Oliver Jeffers and His Dipped Painting Project

Maybe you’ve heard of Oliver Jeffers or own one of his beautifully-illustrated children’s books. (We have this and this.) I’m a big fan–and apparently so is my girl crush!  I recently saw that he’s started a rather interesting painting project:

Essentially, the guy’s been spending loads of time painting really incredible portraits and as a series of performance pieces, he’ll be dipping them into vats of enamel paint, covering most of the work he’s spent hours upon hours to create. The people in the paintings were interviewed by Jeffers about their experiences with loss and how their memories affect their identity. He’s transcribed their stories onto paper, with each sheet sitting beneath the painting to catch all the drippings, thus hiding the written interviews as well.

From the NY Times:

“Jeffers created portraits from his memories of those interviews, which were hidden from the public until the moment of their dipping, after which witnesses were interviewed about what they saw (some immediately after; others will be interviewed in the coming months). ‘The only evidence of this painting will be people who witness it, like history,’ he said. Eventually, all the works and their materials — including the drop cloths, inscribed with Jeffers’ memories of the interviews, over which the paintings dried — will be displayed in an installation.”

So fascinating.

It’s like a game of memory that challenges you to participate in art and really pay attention to details. It’s got me thinking, as a storyteller, what do I need to share with others that I want them to know? And what do I need to ask others in my life so that their story can live on, be seen and felt and heard and passed along?

Really compelling, right? Are you following any incredible artists on Instagram?  

All photos via Oliver Jeffers.

 

P.S. Check out his website for cool free illustrations for coloring, crafting, and puzzles. Also, more awesome art.

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Sweet Shop: Starla Michelle Halfmann

If you know me, you know I’ve got a slight obsession with peacocks and peacock feathers. Part of it stems from growing up in Arcadia and the other part is just because they’re insanely beautiful. Mumbles’s grandfather even has a few at his home, which is always fun for me. (Proof: here and here.) Even our wedding had a bunch of peacock feathers and hues, so it’s no mystery that there are still some lingering in our home.  How I’m going to refrain from becoming the crazy peacock lady, I have no idea. I see a future where everything I own may or may not have a peacock on it because surely when my friends and family see such things, they’ll think “Jenn will love this!” and they’ll be right.

Well, here’s a lady I just discovered who is wholeheartedly not helping with this problem. Meet Starla Michelle Halfmann.  I discovered her work via Anthropologie (swoon) and it’s just absolutely gorgeous. I want everything she makes but this print is definitely on my Dear Santa list.

Starla Michelle Halfmann

 

P.S. More awesome art.

Sweet Find: Amber Alexander on Etsy

Etsy is a magical, magical world. I’ve been trying to figure out what to put on the walls in our 2nd bedroom/office/Mumbles’ closet/guest room.  I wanted something whimsical and fun and I’d been eyeing watercolors and illustrations for quite some time.  Then, I somehow stumbled upon Amber Alexander’s lovely Etsy shop.  And that’s the magic of Etsy. I want just about everything she makes — beautiful florals, feathers, and furry friends. I simply adore her work.

I ended up purchasing three prints from her shop so that I could put them in these wood frames I found at Target (I love that you can see the grain and knots in the wood).  Meet my three new mates Byron, Duncan and Looker the Alligator.  Mumbles likes Duncan enough to want to take him to work but I’m not quite sure if I can give him up.

Art prints by Amber Alexander on Etsy

Art prints by Amber Alexander on Etsy

Also, Amber was sweet enough to send a few cards in my package which was such a fun surprise.  I was delighted to gift them to some friends later on and even more excited to show them the cute little stories Amber has created for each of the characters on the back of the card. For example, I said “Happy Birthday” with this fabulous card for my wine-loving friend.  The caption read: “I don’t know what could have been ‘hard’ about her day. She’s a cat! not enough catnip? lost her toy? bad fur day?”  I just thought it was darling.  So did my friend.

Super sweet stuff.

What are your favorite Etsy shops?  

P.S. I thought Byron, Duncan and Looker all needed to be a foursome (you know, in case they wanted to play golf or something) so I happily scooped up this darling fox by Eastwitching.  Now I’ve got a happy bunch of furry, sophisticated friends!