Sunday, 28 November 2010

Dreams of Flying

In a current drawing project we got to pick the theme for ourselves, asking 'What's On Your Agenda?'. So what is it I want to make my drawings about? Instantly I thought of dreams.. Almost every day I have vivid and rather strange pictures playing in my head.
For pretty much my entire life I have wanted the ability to fly just like in my dreams. Jan Von Holleben makes this dream a reality. These photos speak for themselves with their amazing energy and simply make you smile. Enjoy.

Wednesday, 13 October 2010


In my previous blog I mentioned that I want to make a poster to raise awareness about fires across  Russia. I am continuing with my project and here are some statement posters that are a great source of inspiration for me.

Les Yeux Sans Visage (Eyes Without a Face) (1959)
Art by Jean Mascii
Courtesy of The Nouvelle Vague Collection
As everyone wore protective masks during the smog in Moscow I thought I could use this idea in development of my work if I decide to highlight this fact. Detail that intrigues me the most is the face and the fact that it's covered up but only the eyes are open and full of fear.

The Omen (1976)
Film Poster
Courtesy of the Martin Bridgewater Collection
Looking at this poster I thought of interpretation in which I can use St. Basil's Cathedral (which is one of the most famous attractions in Moscow) and use fire in the shape of a dragon as a shadow to show that fires are eating the most precious away.

White Army poster that shows Leon Trotsky as a main character, who was a Ukrainian Bolshevik revolutionary and Marxist theorist. The Bolsheviks came to power in Russia during the October Revolution phase of the Russian Revolution of 1917, and founded the Soviet Union. They were strongly against religion and any recognition of God, any people seen wearing a cross were sent to prison or severely tortured . One of the "torture basements" was located in Kiev which looked like an underground theatre. Fans of blood-streaming shows would take comfy seats around the stage and were guaranteed shivers down their spines from what would happen before their eyes.
This summer in Russia, many religious people who lost their homes and relatives thought it was either the end of the world that came upon people to punish them for increasing number of those who don't believe in God or that the weather was due to Devil's deed. For most of simple religious working people there was no other explanation as to why they were experiencing such a disaster and were coming outside holding icons and praying for forgiveness. I thought I could use this idea of Trotsky (torturer, devil) sitting on map of Russia or similar.

Lithograph from 1898
Over 200 works from Ensor can be seen in this Flemish Art Collection.
When I first saw this I absolutely admired the style that Ensor has, the unique quality of pen and ink. I would like to try our this technique when I search for solutions of drawing tongues of fire.

Monday, 11 October 2010

Burning Summer of 2010..

This summer became the hottest in history for Russia causing a series of hundreds of wildfires that broke out across the country, primarily in the west, starting in late July 2010. Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has declared a state of emergency in seven regions for the fires, while 28 other regions were under a state of emergency due to crop failures caused by the Russian drought. The fires have cost an estimated $15 billion USD in damages so far.
During the year 2010, Russia experienced generally dry and hot weather starting around late May – early June. Temperatures of 35 °C (95 °F) first occurred after 12 June, which alone was an abnormality for the country (average mid-June temperatures seldom rise above 30 °C (86 °F)). On July 29th peat fires start in the Nizhny Novgorod Oblast, the Voronezh Oblast, Moscow Oblast, Ryazan Oblast and across central and western Russia due to unseasonably hot weather with people casualties.
Ilya Varlamov (zyalt)This is what the forest looks like now.

Man putting out fire with sticks. Photo: Ilya Varlamov (zyalt)When people run out of water they use sticks to put out the fire.

A fire engine gets stuck. Photo: Ilya Varlamov (zyalt)There's a shortage of fire engines and they are failing to cope with the situation. They run out of water and have to travel dozens of kilometres to find more. This fire engine got stuck in the peat as the firefighters were looking for water.

Deaths in Moscow were averaging 700 people a day, about twice the average number, amid a sweltering heat wave and poisonous smog from wildfires, according to Andrei Seltsovky, a Russian health official. He blamed weeks of unprecedented heat and suffocating smog for the rise in mortality compared to the same time last year, adding that city morgues were nearly overflowing, with 1,300 bodies, close to their capacity. The heat wave is likely unprecedented in Russia in 1,000 years, and may have killed over 15,000 people so far.
People are forced to wear gas masks on daily basis to protect themselves from killer smog.

Many animals have suffered health problems and death.

Fires have affected areas contaminated by the Chernobyl incident, specifically the surroundings of Bryansk and border regions with Belarus and Ukraine. Due to this, soil and plant particles contaminated by radioactive material could be released into the air and spread over wider areas.

 Being from Moscow, Russia myself I felt really strongly about the fact that most of people I knew in UK didn't know anything about the disaster that occurred in the biggest country of the world so I decided to start a project helping people that suffered from fires and raising awareness of others by posters and leaflets. I found a few aid websites while doing my research on the subject, here's one that interested me the most

I am going to continue my research and hope that soon I can change people's perception on what is around them.