This is an illustration I was asked to do for a poster for an art fair/exhibition. I tried to make a comment on art typically produced now. With so much digital involvement and technology used in the making of work, the traditional idea of the artist producing work in the moment, messily splashing paint, might now be less common. I think blue is a colour that has been chosen by artists in the past because it can be effectively used on its own. While it is associated with being cold and stark it can be powerful, rich and effective in combination with black. Yves Klein and Picasso are two artists who used just blue to good effect. Another element of this illustration which has been possible with the use of blue is the suggestion of orange light. The blue in the shadows makes the illuminated areas from the light of the candle standout. Blue and orange are complimentary colours so while there is no orange used, the blue gives a suggestion of the colour of the warm light source. It was also important to give the image a traditional and possibly nostalgic feel. I have worked in the past with lithography and here I tried to replicate the hand produced feel and marks possible but also the way sections of colour are introduced in this old and complex printmaking medium. The print ‘Dinner Party’, below is a lithograph I made previous to this illustration. Having recently been to the London Art Fair I saw some great lithographs, including Andy Wahol’s ‘One Blue Pussy’ and ‘A Cat Named Sam’. Edward Bawden’s prints and Chris Orr’s ‘Journey To The Centre Of The Earth’ were other great Lithographs at the fair. Abstract Expressionism is another period in art that I wanted to reference. Pollock’s splash painting is referenced in the subject. Also an inspiration was the work of Max Beckmann and Otto Dix, whose simple, abstract, sometimes mechanical forms and figures were used, making gestures, actions and expressions more exaggerated.
This is a commission I did for New Turn magazine. The subject is Barak Obama’s pledge before he came to power to close Guantanamo Bay. In reality that hasn’t happened and as he campaigns again to remain president, there is a question of how we can believe any promise or commitment to policy, politicians make. An online version of the magazine can be found here: newturn_magazine_2 and the website for new turn is here: www.newturn.org.uk . The New Turn is a very proactive organisation which has holds talks with leading politicians, discussions, as well as the magazine which has social, political and cultural comment.
This is another illustration I did for, The New Wolf’. The article was written by Jamie Tennent, on the book ‘Sound’ by T.M. Wolf. The book has been described as revolutionary in terms of its layout- similar to a music score and it’s content, a break through in terms of its originality compared to ‘Generation X’. The book follows a young man, taking leave from studying for a Doctorate in Philosophy to work and live in New Jersey, in a Boat Yard. Many interesting characters and relationships are described, including, an unconventional relationship with a local girl, the reuniting with an old friend who fronts a covers band. Also, the pothead, albino twin and rastafarian co workers from the Boat Yard. This is also set against the backdrop of New Jersey with sycamores, synagogues, rococco palaces, modernist estates, palm trees and swimming pools.
The illustration shows his position as shift manager in a Boat Yard, caught up in dreams, ideas and music that occupy his mind. A part of this is the paranoia of police surveillance he developed and also the relationship with a local girl, Vera, described as beautiful yet frustrating and odd. You can read the article here: www.thenewwolf.co.uk/2012/08/t-m-wolf-sound/
An illustration I did for an article on Advertising, for the Online magazine New Wolf, www.thenewwolf.co.uk . They are a collective of independent, creative minds who comment and review art, politics and current social issues. They also host events and exhibitions, wanting to offer a wider picture of the world, telling stories which are sometimes missed or overlooked. It is great to work on projects which deal with important, serious matters but also look at the newest art and culture. It’s enjoyable producing this find of satirical, critical work. The intentions were to challenge, provoke and offer humourous perspectives, as a counter weight to popular opinion, but not enforce any particular persuasion or make judgement. This illustration shows the dilema of the writer. The article describes his employment in the advertising industry, despite having a more Marxist political standpoint. I used a quote on advertising being the ‘Belly of the beast’ of business and combined it with a stereotype of a London business worker, to provide a metaphor for consumerism. I think the interpretation offers a simplistic standpoint on the irony of advertising but more significantly a humourous questioning of where industry is heading, why people consciously engage with consumerism and the sophistication sometimes needed in advertising. Here is a sketch which was the starting point for the finished illustration above.