PRIMAL PORTRAITS BY IAN BERTRAM

by Ariadna Zierold

ian bertram, illustration, comic, characters, mystical, grotesque, primal, portraits, drawing, upper playground

New York-based Ian Bertram is an artist interested in uncovering the hedonistic and fatalistic nature of man vs. self. A graduate of the School of Visual Arts in New York, Bertram was chosen as the Best New Talent of 2011 by Comicbookjesus.com, and selected to the Society of Illustrators 2012 Student Scholarship Competition.

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By combining precise, meditative mark making, with visceral and sudden actions, he creates mystical, grotesque, and primal portraits of ennui and the strange by way of drawing and painterly techniques.

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INTUITIVE NARRATIVES BY TARA BOOTH

by Ariadna Zierold

tara booth, drawing, illustration, comic, narrative, characters, portland, gouache, pencil, upper playground

Portland-based Tara Booth is a comic book artist who mixes drawing and painting in detailed pieces. She gets most of her inspiration from her diary, displaying unique characters in bizarre situations.

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She begins her pieces with a pencil sketch, layering with textures and patterns, then fills it with color using gouache. Her entirely intuitive color choices are the key to the success of her work.

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“If you could do an X-ray of one of my paintings you would see layers and layers of failed color schemes and patterns. I try to work it out until it feels right.” Tara Booth

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TOMER HANUKA’S TROPICAL TOXIC

by Ariadna Zierold

tomer hanuka, tropical toxic, illustration, comic, new york, upper playground

New York-based Tomer Hanuka‘s art is incredible, influencing a whole generation of artists with his beautiful line work and distinctive color scheme. It’s in a dreamlike, almost poetic style that this Israeli-born illustrator found his passion for drawing through comic books: drawing with his twin brother on a Persian carpet. His fantastic ability to apply his comic-inspired style has enabled his work to reach all kinds of audiences.

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CHARACTER-BASED ILLUSTRATIONS BY DAN WOODGER

by Ariadna Zierold

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London-based Dan Woodger’s colorful, cartoonish illustrations are inspired by 1980s pop culture and Saturday morning cartoons. Since graduating three years ago Dan’s oblong-eyed creations have graced the pages of numerous editorials, like ESPN and The New York Times, and have been part of campaigns for GiffGaff, The Webby Awards, and Oreos.

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His highly stylized, comic book figures have an all-age appeal to them that’s eager to be snapped by companies large and small to give them the charming and cheeky edge they need. Woodger’s characters are expressive and manage to convey sarcasm, lust and anger all in a few lines.

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BEAUTIFUL SCI-FI BY ARTYOM TRAKHANOV

by Ariadna Zierold

artyom trakhanov, comic, illustration, undertow, stories, sci-fi, russia, upper playground

Artyom Trakhanov lives and works in Novosibirsk, Russia, where he is feverishly working on his next creator-owned project. Trakhanov’s most recent work includes the moody and beautiful sci-fi epic UNDERTOW, as well as assorted cover work for Image, BOOM!, and DC Comics.

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Artyom has contributed covers and short stories to several titles while working on multiple new projects, both with writers and on his own.

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“MAGNUM” BY FILIPPO FONTANA

by Ariadna Zierold

filippo fontana, magnum, comic, new rich, humor, upper playground

Filippo Fontana is an Italian-Polish designer from Belgium, currently living in London while finishing his Master’s in Visual Communication at the Royal College of Art.

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‘Magnum’ is a comic book inspired by the contemporary figure of the “new rich” in our society -a term to describe those who have only recently gained wealth and often perceived as having money, but no taste. The project portrays the adventures of three characters who each symbolically represent an extreme aspect of human behaviour and our relationship with money. Through the different stories, full of politically incorrect and dark humour, the comic book prompts the reader to reflect critically about the ethical relations between wealth and our actions.

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PAUL PAETZEL’S TALES

by Ariadna Zierold

paul paetzel, illustration, colorful, berlin, comic, artwork, silkscreen, linocut, reprography, upper playground

Paul Paetzel lives and works in Berlin where he was also born. He likes taking the metro and observing people. He searches for the mystic in everyday life and the normal in the abnormal. Paetzel is a member of the comic collective Édition Biografiktion which he founded with Ana Albero and Till Hafenbrak in 2008.

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The first zines (Biografiktion) they published were comic stories about celebrities adding fictional elements. They decided to start a second series called Human News whose theme varies in every issue and which is more focused on Illustration. To produce their artwork they use the printing techniques which are easily at their disposal: silkscreen, linocut and reprography.

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MOCHI AND MANGO BY SO YOUN LEE

by Ariadna Zierold

so youn lee, mochi, mango, candy, colorful, vibrant, innocence, comic, upper playground

Based in San Francisco, So Youn Lee identifies as a fresh contemporary artist best recognized for her vibrant & youthful original paintings reflecting varying themes surrounding innocence. Influenced through iconic 90s asian culture such as comics & animation, Lee hopes to express both an echo of her childhood and the yearning for an innocent utopian future.

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“Mochi refers to one of my favorite snacks when I was young. It is a rice cake filled with red bean paste. I called my characters in my black and white work ‘Mochi’. They look very much like rice cake, soft and chewy. Mango is a fruit as you know, and I call my characters ‘Mango’ in my colored works. I got inspired by its color, texture and taste. When I first started to draw my new character, it looked so weird to me, but senselessly cute. It reminds me of my very first encounter with the taste and textures of a Mango. The texture was so foreign but so delicious at the same time. Now you know that I relate everything with food.” – So Youn Lee

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WOBBLY ILLUSTRATIONS BY LUKE PEARSON

by Ariadna Zierold

luke pearson, cartoon, comic, illustration, hilda, upper playground

Luke Pearson is an illustrator and cartoonist. He draws comics and does various kinds of illustration work, including illustration for magazines and newspapers, book covers, poster design and development work for animation. He has written and storyboarded a number of episodes of the tv series Adventure Time.

luke pearson, cartoon, comic, illustration, hilda, upper playground
Pearson is the creator of the Hilda series of comics. His other work includes Everything We Miss and various shorter stories and strips.

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