Dalton Webb has the right idea- about everything, it seems. He creates illustrations based on his love of drawing cartoons when he was little (primarily Garfield) and composes his work by gathering vintage lettering, cartoons and children’s books and getting inspired. He uses this technique to design incredible work for bands, comics, books, and just about anything he wants to work on. We love his work because he loves what he’s doing, and it shows. Here is what he had to say about some of his pieces:
Howard Schiffer worked in the vitamin industry, and wanted to do something more for children in underprivileged countries. So he started Vitamin Angels, which is providing vitamins and minerals to over 20 million children this year. The results have been staggering in the fight against poverty. Here is full story:
Love+Water- How did you come up with the idea for Vitamin Angels?
Howard Schiffer- I was a mid-wife in my early twenties, and was a part of the Home Birth Movement. I became involved in learning as much as I could about childbirth nutrition. At the time we were feeling pressure from the medical community and prenatal nutrition was a way in which we could help influence better birth outcomes for both the women and babies. When women were healthy, eating the right foods, getting the right nutrients and rest we had healthy babies and moms. That research and experience eventually lead me into the vitamin industry. I created vitamin brands for 14 years, and got to a point where I enjoyed selling the products but I knew there was something more I wanted to do. I knew they could have a positive impact on global health, but I didn’t know how to get them out to the villages that could benefit from them. There was an earthquake in Southern California at that time, and a vitamin company I owned received a call from a relief agency wanting to distribute vitamins to a migrant community that had been destroyed. I got them some vitamins, and realized that larger relief organizations did not have vitamins to distribute to people in need. I met with a relief agency to talk about what vitamins I could get them, and I learned some amazing facts, one being that a high dose of vitamin A given to a child once every six months- which is two capsules a year- can stop a child from going blind. I did not realize that, since I had never worked with children in such dire need, and was shocked at how easy it was to provide that for them. That was the start of Vitamin Angels.
L+W- Where does most of your funding come from?
L+W- What is the most moving moment you’ve had so far with Vitamin Angels?
L+W- Is there anything else we need to know about Vitamin Angels?
Scott Speck’s photography is so stunning that my mouth hung open for about five minutes the first time I saw one of his photos. There was something about the contrasts, the angles, the absolute artistry behind each shot that takes photography to a whole other level of artistic mastery. Then I found out they are all pinhole photographs. This explains two things: Scott is an artist whose medium is the camera, and he is a craftsman who has honed his work to a state that nears perfection. Here is what he had to say about his technique and some of his work:
I became interested in pinhole photography about four years ago. My cameras are made of wood and metal, and they contain no lens -- only a small pinhole in the front of the camera. My camera uses no electronics, is completely manual, and does not allow me to look through the camera to compose a photograph -- everything is done external to the camera. I use medium and large format film for my work in both black/white and color, and my exposure times range from 1 sec (bright, outdoor scenes) to 1 hour (dark interiors, like dimly lit cathedrals). The pinhole's unique optical characteristic is that it affords infinite depth of field, whereby all parts of a scene, no matter how close (0.5mm) or how far (infinity), are equally in focus. This permits one to explore perspective, dimensionality, and an intimacy of texture. My large format (4x5) pinhole camera affords an ultrawide field of view of 160 degrees, with no edge curvatures as occurs with a fisheye lens. My favorite subjects are architectures, portraits, and landscapes. I have had my work published in books and magazines, my work has won awards in juried competitions, and I frequently show my work in galleries, by invitation. I also conduct interviews and pinhole photography seminars. Prints of my works are available for sale upon request, and I enjoy doing commissioned pinhole photography for individuals, couples, music bands, etc. Through the pinhole, I create the surreal from the real. No other form of artistic expression has ever felt so right to me.
