the art of michele bosak

When I went to the Renegade Craft Fair last month I saw a lot of great stuff, but was immediately drawn to a few certain things, one of them being the wonderful artwork of Michele Bosak. Michele, who told me she was just finishing up her MFA in Drawing at NIU, splits her time between northern Illinois and Michigan. Her collection has charming childhood themes, greatly effective negative space and a thoughtful vintage feel to it. The soft color selections draw me in and envelop me like a favorite childhood blanket once did.

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I appreciate Michele’s use of many types of media, like graphite, ink, watercolor and acrylic paint. It’s hard for me to pick a favorite in her collection but since I bought this piece, I think I like her wax and oil paint encaustic paintings best.

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See more from Michele on her website, blog and Etsy shop.


tabitha bianca brown: miniview

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Are you in a groovy, cool vintage-feeling mood right now? I am. I feel like curling my feet up under me in a Barcelona chair, grabbing a cold one and putting some old Chaka Khan tunes on my headphones right now, because I’ve been looking at the stylish artwork of Tabitha Bianca Brown. I like Tabitha’s style. It’s loose but orderly. Soft, with a little bit of urban edge. It has dimension due to its layers of assorted materials – chalk, acrylic, graphite – and the earthy color palettes appeal to my organic side. I wanted to know some more, so…

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Q: Where do you live and where do you create your artwork?
A: I live in a suburb north of Chicago, Illinois. Most of my art is created while I sitting in front of a window. I like using natural lighting.

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Q: In your collection, I see you have mixed media pieces, paintings and illustrations too. Do you have a favorite technique or medium?
A: I enjoy enjoy mixing and matching different techniques. So, I don’t have a favorite. But, I will say that the staple of my pieces is my 2H pencil. The little guy creates the framework of all of my pieces, no matter what the final medium will be.

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Q: What is it about the 60’s and 70’s eras that appeals to you the most? If you could pick one element of that period to incorporate into the age we are in today, what would it be?
A: I grew up surrounded by records from the 70s. While visiting my Grandma (that’s where the huge record collection lived), my aunt would play these records for us. It’s mainly the nostalgia that appeals to me. I think the music was wonderful, particularly the soul, funk, and jazz. Those genres had so many layers; smooth, gritty, airy, heavy. These opposing layers were perfectly blended into harmony. I would like to carry those layers into the modern day. The complexity and simpleness of everyday life.

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You can see much more of Tabitha’s work at her Etsy shop and website, and say hello on her blog.

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Thank you Tabitha!


the art of angela petsis

today i have a terrible internet connection, but am loving the soothing tones and soft layers on this mixed media work from dynamic artist angela petsis. these acrylic and collage pieces represent only a fraction of angela’s formidable work– she also has strong beeswax, polaroid transfer and altered book page collections. i am enjoying the cohesive motifs of so many mysterious tales and romantic, melancholic, even tragic stories, which unfold in front of my eyes the longer i look.

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see more of angela’s fabulous work on her website and flickr stream, and purchase select works at her etsy shop.


dana robson collage works

i am buzzy doing blog maintenance, working on my special creative project and caring for my big doggie who is having trouble walking post-seizure, so i cannot write much today but i wanted to show you the beautiful works of san francisco artist dana robson. i love the gorgeous handwork here; the stitching onto vintage papers and maps, the goccoing, the nature motifs and while we are at it let’s not ignore the frame crafting either. the pieces give off a flowing, soothing energy which my whole house could use right now.

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purchase these pieces at the beholder and see dana’s website for more.


michele maule mixed media: miniview

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i think i have mentioned before that my father in law has this awesome collection of old typewriters? they’re all black, which is perfect and fine of course, but just a tad heavy to be filling my eyes and mind, what with all the summery things that are pouring into my head at warp speed right now. the old brightly colored ones are perfect in a different way, a seasonal way, a now way, which is why i am sooo attracted to the most excellent artwork of michele maule. i love her free-spirited interpretation of these utilitarian objects, with their foxy colors and soft curves. there is some big love behind these pieces, you can just tell. and her other work, which includes original encaustic paintings, illustrations and screenprints, is a nice crusty contrast to those colorful jammy typewriters. that’s right, i said jammy. the point is, there’s all different kinds of plenty for people to enjoy in her prolific collection, and with all that said, wouldn’t you like to know just a little more about the brains behind the operation? me too!

