My favorite thing about journalism (it ain’t the paychecks) is that it connects me with extraordinary people, like 17-year-old Hope Lennox. Throughout high school, the recent graduate of Atlanta’s Pace Academy eschewed football games to stay home and make art, teaching herself to create realistic portraits in glitter. She’s been exhibiting since age 12, and she developed a surprisingly sophisticated take on a medium I associate with cheap birthday cards! I’m sharing a few of her paintings here, and you can read all about Hope and her process in my profile for the Atlanta INtown paper.
I rang up my first celebrity a few weeks ago. Print magazine hired me to interview actor and artist Kevin Christy, best known lately for his role as Lester on Showtime’s Masters of Sex. Kevin’s double life fascinates me: He’s a commercial illustrator and fine artist who pays the bills with minor parts for TV and movies. Most freelance creatives have bread-and-butter side gigs, but how many film for Dude, Where’s My Car? in the morning and paint a portrait for the Atlantic in the afternoon?
His dual gigs have more in common than I first realized. Rob Clayton, Kevin’s former teacher at Art Center College of Design, put it like this: “Being a character actor is really similar to being an illustrator. Because you get known for a particular thing, people hire you for that thing, and if you get big enough, you’re allowed to change and develop a new thing.”
I think our talk revealed a few valuable lessons for artists and designers, and it’s also good for a few laughs (Kevin does stand-up comedy, too). Have a look on Print’s website and let me know what you think.
I’m no gamer, yet this morning I found myself watching the trailers for Fallout 4 on a loop and snapping screen shots. Why the sudden interest in virtual combat, you ask? I noticed on TV commercials that the latest creation by Bethesda Game Studios, launching Nov. 11, prominently features Lustrons and Lustron-inspired homes in its landscape. Since players’ mission is to shape the fate of a world destroyed by nuclear war, it snaps into place that the designers were inspired by the prefabricated homes manufactured just after World War II.
The boxy, steel homes and their midcentury advertisements ooze optimism, normalcy, and domestic peace. So it makes sense that Lustrons are powerful symbols in an animated wasteland. You can watch the Fallout 4 trailers here and catch up on posts about my own Lustron here.
Local illustrator Sarah Neuburger’s latest print, titled “Atlanta’s Creative Class,” pays tribute to 50 women who write, photograph, stamp, style, and otherwise boost the arts and crafts scene in our fair Southern city. Yours truly is portrayed in the bottom row, third from the left. I’m honored to share this 12×16-inch stage with some of my closest friends, like Shannon Mulkey from the Indie Craft Experience, as well as talented ladies I’ve been admiring from afar for years. Read more about the project below!
Vinyl lawn chairs and turquoise trailers are her muses. Since 2008, Boston-based artist Leah Giberson has painted the tidy trappings of middle-class life with stunning realism. Read on to find out why she’s fascinated by suburbia, and why her perfected portraits couldn’t be further from her own childhood.