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Art

Serene Wooded Landscapes Nestle Inside Introspective Silhouette Paintings by Megan Aline

January 24, 2022

Grace Ebert

“Everything Changes,” acrylic on panel, 16 x 12 inches. All images © Megan Aline, shared with permission

In Unseen Roots, artist Megan Aline fills silhouettes with brush, autumn foliage, and tall, skinny trees that span from torso to crown. Her solo show at Robert Lange Studio in Charleston consists of dozens of acrylic works that expose a small glimpse of a landscape hidden within each figure. “As we become increasingly disconnected from the natural world, I think the memory of nature becomes even stronger inside each of us,” the artist shares. “If you only spent weekends in the woods or summers at your grandmothers or you have a park you visit from time to time, it becomes the quiet space inside you that you can escape to even when you aren’t there.”

To render the contemplative works, Aline paints inside a stenciled silhouette on panel, which creates crisp outlines of each figure—she shares videos of this process on Instagram—and visible brushstrokes in pastel and neutral tones comprise the paintings’ backdrops. “As an artist, I spend a lot of time reflecting inwardly as I paint outwardly,” she writes. “I like the idea that we have an ‘inner landscape,’ a map created from emotions, ideas, and sensations collected throughout our lives.”

Unseen Roots is on view through January 28, and you can shop prints of Aline’s introspective silhouettes on her site. (via Supersonic Art)

 

“Deepest Pathways,” acrylic on panel, 16 x 16 inches

“Deeper Time,” acrylic on panel, 20 x 20 inches

Top: “Constantly Growing,” acrylic on panel, 20 x 30 inches. Bottom left: “Emergence,” acrylic on panel, 18 x 24 inches. Bottom right: “Radiance,” acrylic on panel, 16 x 16 inches

“Deeper Change,” acrylic on panel, 20 x 20 inches

“Positive Light,” acrylic on panel, 8 x 8 inches

“An Underlying Message,” acrylic on panel, 24 x 24 inches

“Beyond the Surface,” acrylic on panel, 16 x 16 inches

 

 



Craft

Learn to Paint Magical Scenes in Thread in a New Book by Embroidery Artist Emillie Ferris

January 13, 2022

Grace Ebert

All images © Emillie Ferris, courtesy of David & Charles, shared with permission

U.K.-based artist Emillie Ferris (previously) has spent nearly a decade refining her distinct embroidery technique, which involves staggering long and short stitches to create textured portrayals of flora and fauna. She’s crafted magical butterflies in smooth gradients, bees that appear as fuzzy as their real-life counterparts, and a variety of realistic portraits that use sweeping, layered passes associated with brushstrokes to render images in fiber.

Now her work culminates in a forthcoming book published by David & Charles titled Paint with Thread: A Step-By-Step Guide to Embroidery Through the Seasons. The how-to volume contains instructions for creating five projects shown here, in addition to tips and tricks from the artist, and is available for pre-order on Bookshop. In the meantime, shop more of Ferris’s tutorials and patterns on Etsy.

 

 

 



Illustration Science

In 'Wild Design,' Vintage Illustrations Expose the Patterns and Shapes Behind All Life on Earth

January 5, 2022

Grace Ebert

Ernst Haeckel, Kunstformen der Natur, 1904. Gotha: Bibliographisches Institut. All images from Wild Design: Nature’s Architects by Kimberly Ridley, published by Princeton Architectural Press, shared with permission of the publisher

Focusing on the patterns and shapes that structure the planet, a new book published by Princeton Architectural Press explores the science behind a trove of organically occurring forms. Wild Design: Nature’s Architects by author Kimberly Ridley pairs dozens of vintage illustrations—spot the work of famed German biologist Ernst Haeckel (previously) among them—with essays detailing the function of the striking phenomena, from the smallest organisms to the monumental foundations that extend across vast swaths of land. These structures are simultaneously beautiful and crucial to life on Earth and include the sprawling mycelium networks connecting life above and below ground, the papery, hexagonal cells comprising honeycomb, and a spider’s funnel-like web tailored to trap its prey. Dive further into the world of Wild Design by picking up a copy from Bookshop.

 

(Johann Andreas Naumann, Naturgeschichte der Vögel Deutschlands, 1820. Leipzig: G. Fleischer

Ernst Haeckel, Kunstformen der Natur, 1904. Gotha: Bibliographisches Institut

Berthold Seemann, Journal of Botany, 1863. London: R. Hardwicke

Henry C. McCook, American Spiders and Their Spinning Work, 1889. Philadelphia: Academy of Natural Science of Philadelphia

 

Henri de Saussure, Études sur la famille des vespides, 1852. Paris: V. Masson

Oliver B. Bunce and William C. Cullen, Picturesque America, 1872. New York: D. Appleton

 

 



Photography

A Montage of 64 Portraits Reveals the Wildly Diverse Characteristics of Foxes

December 21, 2021

Grace Ebert

All images © Roeselien Raimond, shared with permission

Back in 2009, Dutch wildlife photographer Roeselien Raimond snapped a portrait of a fox that always seemed to be squinting her eyes in contemplation. That first image sparked a fascination with the creatures and their idiosyncratic expressions, an interest that’s culminated in a decades-long project and now montage documenting the fantastically diverse animals. “Foxes’ characters may differ as much as human characters,” she writes. “Shy and arrogant, from wallflower to cocky, chronically happy or notoriously sad. Helpful or headstrong. Mischievous and cute. Name it, and you’ll have a fox version of it.”

