Kirsten Sims’ Happy Scenes Are Lively, Sketch-like Illustrations

kirsten sims

These lively illus­tra­tions are the work of South African artist Kirsten Sims. Her col­or­ful scenes depict din­ners, the cir­cus, sun­bathing, and more. That all sounds pretty good to me! Sims’ style is loose and ges­tural, and these styl­ized works have the spon­tane­ity of a sketch.

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In addi­tion to her color illus­tra­tions, Sims has also crafted these gor­geous black and white com­po­si­tions. I’m intrigued by the dark rock for­ma­tion in the mid­dle of this room.

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The Divine Gold-Dipped Jewelry of Qian Yang

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Have you ever seen some­thing that’s instantly cap­ti­vated you? That’s how I felt when I saw Qian Yang’s jew­elry. The casted fig­ures of cherubs, dogs, and birds form rings, hair clips, and bracelets, and more. They cre­ate osten­ta­tious, fan­tas­ti­cal pieces made divine by the com­bi­na­tion of gold and white porcelain.

Yang is cur­rently a 3rd year stu­dent that’s study­ing at the Lon­don Col­lege of Fash­ion. They sell cus­tom pieces under the name YQY Jewelry.

Via a_a Tum­blr.

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Zoë Williams Crafts Ghostly-Looking Sacred Spirits Out of Felt

Zoë Williams

How about some nee­dled felted, ghostly beings to start the week off right? Zoë Williams is a New York-based artist who crafts “spir­its, sacred crea­tures, and phan­toms from the dream world.” Her state­ment explains that they con­nect us with the realm of the col­lec­tive uncon­scious and the king­dom of nature. We see ref­er­ences to sto­ries in the Bible (Cain and Abel), as well as the other myth­i­cal tales (like Romu­lus and Remus).

I’m impressed by William’s craft and am also fas­ci­nated by her inspi­ra­tion for these works. If you haven’t read about the col­lec­tive uncon­scious, do. It’s an inter­est­ing way of thinking.

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Friday Roundup: 10 Pinterest Accounts You’ll Want to Follow

Is pin­ning your pas­time? I know it is for me; I spent the bet­ter part of last Sat­ur­day night just click­ing away, get­ting lost in var­i­ous Inter­net rab­bit holes. Any­ways, here are some Pin­ter­est pin­ners who I think you’ll like. Some you prob­a­bly know, oth­ers your might now. Check ‘em out and enjoy your weekend!

Mal­lory McIn­nis You might know her as the lady behind the blog GEMS. Just like her blog, her pins don’t disappoint.

Ellen Sur­rey I’ve fea­tured her vintage-inspired illus­tra­tions on Brown Paper Bag before!

Janna Mor­ton Another illus­tra­tor I love. She’s got a pen­chant for pin­ning the best kitsch.

Baba Souk They’re an online bou­tique who, not sur­pris­ingly, fea­tures some great objects.

Sarajo Frieden If you enjoy tex­tiles, she pins some great ones.

Happy Red Fish This is an all-around good Pin­ter­est that’s full of inspir­ing col­lage and more (with over 18,000 pins!).

I need a guide  A blog’s Pin­ter­est that fea­tures good fine art picks.

Jeal­ous Cura­tor  If you enjoy read­ing Jeal­ous Curator’s site but don’t remem­ber to look at it every­day (guilty!) then you can catch up on her great picks via her pins.

Oh My Cav­a­lier There’s beau­ti­ful inte­ri­ors and folk-inspired illus­tra­tions on Julianna Swaney’s boards.

Nathalie Chikhi Color, color, color! I also love her fash­ion pins.

Don’t for­get to fol­low me on Pin­ter­est, too!

Adorable Ceramic Animals by Harriet Damave


Did you know that aside from Brown Paper Bag, I also co-run a blog that’s ded­i­cated to illus­trated prod­ucts? Well, I do! It’s called Pic­ture Party, and it’s a Tum­blr, so you should fol­low it if you have one, too. My pal Lisa also curates the blog, and last week she posted about brooches so cute that I couldn’t help but share them here. So, behold the hand­i­work of artist Har­riet Damave. Her hand-made animal-themed acces­sories are pro­duced using the tra­di­tional Dutch tech­nique of paint­ing with cobalt oxide on porce­lain. Every­thing is hand-painted, too.

