Sunday, 15 December 2019

Kate Vernon I

A pink hot dog Christmas decoration took me to Kate Vernon's portfolio and her funny mostly un-Christmasy Chritsmas illustrations, made more festive with the addition of an ornament topper. 

Saturday, 14 December 2019

Ivana Kozlai Lauridsen

Ivana Kozlai Lauridsen's picture about decorating a tree in the forest looks almost like they are walking together and that's what I love about it.

Friday, 13 December 2019

Alexis Deacon

Alexis Deacon for "Soon Child" by Russell Hoban (2012). Alexis has twice been shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal and is a two-time recipient of The New York Times Best Illustrated Children's Books Award.

Thursday, 12 December 2019

Diego Freyre

It is election day in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland so this suited man selling rainbows illustration by Diego Freyre seemed a good choice, may sanity win over the madness.

[Postscript] unfortunately it didn't!

Wednesday, 11 December 2019

Mary Bergherr

Mary Bergherr is a Minneapolis based painter/artist. I love her work, her random sketched thoughts and honesty. The painting above is 'One bad cat' from 2013.

"When not painting I am cooking, eating, worrying, or wanting more dogs." Mary Bergherr

Monday, 9 December 2019

Antti Kalevi I

This reminded me of a shy but extravagant Christmas Bauble. This illustration is by Antti Kalevi who studied graphic design at Aalto University and at the Iceland Academy of the Arts and now lives in Helsinki.

Sunday, 8 December 2019

Saturday, 7 December 2019

Kyoko Nemoto I

Two musical polar bears by Japanese illustrator Kyoko Nemoto to lull you into a December weekend 

Friday, 6 December 2019

Aoi Huber Kono

こうの あおい Aoi Huber Kono's book 'Winter' first published in 1972, is a haiku in a picture book form. Mostly illustrated in grey and white, it tells the story of clouds gathering and snow falling on the trees and on the ground, gathering the footprints of all who pass. 

Aoi Huber Kono was born in Tokyo in 1936, Her father was Takashi Kono, a pioneer in the graphics world. After graduating from the Tokyo University of the Arts she studied at the Royal Swedish Academy of Arts in Stockholm, she settled in Millan in 1961 working beside graphic designer Max Huber. Here she also collaborated with Bruno Munari and Achille Castiglioni. Eventually, Aoi has settled in Switzerland 

Thursday, 5 December 2019

Children's Christmas Cards

I love working with children and every so often I get the opportunity to do workshops. Last weekend I was in Perth making Christmas cards with kids that have an expanding, concertina section, this Santa's beard was my favourite.

Many delightful cards were made, what was frightening to me was the lack of knowledge and skills. After 10 years of austerity in Britain; art, music and drama teaching has been cut to extinction in many primary and secondary schools. 
Most of the children yesterday didn't know how to make a snowflake, couldn't do the cutting . . . they would have been able to before. We are losing eye-hand coordination, fine and gross motor skills, not to mention confidence, imagination, design, colour theory etc. 

It is criminal what we have lost from the primary development stages of education, the effects will be felt for generations, already it is reported that trainee doctors are lacking the coordination and fine motor skills required for surgery that they would have got from doing art and craft as children in the past. New generation do not have the skills or knowledge to teach art and craft and classroom management of (often) 30 pupils doing art and craft is terrifying to them. People do not realise what they have lost, these so called soft subjects that have been dismissed as of no value have powerful qualities that seep into the hands, minds and souls and build a culturally strong, able population. 

Monday, 2 December 2019

Lara Maiklem II

Lara Maiklem has been collaging some of her amazing finds, above is Jack Frost.
"This chilly chap is made up of a conglomeration of finds, including a paleolithic flint; a 17th century Bellarmine jug face; human teeth; medieval mail; boar tusks; handmade iron ship nails (c.15-18th century); a copper alloy needle (c.15-18th century); cloak fasteners (c.16th century); glass 'seed' beads; semiprecious stone beads; mother of pearl buttons (c.19th century); handmade dress pins (c.15-18th century); mounts (c.15-18th century); a pearl bead." Lara Maiklem
Above: A partridge in a pear tree.

"My pear tree is made up of 17th and 18th century clay pipes; its trunk is a late 17th century wig curler; the ground is Roman mosaic (tesserae) pieces,;the pears are 16th century glass goblet stems and a modern glass stopper; the 'partridge' is a 17th century pipe clay 'fairing' (a cheap child's toy sold at fairs), it has a halo of beads - cane trade beads (c.17th century), a chevron trade bead (c.16th century), two coral beads and blue glass beads." Lara Maiklem

 "The sleigh driver is a mid-century (or earlier) snow baby and his sleigh is being pulled by a collection of broken toy lead horses. The sleigh is made up of a betty lamp hook (c.19th century) a medieval knife handle, two Tudor cloak hooks and an early 17th-century bone pocket sundial. His booty includes scraps of gold, semi-precious stones, glass (paste) jewels, a Roman ring intaglio, a Roman melon bead and a pearl bead - all found by eye on the Thames foreshore." Lara Maiklem