nature

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Art Craft

New Paper & Textile Wildlife Sculptures by Kate Kato

November 7, 2017

Laura Staugaitis

Botanical paper artist Kate Kato (previously) continues to use found and recycled paper to build intricate natural dioramas. A buzzing hive of bees makes a home in a matchbox, vintage books are overgrown with paper fungi and colorful wildflowers, and a shadow box is filled with butterflies and beetles. Rather than striving for exact scientific replication, Kato allows the original material to show through, lending a spirit of handcrafted whimsy to her work. Some of the pieces seen here can be purchased through Etsy, and you can explore more of the Wales-based artist’s work on Facebook, and Instagram.

 

 



Craft

Incredibly Lifelike Insects Crafted out of Bamboo by Noriyuki Saitoh

October 7, 2017

Laura Staugaitis

Capturing anatomical essences with uncanny skill, Japanese artist Noriyuki Saitoh constructs life-sized insects using bamboo. The natural material’s versatility lends a surprisingly wide range of colors and textures to each creature. And although the first impression is of insects that are ready to crawl or fly off the page, Saitoh engages a thoughtful process of paring down each bug to its essential forms that give the impression of life.

As the artist writes on his website, “Since we are not preparing specimens and replicas, we strictly measure the [overall] dimensions and prioritize the appearance, impressions, features, and senses rather than proportions being created exactly…reality as a work is born if you thin out the elements and leave room to imagine.”

Saitoh is active on Twitter and Facebook where you can follow more of his creations and see works in progress. (via Lustik)

 

 



Art Craft

Aspen Trees Grow on Delicate Ceramic Vessels by Heesoo Lee

September 21, 2017

Laura Staugaitis

Ceramic artist Heesoo Lee brings the textural depth of aspen forest canopies to her sculptural bowls and vases. Lee painstakingly places each and every leaf by hand, building unique, organic trees that seem to come to life with their shimmering, colorful leaves. While the vibrant glazes add a lifelike layer, the pieces are equally stunning in their unglazed form. The Montana-based artist shares many progress shots and videos on her Instagram, and works are available for purchase on Etsy. (via Lustik)

An unglazed work in progress

 

 



Photography

Aerial Images of Vibrant Landscapes by Photographer Niaz Uddin

September 19, 2017

Kate Sierzputowski

The Grand Prismatic Spring at Yellowstone National Park (all images via Niaz Uddin)

Niaz Uddin is a photographer, director, and filmmaker that explores a variety of natural landscapes from high above. His color-saturated photographs explore crowded beaches and remote tide pools, capturing each of the scenic environments from a bird’s eye view. One of my favorite images is the picture above, which provides a rare perspective of the Grand Prismatic Spring in Yellowstone National Park. You can see even more sky-high images on his Instagram, and buy limited prints on his website.

Laguna Beach

Laguna Beach

Manhattan Beach

Manhattan Beach

 

 



Art

Lisa Ericson Imagines Fantastical Ecosystems Carried on the Backs of Turtles

August 28, 2017

Laura Staugaitis

“Migration,” acrylic on wood panel, 12″ x 16″

Portland, Oregon-based artist Lisa Ericson blends her hyperreallist painting style with a vivid imagination, resulting in fantastical combinations of plants and animals. Ericson tends to focus on one specific flora/fauna combination at a time, like hybrid mouserflies or coral fish. Her most recent series, Mobile Habitats, highlights turtles that support small ecosystems on their shells. From mossy knolls surrounded by fireflies to gnarled trees leafed with monarchs, each turtle-world evokes a specific time and place.

Ericson chronicles her work on Instagram, where she shares, “these pieces are all about turtles and what they can carry on those amazing half-a-globe shells, and about things that need saving.”

The acrylic-on-panel paintings are featured in her solo show, currently on view at Antler Gallery. All of the originals have already sold, but the gallery is offering a limited edition of 50 full-sized, signed and numbered prints.

“Island,” acrylic on panel, 12″ x 12″

“Carrier,” acrylic on panel, 16″ x 12″

“Raft,” acrylic on panel, 12″ x 12″

“Terrarium,” acrylic on panel, 12″ x 12″

“Migration II,” acrylic on panel, 12″ x 16″

 

 



Art Craft

Biodiversity Reclamation Suits: Extinct Bird Costumes for Urban Pigeons Crocheted by Laurel Roth Hope

August 15, 2017

Christopher Jobson

Paradise Parrot and Guadalupe Caracara, 2013. Crocheted yarn, hand carved pigeon mannequins, walnut stands.

When first engaging with these crocheted bird suits by artist Laurel Roth Hope it’s not without a bit of whimsy and an immediately appreciation for her skill with yarn and needle. The colorful one-of-a-kind sweaters are each designed to fit a standard urban pigeon, complete with a hood retrofitted with eye and beak holes. While the project isn’t without a bit of humor, its warning is particularly dire: each suit represents an extinct bird species and highlights the futility of restoring lost biodiversity. The works are purposely displayed on hand-carved pigeon mannequins to suggest that animals we most abhor are often the ones most capable of thriving within a human-made environment.

Hope has worked as a natural-resource conservator and park ranger, both of which have deeply influenced her artwork that explores themes of environmental harm, extinction, and consumerism. You can see many more of her Biodiversity Reclamation Suits in this gallery.

Concord, 2008. Cotton, silk, bamboo, wool, and acrylic. Blended yarn mannequin: basswood, acrylic paint, gouache, glass, pewter, and walnut.

Seychelles Parakeet, 2015. Crocheted yarn, handmade pigeon mannequin, walnut stand.

Urban Pigeons: Dodo II, 2014. Crocheted yarn, handmade pigeon mannequin, walnut stand.

Passenger Pigeon II, 2014. Crocheted yarn, handmade pigeon mannequin, walnut stand.

Carolina Parakeet, 2009. Crocheted yarn, hand carved pigeon mannequin, walnut stand.

Carolina Parakeet (detail)

Bachman’s Warbler, 2015. Crocheted yarn, handmade resin pigeon mannequin, walnut stand.

 

 



Photography

Vibrant Mushroom Arrangements Photographed by Jill Bliss

August 4, 2017

Christopher Jobson

Artist and educator Jill Bliss lives on a small island in the Salish Sea, an intricate network of coastal waterways that stretches from British Columbia to the Pacific Northwest. It’s here amongst a vast array of biodiversity that she creates artworks that span illustration, photography, and the temporary arrangement of local plants and mushrooms she refers to as Nature Medleys. Many of her pieces are available as prints and stationery in her online shop and you can follow her adventures around the Salish sea on Instagram.