Freakshow #1

This weeks kick about over on Red’s Kingdom is the circus themed paintings by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec. Initially, I had the idea of loading up an old battered and broken blue iPhone that I didn’t expect to turn on, from which to rip some photographs from a circus I attended with friends, the circus standing tall on the iconic Rochester hill where I went to uni. Amazingly, the phone turned on with its red battery charging symbol loading through the cracked pixelated screen. The joy on my face when I held the tiny phone in my comically large hands… However in my many attempts to get all those photos off this ancient iPhone, technology somehow fucked me over and devastatingly wiped every single photo from the phone, including all the photos I wanted to use for this week’s prompt!

I ended up sitting and sulking on the idea for a while and contemplated coming up with something completely different, but stubbornly I didn’t want to, and I did find a handful of those very photos from that iPhone stored on my laptop that I never deleted. So instead of being a moody little shit, I decided to try and make something from them by duplicating the original photos and using previous creations and random photos laid on top to attempt to create some new compositions exploring the light, energy and disorientating weirdness of a circus. I guess with the recent anniversary of the Kick-About, in some ways it can seem poetic to use a bunch of outpourings from previous Kick-About’s to create something completely new.

Folk Art

This weeks kick about over on Reds Kingdom is the work of celebrated Ukrainian Artist – Maria Prymachenko. I wanted to focus on Primachenko’s bold use of vivid colour from her powerful folk art and painted an abundance of flora with some creatures in situ. I’ve been meaning to give a whirl of painting digitally and resemble watercolour and ink, Primachenko’s imaginative and colourful illustrations were the perfect prompt to give it a go.

Flux #2

A second crop of altered CGI renders consisting of filaments of fabric for this weeks Naum Gabo Kick About on Red’s Kingdom. One thing so compelling about Gabo’s vessels is the amount of depth in relation to how transparent and delicate certain parts are. You can always feel where the fingers of this craftsman spent the most time making and altering. With my own stream of offerings, things turned up a notch when I started to duplicate the shapes on top of each other, tinkering with its blending of counterparts to provide the depth that I craved.

Flux #1

This weeks Kick About of creative outputs from artists of all stripes is the sculptural work of Naum Gabo – Linear Construction No.2. I have never seen Gabo’s structural filaments before but the meandering weaves of fabric intertwined into curves provides such depth and movement I was fascinated by the displays. I tried to emanate the same flow of fabric with a disused project that otherwise would never see the light of day. These CGI rendered materials – originally hats, were warped, blended and mended back together in light of Gabo’s intricate meshes. I created a bunch more models of peculiar looking shapes for this prompt but not particularly liking how the material looked on those offerings – as getting those delicate weaves of fabric through to the renders provide difficult, I decided to only use a couple of those shapes and instead rely on injecting some life in a otherwise dead project. 

The Handmaid’s Tale – Illustrations

This weeks kick about over on Red’s Kingdom is the colourful compositions, shapely design and bold typography of Saul Bass. Bass’s graphically designed posters and iconic title sequences are utterly transfixing and I wanted to create illustrations in relation to a series that grasps me just as much. The Handsmaid’s Tale is a dystopian series revolving around the roles of woman in a new male dominated world order. The series is directed by Liz Garbus and is based on the 1985 novel of the same name by Margaret Atwood. The series uses colour and composition in such a visceral way to represent the emotions of the characters, cooling teals and burning reds make up a lot of the series compositions and are splashed alongside more sterile colours, always making for such a striking difference and oozing with ominosity. I made some illustrations revolving around that colour palette and adding some of the phrases frequently used. I think illustrations can be very intriguing when you try take away all the unnecessary stuff and boil the composition down to its core so that it is still completely understandable. Doing illustrations like Saul Bass is tricky as although Bass’s impressive catalogue might look simple, it is hard to know how to get something up to the point so that it looks “right” and although I think my efforts could be better, it was still enjoyable – especially when something clicked and brought it closer to the desired result.••

Fragments #2

A second cluster of collages for this weeks John Stezaker Kick About. The likes of Ernst Haeckel’s botany illustrations, Anton Kerners “Plantscapes” and some garish dental illustrations make up the smorgasbord of cutouts in these depictions. I have learned that I really enjoy fabricating collages – Like all creatives processes there is a time when everything looks a mess with no cohesiveness whatsoever, but a certain shape will flourish and be a golden nugget that will spark something in the right direction – by moving something here, scaling something there, a whack of colour here, a penis there, things start to manifest into from – like the final missing puzzle piece.

Fragments #1

This weeks Kick About over on Red’s Kingdom is the freakish portrait photography of John Stezaker entitled Marriage (Film Portrait Collage), where photographs of celebrities are split into uncanny cacophonies. Because Stezaker drew inspiration from Dadaism and Surrealism by kit-bashing and appropriating images into bizarre collages, I decided to splice together some absurdities in a fun – no fucks given kind of way, all images nicked from the public domain of course.