Field Notes Launches New Collection of Letterpress Notebooks Designed by Nine Printers Across the U.S.
September 17, 2020

For its latest limited edition series, Field Notes tasked nine letterpress shops with capturing the diverse perspectives and histories of the nation through a pocket-sized design. United States of Letterpress is a pastel collection of memo notebooks featuring renderings of small storefronts, geometric patterns, and various slogans, including nods to the upcoming presidential election. Each holds 48 pages of graph paper.
To coincide with the launch, the Chicago-based notebook manufacturer filmed a short documentary, directed by Steve Delahoyde, capturing the processes and history of the art form. More Continue reading

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Quirky Characters Anthropomorphize Patterned, Pastel Vases by Ceramicist Sandra Apperloo
September 9, 2020

Sandra Apperloo infuses her love for pastels and tiny freckles into a playful crew of characters. Shaped to hold a single flower stem, the anthropomorphized vases display a range of emotions and together, form a series humorously named Weirdo Bud Vases. Their lengthy bodies are covered in polka dots, floral motifs, and stripes, and while some stand straight up, others twist around a similarly dressed figure. “I hope my works make people laugh and daydream. More Continue reading

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Limp Balloons Slump Over Each Other in Pastel Sculptures by Artist Joe Davidson
September 3, 2020

In varying states of deflation, Joe Davidson’s pastel balloons sag, slump, and flop in every direction. The limp, elongated forms are stacked on top of one another in seemingly precarious piles and resemble latex tubes filled with days-old air. While the sculptures are playful in both color and form, the Los Angeles-based artist notes that they also hold earnest themes of masculinity and aging, two concepts he’s thinking about often.
Davidson prefers to explore new materials and those beyond the bronze, stone, and wood typically used in this medium. More Continue reading

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A Massive Compendium of Tarot Cards Explores 600 Years of the Divine Decks
August 8, 2020

Compiling more than 500 cards, a new book sequences an incredibly diverse array of metaphysical decks from medieval to modern times. Tarot is arranged in order from the Major to the Minor Arcana and examines the meaning behind the varied illustrations, considering who created them and when. From a whimsical, black-and-white rendering of The Lovers by Madison Ross to French occultist Jean-Baptise Alliette’s pastel series, the compendium explores the collaborations between mystics and artists that have been happening for centuries. More Continue reading

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A Massive Flower Splays Across Six Surfaces in a New Mural by Artist Mona Caron
August 3, 2020

An enormous flower overtakes the San José’s cultural affairs building in a multi-plane mural by artist Mona Caron (previously). Titled “Limonium,” the delicate, pink-and-green leaves spread out across the structure’s facade, transcending a single side. Wrapped around six walls and across four planes, the flower appears to be growing continuously from multiple angles.
The San Francisco-based artist says determining the spatial logistics was straightforward. She added reference points to the wall and superimposed her botanical piece to a photo, which guided her through the process. More Continue reading

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Children’s Imaginations Materialize as Cartoon Chaos in Paintings by Artist Kayla Mahaffey
June 3, 2020

Chicago-based artist Kayla Mahaffey captures the vivid reveries occupying young minds. She juxtaposes realistically rendered figures with chaotic scenes of two-dimensional cartoon characters as they emerge from amorphous clouds and pastel commotions. Each central figure wears a distinct expression that’s reflected through the fictional world.
Many of Mahaffey’s pieces portraying children’s imaginations shown here are part of the series Off to the Races, which serves as a hopeful narration of change, she said in a statement. More Continue reading

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Geometric Insects Navigate Sparse Flora in Pastel Illustrations by Hoàng Hoàng
April 5, 2020

Based in Ho Chi Minh City, graphic designer and illustrator Hoàng Hoàng merges science and art into a series of illustrations that mimic both insects in their natural habitats and those pinned in display cases for preservation. The Insect World Collection is comprised of varicolored stripes, semicircles, and other angular shapes that form multi-hued wings and rotund bodies. Set on pastel backgrounds, each arthropod features both Vietnamese and English translations of the insects’ common and scientific names. More Continue reading

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Artist Spotlight: Clément Thoby
March 19, 2020

A selection of pastel drawings by Paris-based illustrator and background designer Clément Thoby.                                                                     Clément Thoby’s Website Clément Thoby on Instagram Continue reading

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Minimalist Ceramics by Amy Victoria Marsh Exude Positivity and Playfulness
February 10, 2020

Relying on a simple color palette, Amy Victoria Marsh crafts minimalist ceramics meant to inspire positivity and humor. The Manchester-based artist creates playful pieces ranging from supine women reading to others wrapped up on a sushi bed to her “Happy Poo” collection. Her pastel fortune cookie even comes in an illustrated package with an uplifting saying stuffed inside.
Marsh tells It’s Nice That that much of her lighthearted work has been inspired by a 2016 visit to Japan. More Continue reading

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