Category Archives: Illustration

Noma Bar: Wallpaper Cover Illustrations

Beautifully illustrated, bold, spacial renditions of eye-catching but clichéd, questionably imaginative and wholly inaccurate stereotypes.

These  cover illustrations for Wallpaper magazine, by Noma Bar (portfolio here), have me mentally contradicting myself, and feeling rather hypocritical for liking. I have to admit, aesthetically the set are fantastic, and I’d quite like to have a copy of each – and the indoor concept plays nicely with the bold, block-colour style, which could otherwise feel generic. And, as Noma Bar’s illustrative style is quite recognized for, the shapes and images play well together, creating some optical-illusion connoting merging of images that do exhibit Bar’s visual creativity (especially with the incorporation of 3D elements). Though, visually, they’re stunning, playful and imaginative, they do prove how much designers and illustrations rely on stereotypes; there’s no way these covers would be as striking without the dominance of over-used stereotypes, but (regardless of the 3D styles) do they do much to present anything other than these rather two-dimensional, stereotypical representations of the countries referenced? Then again, they are beautifully created, and, it could be argued, intentionally playful. But personally, I much prefer his other work, that showcase a huge amount of visual creativity and double-entendres, without relying on outdated stereotypes.

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Designer: Super Serge

Thank you to Emily (fantastic blog here) for introducing me to this great designer; Thomas Girault – whose CSS Award-winning portfolio website you should definitely check out here. His work is a  mix of photography, digital illustration, bright colours, patterns and text – creating some stunning compositions and visuals that feel both incredibly abstract and modern, while at the same time quite retro and aged through the black and white photography and textured backgrounds. I would absolutely love to see some large prints of his work.

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Designer: Mika Mäkinen

Really love the work of Mika Mäkinen (Art Director at the Great Apes Ltd) – At times feeling both digital and handcrafted textured (absolutely love the creased paper in “Lake”), and with a feel of both graphic design and illustration through fantastic, quirky collages and textures, and considered colour, compositions and typography. Especially love the surreal mixture of collaged photography (from modern to quite vintage-looking images) and digitised images. Definitely worth checking out his portfolio here.

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John Stezaker

Just come across the fantastic collage artist John Stezaker, after feeling the need to research the cover of the book I was reading on Appropriation. His understanding and visually intellectual use of the form of collage is really evident and striking – and the quite minimal (I hate how often that word is used, but it’s definitely relevant) appraoch to collage is a really nice contrast to what the form generally suggests.

“John Stezaker: My mother has always been horrified at how my work emerged out of childhood vandalism. I was into it from the beginning, seemingly. I cut up and defaced books, and was regarded as very naughty for doing it. I do still feel that guilt, there is something very peculiar about taking a scalpel which was invented for surgical purposes and cutting across the emulsion of a photograph. I don’t know why I felt it was necessary. It shocks me sometimes how violent my early work was. But you can only get a feeling of the inviolable purity and sanctity of the emulsion of a photograph by violating it.” Interview here: http://www.bjp-online.com/british-journal-of-photography/interview/1940374/john-stezaker-vandal-thief.

Tina Berning

Was introduced to this fantastic illustrator’s work today in Life Drawing class – beautifully textured, sometimes collaged figure and portrait illustrations – great use of varying media across ink, dye, graphite, guache and no doubt more.

Check out her site: http://tinaberning.com/

Urban Illustration

Two double page spread concepts for an Illustration project on City life, combination of physical and digital media.

Urban Illustration Spread

Magazine Spread inspired by my variety of physical and digital illustrations on Urban Streetlife – created in an Adobe InDesign worskshop (Pretty proud considering it’s the first time I’ve used it!)

P.S. Don’t try to read the text…

Manuel Rebollo

Just came across this fantastic illustrator. Stunning work – love the textures and varied use of media. The typographic elements are great too – especially were they’re clearly handdrawn, and feel combined wit the drawings themselved – absolutely love the text in “Like A Hurricane”

Check out more of Manuel Rebollo’s work here: http://manuelrebollo.blogspot.com/

Nobody Here Gives A Damn.

Another more developed piece for my Illustration project on urban life. (Marker pen on acetate, found paper, and digital vector artwork & text)

Star Wars Day

Two vector illustration posters I created for my previous college’s Star Wars day.