The Constitute has been hard at work, to cast the last years of roller coaster-ride that is the Fabmobil into a documentation-style book form. It features a project history, photographs, interviews and of course also the drawings I made for the project in May 2018. My previous write-up about the project here.
It is always nice to receive the actual printed matter I work on, but this one is special. I like the way illustration is used in general here. Usually I receive a subject and have to generate ideas on what is given. Here the drawings were finished long ago, the subjects decided on the spot.
Christian and Sebastian then had a pool of images to choose from to illustrate their articles, as they saw fit. The pairing of subjects and image might have been a nice creative challenge in itself. The images are not direct analogues of the text, but they rather offer another view on it – since long an ideal I think illustration should aspire to. They are at times enlightening, but can also create a tension between image and text. In the best sense the elements compliment each other. I like the more emancipated role illustration has in this form of working.
More could be said about seeing photography and illustration of the same subject next to each other, but I will not write an essay about it right now.
I find this way of working intriguing. I think it offers more creativity to the illustrator and also to the designer. Of course this hardly possible in usual editorial assignment. But that’s what I said up top: This one is special.
I am happy to say, that we are also planning a second installment of this cooperation, that is going to happen in the summer. I am very much looking forward to it.
My drawing for Alfonso Cuaróns Roma, in Entertainment Weekly is one of 137 drawings (out of more than 3900 submitted) to be featured in the Communication Arts 2019 Illustration Annual. It is the 60th annual competition of its kind and the annual will be published as the May/June issue of Communication Arts magazine.
Same as last year, I only submitted one work to this competition. So I am very happy to be selected a second time in a row. Thank you to the jury!
Here is a series of illustrations I made for a special supplement of DIE ZEIT - ZEIT Verbrechen, which focusses on crime stories. This series was about stories that took a turn for the better, wrongly convicted people being freed, wrongly accused being compensated and so on.
The original drawings where in color but I feel stronger and stronger now, that this kind of drawing works only in black and white. I will make a point in the future of arguing more for the monochrome variants.
I made this illustration for an article in this week’s DIE ZEIT. The article is titled “Der Treuhänder” (‘The custodian’) - a portrait of Ulrich Mix, manager of the pension fund of Karstadt, a now defunct (or insolvent, or sold off) German retail chain (it’s complicated). In his position Mix has invested in illegal Cum-Ex schemes.
Art direction by Norman Hoppenheit.
“Fun is good for your stomach”
-Moominmamma from the Moomins
Illustration for Psykologi.
Illustration for The Intercept for an article by Sam Biddle titled "For owners of Amazon's ring security cameras, strangers may have been watching too". Unencrypted surveillance footage has been transmitted to the Ukraine, to be tagged. Art direction by Soohee Cho.
This is an illustration I made before Christmas for DIE ZEIT. The article was about the field of theological research. The Vatican has a right to veto people advancing their career in theological faculties, if applicants have researched and written about subjects that the church is not comfortable with.
Art direction by Ludwig Ander-Donath.
The blog of Finland’s illustrators association Kuvittajat ry, has published an article about our drawing event at Tampere Supercross in the beginning of November. I wrote about this previously here. You can see there also the drawings of the other three illustrators. The article is in Finnish, but here is a link to a Google translated English version.
The participants Riina Helinä, Pirita Tolvanen, Jani Ikonen and me talk about our experiences while drawing on location. This is a way to record what we have learned, and to keep things in mind for the next possible event, and maybe also as a glimpse for people who might be interested to join next time.
I think it was a very worthwhile experience, and I would be happy to to something like this again in the future. If you are interested, and are located in Finland or can arrange to come here , you can contact me directly and I will make sure to inform you about future events.
I made this illustration about the movie “Roma” by Alfonso Cuarón for Entertainment Weekly. It was published on December 7th.
The film, which is filmed entirely in black and white, follows Cleo a housekeeper in a wealthy family in early 1970s Mexico City. Cuarón is able to show the big picture in small details. In the same way a detail reflects something beyond itself, individual lives are a reflection of a larger shared historical experience. Even the menial and mundane tasks of Cleo, the housekeeper – and by extension all of us – constitute the very fabric (!) of our communities and cities.
A first sketch and a refined sketch below.
Art direction by Erica Bonkowski.
"In spite of all the horrors of the past … I believe in you.”
–Nelly Sachs in her acceptance speech for the 1965 Peace Prize of the German Book Trade
O die Schornsteine / O the Chimneys
And after my skin has been thus destroyed,
then without my flesh I shall see God. – JOB
O the chimneys
On the artfully contrived habitations of death,
As Israel's flesh floated in smoke
Through the air -
A star, there, received it, a blackened, a
Chimney-sweep star -
Or, could it be, sunbeam?
O the chimneys!
Jeremiah and Job, their dust, their release -
Who contrived you, who built, stone on stone,
For fugitives, this path of smoke?
O the habitations
Of death, so lovingly made ready for
The master of the house, the guest turned host -
O you fingers,
Laying down the threshold
Like a blade to sever death from life -
O you chimneys,
O you fingers, And Israel's flesh floating in smoke though the air!
From In the Habitations of Death, 1947
I drew today’s Google Doodle that can be seen on the Google website in Sweden, Germany, the US, Israel, Bulgaria, the UK and Ireland.
The occasion for the doodle is the 127th birthday of German-Swedish poet, playwright and Nobel laureate Nelly Sachs. She escaped with her mother in one of the last planes from Berlin, one week before she was scheduled to report to a concentration camp.
For years Nelly Sachs lived with her mother in a small apartment in Stockholm supporting herself with translations, working on her poetry in the night.
The horrors Nelly Sachs experienced during the persecution in Nazi Germany and its aftermath are an ever-present theme in her work.
On her 75th birthday on December 10th, 1966 Nelly Sachs received the Nobel prize in literature together with Samuel Joseph Agnon.
More about the Google Doodle here:
I made this illustration for The New Republic for an article titled “Unchecked Power - How monopolies have flourished—and undermined democracy by Ganesh Sitaraman”.
The drawing is based on a classic caricature by Horace Taylor from 1911, in which John D. Rockefeller examines the White House, after the verdicts in the antitrust trial against his Standard Oil company - himself having become a giant much bigger than the government that tries to reign him in.
This is the modern version of that.
The article can be read here. Thanks to art director Siung Tjia.
Not many updates lately. It is not because I have not worked, rather the opposite. I try to catch up a bit and post some of the recent drawings I made in the following days.
A start is this portrait of Arnold Schönberg, inventor of twelve-tone music, for Engelsloge.
Fun fact: Apparently Schönberg suffered from a fear of the number 13 (Triskaidekaphobia).
On Friday and Saturday I was drawing at Tampere Supercross . Drawing there was an event I organized for the Tampere illustrators club. Three other brave illustrators joined me and took up this challenge. Maybe we will publish a selection of their work too in some form soon. For now here are the results of my work.
I made these two illustrations for Wirtschaftswoche in the beginning of October. The article was about a trend in human resources departments of companies to classify their employees in different personality categories. The information might then also be used to combine teams according to the strengths and weaknesses of their members.
Art direction by Claudia Immig.