Need inspiration?… Watch these now.

December 19, 2014 § Leave a comment

about_gaughan_painting

I can’t get enough of these Aaron James Draplin of Draplin Design Company videos. As a designer, it can be quite easy to get trapped in your own process and loose the road map and enthusiasm for the design. I guarantee, after watching a few of these vignettes, you will be re-inspired. Draplin’s enthusiasm is infectious and his work: elegant and timeless. Do yourself and your future projects a favor~ carve out a good half hour or so to watch a few of these. You won’t be disappointed.

 

Best Albums 2014

December 19, 2014 § Leave a comment

Except in the case of the first pick the number rating means very little. Here are BlendBlog’s pick of the best albums of 2014. Some people hate these year end lists, but this is one of my favorite times of the year because I get to discover a slew of great, new music and I hope you do the same.

War On Drugs

1. The War On DrugsLost In The Dream

I choose this record as #1 because it is so thematically and emotionally consistent. Adam Granudiel and bandmates spent well over a year in the studio putting this together and it shows. This is a sprawling big sound, an analog quality recording that has shades of “Desire” era Dylan and Born to Run era E street band or Astral Weeks. This could have easily been recorded in LA’s Laurel Canyon sometime in the mid-seventies. In any other universe these songs would be played often on the radio. The lyrics are charged with a passion and beauty that is rarely achieved in pop music.

 

Angel Olsen

 

2. Angel OlsenBurn You Fire For No Witness

A true star making record. The genius of the lyrics is audacious and the vocal delivery incomparable. Warbly like Roy Orbison with a sometimes twang when she quotes Hank Williams, Angel Olsen is a singer/songwriter who defy’s categories: ( Leonard Cohen and Edith Piaf have a daughter?) Olsen often changes the pitch of her voice to a stunning effect. Listen closely to the lyrics of Safe In The Womb and enjoy the rocking Letterman appearance.

Alt-J

3. Alt-JAn Awesome Wave

The Mercury Prize winners drop a hell of a sophomore record which sounds like no other band in the world, with careful craftsmanship and attention to the smallest of details these songs weave in and out of the wholly unexpected and sublime.

Alex G DSU

Alex GDSU

Not to be confused with the youtube star lite girl, this Alex G is from Philly where he has a loyal following. He has been writing and recording songs since he was 14. At 21 he has just released a full length album on a real record label. On his website he has an entire catalog of dozens of songs. A real come out of nowhere surprise. The kid has chops and good songwriting instincts.

Lia Ices

Lia IcesIces

This sophomore effort received a mixed critical reception mainly because Ices switched from spare piano songs on her brilliant first album Grown Unknown to a much more complex, sometimes calypso vibe. Upbeat, complex and good on repeat.

Gazelle Twin

Gazelle TwinUnflesh

A powerful and unusual voice that might be considered experimental by some, but never dissonant or noisy. There are a lot of unexpected twists and turns playing with the dark and gothic spaces.

Little Dragon

Little DragonNabuma Rubberband

These Swedes continue to produce one amazing album after another. And they really know how to swing.

Liars

Liars Mess

What to call the Liars? They started out with garage-ish brassyness and have evolved into an incomparable EDM band of (gulp) danceable tunes –but  for those not likely to dance. Always pushing the boundaries and carving out a wholly original version of art-rock-dance-experimentalism.

Mutual Benefit

Mutual Benefit — Cowboy’s Prayer

An Ep but basically a continuation of the stunning full length Love’s Crushing Diamond. There are violins, percussion, keyboards as well as a host of up to a dozen people playing, all with the plaintive songs of band leader Jordan Lee.

Lucrecia Dalt2

Lucrecia DaltSyzygy

Sort of on the cusp of 2013 and 2014 this is the third full length from Columbia born Lucrecia Dalt. Always a pleasure to hear her voice.

 

 

 

 

 

BLENDED

December 19, 2014 § Leave a comment

Friday Diptych: Gnome Life by Ophelia Chong

BLD114754  Sam Diephuis BLM022235 Spaces Images

BLD114754 Sam Diephuis
BLM022235 Spaces Images

Petal Mandalas

December 19, 2014 § Leave a comment

danmala05

Flower Mandalas by Kathy Klein. These are simple and fleeting yet the artist captures something permanent when she takes a photo of each mandala and prints them up for sale and exhibition. Simple, yes, but also fantastic.

danmala03danmala08DSC06501_2-e1407089604977IMG_2517-e1407091214333danmala01danmala02danmala09danmala10danmala13danmala14danmala16

 

Alexandru Crisan

December 19, 2014 § Leave a comment

Alexandru-Crisan01

Alexandru Crisan is a photographer based in Romania although these images were taken in a moving car in and around Rome, Italy in the pouring rain.

Alexandru-Crisan02Alexandru-Crisan03Alexandru-Crisan04Alexandru-Crisan05Alexandru-Crisan07Alexandru-Crisan10Alexandru-Crisan11

 

 

Tartan Mammals

December 18, 2014 § Leave a comment

sean-landers01

Artist Sean Landers has embarked on a very different path than most of the rest of his work with these animals covered in a variety of Scottish tartan.

These tartan animals represent the first time that I ever thought of my paintings in such a deliberate parent-like fashion. I have cloaked them in tartan fur to help protect them from indifference on their journey through time.

sean-landers02sean-landers03sean-landers04sean-landers05sean-landers06sean-landers07sean-landers08sean-landers09

 

 

 

Jen Stark

December 18, 2014 § Leave a comment

“” jenstark2

We’ve featured the astounding work of Los Angeles artist Jen Stark before but she is so prolific that we can now post a whole bunch of newer work.

On display at Eric Firestone Gallery booth at Art Basel at the Untitled Art Fair were some of Stark’s newest, craziest paper sculptures.

“Stark’s kaleidoscopic sculptures are made of geometric layers of colored paper that spiral inward to form a hypnotic, rainbow-hued abyss.”

centrifugalcosmiccomplexglowholographiccircleholographicsquarejenstark1jenstark2jenstark3jenstark4jenstark5thewholevortextural

 

 

 

 

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