I am lov­ing the details on these. The fine brush work and washes of color appear like they’re tiny water­color paint­ings. All of these items are avail­able on Damave’s Etsy shop.

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The Minimalist Stylings of Veronica Cerri’s Illustrations

Veronica Cerri

Thanks to Lisa, I became acquainted with the work of Ital­ian illus­tra­tor Veron­ica Cerri. I love the bold, styl­ized nature of these images, and the dry brush tex­ture that she pep­pers through­out these compositions.

While I really enjoy all of her illus­tra­tions, I am super intrigued by the top image. I would love to see a con­tin­u­a­tion of that!

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How very Hitchockian-feeling, these win­dows…luzhin_cover_905 OpinioneWhite Winter_905

Nanotecture: A Beautiful Convergence of Geological Forms

Jennifer Strunge Jonathan Latiano

This beau­ti­ful, ghostly instal­la­tion is titled Nan­o­tec­ture and was a 2013 col­lab­o­ra­tion between artists Jen­nifer Strunge (AKA Cot­ton Mon­ster) and Jonathan Latiano. The site-specific work was made using velour, faux fur, recy­cled t-shirts, poly­ester stuff­ing, wood, foam, joint com­pound, paint, fans, and lights. (whew! What a list.) Here’s the idea behind the work:

Nan­o­tec­ture addresses notions of con­verg­ing biological/geological forms, archi­tec­tural inter­ven­tion, points of tran­si­tion and what it means to come upon some­thing. This project cre­ated a new gallery space at the School 33 Art Cen­ter [located in Bal­ti­more, Mary­land] in what was once a tele­phone booth.

Gor­geous details. Pho­tos by Kim Ller­ena.

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My Studio: Same Embroidery, More Flowers


So, I was on vaca­tion for a whole week (over a week ago at this point) and made some good progress on my cur­rent embroi­dery work. I love this activ­ity, but alas, it’s more of a reward for when I fin­ish other respon­si­bil­i­ties, so it can be a slow grind through these stitches. Do you have some­thing like this in your life?

Also, what are you work­ing on? Let me know via Twit­ter or Face­book!



Lydia Hardwick’s Abstract Ceramic Art Objects

lydia hardwick

I recently became acquainted with Lydia Hardwick’s abstract ceram­ics because of her new show up on Buy Some Damn Art. I’m lov­ing the col­ors and the sur­face design, as well as all of the ran­dom lit­tle bits that are mixed in.

In an inter­view with Kate Sin­gle­ton of BSDA, Hard­wick gives a detailed expla­na­tion of her process, which I find fascinating:

I use porce­lain because it is very white. This means that when I mix colour­ing oxides and stains into it, the colours show up well. I tend to work quickly, mak­ing a lot of pieces in one go. Some­times I squash the clay into big flat sheets, and cut out shapes to cre­ate a sort of col­lage. I also use porce­lain a lot in its liq­uid form. This is called ‘slip’. I mix news­pa­per pulp into it, which makes it look a bit like por­ridge. I then pour the sub­stance onto a sur­face and drop other small frag­ments of porce­lain into it. When this dries, I might paint stained porce­lain slip onto the sur­face. The true colours don’t emerge until the work has been fired in the kiln, so there is a lot of guess­work involved.

I would rec­om­mend read­ing the entire inter­view. It’s really inter­est­ing! And, if you’re inter­ested in pur­chas­ing any of these works, mosey on over to Buy Some Damn Art.

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Yvan Duque’s Fantastical and Illustrative Tales

yvan duque

The vintage-inspired illus­tra­tions by Yvan Duque tell fan­tas­ti­cal tales of strange, larger-than-life crea­tures. We see giant squids, ghost-like fig­ures, and even a foxy lady occupy these richly-colored com­po­si­tions. They travel through dark forests, fiery lands, and houses off secluded coasts.

The lus­cious reds, blues, and greens remind me of illus­tra­tors like Mary Blair (per­sonal favorite!) and Mar­tin + Alice Provensen. Duque has nice use of dry brush paired with fine, painted details.

Wanna own some of Duque’s work? Check out their Etsy shop.

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