Elphick’s Preraphaelite muses

I may have missed the very promising exhibition The Pre-raphaelite Sisters at the National Portrait Gallery in London, what I did not miss though, is that:

a) its curator Jan Marsh has a blog where you can read about history of art, the making of an exhibition and other art-related subjects; and

b) I fell in love with artist Marina Elphick‘s work, discovered through Marsh’s blog.

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Elphick was showcased at the Preraphaelite Sisters conference at York, where she brought her own depictions of the famous Preraphaelite models made with fabric and thread. Her “muses” as she calls them, are skillfully crafted (look at the hair! look at the dresses!) and perfectly beautiful. But that’s not everything. Not only did she create these amazing figures, but she also collaged them into illustrations, photographs and paintings of their contemporaries, thus creating new artworks for us all to enjoy.

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Posing in picturesque landscapes and Victorian interiors, the muses are depicted as Elphick imagined their lives were. But she didn’t stop there either! On her website, she also shares the biographies of each of her muses, filled with details, portraits and anecdotes.

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The creative process Elphick went through to create this multifacted project resulted in a very aesthetically pleasing, dream-like world where her enigmatic figures evolve surrounded by art and history. *le sigh!*

Elena Tyn

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When I found this Tumblr last year, I couldn’t believe how beautiful everything was. The photos, mostly taken in the forest, emanate this gentle charm that you sometimes find in pictures from the past. As for the crafts, carefully handmade little objects for everyday life: purses, knitted mittens, decorated notebooks… my heart sighed with admiration. How precious! Since then, I have been dutifully following Elena on her quaint Instagram account and on her Etsy shop and have recently ventured to ask her a few questions for the Art Gazette. She kindly accepted, here are her replies:

 

Hi! Could you tell me more about yourself? 
Hi! My name is Elena but I like to be called Ellen. I’m a full-time crafter and instagrammer living in the wild Karelian woods, Russia, with my family. Everything I do is my job and my hobby.
What does your pseudonym stand for?
The name of both my Instagram and Tumblr accounts is Liskin Dol, which means “valley of a fox” in Russian, in reference of where I live: a valley where the wildlife roams free.

 

You seem to be doing both photography and crafts, do you consider yourself more of a photographer or a maker?
Do I have to choose? 🙂 Both photography and crafts exist together and go hand in hand in my life.

 

Which one did you start first?
I think crafts came to my life earlier. I always did something with my own hands since early childhood.

 

Can you tell us the process you go through to make one of your creation?
It’s a very chaotic process! And very different every time. But from the moment an idea blooms in my mind I can’t be calm. I won’t stop until it’s ready.

 

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What inspires you? 
Everything that surrounds me, so… nature! Wild forest vibes are the best inspiration.

 

Where do you take your photos?
I try to take all my photos outside: in my garden or in the forest behind my home,  so my followers and customers can feel nature’s magic.

 

Any new projects in mind for the future months?
Actually, nothing in particular right now. I’m going to develop my skills and focus on the things I already work on for the moment.

 

Where can we see your work?
I publish my works mostly on Instagram, and sometimes on Tumblr. I also have an Etsy shop. It’s usually empty but you can see my previous works – including those which aren’t posted in instagram, in the sold out products.

 

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Chika Usui and her family of scarecrows

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Japanese artist Chika Usui has a thing for scarecrows. So much so that she decided to only feature them as the main theme of not one but two photographical projects, in which she also poses.

Arranging the scarecrows in life-like positions and sitting or interacting with them, Chika’s photos could almost look like candid family portraits… only with stuffed puppets instead of real human beings. The result is both cute and disturbing, but definitely worth a look!

(via Frankie)

Touchka Fashion Tales

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“Swallow, Swallow, little Swallow.” said the Prince, “will you stay with me one night longer?” (Oscar Wilde, The Happy Prince)

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“Do you believe in fairies? If you do, clap your hands” (J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan)

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“A black shadow dropped down into the circle. It was Bagheera the Black Panther, inky black all over, but with the panther markings showing up in certain lights like the pattern of watered silk.” (Rudyard Kipling, The Jungle Book)

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“If you love a flower that lives on a star, it is sweet to look at the sky at night. All the stars are a bloom with flowers…” (Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince)

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“Do you know, I always thought unicorns were fabulous monsters too? I never saw one alive before!”

“Well, now that we have seen each other” said the unicorn, “if you believe in me, I’ll believe in you.” (Lewis Carroll, Through the Looking-Glass)

Touchka Fashion Tales was founded by Jenny Lumelsky and Tomer Ronen out of their love for storytelling. Their intention was to create timeless pieces, between illustration and fashion, for elegant women.

What to say except that these gorgeous scarves are definitely on top of my wishlist. All of them of course.

(via The Jealous Curator)

Thomas C. Chung | “A Promise Made, Is A Promise Kept”

download (1) download (2) download (3) download (4) download (5) download Australian artist Thomas C. Chung hand stitched 88 full-sized succulents for an installation called “A Promise Made, Is A Promise Kept” in 2013 at Bloom Art Space in Shanghai. 88 is a symbol of good fortune in Chinese culture, with the artwork speaking about growth and patience for change in the global climate (which he probably needed to hand-stitch them all!), as seen from a child’s point of view.

I love plants but since I have a tendency to kill them all (too much love?), perhaps it would be a good idea to invest in one of these cuties? (via Frankie Magazine)

Nathalie Lété

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Nathalie Lété is a French artist who creates wonderful illustrations mixing her imagination as well as some real influence from childhood and France in general. Not only does she sell regular prints and silk prints, she also makes hanging toys, cushion covers and… rugs!! Look at these:

 

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Cat or steak? I must admit I love them both. But if you would rather have a cute owl, some simple but beautiful flowers and even a colorful mushroom, you can find them all on her e-shop.