Artist Who Use Unusual Media

Art is more than just paint, pens or pencils on paper. Through its history artists have evolved not only style but the medium they create with. With the rapid advancement in technology, it’s interesting to observe how creativity draws people both with the time and back into the past. Where digital art has made great strides with the help of computers,  traditional artists today also re-discover the beauty in old tools. We feature in this post a few such artists, who have been creative, progressive and even nostalgic with their art.

Cayce Zavaglia  (site)

Though a traditional art form, embroidery has not achieved a status beyond the hobbyist’s world, but Cayce Zavaglia’s expression in stitches brings a new appreciation to the craft.

“I was originally trained as a painter, but switched to embroidery 16 years ago in an attempt to establish a non-toxic studio – and create a body of work that referenced an embroidered piece I had made as a child growing up in Australia.”

Cayce Zavaglia – on her work and inspiration.

Her focus was exclusively on hyper-realistic portraits with the gaze always turned toward the viewer; her tools, cotton silk thread with a crewel. Cayce’s work was specifically astounding for the renaissance painting style she’s achieved with thread. Take a few steps back and you’d think you’re looking at a painted piece.  

Amy Harris (site)

Amy Harris takes paper cut outs to a whole different level. Her whimsical 2D & 3D “illustrations” using paper cut outs have made advertisements, typography, even window displays.

Amy as an illustrator works within several mediums; from paper crafts to ceramics, printmaking etc. Her strength lies in her dedication to express through art that allows her to transcend between instruments.

One of her fascinating projects involve her affiliations with charities such as BlindAid, with whom she conducts community project workshops, “working with groups of blind and visually impaired people to help them explore their creativity, developing their skills and build confidence within a supportive environment”.

Cristiam Ramos (site)

Cristiam Ramos has taken to creating portrait pieces entirely out of candy. From Gummy Bears to licorice, flavors and flavors of gum, hard candies, sweet tarts etc, each of his artworks are made up of up to 6,000 pieces. His largest, candy made art was a Harley Davidson motorcycle ‘sculpted’ up from over 20,000 candy.

Boasting an impressive portfolio, Cristiam, a painter originally from Mexico has found his niche in creating artwork on ordinary surfaces and with non-typical mediums. Beyond his candy portraits, he has re-created masterpieces on the wings of butterflies, awe-inspiring life sized sculptures of the likes of Elvis and pop culture icons ‘painted’ in toothpaste. His works have even been featured in many Ripley’s Believe It Or Not Museums.

Dale Dunning (site)

Better described in his own words, Dale Dunning’ sculptures “are objects of reflection and contemplation. The head that I employ in most of my work is generic, non-specific, gender-less, egg-like in form and intention. I look on them as a mirror which reflects back the observer’s experience in new combinations and associations. The works are open ended with no didactic intent other than to see new possibilities.”

Dale Dunning creates stunning self-portrait sculptures out of a variety of metals. What makes his work unique is how he creates textures of the metals before he creates his ‘head sculptures’.  His body of work include a head made completely of wrenches, rebar, aluminum sculpted with intricate Baroque patterns and even nails.

Erika Iris (site)

Erika Iris is an artist based in Chicago who expresses her love for making art our of unexpected materials through her most recent collection, art from cassette tape films. Her art has been commissioned by American Express, Showtime and even The Recording Academy.

Erika Iris’s art features in this Bruno Mars Video!

Jennifer Maestre (site)

Jennifer Maestre’s original sculptures were inspired by the dangerous yet beautiful urchins. A creature that was alluring, drawing the observer to touch while warning against possible consequences of contact. It’s befitting that she chose sharp, pointed, colorful pencils to express this simultaneous sense of desire and repulsion. Her process involves taking hundreds of sharp pencils, cut up into 1-inch sections and sewing them together using the beading technique of peyote stitches.

Jan Campbell (site)

Jan Campbell, the creator of Avocado Stone Faces is an Irish artist who found her connection to nature through an accidental “pocket pet”. What began as a hobby Instagram account has now turned into a line of Irish lore inspired products. The pieces are whimsical, ranging from ‘Forest Listeners’ to Siofra (sprites) Goddesses, Celtic druids and chieftains. She makes wearable talismans, figurines and totems in silver or bronze cast from the original stone carving.

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