Raimond photographed all foxes from the same angle to allow for easy comparisons, and the result reveals a wildly varied display of characteristics: there are differences in fur color and pattern, face shape, eyes, snout length, and the way their fur trims their ears. Even their expressions aren’t alike, and some appear to bask in the sunlight while others intently focus on an object in front of them.

The collected portraits and individual shots are available as prints in Raimond’s shop, and she shares many of her wildlife encounters on Instagram. You also might enjoy this study of bee faces. (via My Modern Met)

 

 

 



Art Illustration

Foliage Sprouts from Four Imaginative Clay Illustrations by Irma Gruenholz

December 15, 2021

Grace Ebert

All images © Irma Gruenholz, shared with permission

It’s easy to mistake Irma Gruenholz’s whimsical ceramic figures for two-dimensional illustrations. The Madrid-based artist (previously) is known for her sculptures and still lifes in clay that resemble flat graphics and drawings, although her works require precise positioning and photographing before they’re printed in the pages of a magazine or children’s book.

In addition to working on commissions for major publications and brands in the last few years, Gruenholz’s most recent projects include four imaginative figures tattooed with foliage and sprouting leafy branches from their heads. “During Covid lockdown, I have had time to reflect and realize how important it is to respect your internal rhythm when you are creating,” she says. “I think there has to be another way of living, a slow life good for the people and for the planet.”

Head to Behance and Instagram for glimpses into the process behind these fantastical figures and to explore a larger archive of the artist’s illustrative work.

 

 

 



Photography

Jane Goodall, Paul Nicklen, and 100 Photographers and Conservationists Join a Print Sale to Protect the Environment

December 3, 2021

Grace Ebert

Kilifi was an 18-month-old rhino and his keeper, Kamara was hand-raising along with two other baby rhinos at Lewa Wildlife Conservancy in Kenya. Kamara spends 12 hours every day watching over the vulnerable baby rhinos. He loves these animals like his own children and is part of the reason Kenya’s black rhinos, whose population had plummeted to near extinction, are doing so well here. Photo © Ami Vitale

A collaborative effort by 100 world-renowned photographers and conservationists is harnessing the power of an image to generate much-needed empathy and protect the environment. Helmed by the woman-led nonprofit Vital Impacts, an ongoing print sale captures the stunning, intimate, and remarkable sights of the natural world through a diverse array of works focused on the earth’s landscapes, plants, and animals. “As world leaders disperse to implement COP26, these photographers show us exactly what is at stake. The photographs from all the artists in this initiative are diverse but the one thing they all have in common is a shared commitment to the environment,” co-founder Ami Vitale says.

Available images include a signed self-portrait by Jane Goodall and shots by some of Colossal’s favorites, including Paul Nicklen (previously), Xavi Bou (previously), Reuben Wu (previously), and Tim Flach (previously). Sixty percent of the net profits will go toward four programs—Big Life Foundation, Jane Goodall Institute’s Roots and Shoots, Great Plains Conservation’s Project Ranger, and SeaLegacy—and you can shop the sale, which is operating on an entirely carbon-neutral platform, through the end of the month. (via PetaPixel)

 

The Nenana River wolf pack spends time in Denali National park and just East of the Park. The pack is moving more and more away from the Park into territory where it is legal to hunt wolves. Photo © Aaron Huey

A resting endangered Green Sea Turtle surrounded by Glass Fish on the back of the Ningaloo reef. Photo © Aimee Jan

While on a remote climbing expedition in Greenland, I was approached by a curious polar bear while scouting fjords in a small zodiac boat. The moment lasted only a brief second before the bear dove down and into the icy arctic sea. Photo © Andy Mann

As night falls over the Makgadikgadi Pans, giant trees stand starkly against the horizon. Leafless branches reach for the light. On the opposite side of the sky, Earth’s shadow is rising. True wildness manifests itself in the form of curling black branches in November, silhouetted against an indigo sky. Photo © Beth Moon

Self-portrait © Jane Goodall

Image taken for National Geographic on the Pristine Seas Expedition to Franz Josef Land, 2013. Underwater Walrus shots from near Hooker Island. Photo © Cory Richards

Heron Island, Queensland, Australia. A Green Sea Turtle hatchling cautiously surfaces for air to a sky full of hungry birds. Against all odds, this hatchling must battle through the conditions of a raging storm whilst evading a myriad of predators. Not only has the tropical storm brought out thousands of circling birds, but there are also patrolling sharks and large schools of fish on the hunt for baby turtles. Only 1 in 1000 of these hatchlings will survive, will this one survive against all odds. Photo © Hanna Le Leu

In winter, Japanese macaques in the Joshin’etsukogen National Park, on the island of Honshu, congregate in the hot-spring pools, to stay warm and to socialize. The colder it gets in the mountains, the more of them head for the pools. Photo © Jasper Doest

Giant Sequoia Trees, photographed for National Geographic. These trees are without a doubt my favorite and a species endemic to California’s Sierra Mountains. Fully matured trees grow upwards of 250 feet tall, can live for over 3,000 years, and have fire retardant bark that’s three feet thick. Photo © Keith Ladzinski

Hope Through The Storm. Renan Ozturk lives to tell stories about our connection to the natural world, often set within the most challenging environments on Earth. Photo © Renan Ozturk

A school of sailfish set upon a ball of sardines off Isla Mujeres, Mexico. Photo © Shawn Heinrichs

 

 

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