foot bridge in Ellicott City, Maryland, during a misty rain.Gothic Glory
National Cathedral in Washington, DC.Forest in Wind
Mountain in West Virginia.Patterns of Force
district of the city of Baltimore, Kelly Kalac modeling.Madrid Cathedral
Madrid Cathedral, Spain.Magnolia
Visit Scott's site: www.scottspeck.com
Miyoko Brunner- WITNESS is co-founded with Peter Gabriel. He went on tour with Amnesty International’s Human Rights Tour in 1988 and took the Sony 8mm Handycam with him. He filmed people he met all over the world, many of whom had suffered human rights abuses, and had them tell their stories. He found it so amazing that these people were experiencing these abuses and not only were they not being heard, but their stories were being denied. He realized that something as simple as a video camera could bring these stories to the eyes of so many people. WITNESS started with the simple idea that ‘seeing is believing’ in order to help empower people to create change for themselves and those around them. In 1991, the Rodney King incident occurred, which was further motivation for Peter to move forward with his plan for WITNESS. By 1992 WITNESS was formed with Peter, the Lawyer’s Committee for Human Rights and a seed grant from the Reebok Human Rights Foundation. In 1993 we sent our first 25 video cameras to local human rights groups around the world. Since then we have continued to partner with grassroots organizations in order to advocate for human rights.
MB- The main way in which we are able to make this system work is by partnering with organizations all over the world. We have partnered with grassroots organizations in such places as Brazil, India, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Yemen, Zimbabwe and Cambodia. We create relationships where we work with them for one to three years to find out what their focus is, who their audience is and how we can incorporate video into their plan for change. We also just started working with coalitions, which is one of our new strategic visions. As technology evolves, we realize that cell phones are quickly taking the place of video cameras, and technology is evolving in new and exciting ways, so we are working with media outlets such as YouTube and Twitter in order to ensure we stay current in manning how video is best used to make human rights stories visible to the world.
MB- I think that change- real, sustainable change- can take such a long time, so when I see a campaign really get started and watch as a partner and think it through, and then actually see success, that is really moving. I’ve been with WITNESS for three years now working with events and individuals mainly on support. We have one partner that works with child soldiers in the Democratic Republic of Congo. It’s such a hard issue and so hard to watch these children talk about their experiences. Also just meeting some of our partners, and having them thank us for instilling the aspect of video into their causes, which enables them to take the stories of the people they work with and turn them into tools for social justice is really moving as well. Because after we leave them, they have the ability to continue using video to further their causes.
MB- We’re working on creating a Video Advocacy Planning Toolkit where we walk through each step of how to get started with using video as a tool for advocating for social justice. That will be available soon for people to use and we hope it will be a way to increase awareness and perpetuate the ability to take action.
L+W- Is there anything else we should know about WITNESS?
MB- The main idea is that change is possible, and that anyone can be involved in creating change. Stories are so powerful, and that is the essence of why WITNESS was created. A lot of high school students these days are so much more adept at video than most adults, so finding ways to empower young people now with the ability to use these tools to foster change is a key component to our mission.
A Polaroid Fade to Black film. I shot it in very dark conditions to get a long exposure and used light & movement to create the effect. This is an original, with no retouching or Photoshop effects involved.
The Dress was designed by Dutch fashion designer Anouk Wipprecht just for this idea. The Chinese lantern is the one that I have in my living room. Inside it I attached a small lamp for an illumination effect.
Visit Lambis’ site: www.lambisstratoudakis.com
Alan Ariail is a kind of genius when it comes to hand lettering. He is one of the few artists in this day and age who focuses on lettering as an art, and while he designs primarily for commercial products all of his work is hand drawn using pencils, markers, ink pens and brushes. His work speaks for itself, and here is what Alan had to say about a few of his pieces:
No matter how many lettering treatments I have created in my career I have never found an easy method where something magically happens in an instant. To design a solid lettering piece it takes a lot of preliminary drawing. The B/W sketches for The Soulless were drawn on 11″ X 17″ sheets of layout paper with pencils, markers and ink brushes. All the sketches were taped to a wall in my office. In addition to the wall sketches I also drew the logo at small size with a fountain pen. I had to draw the logo many times to learn the rhythm and flow of the letterforms. Eventually a well defined a solid logo emerged from all the preliminary concepts studies.