Posts tagged with artists on tumblr
The Creators of Chicago: Artist Luke Pelletier
Graphic designer Lucy Hewett was 27 when she quit her job at a marketing agency and taught herself to take photos, experimenting on friends to hone her portraiture skills. Going freelance was a struggle (stylized portraits don’t pay quite like ad campaigns for McDonald’s) but Hewett credits her success, in part, to the support of her local creative network. This would have been the first in a series of ten profiles, but life had other plans. Enjoy this first and last installment anyway, and thanks for reading with us.
Table Manners: Turning Restaurant Stationery into Art
When New York-based artist Jay Batlle dines out, he’s still on the clock. Of course, he’s at the restaurant to feast and imbibe and commune with friends. Upon the meal’s consummation, however, he poses a question he’s been regularly asking restaurant staffers for the past decade. They oblige, and a blank sheet of the venue’s stationary is carefully placed in his hands. He’ll return home, and on it, in watercolor and pen and wine and coffee grounds, he’ll express his thoughts — on the evening, the atmosphere, the idea of decadence and societal consumption and what fine dining has become.
Batlle (pronounced “Battle”) chronicles this gastronomic collection, The Stationery Series, on his tumblr, Restaurant Restaurant. He eventually plans to turn it into a three-volume book, but he’s not stopping anytime soon. Here, we talk to the artist about New York cuisine, Balthazar, and pouring wine down the drain.
The Fine Art of Coffee Portraiture
Here’s more evidence to back up all those studies on boredom inspiring creativity: Meet Mike Breach, barista extraordinaire, who “paints” everything — and everyone — into his lattes. “I’m an esspressionist,” he proudly proclaims. Just last year, Breach was idling away his customer-less hours in the back of a hotel kitchen with only a dormant espresso machine for company. He was “so, so bored.” So he taught himself how to inscribe ornate hearts in coffee foam, with a bamboo skewer as his paintbrush. “People got so excited about it!” says Breach. He took it further; out came the teddy bears (“the girls just love those”), a portrait of that hotel boss (“I didn’t show it to him, but my coworkers and I laughed about it”), and Salvador Dalì, and Edward Scissorhands, and Beyoncé.
We’re at the Smile To-Go, and he’s frothing some milk behind the counter; the shushing of the machine almost drowns out his words. He reflects. “It’s like, if something is lacking, you’ve got to find a way to make it exciting and fun. Right? I mean, I’m so happy that my old job was so boring! Otherwise I wouldn’t be making these! And this is just the beginning. I want to start a movement.” The milk is now pillowy, foamy-soft — perfect for the latte Breach is about to pour. He stares into his empty chestnut-colored canvas, and suddenly looks up. “I’ve been wanting to try Snoop. Let’s do that, yea?”
Noelle Stevenson’s Guide to Blowing Up on Tumblr
Noelle Stevenson, aka gingerhaze, joined Tumblr to share her fan art — comics based on movies like X-Men: First Class and Lord of the Rings. In the summer of 2011, she started posting “The Broship of the Ring,” a modern interpretation of the LoTR characters as hipsters and fratboys, and everything kind of … exploded. Stevenson’s online following shot way up, and since then, she’s landed an internship at a comics publisher and has signed with a literary agent.
She’s also been offered a contract to publish in hard copy her original webcomic project, Nimona — the story of aspiring supervillain Lord Ballister Blackheart, who never seems to get anywhere with his evil plots. That is, until he takes on a new sidekick, Nimona, a shapeshifter with poor impulse control who likes to solve problems by blowing things up. Nimona recently won the Cartoonist Studio Prize for Best Webcomic of the Year by Slate Magazine and the Center for Cartoon Studies. It was also named one of io9’s top ten Best New and Short Webcomics of 2012. We had a chance to talk to Stevenson about breaking out and Hulking out.
How long have you been drawing?
I’ve been drawing pretty much as long as I can remember. It was a hobby of mine as a child, and I grew up and that was still what I wanted to do.
At Gowanus Canal, Turning Toxic Waste Into Art
New York’s Gowanus Canal is notoriously toxic — full of dangerous chemicals, industrial waste, and yes, poop. It reeks in the summer and lives in the popular imagination as the perfect dumping ground for dead bodies. No plant or animal life can survive in it for long. This tends to inspire two kinds of images: gritty photos of the filth and pollution, and scenic landscapes that try not to dwell too long on the former.
I Am Legion: Universe of One
Cheyne Gallarde was born and raised in Hawaii in the 80s, but he claims “my soul feels like it was born in the 50s.” His affection for midcentury Americana is plainly evident in the fashion photography of Gallarde’s studio Firebird Photography. Gallarde’s work combines a love of theater (and the theatrical) with maximalist colors and a kinetic feel. All of these elements came together in his Universe of One project, where Gallarde photographs himself as various characters using all the tools at his command, from makeup and wardrobe to lighting and backdrops. After testing the waters with his Tumblr, Gallarde decided to transform his transformations into a book via Kickstarter, with a modest cash goal that was funded almost immediately. Before that’s even done, he’ll spin it off into a second book, Twinsies, which will get its own Kickstarter very shortly. To demonstrate his skills, Gallarde offered to incarnate our own David Karp, and the man himself graciously accepted. The results and process may be seen above, and our talk with Gallarde appears below.