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Aaron Draper Poignant Yet Hopeful Photographs Of The Homeless

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The Underexposed series illuminates outsiders of the world, homeless people of our streets. Aaron Draper has made the deliberate decision to literally put in the spotlight a dozen of men and women living on the streets, giving an authentic representation of what could happen to any of us. Not wanting to fall into the cliche of taking black and white photographs or insisting on the harsh features of his subjects, Aaron Draper is applying a commercial tone to the way he envisions their lives, giving the viewers a more positive imagery of scenes not so pleasant to usually watch.

That’s the reason the series has gone viral, the viewer is not in a position of guilt, he doesn’t need to feel bad. He is invited to share that special connection the photographer encountered when meeting his subjects. Inspired by John Steinbeck’s vision on dispossessed families struggling to carve their way into life, he spent a lot of time and money getting to know the personalities behind the facade of their humble lives. Using a camera strobe and a documentary effect, Aaron Draper wants to turn around the false perception one might have about homeless life. He says if he can only initiate that shift, his work will be successful in his heart.

The video below details the photography process of the Underexposed series and shows a passionate Aaron Draper at work. (via Trenf)

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Didier Blondeau

Didier Blondeau

 

Didier Blondeau, quite obviously from France, is an incredible graphite artist (fancy-talk for someone who draws with pencils, but you knew that). One cannot fathom that the image above is hand drawn, and not a beautiful, rich in contrast black and white photograph.

 

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Thomas Mailaender’s Uncomfortable Sunburn Art: Using Human Bodies As An Unsual Canvas

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Thomas Mailaender’s creative use of sunburns in his project “Illustrated People” combines the surface of the human body with already existing negatives of photographs to create stunning and unusual results. His project consists essentially of manufacturing sunburns: he does this by placing negatives on his subjects bodies, and shining a UV light on the designated area. The light from the lamp shines onto the subject’s skin and, around the negatives in such a way that the image from the negative is reproduced. This method yields fascinating results that draw your attention, not only because of the photographs on display, but also the way he transforms the sheer pain of sunburn into a work of art themselves.

His juxtaposition of human bodies and other people’s lives makes for a sort of temporary tattoo, where the subjects carry the story of a stranger on their bodies. This project is truly beautiful in both its conceptual and physical form in the way that it joins human lives both past in present in a single work of art. The use of a natural element, albeit artificially inflicted in this case, such as UV rays in combination with the man made element of photography adds another dimension to the artwork and depicts human bodies as both artwork and creators of art. The temporary nature of the sunburn is also fascinating in its own respect: once it disappears, so will the photographs, giving the process of regeneration of skin an active role in this piece.

Mi-Zo

mi-zo kintaro1Graphic Artist Minori Murakami and Photographer Zoren Gold are a powerful team, but you can call them Mi-Zo.  They have a wonderfully bizarre body of work.  Mi-Zo has worked for many important clients and editorials, while constantly maintaing their unique style and sensibility.

Heavy Metal Art: Banks Violette And Seven Other Artists On The Spectrum Of Dark And Gritty

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Banks Violette

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Ben Venom

This weekend on Beautiful Decay we want to welcome you over to the dark side, where a vast amount of artists are churning out contemporary art fueled by the fire of Metal.  A multitude of artists these days are making art inspired by the crushing sounds and dark spirit of Heavy Metal, Death Metal and Doom music, all of which weave in and out of several other genres.

I’ve been a huge fan for a while now of the work made by artists Skinner, Ben Venom and Martin Durazo, which are strongly informed by Heavy Metal.  This past week after chatting with artist and Beautiful Decay owner, Amir H. Fallah and artist Skinner and reaching out on Facebook to learn more about artists tied into this music scene, I was turned onto a breadth of incredible artists.  A lot of artists working with metal as inspiration have strong crossover into design and illustration, album art, posters (especially for the band Mastadon), band merch and murals.  There’s also a strong genre of work that explores dark spiritual matter, mythology and death that is absolutely captivating.  You can expect upcoming coverage of these sub-genres in coming weeks.

Alma Haser’s Origami Portraits

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Photographer Alma Haser has often incorporated origami into her work.  However, in her series Cosmic Surgery the origami is brought to the forefront.  For the Cosmic Surgery Haser photographs a series of portraits.  She next makes multiple prints of the portraits and folds them into complex origami objects.  The origami pieces are placed back into the portrait and a photograph is taken of the final composition.  Haser mixes the meditative nature of origami and transposes it onto the face of her subject, somehow injecting simple portraits with an esoteric atmosphere.

Jesse Balmer

Jesse was born in San Juan Capistrano, California in 1987. He has been drawing since before he can remember, which was really only the-blink-of-an-eye ago on the geologic time scale. He now resides in San Francisco, California. I love the colors and the fluidity of line work in his drawings- he did what I always wanted to do with those Gelly Roll pens… but could not.

Yoo Huyn’s Carves Hyper Realistic Portraits Into Paper With A Little Help From His X-Acto Knife

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Precision and thorough work is the base of Yoo Huyn’s design pieces. Through small hollow spaces a portrait of a celebrity appears: Audrey Hepburn, Pablo Picasso, Marilyn Monroe, and Jim Morrison to name a few. The Korea based artist uses an intriguing method to create his hyper realistic photos.

He uses an X-acto knife, tweezers, ink and Korean paper. Hand carving takes a lot of patience, and in this case it also takes talent.
Yoo Hyun’s signature style consists of zig-zag patterns, but he doesn’t carve in straight lines. Instead, he varies the thickness of each strip, to create facial features and expressions. Each line specifically adds to the three-dimensional illusion. The negative spaces are see-through, so layering the portrait over a colored surface or pattern adds even more depth.
From far away, and placed in front of a black background we can clearly recognize the face but zooming in, the cut-outs and white parts make a pattern which looks like an abstract illustration. There is something fascinating about his inspirations; the fact that he chooses celebrities mostly from Hollywood vs the contrast of the use of traditional ink and paper.

Yoo Huyn pushes the limits of what can be done intuitively and without the help of a computer.

For more visuals, visit Yoo Huyn’s Instagram account and Facebook page. (via DesignBoom)