When we first featured UK artist David Bray on our blog, his work a looked a little different than it does now- immensely detailed mixed media on paper drawings, usually depicting figures in erotic displays. "The work I do is based on that punk ethos- punk with a small 'p'. Just make something. Use what you've got. That's why I use biro pens stolen from the bookies: paint with tippex, highlighters, stolen paint from DIY stores, found wood...whatever implement is available immediately, right now, no excuses. It's about utilizing the ordinary and everyday to create something beautiful."
The name Ed Hardy immediately evokes images of tattooed baseball tees with cartoon skulls and studded baseball hats worn by reality TV stars. But before artist Don Ed Hardy became one of the most polarizing brands in history, he was a young aspiring artist whose favorite past time was going down to the beach in Southern California and looking at classic cars. He eventually went on to study under legendary Japanese tattoo artist Horihide, an experience that had a profound influence on Hardy's signature, ornate style. Today, Hardy is retired from tattooing, instead focused on non-tattoo based art like printmaking, drawing, and painting. This also includes new porcelain works and tapestries in his upcoming exhibition curated by Varnish Fine Art gallery in San Francisco, "Visionary Subversive".
Based in Barcelona, artist Ramon Maiden embellishes pin up girls and religious figures with some serious ink. Using ball point pen, the self-designated "Dandy Delinquent" adds a mix of tribal patterns and old-school Americana to his subjects otherwise revered for their innocence.
Chaim Machlev is a Berlin-based tattoo artist originally from Israel whose captivating, geometric designs resemble the spiked images of cardiographs. Machlev works intimately with clients one-on-one in his private workshop where he creates custom designs suited to each person's body. Though his work appears somewhat digitized, he says he draws out each image entirely freehand before making it permanent. The lines and curves of each piece respond to the unique shape of each individual. As a result, Machlev never inks the same design twice.