medium /// painting

cassie marie edwards

I have literally spent hours obsessing over weird little ceramic animals who’ve been abandoned on the wobbly old shelves of second-hand shops. A pink deer with golden hooves, a slightly terrified looking dog, and a white unicorn that I’m pretty sure I had in my room when I was 9. American artist Cassie Marie Edwards takes these orphans from their dusty shelves, and gives each of them a new home on her lovely canvases. Don’t worry little pink deer, you can come and live with me if you want to!

holly farrell’s clowns

LOVE! And also… huh!? This is a very new series by Toronto based artist Holly Farrell, and I cannot get over how different it is than her usual work. Her stunning painting skills are still the same, but the subject matter is a huge departure from what she has become known for… work that I have written about 5 zillion times, featured in my book, and had the pleasure of hanging in person last year at the Tanner Hill Gallery in Tennessee. That show was called Beautifully Boring… clearly it’s time for a new show with Holly’s work… Beautifully Bizarre! Clowns. Portraits of actual clowns that sat for her. Sooooo different than her paintings of vintage milk jugs, shoes, and cookbooks {still so fantastic in their Holly Farrell-ness}, but I had to ask, why clowns? This is her lovely, thoughtful answer:

Painting, for me, is an exploration of the grey areas of my experience… whether it be a still life or a portrait of a person or, in this instance, portraits of clowns.  There is a duality in clowns that I find fascinating – there is the clown, who I painted, and there is the person, behind the paint.  Their mask, their nose, their paint allows them to draw on parts of themselves that would typically be frowned upon in our society.  The person and the clown do not live in perfect harmony – it seems they rely heavily on one another at times.  Our response to the clown says so much about ourselves.  We need clowns.  They give to us at their own expense.  They make us laugh, cry, they make us angry, they make us feel whatever needs working out.  Clowns are asking for it.  That’s how they help heal us.

{ps. Almost no one has seen these paintings yet. She’s been tucked away in her studio working on these [and many more] for a new show that opens next week at Chicago’s Packer Schopf Gallery. Opening reception: Friday Feb 21 5~8pm and it runs until April 5th. I wish I could go… you go for me, ok?}

meghan howland

Whoa. Now, just to be clear, there are many, many, many other things in the impressive portfolio of American painter Meghan Howland, but these stunning bird covered portraits immediately grabbed my attention. So gorgeous, and just a tiny bit creepy. Yes, that’s right birds, you heard me… I don’t care how pretty your feathers are, I do not want you anywhere near my head. Ever. I would, however, happily put one of these paintings on my wall.

{Thanks to Melanie for a link to Meghan’s work}

mats gustafson

Oh my! So, so so gorgeous! This is the work of Swedish fashion illustrator/artist Mats Gustafson. Sleek lines, gorgeous textures, elegant women dressed in haute-couture’s finest. LOVE. I could look at each one of these for quite a long time, because let’s face it, watercolor is tricky on a good day… how he manages to paint those layers of tulle, and fur collars… I’m in awe. And I also want to go shopping.

ps. My latest REAL ART FOR A FICTITIOUS WORLD post is up on SF Girl By Bay today and Mats’ work is featured in it… can you guess which character I might have thought this work would be perfect for?

dane lovett

Sigh. Little fledgling plants and some classic New Order, beautifully painted by Melbourne based artist Dane Lovett. I have always had a thing for mundane subject matter, and lately, mundane still life is quickly making it’s way to the top of my list of “favorite mundane things”. So quiet, so ordinary, and oh so special in it’s quiet ordinariness.

{via Artsy Forager}

lulie wallace

Who needs real pots of flowers when you can have these beauties… they’ll stay fresh forever!!! This is the patterny, flowery, joy-filled work of American artist Lulie Wallace. So just to recap, if you were thinking of sending me flowers for any reason at all [insert husband's name here], I’ll take any one of these colorful bouquets, please and thank you!

{via Design*Sponge}

naomi okubo

The work of Japanese painter Naomi Okubo makes me want to be 13 again, at a sleepover with all of my best girlfriends… with streamers and as many patterned textiles as possible! That is honestly what I thought the moment I saw this work, which is actually really interesting considering that her statement, about much of the work featured here, is the complete opposite:

… In my adolescence, I had felt fear what others thought about me. As a result, I had been confused how I should relate to others. Through this experience, I have showed plural self-portraits in my works. This idea is that I could escape the fears that came from the relationship with others if all people in the world were myself. My expression was based this abnormal teased feeling.

See? Very different than a sleepover with all of her best girlfriends. It breaks my heart that anyone would feel like this as a kid, but wow, what an absolutely stunning way to visualize those feelings.

{via Booooooom}

hannah k. lee

How amazing, and hilarious, is this beautiful little zine?! “Shoes over Bills” is a project by Brooklyn based artist/illustrator Hannah K. Lee that is filled to the brim with gorgeous illustration, lovely hand-lettering, and the kind of perspective every girl needs! Cozy moccasins over 10 boxes of ramen noodles? Um, no problem! The cell phone bills might be a bit trickier, but I’m sure we can work something out.

Not only does she have great taste in shoes, she also has a very impressive client list. It goes a little something like this: GQ, Lucky Peach, The New Yorker, Aritzia, PLANSPONSOR, The New York Times, Harvard Business Review, New York Magazine. {Let’s hope this means less ramen, and more shoes, for Hannah!}

elizabeth amento

Gah! It’s like a whole bunch of colorful, little celebrations exploding on heavy, white stonehenge paper… love, love, love! These are bits n’ pieces from the pages of Ladies Journal and Good Housekeeping, placed carefully in a sea of white space, drizzled with vivid, flowing gouache. They are the mixed media collages of San Francisco based artist Elizabeth Amento… they are also exactly what I needed to get this weekend started! KA-POW!

charlotte hardy

The mixed media of UK based artist Charlotte Hardy makes me want to eat pastries, surrounded by flowers as I re-wallpaper my front parlor… and I don’t even HAVE a front parlor! Sigh ~ so, so, so pretty!

{via Artsy Forager on Pinterest}