SPOOKY ILLUSTRATIONS BY TRAVIS LAMPE

by Ariadna Zierold

travis lampe, painting, illustration, chicago, spooky, cartoon, cartoonish, vintage, upper playground

Chicago based Travis Lampe grew up in a small town in Kansas. After earning a degree in Graphic Design, he took a job in advertising as an art director in Chicago. While making ads for breakfast cereals and well known purveyors of inexpensive furniture over a period of several years, he secretly began “developing his illustration style,” which is not the same thing as “procrastinating.” Finally, when he felt the world was ready, he began his slow explosion onto the art and illustration scene, as it were.

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REINVENTED POP ART BY GARY TAXALI

by Ariadna Zierold

gary taxali, india, toronto, canada, pop art, vintage, retro, illustration, low brow, high brow, upper playground

Gary Taxali was born in Chandigarh, India and raised in Toronto, Canada.  Taxali graduated from the Ontario College of Art and Design University (OCAD). His retro stylized art is reminiscent of the 1930s and best described as “reinvented pop art” and rooted from an award winning illustration background. His art has a low brow/high brow appeal.

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AMERICAN STORIES BY SHAWN HUCKINS

by Ariadna Zierold

shawn huckins, painting, humor, text, american, vintage, classic, modern, typography, upper playground

Shawn Huckins (previously featured here) was not inspired by the likes of Van Gogh, Monet, or DaVinci. As a young boy in the second grade, Huckins found inspiration in someone who he affectionately refers to as the ‘Big Kid.’ Observing the ‘Big Kid’ and his drawing talents during a school bus ride home, Huckins took to creating his own sketches. Now a painter, Huckins’ introduction to painting came in the form of a family loss when his grandmother passed away a year later and inherited her slightly used oil painting set.

shawn huckins, painting, humor, text, american, vintage, classic, modern, typography, upper playground

Unfortunately, Huckins’ love affair with painting did not last long. As the medium was not quite what he was used to, he became increasingly frustrated, and stepped away from painting altogether until his college years. After a little globetrotting and some brief stints as a film major, an architecture major, and then as a graphic designer, Huckins found his way back to the medium that he now skillfully manipulates.

shawn huckins, painting, humor, text, american, vintage, classic, modern, typography, upper playground

Now settled in a creative niche that he could call home, Huckins went onto create his most notable series to date, The American Revolution Revolution and The American __tier.

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WHIMSICAL CREATURES BY ROMAN KLONEK

by Ariadna Zierold

roman klonek, illustration, illustrations, illustrator, germany, dusseldorf, old fashioned, color block, vintage, retro, whimsical, creatures, characters, surreal, graphic, poster, posters, upper playground

Düsseldorf, Germany based Roman Klonek (previously featured here) was born in Kattowitz, Poland. He has a spot for old fashioned cartoons and modern block printing styles. In the 90s he studied Graphic Arts in Duesseldorf and discovered a passion for woodcut.

roman klonek, illustration, illustrations, illustrator, germany, dusseldorf, old fashioned, color block, vintage, retro, whimsical, creatures, characters, surreal, graphic, poster, posters, upper playground

For 15 years he has been doing posters with a wide range of whimsical creatures, mostly half animal/half human, preferential in awkward situations. In his work, you will find a bizarre balancing act between propaganda, folklore and pop.
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MACABRE HUMOR BY ALEXIS E MABRY

by Ariadna Zierold

alexis e mabry, painting, paintings, collage, collages, macabre, humor, chaos, vintage, upper playground

Alexis E. Mabry‘s assemblage paintings, mixed-media collages, and jewelry mix the macabre and the whimsical into a potpourri of lighthearted chaos. Wholesome American families from the 50s laugh while catching on fire, an eager young boy’s head flies off his body like a bloody rocket while opening Christmas presents, a lamb smiles wryly while getting stabbed by a dozen steak knives.

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Her sources of reference and artistic material for her collages come from the same types of Christian books of older American life that she was forced to read in elementary school. A change of facial expression or of background scenery could easily transform these works into gruesome horror, but instead they become emblems of humor.

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SURREAL SITUATIONS BY EUGENIA LOLI

by Ariadna Zierold

eugenia loli, collage, collages, california, digital collage, digital, bizarre, surreal, narrative, narratives, surrealism, pop art, vintage, upper playground

California based filmmaker and a digital collage artist Eugenia Loli uses photography scanned from vintage magazines and science publications to create bizarre visual narratives that borrow from aspects of pop art, dada, and traditional surrealism.

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Loli was born in Athens, grew up in the Northwest of Greece near the city of Preveza, and lived for a while in a small village in the mountains. She then moved to Braunschweig, Germany, and subsequently Surrey, England, before moving to the California Bay Area. While growing up in Greece, she liked to draw a lot, but because of the lack of economic opportunities, she decided to cast aside her aspirations of becoming an artist and decided to go into the tech field. She studied computer programming, which in turn led to a life in blogging, animation, and eventually, filmmaking and digital collage.

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TILING COLLAGES BY ANTHONY GERACE

by Ariadna Zierold

anthony gerace, collage, collages, london, vintage, portraits, portrait, tiles, tile, tiling, abstract, chromatic, upper playground

London based Canadian artist Anthony Gerace creates mysterious collages by combining vintage portraits with colorful tiles that fragment the image resulting in dreamy compositions in paper – often working chromatically, and using tiling to abstractive effect. Because parts of the subject’s face are hidden, the artworks leave the viewer to fill in the missing pieces with their imagination.

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GHOST PORTRAITS BY ANGELA DEANE

by Ariadna Zierold

angela deane, photography, photographs, photograph, ghost, ghosts, vintage, paint, upper playground

Angela Deane explores the beautiful, painful, and ultimately puzzling, human condition of having memories. Deane covers people on found photographs with paint, subtracting the specific identity of each person and transforming them into anonymous entities for the viewer to project upon. The new portraits liken themselves to the familiar visual of a ghost, cloaked in opaque material and masked behind the guise of the fabric.

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