Tag Archives: illustration

Olly Olly Oxen Free!


When Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland came out in March, there was an absurd amount of Alice in Wonderland themed works in pretty much every medium imaginable. I can’t lie, it got a bit tiresome. A bit overdone. I’ve been getting a bit annoyed about the degree of stuff surrounding films like this one and Where the Wild Things Are. I mean, a lot of it is lovely, but there gets to be that point of over-saturation where you might see something really fabulous and still a part of you is wondering really? more?!

Seriously. I can get a little bit crazy. But I was shuffled off to this lovely poster by one Olly Moss and thought it quite perfect. Maybe it’s just because it’s from one of the favorite bits of the film, with all of the magical shrinking and growing. And then, of course, how it’s anything but overdone. It’s simplicity is refreshing. And when I hunted down his site, that’s what I found in all of his work. Perfectly cheeky and witty and delightful without heaps over thought farce.

Look! My initials! Slipped into a belt and a pair of scissors. (haha, I’m imagining an image of the scissors cutting into the belt, or maybe just tucked into it sort of handy(wo)man style. Maybe there could be an “i” perhaps as a needle tucked in, too, to account for the middle name)

There was a lot of Lost work out there. I like this one because it reminds me of an old movie poster (a bit like Hitchkock’s Vertigo, perhaps). And then, of course, this awesome reaction to the “Keep Calm and Carry On” poster/phrase craze of not-long-ago (even I mentioned them). Granted, I’m usually a bit more likely to panic and freak out. At least before I manage to shut myself up enough to calm down and carry on. I should like to see the two hanging side by side. Because sometimes you just need to freak out a little bit. Even if only for a few minutes.

(Seriously. Like the time almost two years ago when I found out I had about two days to get ready to move, and I was eventually struck with the horrors of oh-my-heavens-when-on-earth-did-i-get-so-much-stuff-and-how-in-the-hell-am-i-supposed-to-move-all-of-this reality and subsequently panicked. I’m pretty sure I sat on my bed and shook and cried as I eyed the catastrophe that was my room, and I tried to make myself shut up but it didn’t work. So. I resolved that I could panic as long as I was being productive at the same time. And I wound up sobbing and packing at the same time. It must have been quite a sight. But I moved!)

Ahem. Moving on.

Get to work! Or not.

Well I just like these. Because, well, maybe you should make something cool everyday. And the lobster is just awesome.

Olly Moss:
Alice Poster

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I kind of live on craigslist. Sometimes more than others, but it’s somewhat the nature of the beast of living in the city. Roommates, jobs, apartments, and so on and so forth. You really never know what you’ll find, which is especially the case when clicking upon links in the artist section where people sometimes promote their work. (Hey, I’ve done it. Especially after my early serious dress post, because that took me a while to photograph and put together and all and I was proud of it). So, yes, you never know what you’ll find, and usually I find myself frowning or cringing at what I see. But. One day I was game, and clicked on the link to Steven Ketchum‘s page, and I found myself pleasantly surprised.

As I scrolled through his work, I found myself thinking hmm… I like this. I do.

I like the parts of intricate detail, combined with the blurred inky watercolors.

The simplicity, but that it’s not.

To me, it’s like memories. The way we remember things. Some things call out in detail. Some things are blurred. Some things fade away with time. Some are amplified, and some we recall wistfully.

It reminds me of something, but I don’t know what. I like them, but it’s hard to describe why. But. I feel like that’s kind of the feeling that these capture. Lack of understanding; the feelings between feelings; the thoughts between thoughts.

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A loud hush, a quiet roar


Isn’t this little home absolutely dreamy? It combines some of my favorite things, like a little hidden bedroom nook, a spiral staircase, a whole gosh darned library, and a sweet little loft. If I could just colorize the place a bit it’d be a dream come true. In fact I love those brown pillars, and it could be fun to create some abstract-y leafy shapes at the top so that there were a bit of a treehouse feel (another favorite thing). Maybe using metal wire bent into leafy shapes. Maybe with some leafy bits of fabric dangling too. A really multi-textural, dreamy, magical sort of tree that’s open enough so that you can still sit on the upper loft and see straight out! It could be pretty amazing don’t you think?

And then I saw this stunning illustration by the talented Renee Nault just few minutes after I swooned after the above photo and fell in love with this piece, too. They sort of remind me of each other. They kind of sort of go together. I adore the way Renee elaborates on this piece:

This illustration accompanies a series of short pieces of writing, all of which are about how small moments can lead to larger ideas or epiphanies. So the figure under the tree is experiencing a seemingly mundane moment, while under the ground there’s a whole world unfolding. I think anyone who’s a big thinker or a big imaginer – anyone who has a rich inner life – experiences moments like these.

It’s perfect, that sentiment of a rich inner life. Of the life hidden beneath a seemingly quiet facade.

When you look at them side by side, it’s really clear, yes? It’s like the girl is standing on top of the loft with a few quiet books. She can travel down the staircase, like the roots of the tree, down and down until everything opens up. And there’s a whole little world right there. It’s perfect.

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Lost & Found


I can’t lie, I really enjoy perusing the craigslist missed connections section. In this crazy city we pass by tons and tons of people daily in the street, accompany hundreds on the subway (packed in together, sometimes, not unlike sardines), lounge with them anonymously in the parks, etc. Missed connections serves as a little spot where strangers reach out to say the things we didn’t get to say to each other in the moment because we were too shy or the constant stream of people hindered the opportunity (and so much more). The postings run the gamut from heart-breaking to hilarious and they always last only 7 days.

It’s certainly an interesting medium for expression and artist Sophie Blackall has recognized the beauty in their fleeting nature and has taken posts from missed connections and made them into art:

Tuesday, March 10, 2009
– m4w (exiting to the street)
cursive, on leaving, stepped on my foot
wish i could have stricken up a conversation

Saturday, March 28, 2009
– m4w – 19 (Uptown 3 Train)
If not for your noisy Tambourine, I would not have seen you.
Your green skirt looked terrible, but that leather jacket makes you look just right.
I was the attractive guy sitting to your left just before you got off.

Thursday, March 12, 2009
-m4m (East Village)
Phoenix w/crutches
I would love to carry you around piggy back until you can walk again…

Tuesday, March 17, 2009
-w4m -22 (williamsburg)
i bought you that milkshake
you just didn’t realize it.

Monday, March 23, 2009
-m4w (Harlem)
Remember? Uptown A train. Sunday at around 9pm. I was the black dude reading Bukowski’s Post Office. You were reading the Arts and Leisure section. You passed wind rather loudly and started chuckling. I’d like to see you again. The flatulence wasn’t a turn-off.

More of Sophie’s Missed Connections.

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