2011 was a creatively barren year for me; just dreaming and working, but producing nothing. Thankfully all the months have finally paid off as I start this year in a new and better place.
My new home is the beautiful city of Edinburgh, and I finally feel free to work on my own terms for the first time.
A very happy new year!
Last week I finished a new version of my website, updated to show a bit more old work, including the innocently sensual lingerie concept brand ‘Rose & Honey’ which I am currently working on relaunching.
As I am finally sorting out my printed portfolio too, I’ve been taking a look at images from a few years ago with fresh eyes! I found this shot which I worked on with Heather Longton in 2008. It’s based on goldilocks – I wasn’t too keen at the time but I rather like it now…
Have a look…
I want to share some scans from a recently-acquired book of inspiration.
David and Elizabeth Emanuel went down in fashion history as the couple responsible for Princess Di’s wedding dress. Yes, that one. Perhaps not the sanest sartorial venture, I hear you cry, but everyone knows that rational thought and the art of dress do not always go hand in hand. Forget the inhibitions of popular good taste and you can’t help but feel awe-stuck by the sheer overblown fantasy of their gown. It takes dramatic vision and ‘cojones’ to attach eight metres of taffeta to a bride.
A hunt for information on these somewhat forgotten and fearless romantics lead me to purchase this out-of-print book. When it arrived I was so delighted! It was like going back to all the party dresses of childhood. As well as a mine of pictures, the book presents their approach to styling and design – which encourages us all to look ‘uniquely and unforgettably individual’ and references art history and classic cinema with inspiring eccentricity.
Stunning Susan Hampshire in an Emanuel dress
Some chic summer looks
A dress suitable for dancing with 5 naked cherubs in a spanish aristocrat's house
It’s time to get this Desire Machine going for good! To date I have been a terrible blogger; constantly returning to the safe little private land of pens and paper. But it’s time to embrace the digital age and start sharing some pictures and some thoughts. I’m working on my art full time now so every day should be full of inspiration and imagery – thats the theory anyway!
This week I have been obsessed with the ‘girl as cat’ theme. The feminine feline is a favourite charachter of popular mythology - from Bardot the ’sex kitten’ to kid’s charachters like Josie and the Pussycats, Catwoman to Anime catgirls. The enduring fantasy of this creature is implicit in the fashion pages: perhaps she stirs somewhere in our psyche as we pick out a black polo-neck and skinny jeans, slipping on a pair of ballet flats?
Styling ideas for a cat
So here is ‘Black Cat’, the first image in a new set:
Thanks for everything, Julie Newmar!
Illustrator Kasia Charko has worked on numerous children’s books…but back in the early 70′s she also created these fabulous pin-up style images for the different departments of Big Biba.
I think this cheeky lolita schoolgirl is my favourite!
I first came across the work of Hiroshi Tanabe in 2001 in the book Fashion Illustration Now, which I have just dug out of a dusty box in the garage. Seeing as that book was published 10 years ago, a lot of the illustration styles seem a little dated…but not so Tanabe! Seeing his work again reminded me how much I loved it when I first saw it, and a quick visit to his website provides more elegant, minimalistic eyecandy!
This must be the most sophisticated image of the Playboy-Bunny erotic-cliche ever! I love how he uses silhouhettes and clean woodcut-style linework to let the viewer’s mind fill in the detail.
More Beardsley stylings with these illustations by Otto Franz. I can’t seem to find any information on this artist, but I’m guessing these were drawn in the 1960′s if the hairstyles are anything to go by!
Via Blonde Zombies