Sometimes it’s hard to put into words how I feel about someone’s illustration or art. Mostly it’s “I like!” “I like!!” But that’s a pretty boring and shallow way to react to all this visual stimulation. Blame it on watching too much mindless TV. I don’t know. Anyway Jeremy Enecio’s fantastic art makes me gibber “I like” quite a bit. I had to stop for a bit, and actually look harder, take a moment and review why “I like”. I think first he caught my attention with his tribute work entitled Cthulu ( acrylic on paper | 11 x 14 ) The glowing eyes of the beast, and it’s enormity depicted with the tiny shark (that you instinctively know is probably a gazzillion meters long, at least 13 anyway!) drifting through the tentacles, froze me in it’s gaze. I couldn’t look away. Is it not fantastic to have this sort of physical reaction to an artwork. The more I browsed through his portfolio, the more I was entranced. The use of colour and subject matter, especially his fantastical artworks, blew my imagination open wide. Go do yourself a favour and take a peek at his website and blog!
Amy Ross writes “I am interested in the idea of artist as mad scientist. My drawings offer visual hypotheses to the question: what would happen if the DNA sequence of a plant or mushroom were spliced with that of an animal? Using graphite, watercolor, and walnut ink on paper as well as directly on gallery walls in site-specific installations, I portray animals morphed with branches, mushrooms, berries, and blossoms, thus forming implausible hybrid creatures. These images subvert the traditional genre of botanical illustration by approaching the close study of the natural world through the lens of genetic engineering and mutation gone awry.”
Her delightful images make your face smile as you imagine small mushroom birds bursting from the soil or hopping along branches. The delicate colours emphasise the unusual creatures created from both foliage and fur or feathers. Her attention to detail, and delicate renderings of shadow, smudge, beak and eye make you wish that her mad creations existed somewhere in the world. And perhaps they do! Find her work here.
These are a few paintings from Stefan à Wengen, a Swiss artist based in Germany. His work is often times dark, mysterious, and I particularly love his “Occurrence” series, which I have presented here. The paintings make you ask questions, what happened? why? where? Your imagination spins off in a multitude of directions, fuelled by his landscapes and creatures, who seem furtive, perhaps trying to escape, flying off canvas, and creeping into shadows. The mood seems one of the hunter or hunted.
He includes an interesting interview in his website, an excerpt of which I have included here.
Where does your interest in night, darkness and desolation come from?
That is not an easy question! I try to answer;
I try to work with things I do not understand like death, sexuality and time. Since my childhood I am fascinated in things I tried to understand but nobody could explain me, for example where melancholy comes from, why do I have depressing days, why is alienation so alien, why is the night sometimes frightening and at the same time so beautiful and protective.
There is always light in the dark, there is always good in evil – or like Lautréamont once said: “Like Baudelaire, like Flaubert, he too believes that the aesthetic expression of evil implies the most vital appreciation of good, the highest morality.”
Or to tell it in an other way:
I always felt the idyll seems uncanny to me, the idyll of a fancy suburbia for example implies to me a great deal of violence to keep up the idyll as such, to keep up the atmosphere of this area, that suggests, that there is always Sunday. These things make me angry and are fascinating me at the same time.
There is no black or white, there is neither a grey, but there can be black and white… you know what I mean…
And doesn’t have everybody a dark side? Don’t we enjoy the execration sometimes – beside it helps to keep up our cardiovascular system?
An illustrator based in Belgium, drawing for graphic comics, the doodles of this artist capture the imagination don’t they? Soft and sharp, shadows play, and creatures abound. This is the work of Yohan Sacré. Have a peek into the pencil world and see what you can discover! A tentacled monster sneaking through a doorway or small acorn beings living large in a chocolate chip infested landscape. The uncomplicated medium of paper and pencil just emphasise the detailed ideas, and makes me want to get out my moleskine and draw!
Now this guy paints some mysterious artworks; mushrooms and flowers infest his characters from a 2011 collection, in an organic explosion of colour and texture. I enjoy his use of colour, and especially his subjects, pale glowing skin, pink fingers, or entirely filled with swirling effects. Julian Callos, is an LA based illustrator, and I recommend you go check out his website. His sculptures are pretty neat too! He is a talented painter, and his editorial work is fantastic. He is able to capture emotions and moments in time with smart attention to detail, creating interesting appealing artworks.