People whose work I admire: 1 Tara McPherson
I had completely forgotten about the work of Tara McPherson until I was tidying up my book shelves the other day and found my copy of Lost Constellations (the link is to forbidden planet's store - an awesome shop and the cheapest I can find it on line). The picture above is 'Hey, We All Die Sometimes' and features in Lost Constellations.
I was completely unaware of her work, until one day when I was scratching my inner nerd's itch at Playlounge just off Carnaby Street (Go - they have moomins and tokidoki and Liberty, Drop Dead and It's Something Hell's are just around the corner) and came across the above book. It's AWESOME.
She's a US based artist who draws wonderful, dreamy, ethereal, kooky, Rock 'n Roll characters in surreal, fairytale worlds using a limited palette of colours (usually teally blues, dusky pinks and reds and black). I wouldn't say that her work directly inspires or influences mine in any way, but it's definitely an aesthetic to aspire to.
When I had my finger mo tattooed a couple of years back, I used her 'Lucius' character from a Melvins poster she'd designed as the flyer image to get sponsorship for Movember.
Terrible picture. Let's move on.
It's hard to pick out the best pieces of work from her portfolio, because I love them all - she's one of those rare artists who never seems to do a bad piece of artwork. For the sake of you, the reader, I'll have a go and say that this unicorn seahorse girl for a Shonen Knife album cover is one of my favourite characters.
'Laughing Through the Chaos of it All' features Mr Wiggles (the balloon) another cute character who pops up quite often in Tara's work.
I adore this Isis gig poster, and have a copy of it on my 'Wall of Pirate' (I'll blog about THAT some other time). I really love the resurgence of one-off screen printed poster designs for individual gig dates that seem to be 'en-vogue' on the Indie Rock scene at the moment. To see the archive of Tara's posters click here.
Her 'How to Heal a Broken Heart' comic strip (click on them to see larger images)
More recent works include:
This beautiful Indian influenced piece 'Safety of Water'
'Searching for Penguins'
And of course 'The Umibozu Wish' - because I have a fondness for small, black cute things with big eyes!
Oh, and whilst at Art College, she interned at Rough Draft Studios working on my favourite cartoon ever: Futurama. Respect!
Tara McPherson's website is here
The art boutique she owns 'The Cotton Candy Machine' webstore is here
The gig posters are screen printed by Diesel Fuel Prints and their website is here