Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Grahame Baker Smith

Grahame Baker Smith
UK illustrator Grahame Baker Smith is known for his interpretation of classics like Pinocchio and Robin Hood, as well as contemporary works like Leon and the Place Between and FArTHER. His work for the latter garnered him the Kate Greenaway Medal in 2011 (a British medal awarded each year for “distinguished illustration in a book for children”).

Smith has also done diverse projects like album cover art for Robert Plant, and an animation project on which he is currently working.

He works in both traditional and digital media, varying his approach as the project demands. Some of his pieces look like assemblages, some are straightforward, some lighter, some darker.

In taking on the challenge of a series of stamps for the Royal Mail marking the 150th anniversary of the publication of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Smith has neatly sidestepped the problem of getting around the definitive interpretations of Tenniel and Rackham by taking a distinctly modern approach.

Eye candy for Today: Jan de Beijer ink and wash drawing

Grebbesluis, Jan de Beijer , pen and wash
Grebbesluis, Jan de Beijer

Ink and wash, roughly 4 1/2 x 12 (120x30cm). In the Rijksmuseum.

With clear observation, economical delineation and a few simple tones, 18th century draftsmana nd painter Jan de Beijer gives us an evocative semi-panoramic scene. It looks to me like the right side of the drawing may have been cut off, perhaps the scene was even wider.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Sargent: Portraits of Artists and Friends

Sargent: Portraits of Artists and Friends, John Singer Sargent exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art

“Sargent: Portraits of Artists and Friends” is a new exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art until October 4, 2015.

Over 100 of Sargent’s oils, watercolors and drawings, on loan and from the museum’s own superb collection.

My God, what more do you want me to say? Just go if you possibly can.

Friday, July 3, 2015

Kazumasa Uchio

Kazumasa Uchio
Kazumasa Uchio is a Japanese concept artist and fantasy illustrator. Beyond that, I have little background information.

Uchio creates fascinatingly elaborate fantastic landscapes — full of curvilinear Art Nouveau inspired designs, glowing windows, luminescent plants and lots of other deliberate eye candy — inviting you to browse through them in a leisurely manner, as though a tourist, drifting through one of his fantasy worlds on a flying ship.

There are some fairly large images of his work that facilitate viewing his detailed approach on what I believe to be his official blog.

Unfortunately, the navigation is a bit awkward for those of us who don’t speak Japanese. Look for the sequence of yellow numbered links just under the main banner image, or at the bottom of each page, to browse back through posts in order. Browsing this way, you may need to be patient and persistent to get to some of the most interesting images.

Alternately, click on some of the links in the third section of the right hand column, which are categories. You can also try Google Translate.

You can also search Flickr, or search Google Images, or get a brief overview on this Russian blog post. (Those of you with accounts on Pinterest, Tumblr or Pixiv can also try there. I don’t link to sites that require membership to view the images.)


Monday, June 29, 2015

Eye Candy for Today: Edwin Austin Abbey scene from Shakespeare

King Lear, Act I, Scene I; Edwin Austin Abbey
“King Lear”, Act I, Scene I; Edwin Austin Abbey

In the Metropolitan Museum of Art, use zoom link or download arrow under image. Also, larger, somewhat brighter image on Wikimeda Commons.

Usually the Met’s images are pretty accurate, but I happen to like the one from Wikimedia Commons a little better in this case, so I’ve used it above.

Another of Edwin Austin Abbey’s wonderful interpretations of scenes from Shakespeare’s plays, for which he was justifiably well known. Even the faces of the incidental characters — half-hidden in shadow — are full of drama.