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We go through many interesting design projects each day and find them inspiring enough to be shared further. Projects which have the potential to inspire and spark multiple ideas. So, here are few selected one for this week’s design inspiration, enjoy!

Design by ATOM63
Design by ATOM63
Design by ATOM63

Identity Design for Hydeout by ATOM63

Design by NH1 Design
Design by NH1 Design
Design by NH1 Design
Design by NH1 Design

BIRA Packaging by NH1 Design

Type by Tenski

Packaging & Illustration of Mejo 2021 by Lucia Del Zotto

TypoGrAphiC by Dev Ethan Valladares

Visual Identity for Connectivity Standards Alliance by Interbrand

Packaging design for BIRA by CoDesign

Design for A-Trak ‘In The Loop’ by DIA Studio

Brand Identity for Marks’ Chocolate by Permanent Agency

If you have any of your design projects or someone else’s, which is equally inspiring for fellow creatives, then share them with us at contribute@creativegaga.com

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Tokyo’s Musashino Art University students design huge animated creatures (Sculptures) from straw to bring back lost practice of using remains from rice harvest in Japan.
Image credit: Wara Art Festival

Leftover straw post the harvesting season of rice in Japan has found a rather innovative and creative use. Huge, gigantic structures (Sculptures) of various animals and mythological characters have been created from the same, be it the mighty Gorilla or popular character, Amabie.

Image credit: Wara Art Festival

“Wara,” as it is known traditional in Japan, are remains from the process of extracting rice off the crop. Generally, it is put to use for the purpose of building roofs, tools of different kinds and even footwear. In fact, it has typically been put to use even to improve the fertility of the soil, alongside being utilised as feed for cattle and raw material formats of all sorts.

Image credit: Wara Art Festival
Sculptures
Image credit: Wara Art Festival

However, this practice had lost its popularity in recent times. Since 2008, though, the Wara Art Festival has been regularly held at Niigata’s Uwasekigata Park to revitalise and bring back this form of traditional Japanese art among the masses.

Image credit: Wara Art Festival

Designed by students from Tokyo’s Musashino Art University and thereby exhibited in the form of art installations through collaboration with local residents in Niigata, the festival portraying these giant straw figures is currently in its 13th year. Local craftsmen and farmers are the ones who bring the idea into physical reality through a hard technique called “Toba-ami.” Expected to last until the 31st of October, this year’s edition comes after a year of setback due to the Covid-19 pandemic not allowing for gatherings and events to be organised on a large scale.

Image credit: Wara Art Festival
The hope or purpose of this effort is mainly for the practice of using “wara” to be embraced and acknowledged once again.
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Vivek Mandrekar takes us through his journey of illustrating digital movie posters effectively. In the process, he also shares his own illustrating journey and insights gained behind the reel.

Posters by Vivek Mandrekar

CG. What’s the story behind choosing movies specifically as your avenue?

Vivek: First and foremost, it was an obsession with watching all kinds of movies that led me to see movie posters on a theatre lobby, lamppost, street-side wall, video store, newspaper or in a film journal. The artwork on them, especially the Hollywood ones, intrigued me. It gave an essence of what the movie would be before watching it. Then recreating and drawing the visual from posters became an interest. Be it Shah Rukh Khan from “Baazigar,” Jim Carrey from “The Mask,” Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone from any of their movies or even a “Jurassic Park” logo. I did not know, however, this interest would lead me to become a full-time movie poster artist. So, yes, life has been kind.

Posters by Vivek Mandrekar

CG. As a digital artist in this genre, how do you perceive the film poster painters and process of the previous era and, thus also, how are client expectations different today from then?

Vivek: Huge Respect! To all the veteran poster artists of that era. I was privileged enough to meet and learn from them. God bless them all. The process is the same till now. The only things which have changed are the medium, technology, time, involvement of more minds and interference. Those days, a poster artist was given creative freedom. These days, everyone knows everything except the artist working on it. But I can’t help it, so I’m going with the flow and doing my best job around it for a living.

CG. How did your design journey start and how did you carry it forward through any related education, learning processes, practice and experiences?

Vivek: It started with my father, Late Shri. Arvind Mandrekar, who was a fine artist and illustrator for Amar Chitra Katha. So my upbringing in art and inspirations were from him and also my drawing teachers, Beena Godambe miss and Rajesh Rumade sir, who guided me in my school days. Presently, I have been learning under the guidance of a well known fine artist and teacher, Shri. Suresh Bhosale sir. Post the 90’s a digital era in designing started, of which movie posters were part. It had everything from a Title Design, Image Manipulation to Colour Grading done digitally.

Posters by Vivek Mandrekar

Somewhere, the childhood interest in movie posters created a curiosity that pushed me to learn the tools of the trade. But, in those days, there was limited access to tutorials, the internet and online courses. Thankfully, a god-sent friend of mine, Dinesh Narayanan, a master digital artist in entertainment art, gave me advanced training in Adobe Photoshop, which was the tool for creating movie posters. But, afterwards, due to personal circumstances, I could not afford to join art school or take formal education in it. I started working at an early age in the movie poster industry, which wasn’t easy at the beginning. I did odd jobs for survival. Humiliation; insults from senior artists in the field; failure and rejections came with it. But if I look back on these now, there was a silver lining. These experiences have been my education and learnings which led me to follow my dream.