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q: where do you live and where do you make your collection?
a: i live in pontiac, michigan, a forgotten suburb of detroit. i mostly work in my house. i recently converted my living room into a work space, and there is also a small space in my bedroom where i work.

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q: what inspires you to create?
a: i find inspiration in everyday objects. i love seeing the personalities that things like chairs, typewriters, spools of thread, and sewing machines take on. every time i draw one of these objects, it seems to take on a life of its own. each one has their own character, and i really enjoy seeing that.

i also find a lot of inspiration in nature, and in illustrated science books. things like the anatomy of flowers and our skeletal system really interest me.

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q: what did you think you would grow up to be when you were a little kid?
a: well, i remember the first thing/person i wanted to be when i grew up was wonder woman. i thought she was rad. i even wore these blue rubber bands on my wrists for weeks and weeks. 🙂 later, i knew that i wanted to do something that would let me be creative. i didn’t know what exactly, and i don’t think i really figured that out until my junior year of college!

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q: can we go anywhere to see your work in person?
a: yes you can!! i currently have work in the following galleries and boutiques: fact and fancy in brooklyn, 323 east gallery in royal oak, mi and the ddp gallery in fayetteville, ar.

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see more of michele’s terrific artwork on her website, check out her flickr stream, purchase these pieces at her etsy shop, and be sure to stop by and say hi on her blog too!

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thank you michele!


tony forte photography & design: miniview

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i am back in the saddle this week and today’s miniview brings us more insight into the projects of tony forte, a graphic designer who creates works through digital techniques and photography with strong urban themes. tony’s photography is striking and his rich mixed media pieces with glints of vintage influence intrigue me, so i thought i’d ask a few questions…

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q: where do you live and where do you create your work?
a: i’m living in north new jersey, and all the creative workload gets done in my office/studio which is also in jersey.

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q: do you have a formal education in art or design?
a: i have a degree: applied science in visual communication and graphic design. i’ve been drawing since I was a kid, and have always appreciated photography.

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q: can you tell us a little about the backyard project you have founded?
a: backyard project was founded in late 2005. it was a venture that i had been trying to get off the ground for a very long time. it was tough with working during the day, and bar tending at night. (NO sleep.) me and dan puleo, a friend and artist who shared similar taste when it came to throwing ideas around, launched the backyard site. we had put some cash together to get the website up and running. it was a great way to finally get some more exposure, and also develop a t-shirt/apparel line, with one-color design concepts. the apparel mainly concentrates on simple designs that represent our everyday creative outlook in our neighborhood, that we can share with the world.

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q: do you have a favorite piece in your collection?
a: um, i think one of my favorite pieces is “Yesterday” (below) which can be also viewed with many other pieces of mine on my website. i really do NOT get tired of looking at that piece, i feel that i get something else that pops out of it every time i look at it. it’s hanging in my apartment.

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thank you tony!


lisaur collage art

looking through the postcard section in resale shops is one of me and my husband’s favorite pastimes. we peep at the penmanship and wonder what state of mind the senders were in when they sent their correspondence, as well as the receivers. that is part of the reason why i am drawn to this small scale mixed media art from etsy seller lisaur, made from recycled postcards and collaged on the written sides.

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the rich color combinations only serve as a compliment to the mysterious torn stories told on their papers.

see lisa’s full collection here.


erin smith mixed media art

i love the rich and humorous mixed media collection from georgia artist erin smith. these printed giclee collages are crafted from a combination of acrylic, watercolor, inks, paper, found objects and digital media. the folks in the vintage photographs are her relatives, and the witty prose of course is her own.

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this may come as a surprise to some of you but the feeling of being on edge comes quite naturally to me. i think these pieces are an almost perfect reflection of some of my innermost thoughts. do they reflect your thoughts too?

find erin’s collection at uncommon goods and mud and metal, and be sure to visit erin at her website too.


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