Ariko Inaoka's Photographs of Twins

Juxtapoz // Friday, August 23, 2013
Photographer Ariko Inaoka first met Icelandic twins Erna and Hrefna while travelling the country photographing the landscape. She has since returned every year to take pictures of them and continues to until they are 16, documenting the way their relationship changes, as they grow older. We love the series of beautiful and ethereal photos, even finding some of them a little frightening (though this could be because we recently re-watched The Shining)

Underwater, Dramatic Photography by Tomohide Ikeya

Juxtapoz // Wednesday, August 21, 2013
We have shown some stunning underwater photography on the site before, but these delicately, darkly staged works by Tomohide Ikeya are some of the most bizarre and wonderful we have seen to date. The Japanese photographer has turned the her hobby of scuba diving into a conceptual body of work.

Aki Inomata's Plastic Hermit Crab Habitats

Juxtapoz // Tuesday, August 20, 2013
Inspired and influenced by the architecture of major cities, Japanese artist Aki Inomata constructs intricate plastic habitats for hermit grabs. As hermit crabs grow they require larger shells and will exchange them with other crustaceans, so the habitats resembling the skyline of new york or a tokyo house become shelter for the crabs!

Kotaro Chiba's Girlish Innocence

Illustration // Monday, August 19, 2013
Kotaro Chiba is a professional freelance illustrator, designer, and animator based in Niigata, Japan. Her work is clearly heavily influenced by her home country, containing elements of traditional Japanese art as well as anime and manga, showing lithe young women with long delicate necks and soft features in a variety of natural landscapes.

Back To Nature with Hiroki Takeda

Illustration // Monday, August 19, 2013
Continuing in the the artistic tradition of classical Japanese interpretations of the natural world, illustrator Hiroki Takeda creates portraits of animals through delicately placed strokes of watercolor that represent the plant life of each animal's environment, resulting in a beautiful fusion of flora and fauna. Takeda's work possesses a meditative quality in both subject matter and technique, reflecting the artist's own relaxed approach to his art, preferring to begin his work in a calm, introspective manner in order to fully express the emotional intent of each creative piece.

Fashion Savvy from Shouta Sanoda

Illustration // Monday, August 19, 2013
Shouta Sanoda began his education working in product design but quickly found that illustration piqued his interest as a career. His mastery of the mechanical pencil and his unique blend of realism and graphic elements have made him a rising talent in the fashion illustration industry of Japan. Fully devoted to his hand-made craft, Sanoda's detail-rich and finely precise illustrations take about 20 to 30 hours to complete and are completely rendered without any computer manipulation.

Sakuan Izumi's Bright Simplicity

Illustration // Monday, August 19, 2013
After graduating from art school, Sakuan Izumi worked as a graphic designer for 10 years before deciding that she wanted to become an illustrator. She has since developed a style that combines whimsy and humour with clear, simple lines and bright, garish colors. "It is always my goal for my illustrations to make people happy and surprise them at the same time," says Izumi, who often fuses traditional Japanese art techniques with a distinctively modern sensibility. As the artist explains, "I like to boldly defy boundaries and cherish traditions at the same time."

Sae Tachimori's Vibrant Illustrations

Illustration // Monday, August 12, 2013
Born in 1984 in Osaka, Japan, Sae Tachimori began to work as an illustrator after graduating from the Kyoto City University of the Arts. Her whimsical and vivid illustrations harken back to the fantastical and technically magnificent picture books of the early 20th century, erupting with bright, brilliant colors and chocked full of natural elements and symbolic imagery. The complexity and elegance of Tachimori's work puts her at the forefront of the up-and-coming generation of young illustrators making waves in Japan today. 

Meditations by Takahisa Hashimoto

Illustration // Monday, August 12, 2013
Takahisa Hashimoto was born in 1974 in Fukui, Japan. Before graduating from Senshu University with a degree in Business Administration, he started teaching himself graphic design and instead launched a career as a graphic designer and art director in 1998. It wasn't until 2007, while developing brand campaign ads and TV spots, that he began venturing into the world of illustration and discovered his unique artistic voice. Hashimoto's work won the Society of Illustrators 51 Gold Medal in 2008, and he has been recognized across the globe with the numerous international advertisement and illustration awards.

Ladybird's Requiem by Akino Kondoh

Illustration // Monday, August 12, 2013
Born in Chiba, Japan, Akino Kondoh is an artist and animator known for her striking minimalist compositions, often executed with nothing more than graphite and watercolor. Kondoh as exhibited internationally, earning grants from the Japanese Agency for Cultural Affairs, and has also received the support and collaboration of jazz musician John Zorn, who has used her art on his album covers. Her animated short "Ladybird's Requiem" made it to the top 25 list in the biennial showcase "YouTube Play" at the Guggenheim Museum in New York City.

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