Concept artist and illustrator Ed Binkley has crafted a style of illustration that seems at once old and new.
His finely detailed, almost monochromatic images feel as though they are from another time, or perhaps another place, with fantasy subjects inhabiting misty woods and glades, all drawn with meticulous care.
Despite the level of detail lavished on the works, they never feel overworked or artificially detailed, as is so often the case of similar subjects in the hands of less accomplished artists. Binkley knows how to balance passages of detail with open areas, both for composition and for visual dynamics. In particular there is a wonderful contrast between highly textural foreground elements and beautifully atmospheric backgrounds, in which his imaginary worlds extend into misty infinity.
Occasionally, his approach reminds me of such delightful fantasy artists as Jean-Baptiste Monge, but he really has created his own world. Binkley is obviously versed in art history, as evidenced both by his solid grounding in traditional drawing skills and occasional nods to the greats, like his wonderful take-off of Ingres’ portrait of Louis-François Bertin in Desideratum (image above, bottom, detail image here).
Binkley’s web site is not directly arranged as a gallery, but treasures are to be had if you poke around and lift a few leaves, like his step by step walk through of the creation of his piece, The Mouse’s Return (image above, top).