CG. What’s your progression of taking artwork from understanding the brief to executing the final result?

Vivek: It starts with the reading of a script. Then, grounded on that, concept sketches and mood boards are created with various options. After approval and revisions, a photoshoot is directed based on the concept sketches. Post the photoshoot, the actual magic starts, where the final execution of the poster starts shaping up.

Posters by Vivek Mandrekar

CG. Which films or related works would you consider your best and could you please elaborate on the process they involved?

Vivek: Not yet. Long way to go! The journey has just started. But what gave me recognition and a foothold in the industry was my work on the movie, “Thugs of Hindostan.” Especially the illustrated Imax poster, which got me appreciation from my inspiration and legendary movie poster artist, Paul Shipper sir. What more could I ask!

CG. What features or nuances do you need to pay attention to in your artwork so as to engage today’s audience?

Vivek: Aesthetics, balance, composition, typography, mood and, above all, storytelling are the required features for any movie poster. Movie posters have the power to hold viewers’ attention and tell a story within seconds. Condensing a 2-3 hour movie in a single image is not as easy as it seems.

CG. Can you name some of the artists and illustrators who inspire you and what about their works draws your attention?

Vivek: There are so many in various art forms but some of them I look up to and still learn from in poster art are Diwakar Karkare, Eswar, Yashwant Parab, Drew Struzan, Paul Shipper, Steven Chorney, Bob Peak, Bill Gold, John Alvin, James Goodridge, Mark Westermoe, Rory Kurtz, Steeve Reeves, Akiko Stehrenberger and some of my contemporaries, Raj Khatri, Tuney John, Vinci Raj.

Photographers like Abhitabh Kame, Gautam Rajadhyaksha, Rico Torres. Typography artists such as Kamal Shedge, Jignesh Pancholi, Sandeep Bobade, Thom Schillinger. Illustrators include Bal Thackeray, Vikas Sabnis, Raj Thackeray, Pundalik Vaze, C.M. Vitankar, Deelip Khomane, Mort Drucker, Norman Rockwell, Frank McCarthy, Sam Spratt, Jason Seiler.

Posters by Vivek Mandrekar

CG. What kind of projects interest you and is there any particular kind of work you are looking for?

Vivek: Every kind of project interests me as long as there is creative freedom. Currently, I am more inclined towards doing illustration-based movie posters.

CG. Do you have any other areas of interest as an illustrator and artist?

Vivek: I have been experimenting, learning and achieving traditional medium techniques in my digital paintings, which has given me a different avenue to explore – the other side of my interest and calling, apart from movie poster art. Thanks to the arrival of Wacom Tablet and Balaji Waghmare, an artist and friend who taught me to use it. Also, Sheridan J, whose tutorials helped me learn digital painting art.

CG. What do you think the future holds for poster designing?

Vivek: In the past ten years, poster designing got much more attention, thanks to the exposure on social media platforms. But on the other hand, due to the dying print culture, consumption has shifted to digital thumbnails and video content. Agencies and artists are now just a small part of this industry. Hence, evolving and adapting according to the trends are the only ways to reach success.

Posters by Vivek Mandrekar

CG. What skills do you think the upcoming poster designers need to have in order to be in tune with these anticipated changes in the field and how can filmmakers contribute to taking the art genre in a better direction?

Vivek: Patience, observation, being honest with your work, and constantly learning are the only skills required, rest follows. Don’t get attracted to the glamorous side of the industry. Be focused and dedicated to your craft! Everything will arrive at the right time.

 

Filmmakers can contribute by being more respectful towards the art of poster designing and help it become an asset.

Vivek_Feature - Amitabh Bachchan
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Nudes, an architecture firm founded by Nuru Karim introduces The Forest as a place that encourages hands-on learning, green learning possibilities, networked communities, and experiential learning while improving air quality and student health.

Pune, a city in Maharashtra, has seen some substantial urban growth in recent years. This increase in urban density has led to very scarce recreational spaces around the city. These spaces, also known as green pockets, are what act as the lungs for the city. Mumbai based architectural firm, NUDES have taken this case up to design an urban forest like school in the city. The design is a part of the winning entry of an invited competition for design on ecological change.

Architecture by NUDES

Concept of the School

Titled “The Forest”, the school is built on five major concepts of ‘grow,’ ‘learn,’ ‘reuse,’ ‘plant,’ and ‘play,’ and investigates the link between nature and education. The proposal includes two cylindrical “green towers” and attempts to bring some landscape amidst a crowded area. Located at a distance of 3 hours from the city of Mumbai, the design for the school has a rooftop “infinity” loop track connecting the two “green” cylindrical volumes.

