Hypnotic CGI Animation

July 27, 2020

Grace Ebert

From gurgling liquids to crackling fire to rainbow-colored fur, a range of materials envelop an indistinct figure in Universal Everything’s new animation. “Transfiguration” follows a central character as it wades across the screen wearing full-coverage suits that evolve with each step. Despite the mesmerizing changes in appearance, the figure never walks farther than mid-frame.

To create this new, CGI animation, Universal Everything (previously) updated a similar piece from 2011. The United Kingdom-based art and design studio engages in a wide range of digital projects, which you can find on Vimeo and Instagram.

 

 

 



Animation Art

Digital Sculptures Visualize Chirps of Amazonian Birds in a Responsive Artwork by Andy Thomas

July 22, 2020

Grace Ebert

Based on an audio recording from a 2016 trip to the Amazon, Australian artist Andy Thomas interprets birds’ trills, squawks, and coos through an animated series of digital sculptures. An extension of a previous project, “Visual Sounds of the Amazon 2” is an abstract rendering composed of bursting dots, billowing fog, and flashes of amorphous forms that correspond to the avian sounds. With each chirp, the fleeting masses contort, grow, and disassemble into a new, vibrant form.

Many of Thomas’s projects explore the intersection of technology and nature, and he tells Colossal that he sees “computers as a hyper extension of evolution.” He expands on the idea by saying:

Humans are changing the biodiversity of the natural world and gradually replacing it with digitized versions, like echoes of the past. I am fascinated with the idea of generating digital art that references the beauty and complexity of nature. I hope this piece will encourage people to research the many amazing varieties of birds that call the Amazon home, and remind us of how fragile and important this place is to us all.

The artist ascribes “Visual Sounds of the Amazon 2” a more urgent context, as well. “This series is dedicated to the people of Brazil and the ecosystem of one of the world’s most amazing forests. The Amazon is known as the lungs of the world and is under constant and ongoing threats of deforestation,” he writes in a statement about the animated project.

Find more of Thomas’s visual explorations on Instagram and Vimeo, and check out the sprawling digital creations he has available as prints in his shop.

 

 

 



Design

Surging Fractals and Glitches Are Woven into Mesmerizing Blankets by Zouassi

April 30, 2020

Grace Ebert

All images © Zouassi, shared with permission

Wrap up in one of Zouassi’s earth-toned blankets, and you’ll find yourself in the center of a complex network of digital glitches and fractals. Each tassel-edged throw appears as if it’s covered in three-dimensional patches of fringe that swell and swirl from one corner to the next. Rather than screenprinting the abstract artworks, Zouassi had them woven directly into the entrancing threads.

Similar to the seemingly infinite shapes and patterns the digital artist shares on Instagram, look closely and see how each varying stitch contributes to the overall intricacy of the blanket’s network. Pick up your own cozy throw from the shop, and maybe even grab a phone case or print from Society6.