For my first ever Grand Look Book I had the amazing honor of collaborating with Strong Suit Clothing.
I featured 6 pieces from Strong Suit's Spring/Summer 2016 with inspiration from the late, great portraitist and watercolorist, John Singer Sargent.
Color Studies are becoming more and more important in the editorial work that I create. This series of work for Strong Suit is one of the first times I have taken such special care to paint color studies.
Each study has become a unique work of art, a loose and tiny version of the completed works.
Compare the Studies to the Final Works (yet to be published) to see the structure that supports the series. Then dig back into the sketching and concepting stage to see what ideas led the Color Studies.
At this stage I can splash colors and move wildly with the brush. Most colors will translate directly to the Final Work but certain decisions made here will help to decide what not to put into the Final Paintings.
Concepts and Sketches
I began with thinking about the Strong Suit brand. Located in Little Rock, Arkansas, producing quality, contemporary suiting at an accessible price with fabrics sourced from Italy. So I drew up a list.
- Serif Logo Font
- 'Strong Suit'- a common idiom
- accessible price
- European fit
- American brand- Little Rock, Arkansas
- Italian fabrics
This led me down the path of Italian Unification. Names like Mazzini, Garibaldi and Cavour sprang up but those were all too Italian with little to no American influence. Then I thought of the Renaissance but the same issue existed.
Then I thought of the great American artist, John Singer Sargent. He was after all, born in Tuscany and spent much of his life living in Europe, learning Italian and French and yet still an American. On top of that he was the greatest portraitist of his day.
It was settled. The Grand Look Book for Strong Suit Clothing would be centered around the work of John Singer Sargent.
Andrés Sendra has been making boots and shoes for over 100 years. Still located in the same Spanish town of Almansa, where it began back in 1913.
A fit so good you could walk on water. That was the concept I pulled together for this editorial piece featuring my newly beloved Ocean Patina, Double Monk concept shoes from Andrés Sendra. Inspiration for the piece drawn directly from my time living in Grand Haven, MI (more about that on the Sunflowermatt blog).
See Andres Sendra on
I was fortunate to be able to collaborate with Esquivel Shoes for their part in Cabinet of Curiosities at Colette.
By using beautiful textured hides they were able, together with Guillaume Salmon and Thomas Erber, to add a unique patina to each handmade pair. 4 pairs were created for men and 4 pairs for women.
Accompanied with each pair is a one of a kind painting by Me. To create the paintings I used the pages of a vintage book that inspired the style of boots. The event is being hosted by Colette, in Paris.
On my last visit to New York I stopped in the Onassis Clothing boutique. I was meeting Geo to take a look at the collection and to be featured in the ONS Manual.
ONS is still a young fashion retailer. They've had some time to define their cuts and silhouettes but are still seeking to define their voice.
One thing they are doing extremely well is seeking out unique individuals and sharing a bit of their stories on the ONS Manual. I stopped in to share a bit about myself and do a shoot wearing all ONS Clothing.
Read my nonsense and see the full feature at OnassisClothing.com
As the subconscious is to the self, the sketchbook is to the illustrator.
As necessity is to the invention, coffee is to the illustration.
As an artist, as an illustrator, as a thinker of thoughts I keep a journal with me at all times. I record ideas in words and images, I take notes on lectures and conversations. My collective conscious is reborn through my journal.
Scrolling down you will get just a taste of that consciousness.
As an addict I drink an espresso every morning. Sometimes I find myself with a second cup, wondering where the time has gone but ever so happy. Coffee has become an important part of my creative process. It is an essential part of the routine that starts my day.
For a look at the tools that I use almost everyday click on the links below.