Since I last featured the work of Cristin Morgan, aka Marigold + Mars, she’s been busy stitching up more colorful goodness. Although she’s still focusing on beautiful blooms and embroidered text, Cristin has entered another realm of stitching: pet portraits!
The detailed hoop art features mostly canines as they’re surrounded by stars, florals, and their own names. From the looks of her Instagram, it seems that this sort of imagery is new for Cristin, but one that I hope she continues. They’re delightful.
Illustrator Ayumi Takahashi grew up in China to an artistic family: her father was an industrial designer and painter while her step mom was a theme park designer. She didn’t stay in China for too long, however—when she was 12, she moved to Japan, studied in Thailand during high school, and then came to the United States for college. She’s since remained in America, bouncing from the West Coast to the Eastern seaboard.
Travel is at the heart of Ayumi’s work. “I try to take at least one month off a year to go to places and get inspired,” she tells North. “At the same time, I will learn the history, culture and art of those places. I believe that before you make art, you first need to go see the world. Being away from my studio gives me time and space to rethink and redevelop the kind of art I want to make.”
This global existence is reflected in her portraits. They focus on simple shapes with “concentrated sophistication,” combining intricate patterns with large fields of colors that are a collision of cultural influences.
French illustrator Juliette Oberndorfer has wowed me—for years—with her gorgeous landscape scenes. Using deep, rich colors and a vintage aesthetic, she creates compelling images that are snippets of fantastical stories. The moody pieces convey adventure, romance, and more—all with a folklore appeal.
Juliette produces many of these illustrations as concept art, but her style shies away from the video game artwork of muscly, gun-wielding men that I’m so used to seeing. Hers, instead, recalls the work of Mary Blair—especially her work for Alice in Wonderland during the 1950s.
1. Cactus Detachable Embroidered Collar by Collar Me Pretty
2. White Tiger Enamel Pin by Aitch for Olschinsky Art Store
3. Eyes Cross-Body Bag by Anya Hindmarch
4. London City Bangle by McKean Studio
5. Be Brave Pendant by Bonbi Forest
6. Mint Cactus Lamp by Spearmint Love
7. Large Octopus Air Planter by Cindy Searles
Illustrator Melodie Stacey paints imaginary landscapes that remind us to stop and smell the flowers. Towering mountains and winding paths lead the way to blooms that are as tall as a person, showcasing a fantastical view of nature—but one that was clearly inspired by the splendor we witness in everyday life.
Despite that rosy (pun intended) interpretation, I like how dark these paintings are. The blue/black skies heighten the drama of each scene, as if the women are finding these flowers are on a secret quest in the middle of the night.
Melodie sells prints and originals through her Etsy shop.
The right collar can make or break an outfit. Think about it—how many times have you judged a shirt or jacket based on its cute (or wonky) collar? I know I’ve passed by certain pieces. That’s why I like illustrative collars so much—they add some fun pizzaz to an otherwise plain outfit. Vivetta is one designer who is slaying this realm by creating playful statement collars. They’re adorned to look like a freshly-painted manicure, flower garden, abstract face, and more. The quirky designs transcend your average detachable collar and are wearable works of art.
Some of Vivetta’s collars are available to purchase through Lyst.
If you follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest or Tumblr, you might’ve noticed that I changed my avatar. After years of it being the same cut paper selfie, I finally updated my picture with another collaged portrait. The timing was intentional—I’m headed to ICON9 in a couple of weeks and wanted the image for new business cards.
While working, I recorded video and combined some of the clips into a 4-minute long compilation. It’s not everything I did when make creating this portrait, but it gives you a good idea of my process.
For tools, I use:
As far as paper goes, I gather from a lot of places. Kraft paper, watercolor paintings, construction paper, magazines… it all goes in my giant collection.
If you have any questions about collage or my construction techniques, let me know! I’d be happy to answer them.
I look at a lot of tattoos, and I haven’t seen a style quite like that of Mattia Mambo. The Milano-based artist creates small pieces of body art that look like they’ve been digitally produced rather than one etched by hand. The bold lines and flattened shapes remind me of vectors in Adobe Illustrator, the elements sitting off-register to give them an additional screen-printed effect. They’re colorful, engaging, and eye catching—my favorite are the flowers, but I’m also impressed by Mattia’s commitment to food!
1. Slumber Sloths by Spoon & Moon
2. Lace Up High Waisted Bikini Bottom by Mara Hoffman
3. Mersquad Screen Printed Pouch by Meg Hunt
4. Rain Cloud Coasters by Pygmy Cloud
5. La Croix Can Planter by Hello Happy Plants
6. You Are The Universe Patch by Lisa Junius
7. Paint Tube Doorstop by Bluw
Have I mentioned my love of animal-shape kitchen items? This Goosey Colander and Bowl Set recently caught my eye!
Step into the strange and lovely lands imagined by Alexandra Dvornikova. The St. Petersburg-based illustrator creates these special, often liminal spaces featuring characters that look like they’re straight out of a fairy tale. Often dark in coloring and tone, they’re a reflection of the inner worlds that Alexandra finds interesting, such as neuroscience, psychiatry, and psychoanalyses. The brain-centric concepts invite us to project who we are onto these images and consider what their symbolism and meanings hold for us.
Alexandra sells a selection of her work through Society6.