söndag 27 november 2011

Christmas creations

Coffee after church. A few weeks ago I was working on a label for a Christmas coffee for Skafferi. The old cathedral of Porvoo is a challenge. The same church has been used in labels before, for example in this classic finnish chalk package. I ended up removing everything around the cathedral and making it look like a movable miniature building. The first version (above) is wobbly in a nice way, but it needed some background to stand out. Also, there´s a error that irritates me. Look at the big window on the left, follow the line up to the nook, and you notice it is in the wrong place. It should be in the middle of the wall, the church is very symmetric. The next version is the one that´s used. Here:

The background is thick prussian blue gouache with a little titanium white in it, and the snow is just titanium white spots. Yesterday I went to see how it looks in the shop:

After a few days of negativity looming over me, it felt really nice to see this! I really hope this label will have a life as long as the chalk box from the 1930´s:-)

tisdag 22 november 2011

Removing negativity

Oh my. When a day is stupid and nothing goes your way, you find something like this.

Here, my own Dautremer original:

On the left, an original 3D model of a house in blue cardboard by a little artist who lives with me. Both are lovely.

måndag 21 november 2011


Intolerance on the dance floor. In Finland we have this thing called True Finns. One of their members of parliament refuses to attend the president´s ball on independence day, partly because he dislikes seeing homosexuals dance at the ball. Don´t know if it´s scary or sad or both, but it´s worth a Monday illustration.

fredag 18 november 2011

Black outlines

Borders. Very few things in life have outlines. My ideal is to be able to paint without outlines, to use the contrast between colours and textures to make my point. Like this:

But with printing on soft newspaper quality paper it´s almost impossible to make it without using outlines of some sort. In this illustration, on fully booked restaurants in Helsinki (top, detail of a full spread thing with more black ink than I dare show you), I went too far. This comic book style is not me, no, no, no. Next time, thinner outlines... or none.

fredag 11 november 2011

Something to draw for art class

Since I left facebook my reader stats have dropped, BUT I have gotten visitors who are really interested in the issues I write about. Or so I thought. Here´s the google search keywords for this week. I especially like the last one on the list. I really, really hope I could help you. Some day I will prepare some draw by numbers printouts for you, promise!

This week I have been on and off drawing a coffee label for a Christmas coffee. It became quite nice, I will post some pictures when my wonderful coffee lady has the packages ready in her store. To get in the right mood I have been humming on Ave Maria until I got almost crazy (also in public transportation, sorry all co-passengers). Back home I listened to Nina Hagen´s german version. It´s completely eighties, and it has harp sounds in the background, but it gives me the chills. Definitely better than my Helsinki metro version.

måndag 7 november 2011

I was first!

Happy birthday. The topic for my Monday illustration was quite easy to pick. The world population passed the 7 billion limit and several different babies were celebrated as the one to break the limit. Demography and especially historical demography is interesting. Read Massimo Livi-Baccis book A Concise History of World Population if you want to know how wars and diseases, beliefs and ideologies, changes in climate and innovations in food production affected the population through time. It was on the reading list for one of my courses a few years ago when I still pretended to be a history student, and really stood out as good reading. The latest edition is from 2006 and updated with projections to 2050.

tisdag 1 november 2011

Here we go again

Holy Lucia. I know it´s two months to christmas but I can´t help it. When I found this in my files I just had to post it. Sorry-sorry-sorry everyone who thinks christmas preparations before december is a crime. This is one of the suggestions I had for a tea label last year. Not a winner, but my personal favorite.  Here´s another one:

Something strange happened to the shape of the tea pot, but I like the elf.