Design in Detail

The ‘loop’ on the top has been created as a cycling track that will host a variety of activities, including workshops, student exhibitions, student-led marketplaces, and other events, in addition to its primary role. With the increase in pollution, the school’s architecture acts as a beacon of hope to meet the community’s wider requirements. “The track was a consequence of our consultation with stakeholders who expressed concerns about gaps in the city’s infrastructure, such as secure pedestrian walkways, universal accessibility, and cycle tracks, among other things, the architect Nuru Karim chips in about the project.

Architecture by NUDES

The school will also include a double-height theatre on the bottom floor and five stories of classrooms above it, reaching a height of 32 metres at its tallest point. The exteriors of both buildings will be surrounded by stepped balconies with plants, creating a vertical forest. Phytoremediation is a technique in which certain plants absorb harmful substances through their leaves or roots, allowing them to remove contaminants from the air. Photosynthesis is another way they convert carbon dioxide to oxygen.

A Futuristic Proposal

Nudes’ Forest School intends to tackle Pune’s urban challenges by planting trees at every level and building a “bicycle track for a city in desperate need of pedestrian walkways and cycling tracks.” At the basement level are a tennis court and a pool. There are also service pathways for access to the landscape at the facade, which has restricted access for safety purposes.

Architecture by NUDES

This kind of architecture that imbibes the values of climate change and environmental protection at the structural level will be an efficient stage for the students to learn these values from. The programmatic functions and the interiors are also tastefully placed to ensure an open learning environment. Hands-on learning, green learning possibilities, networked communities, experiential learning, improved air quality and student health, passive cooling, sensitivity to climate change and global warming, and social responsibility are all some features included in the ideation of the project.

Architecture by NUDES
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Real is believable. But abstract teases the imagination. You don’t have to choose one of the two while creating. Mixing reality with abstract is the way to go according to digital artist Ankur Singh Patar. Whether it’s creating a portrait or manipulating a photograph, the digital art is capable of going as far as your imagination can take it. He shares what to keep in mind when working on the digital medium.

Illustratio for Toyota Land Cruiser - 70 years
Digital Art
University of Queensland
Digital Art
University of Queensland

Let your Artwork Play the Guessing Game

Realism, disguised with abstraction, makes for interesting artwork. Abstract art has no boundaries, no set of protocols and no clear message. The fun part is that even though you’ve created the piece with a certain subject in mind, every viewer will comprehend it according to their thinking and imagination and arrive at different conclusions. Realism is important because it helps to connect with the viewers.

Digital Art
Harp and Rabaab
Digital Art
Pandit Ji
Digital Art
Campaign for Adobe

The Challenge is to Re-create the Already-Created

When a famous personality is your subject, it’s important to think beyond how others have portrayed him/her. It gives you the chance to surprise not only yourself as an artist but also the audience. Doing some research, like going through some of the best creative works on the subject, is always recommended. You’ll notice that most portraits are hand-drawn sketches or paintings. That’s why exploring the digital medium can work wonders as it gives you limitless scope and opportunities to experiment.

Digital Art
Anom
Digital Art
God of Small Things
Digital Art
Femina Illustration
Illustration & Photography for Anibus

Creating digital portraits makes your work stand out. It also allows for the beautiful creation and merging of abstract elements along with unique colours. Now that’s different!

Digital Art
M.S. Dhoni
Digital Art
Rafael Nadal
Digital Art
Roger

Colours are the Protagonists

Our subconscious mind is capable of communicating with colours. After all, they are the expressions of our emotions, feelings, thoughts and moods. That’s why, most of the time, you’ll find that the colours you chose were done without a thought. Sometimes it’s better not to plan them and let them be spontaneous. However, sometimes they need to be monitored with respect to the design. The primary colour is an important ingredient as it sets the mood. Including a splash of contrasting colours supports and emphasizes the message and feeling which are embedded in the design.

Digital Art
Scent of a Woman
Digital Art
Udda
Digital Art
Ghagga

A Colour on its own is Incomplete

Colours are like a language. Like certain words hold different meanings when used in different contexts, so do colours. You can use the same colour to represent a smile in one artwork and laughter in another. It’s how you combine it with other colours and look at a painting as a whole to tell the complete story.

Digital Art
The Catwoman
Digital Art
Djokovic
Digital Art
Surjit Patar

Photo Manipulation is not an easy way out

Using real photographs in your artwork and building around it is equally challenging. You need the right photographs, to begin with. Once you’ve got it, you start planning what effect or things you want to do with it. The best way is to work along the way and alter your design numerous times before you finish. You add an element and then maybe tomorrow when you look at it again, you replace it with something better. That’s how your design grows and a photograph evolves from a subject into a story and finally becomes a piece of art.

Digital Art
Stairs to Heaven
Digital Art
Mad Scientist - Lenovo
Digital Art
Prison Break Fan Art

Published in Issue 14

We dedicated this issue to Digital Art where we explored the connection between our dreams and imagination and how the flexibility of technology can be used to document that. In his exclusive article, Android Jones explains the broader perspective of digital art. Featuring Ankur Singh Patar, Archan Nair, Harshvardhan Kadam and Aamina Shazi Arora, every article discusses how each of them has an individual way of working and yet they all look at life beyond the obvious to appreciate it’s beauty. So, go ahead

 

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